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Tip-o-the-hat to Todd Harbour (confessing my swim)

Posted by Hanleyk1 
Tip-o-the-hat to Todd Harbour (confessing my swim)
February 28, 2017 12:32PM
I'm the new owner of Todd's sea kayak and I just have to take a moment to give him his props. I took it to roll session on Friday where several of us played with it and then Robert W and I took it and my slalom race boat from Sauffley's to AW Acres yesterday after work (chasing the sun and switching off halfway through). The consensus, that thing is a BEAST. It's difficult to roll and difficult to keep upright. Even just cruising across a flat pool, it's like walking on a slackline. In fact it's a little more stable when it hits some waves, just as long as they're all kind of in a straight line.

My first attempt to roll that thing (which is on video that I will post here later) was at the pool. I had heard about the trouble Todd had boofing the dam when the stern hadn't cleared the lip so his weight was resting on the knife edge that is the rear V-hull of that boat. He toppled, and so did I coming off the edge of the pool, really hard. In fact, afterward I thought that Kyle Snowden (who was helping me in by lifting up the stern) had just playfully flipped me, you know, for fun. Video evidence shows otherwise.

Anyhow, caught by surprise and unfamiliar with the boat, I made four poor roll attempts and then swam. Later, when I got in the boat upright and had a chance to feel it out a bit, I was able to roll it. Nonetheless, that thing is a beast to paddle and a beast to roll.

I'm not giving up on that boat yet, but I have a new-found respect for anyone attempting to paddle that thing down the Elkhorn in a race. I am hoping that after paddling it for a while, I will learn how to balance it better and it will become a more friendly and fast boat for me, but only time will tell. Meanwhile, thanks Todd. If you ever decide you want to give this boat another go, it'll be right here waiting for you.

_

Hanley Loller


"It's plum amazing what you can do when you damn well got no choice."
--Rickie Dale Larson
Re: Tip-o-the-hat to Todd Harbour (confessing my swim)
February 28, 2017 02:28PM
I saw it at the roll sessions. Looks like a Current Designs and Walt said it was. What model?

I've got two 17' boats and they are both pretty easy to roll (if the hips are snug - had to add paddling to one). One is a Greenland style with a very low back deck, shallow V, soft chines, and large rocker, one is a British style with a low back deck, moderate V, soft chines, moderate rocker.

Jr.
Re: Tip-o-the-hat to Todd Harbour (confessing my swim)
March 01, 2017 09:04AM
Most current designs probably are easier to roll than this one. The boat was made with some type of mold defect and was adorning the wall of a shop with no outfitting before the previous owner acquired it. Apparently, the mold defect causes the bow to curve up higher out of the water than a normal boat. My thoughts were the extra mass makes it very hard to roll, kind of like bringing your head up at the front of the boat, and you have all that extra weight sitting up out of the water, trying to lever you back down. I'm glad it has found a home Hanley.

Todd
Re: Tip-o-the-hat to Todd Harbour (confessing my swim)
March 01, 2017 12:45PM
Don, it's a Squall GTS.

Todd may be onto something about the bow. Robert and I both noted that even though it is 15' 11" in actual length, the waterline was maybe two feet less because so much of the bow was out of the water. Also, we speculated that the outfitting could play a big factor. The seat sits unusually high off the floor, dropping it would probably improve upright stability. Additionally, the boat is padded out well with nice soft padding, so it's easy to feel comfortable in, but neither one of us felt like we were really firm and solid in there. The cushiness is deceptive. It makes you fell comfortable without realizing you're not really fitting in the boat well. After I change a few things around we'll see about taking it out for another test-spin.

_

Hanley Loller


"It's plum amazing what you can do when you damn well got no choice."
--Rickie Dale Larson
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