Which ski ?

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11 years 2 months ago #7455 by MhojoNZ
Replied by MhojoNZ on topic Re:Which ski ?
I own a Vault, had a V12 Elite and a V10S and have also had the Atom for an extended demo. The V12 is longer than the Atom and on flat water probably has more boat run. However it felt too big for me and at 165lb it had too much volume for me. The Atom has quite a deep bucket though. Another option might be the Nelo - it has quite a high seat and is the closest thing to paddling a K1.

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11 years 2 months ago - 11 years 2 months ago #7456 by kajakman
Replied by kajakman on topic Re:Which ski ?
Thanks for the info., much appreciated.
I am used to tippy boats like the T-Rex, I took the seat out and put a lower foam one that I made.
With a ski you cannot do that - the seat is where is will always be. If the Atom is quite a bit less stable than the V10L, it might be more than I can handle because at 6', I also have a long torso for my height, so center of gravity is a bit up there as compared to a shorter person or shorter torso.
With KayakPro's Burn, I can take the seat out and make my own foam one as low as I can possibly put it.
If I did go with that boat, I hope that the seat can go low enough to make the difference.
I just don't know what the stability of his K-1 Burn compares to say a V-12. He does not paddle skis much I don't think, so he did not have a comparison to give me.
So the grand question is: would the hull speed of a 4.5 stability K-1 Burn be faster than the Atom?
It may be irrelevant anyway because I could not lower my center of gravity in the Atom.
Comparing stability ratings of K-1 race kayaks is easy enough, but how to translate and compare to skis....impossible.
Grayson Bourne does believe for sure that the Burn K-1 would be faster than a V-12. His fastest kayak with a stability rating of 1, like the Aurum is similar to the Vanquish series and too tippy for me he feels.

In the past I have bought a lot of race boats I was not able to try out (too far away), some I liked, some I did not, and so I want to make a sound decision before I order an untried boat, based upon some good opinions from folks like you out there.

I find the sport of kayak racing fascinating, challenging and fun with all the variables that pertain to racing surf skis and kayaks.
Last edit: 11 years 2 months ago by kajakman.

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11 years 2 months ago #7457 by zachhandler
Replied by zachhandler on topic Re:Which ski ?
I somewhat doubt that a 4.5 stability K1 is faster than a v12. I have an older K1 (stability 2 perhaps). I am faster in the v12 on flat water even though the K1 puts me in a better ergonomic position with a slightly higher seat. Also, Greg Barton says the v12 is the only boat he can paddle faster than an ICF K1.

Here is a speed comparison he made.

www.epickayaks.com/news/news/boat-speed-comparison

The points I take from this are that the v12 is as fast as stability 1 K1 in the hands of an expert, but faster than the k1 in the hands of an intermediate paddler with balance issues. Also, the amount of flat water speed lost by stepping down to a V10s from a v12 is actually quite small. Likely for a lot of us the v10S is faster once there is some decent wave action.

Current Skis: Epic v10 g3, NK 670 double, NK exrcize, Kai Wa’a Vega, Carbonology Feather, Think Jet, Knysna Sonic X
Former Skis: Epic V12 g2, Epic V12 g1, Epic v10 double, Nelo 550 g2, Fenn Elite S, Custom Kayaks Synergy

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11 years 2 months ago #7458 by mckengmsurfski
Replied by mckengmsurfski on topic Re:Which ski ?
I currently own/paddle an Epic V12 Ultra, an Epic V10 Sport Ultra, and a Nelo Ocean Vintage Ski, and I would agree with Zach.
I doubt a 4.5 stability K1 is faster than a V12. Plus the V12, being a ski, is more versatile and suited to a wider variety of conditions... if you fall out, just climb back in, no messing about with a skirt or getting water out. The V12 also has a nice bucket that seems to fit a variety of people, while providing a decently ergonomic paddling position.
If you want a K1 type position in a ski, the Nelo is the way to go. The seat sits up pretty high, and allows for full rotation and leg extension. The hump is also very small, which helps as well. Stability is similar to the V12, though less secondary seems to be available at times. B/C of the more ergonomic paddling position it puts you in it seems to accelerate faster than the V12, but the top end speed seems about the same. Still, I have no doubt that in ocean conditions I'm faster in my V12.
My understanding of the Atom (based on conversations mind you, I've not paddled one) is that its about as tippy a ski as you can get, but very fast. It would be more unstable than a V10L, and likely a handful if you ever decided to paddle it anywhere other than the flat. Plus, if you're in ME, you may have a hard time finding one for sale around you. The few I've seen available in the US are in California, though I'm sure you could special order one from their guy in FL as well.
If you're trying to lower your center of gravity to get more stable, why not just go with a more stable ski? The Forum thread entitled Epic V10s versus Kayak centre zeplin II is an interesting read along that thought line... Again, agreeing with Zach on this one, I find that in ocean or harbor chop conditions I (being a mere middle-aged mortal) equal or exceed my fastest times on regularly paddled routes in my trusty V10 Sport Ultra, and have more along the way.

