Top critical review
69 people found this helpful
lousy but cheap
on September 2, 2012
I own this as well as a Seveylor Fiji. I've also owed a lot of non-inflatable kayaks. I'll compare this to the inflatable Fiji. This one stinks compared to that one. If you can get a Fiji or simmilar within 50$ don't hesitate to reject this one. 2.5 stars
on the positive side:
1) more leg room. large adults can stretch out more. fiji is narrow and cramped
2) more back support on the middle seat.
3) paddles that come with it are strong, not flimsy like the seveylor's garbage paddles, so you might not have to buy another paddle.
4) boston valves on main compartments. Seveylor has mix of boston and non-boston on the main compartmets.
5) cargo net for convenience
Now the negative:
flat bottom and elevated sides makes it handle terribly. have to put heavy person in the front or it is hopeless to go without radical turns. As I said I'm an experienced kayaker and this boat is terrible for flat water even without any wind. the twin skags on the bottom do nothing that I can tell.
Compared to a real hard plastic kayak this is not very tippy but it's way more tippy than the seveylor because the main walls are higher up. you ride way down deep in this which is also not as convenient for short children.
sevelyor is made of higher quality materials designed to be over pressurized for stiffness (it has built in stretch gauges). this does not so it's always flimsy.
the seams on the cockpit are against your body so they are inconvenient. The seveylors seems are hidden and well thought out.
hard to clean and drain because there is not drain plug (seveylor has one). which means that unless you live in the arid southwest you will have to clean and dry this by hand before you stow it.
front seat has relatively good back support but had no bottom cushion so being the low point you will be sitting in a pool of water and eventually get diaper rash. adding your own cushion would just lessen the back height support. The back support is anchored to the bottom which is what makes it stiffer. But this also means it is not adjustable in position. On the seveylor you can move the back position which is very handy for using it as a 1-man kayak. this one is kinda silly as a 1 - man.
bow and stern are up curved on the seveylor to keep it out of trouble in waves but this one is tipped down so in a river it will scoop water, probably fold on to your legs, and perhaps trap you while you drown. probably very unsafe other than flat water, on which it is just not a good boat.
The pump is fairly flimsy but it works well. It is supposed to be dual action (pumps on the pull and the push) but mine's valve mechanism was broken out of the box so it only pushed not pulled.
But you can make it work so I gave it 2 stars. The sevelor fiji is not a great boat but this one stinks in comparison. I don't mind this as a second kayak for the kids to play with and go fishing. Easier for 2 adults to fit than the fiji so it's nice for the added versatility of passengers. But this thing is really more of a cheap air bed that floats than a boat.
the main reason to buy this is it is cheap and requires no extra costs: comes with everything you need including quality (not great but sturdy) paddles, pump, reapir kit, and carrying case. The seveylors come with lame paddles, lame carry bag, and lame pumps.