Qanik first impressions

Which kayak should I buy? That question I asked myself last fall. I have paddled a Silhouette designed by Nigel Foster since 1999. That is a kayak that I have greatly enjoyed paddling. I fit well in the Silhouette, it is easily driven, it has a small cockpit and a low hull (I have the old version with a small cockpit). I think there is only one major drawback to it. The Silhouette is not particularly fast when turning. At least I can’t get it to turn quickly. So when I decided to buy a new kayak last year, I wanted to have essentially the same characteristics as my silhoutte but with better turning abilites.

The Qanik unwrapped. There is still thick ice on the sea. Here is Qanik at the place where I usually launch my kayak in Göteborg, Sweden.

I’ve looked and test paddled Anasacuta from Valley Kayaks. A very nice kayak actually meet most of my requirements. There are three things that made me not buy a AnasAcuta.
1st Price
2nd Speed
3rd Design and my vanity

I’ve also tried and paddled the Clapotis and that is an excellent kayak in many ways but it is too big. I have tried to convince the constructor Johan Linder to build a low and slimmer version of the Clapotis but without any success.

After reading about Seabird Designs cooperation with Björn Thomasson and when I understood that they had outlined a new kayak model, I was curious and interested in the Qanik. I made contact with Bjorn and asked my questions and talked about my requirements. The answer was  positive to all my issues and with the fact that the pricing of Seabird kayaks is about 50% compared to Valley I decided to go for the Qanik. I bought it without having test paddled or even seen the Qanik.

I still have not paddled it but now it is in my possession anyway. The new kayak was delivered last week.

Qanik has a low profile and a classic shape

The finish is really good.

Screws in the cockpit. Im not used to have open screws at the seat. I know that some kayak models have it.

The first impressions of the Qanik is really good. The external finish quality is good, much better than i expected. Everything seems to be well planed on the deck. I really like the lines and shapes of the kayak. I fit in the cookpit. Seating comfort seems good but it has a soft seat that is riveted. There was surprisingly lots of space for my feet.I’m used to much tighter in my Silhouette.

The Qanik comes to a low price. You can tell by certain construction solutions such as the internal seam between the hull and deck.  They like to use rivets and screws in different locations. They will hopefully do the work but from a designer perspective it could have been done more gracefully. Fortunately, you wont see most of these details externally.

Now I’m curious how the kayak performs in the water and if it will be dry. I will found out soon. We are going to some indoor pool practice in two weeks. And hopefully the ice will melt within a few weeks.

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