Used Carbon Swordfish vs New Glass Evo 2

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7 years 11 months ago - 7 years 11 months ago #21538 by peteski
Hi All

I need some inputs on surfski decision please.

I've paddled a glass Evo 2 in all conditions and loved everything about it. I'm currently testing a slightly used Carbon Swordfish that I can get for the same price as a new Evo 2.

I haven't been able to paddle the SF in confused waters yet, but it feels super stable in Fish Hoek bay which is flat as a pancake at the moment with the offshore winds we've been having.

Should I test the SF in bumpy waters first or will it be similar to the Evo2?

Sorry if this has been covered before...

Fennix Swordfish S - Carbon Hybrid
Last edit: 7 years 11 months ago by peteski.

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7 years 11 months ago #21539 by johnvwoolf
Hi Peteski.
My regular ski is a vac glass Swordfish which I do most of my down winds on. I just subsequently got taken out in the shorebreak whilst assisting another paddler and crunched the nose of the ski and have now ordered a hybrid Swordfish. I also paddle quite often on a carbon Evo2 and have mixed feelings about it. I weigh in excess of 100kg and find that the evo is a great ski and as stable as the Swordfish, but does not have the overall speed on an in/out course. It is a great boat on a downwind, but not as fast on the outward leg(against the wind) as the Swordfish. I look forward to testing the new hybrid Swordfish in similar conditions and will report back.( I am sure that the carbon Swordfish is a better all round boat.)

Cheers,

John.
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7 years 11 months ago #21541 by Goldcoastkiwi
Hi, I have owned both the skis in the variants you are considering, and IMO the Swordfish outclasses the EVO II in so many respects!
Im around 80 kgs and that was enough weight to make the Swordfish behave its self in confusing slop , where my wife at 50 kg found it a bit corky in those conditions. Somehow the EVO II never endeared itself to me, I found it slower and harder work both up and down wind , and the seating position seemed less efficient,I felt the seat was too low in relation to the foot plate.
Of course there are many happy paddlers plying both these skis, and I,m sure many feel differently to me , but I wouldn't hesitate in buying another Swordfish! And the new carbon models are amazingly light!

Skis past and present : New Epic V10 Ultra, Fenn Swordfish Carbon,
Stellar S2E Excel double, PRS 570 , V8 Club, V10 Sport Club,Stellar S2E Advantage double, Epic V10 Sport Performance, Think EVO II, Fenn Swordfish Vac Glass, Fenn LS, new model Stellar S2E double, Fenn Bluefin S Carbon Hybrid
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7 years 11 months ago #21542 by peteski
Thanks for the inputs so far, my head is telling me to go with the SF... I just loved the Evo 2's stability in confused water and it's ability to pick up runs of any size. I'm sure the SF will be as delightful in the same conditions, based on what you've said. I weigh around 85kg, by the way.

A small concern at the moment is the notorious dead leg from the SF. I did play around quite a lot with the footplate position, and found if it was shorter, my legs were fine, but I felt it needed to be slightly longer. One notch further and the back of my calves and hamstrings were touching the hump, which I believe is the cause of the reduced blood flow resulting in the dead legs. I guess I could get a foot plate pad to bring it half a notch closer?

Fennix Swordfish S - Carbon Hybrid

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7 years 11 months ago #21545 by robin.mousley
They're both great skis.

Your comment about dead leg raises a red flag for the SF though. Best be very sure you can find a seating position/length where it doesn't happen anymore. That would definitely be a reason to go with the Evo II.

At 86kg I prefer the Evo II; and my performance improved sufficiently that my buddy Dale Lippstreu felt compelled to move from the SF to the Evo II in an attempt to keep up with me, haha!

But as I say, both great skis, you need to find the one that you prefer. Dead leg is a serious turn-off.

Rob

Currently Fenn Swordfish S, Epic V10 Double.
Previously: Think Evo II, Carbonology Zest, Fenn Swordfish, Epic V10, Fenn Elite, Red7 Surf70 Pro, Epic V10 Sport, Genius Blu, Kayak Centre Zeplin, Fenn Mako6, Custom Kayaks ICON, Brian's Kayaks Molokai, Brian's Kayaks Wedge and several others...
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7 years 11 months ago #21549 by peteski
Thanks Rob, I'll try the SF with padding on the footplate and pedals before making a final decision.

Just curious, do you have the glass or carbon Evo2?

Fennix Swordfish S - Carbon Hybrid

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7 years 11 months ago #21552 by robin.mousley

Just curious, do you have the glass or carbon Evo2?


It's a hybrid layup - carbon deck on a vacuum bagged glass hull. Weighed in at just under 13kg...

