Thursday, January 21, 2010

Inflatable Canoes

Bic YakkAir HP One at £689.00
Sevylor DS at £345.00
Sevylor Rio at £250.00
Gumotex Helios at £230.00
Sea Eagle 330 at £250.00
Sevylor Tahiti at £130.00
Origami plans at £25.00

Yesterday I explored options for the type of tender best suited to my use aboard my Seawych 19 sloop. Large inflatable dinghies were ruled out for practical reasons, which left a choice between lightweight folding boats and inflatable canoes. The argument went in favour of the Bic YakkAir HP One kayak, but she was pretty expensive at around £689.00. As a long-term investment she may prove good value for money, because she’s a proper little boat in her own right that could provide a lot of fun. I could use her when camping or when I may want an impromptu trip on the river or have an outing to the beach. I must say I’m attracted to the YakkAir HP One kayak, particularly because of the effectiveness of her patent high pressure floor system which improves rigidity and shapes her underwater section for effective tracking.

All things have to be considered. If I’m looking for a temporary solution, a cheaper canoe would do the trick; after all, I may only use her three or four times during the summer cruise. On that basis I could consider the following single-seat canoes: Sevylor DS Kayak at £345.00; Sevylor Rio Canoe at £250.00; Gumotex Helios at £230.00; or the very cheap Challenger K1 at £55.00. Jeff Michals-Brown left a comment on yesterday’s Blog suggesting I may consider a Sevylor Tahiti double canoe. He has been satisfied with his, which he has used as tender for his 20’ yacht. Certainly, the price is attractive at £130.00, including paddles, pump, and seats. There is also the bonus that there is room for another person, or for gear. I could also consider the Sea Eagle 330 at £250.00.

Fortunately, there’s no need for me to rush into making a decision. I may even build a small folding tender, such as an Origami. Indeed, I could manage without a tender. Therefore I need to mull over the possibilities, and meanwhile I should look at a few inflatable canoes, even try them before coming to a conclusion.

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