Rob

Currently Fenn Swordfish S, Epic V10 Double.
Previously: Think Evo II, Carbonology Zest, Fenn Swordfish, Epic V10, Fenn Elite, Red7 Surf70 Pro, Epic V10 Sport, Genius Blu, Kayak Centre Zeplin, Fenn Mako6, Custom Kayaks ICON, Brian's Kayaks Molokai, Brian's Kayaks Wedge and several others...
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7 years 11 months ago #21553 by Kayaker Greg
Could have sworn you guys were moving to V10's to go faster?

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7 years 11 months ago #21556 by robin.mousley
Haha, yes, we did and we didn't go faster! That's why we're back on intermediate boats.

Oscar had told me many times that I should be on a V10S rather than the V10 - and in retrospect he was right (that I should be on an intermediate boat at any rate!). But given that the new shape V10 is more stable than the old one, I went ahead and got one. But in the choppy conditions that we almost always have here, I found that I was not going any faster, and I was less relaxed on the boat. Dale experienced the same thing.

I did have a couple of good results on flat water, and one magnificent reverse Millers when the waves were perfectly lined up, but in general, my lack of balance means that I lose more speed because of my compromised stroke than I gain from the innate hull speed.

I wasn't compatible with the old V10S seat (rubbed my coccyx raw) and I haven't had the opportunity to try the new shape.

Rob

Currently Fenn Swordfish S, Epic V10 Double.
Previously: Think Evo II, Carbonology Zest, Fenn Swordfish, Epic V10, Fenn Elite, Red7 Surf70 Pro, Epic V10 Sport, Genius Blu, Kayak Centre Zeplin, Fenn Mako6, Custom Kayaks ICON, Brian's Kayaks Molokai, Brian's Kayaks Wedge and several others...

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7 years 11 months ago #21562 by Trilobite
I concur with Rob. I too, tried a whole bunch of Elite boats looking for the Holy Grail: Legend, V10L, SEL, and new V10. I've since downgraded to the V10S and just having the best of times. It really doesn't give away much in the way of speed, and is exceptionally stable and confidence inspiring. I loved the SEL, but struggled to turn it into the wind. I never really felt locked down in the V10. but the Sport is a different matter. It's lively and responsive, and a much better match for my balance skills. Going slower to go faster...

"Nice? It's the only thing," said the Water Rat, solemnly, as he leaned forward for his stroke. "Believe me, my young friend, there is nothing -- absolutely nothing -- half so much worth doing as simply messing about in boats."
'The Wind in the Willows'~Kenneth Grahame

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7 years 11 months ago #21563 by Kocho
Sorry to hijack the thread a bit...

How do you find the seat width and leg room between the V10 and Sport (new versions, I presume)? I too am thinking that I should try the new Sport and see how I find it...

The new V10 fits me better than the old V10 Sport did. And, in terms of balance, I'm beginning to get comfortable in it lately - however, the thought of "downgrading" has been creeping: I'm definitely faster on the V10 on flats than I was on the older Sport (even though I find the new V10 slightly less stable). And I find the new V10 also faster in surfing the local boat wakes - those I could not catch on the old Sport despite the slightly better stability it had for me. And surprisingly, I have fallen off the new V10 fewer times than I thought I would (and never while surfing wakes - only a few times in confused chop, where the length of the V10 puts it high between two waves and it loses stability).

I also own a Think Eze. At 17 feet and flat bottomed 20" wide, it feels more stable than the V10 to start. Interestingly, however, it has so far dumped me more times in relatively easy conditions than the V10 has - the hard chines trick you into thining the decent stability will be there longer when on edge, but it just flips (where the V10 may have lower overall stability, but it has no surprises - it is smooth and the secondary stability builds-up until much steeper angle edging it, well past where the Eze loses it). The Eze's flat bottom (and shorter length and 5-8lb lower weight) make it a bit more twitchy in side chop than the V10... The Eze is slower for me in both top speed and sustained speed. That is, if I'm not too tired and can benefit from the sleeker and longer V10. The Eze feels easier to paddle at a relaxed pace or when tired - the V10 somehow feels like it does not have a glide when I don't paddle it hard...

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7 years 11 months ago #21568 by Davidw
Back on topic, I tried both the Evo and Swordfish back to back in rough conditions over a few days (both glass vacuum). I ended up ordering the Evo for its extraordinary secondary stability and it's controllability downwind.
My feeling was that the Swordfish may have an edge in moderate downwind, but that the bigger it gets the more the Evo comes into its own.
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7 years 11 months ago #21569 by peteski
I couldn't agree more David. The SF is better in calmer conditions but when it gets wild, the Evo 2 comes out tops for me.

I'm still struggling with dead leg on the SF, so that will probably be the deciding factor for me, even though I've grown to love the boat during the past week.

Fennix Swordfish S - Carbon Hybrid

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7 years 11 months ago #21587 by peteski
So I returned the Carbon SF with a heavy heart, but I'm excited about getting the Evo2. Hein at Carbonology suggested I try the new Zest (website still to be updated) which is very similar to the Evo2 and SF.

Here's some info from Hein:

Length: 6.2m
Width: 48cm
Height 35cm

Description: The Zest is an intermediate surf ski offering fantastic performance in all conditions with added stability in comparison to racing/advanced surf skis. With added stability, the paddler can experience increased confidence in his/her ocean paddling without sacrificing performance.

Bow and stern handles
Duel side handles
Full length adjustability

Fennix Swordfish S - Carbon Hybrid

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7 years 11 months ago - 7 years 11 months ago #21589 by Rod Thomas
I've never paddled the Zest but I went from the Horizon to the Vault a year ago and bought the Cruze for my daughters. The Vault was quite a jump but I'm OK now. The Cruze is super stable and real fun. I guess the Zest is somewhere in between. A poster on this thread claimed it was faster than the SF.

www.surfski.info/forum/2-announcements/1...logy-zest.html#14436

Carbonology make very good strong light boats and Hein gives good after-sales (even though I'm in Japan). Also see this review from SA Paddler. So try one if you can (I wish I could!)



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Last edit: 7 years 11 months ago by Rod Thomas. Reason: addition
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7 years 11 months ago #21590 by robin.mousley
I just confirmed with Hein van Rooyen at Carbonology that the Zest has been completely redesigned... So the new Zest has nothing at all to do with the Zest that is described in that article.

...and I have my grubby hands on one; just arrived from PE! And I'll be paddling it tomorrow evening I hope (today we have bitterly cold conditions, rain, snow on the mountains and a gale-force SW wind predicted!).

Rob

Currently Fenn Swordfish S, Epic V10 Double.
Previously: Think Evo II, Carbonology Zest, Fenn Swordfish, Epic V10, Fenn Elite, Red7 Surf70 Pro, Epic V10 Sport, Genius Blu, Kayak Centre Zeplin, Fenn Mako6, Custom Kayaks ICON, Brian's Kayaks Molokai, Brian's Kayaks Wedge and several others...
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7 years 11 months ago #21591 by peteski
Look forward to your feedback Rob, hopefully it's not the same boat I've booked for the weekend :-)

Fennix Swordfish S - Carbon Hybrid

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7 years 11 months ago - 7 years 11 months ago #21592 by Davidw
I chatted to Hein before I bought my EVO and he was very enthusiastic about the new Zest saying that his aim was to make an intermediate boat at least as good as the EV. If he didn't achieve that he wasn't going to release it. Of course the Zest wasn't available locally then and I was too impatient to wait so I went ahead and got an EVO.
He was keen to get one to Rob to test and that has now happened so I'm keen to hear the verdict!
Last edit: 7 years 11 months ago by Davidw. Reason: spelling!
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7 years 11 months ago #21594 by zamalek
Been reading your Swordfish report with interest.While my Swordfish was getting repaired (backwards on a set into a buddy)I borrowed a Carbonology Vault and was very impressed.Started making enquiries and got the following from Hein - the Vault at 5.95m is more suited for a 75kg paddler where the new Zest at 6.2m is for a 90kg paddler.

Ordered and received the Zest within 3 weeks and have the following impressions : Build quality great,a fairly small volume nose which increases in volume but stays narrow just in front of your feet.The rear is decent volume and fairly wide.Compared to my SF it catches runs possibly more easily and somehow does not bury its nose and slow down but pops up and lets you chase over into the next run.The Zest is definitely more "corky" than the SF (maybe at 90kg I am too heavy for it)and twitchier but this has possibly more to do with the extra volume.Into the wind it cuts through nicely without bobbing too much.

The acid test came on a downwind in a 25knot NE from Umdloti around a ship to Pirates SLSC (Durban)with my buddy on a Fenn Millenium (we are about the same on flat water but his 25 years of experience means he thrashes me when downwinding.)Bottom line - was on the beach and washing the ski before he was at backline,so much so that he finally realizes it is time to change.The run into DBN does get rather unsettled with the NE pushing into the bay,so a good allround test.

My advice - ask Hein to exclude the front and rear straps but keep the cockpit straps,great when launching,carrying the ski.Very impressive!Hope this helps.
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7 years 11 months ago #21598 by peteski
I was thinking the same thing wrt the front and back handles. It looks like the front handle might be a problem on the runs. Cockpit handles look great.

Fennix Swordfish S - Carbon Hybrid

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