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11 years 2 months ago #7459 by mckengmsurfski
Replied by mckengmsurfski on topic Re:Which ski ?
MelMM
Where in SC are you?
I'm in the Charleston area and would love to check out your Atom. I considered one at one point but could never locate one to try.
We have a nice little group of ski paddlers in this area if you're not too far away and would be interested in joining us some time.

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11 years 2 months ago #7460 by MelMM
Replied by MelMM on topic Re:Which ski ?
mckengmsurfski, I'm in Rock Hill, so not exactly in the neighborhood. I WISH I were in Charleston. If you ever get to the Rock Hill or Charlotte area, you are welcome to try the Atom.

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11 years 2 months ago #7461 by mckengmsurfski
Replied by mckengmsurfski on topic Re:Which ski ?
MelMM
Thanks for the response. Sounds like a good excuse to visit friends in Charlotte. If I can figure out dates I'll find out how to get in touch.

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11 years 2 months ago #7462 by MelMM
Replied by MelMM on topic Re:Which ski ?
In a few weeks, we'll also have the Carbonolgy Vault in the fleet. I believe it will be the only one in the US. Got that one for my husband, who needs a bit more stability, but is a light guy. And I'm also getting the new Fenn Slimline.

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11 years 2 months ago #7463 by mckengmsurfski
Replied by mckengmsurfski on topic Re:Which ski ?
Hmmm... You've quickly become my new best friend. Sounds like you may have a couple of surfski addicts from the lowcountry coming for a visit.

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11 years 1 month ago #7564 by heinvr
Replied by heinvr on topic Re:Which ski ?
Hey MelMM,
Hein here from carbonology Sport in SA.
Please drop me a line at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
Would like to chat about your Vault.
Regards,
Hein

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10 years 9 months ago #9226 by Mike C.
Replied by Mike C. on topic Re:Which ski ?
MelMM -

I'm a US paddler as well (California), and am considering ordering a Vault. Any impressions/feedback from you or your husband on the boat?

Thanks!

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10 years 9 months ago #9231 by Dicko
Replied by Dicko on topic Re:Which ski ?
Mike C,
I've had a vault for a couple of months now and am enjoying the experience immensely. I've come from a Red7 pro and a Think Legend, which were both great boats for the conditions that I normally paddle in, but every race I entered seemed to be held in sloppy sideshore chop and consequently I would struggle. I think this was partly due to the fact that I never need to paddle in these conditions, but I also think my boats just weren't built to paddle in sidechop. No rocker and sidechop or lumpy conditions equals hardwork.
The Vault handles this sort of stuff easily.
I would say it's slightly slower than the other 2 boats downwind, but only just. It seems to pick up runners more easily but doesn't hold them as well.
It wanders a bit on waves, whereas the other 2, would hold a dead straight line. I think a more balanced rudder will solve this.
On the flat it is faster than the legend and almost as fast as the red 7, and that was a fast boat on the flat. It is surprisingly quick for such a stable boat.
If you love big downwinds the nose has a tendency to bury, but in most moderate conditions it isn't an issue.
I really like this boat. It has made paddling fun again. Conditions that I would normally balk at going out in are no longer an issue. It's comfortable, well made and has made me a faster paddler in less than perfect conditions. There are a couple of things that would make it better. Firstly the scuppers let in water at a huge rate when you're stationary. This isn't a problem in Summer but will annoy the hell out of me in Winter. We all love the cold water in the cockpit trick. A bung like the Think boats would be good. A dedicated leash point would also be nice. All in all it is a great allround boat. Fast enough to keep up with the quicker boats and stable enough to make difficult conditions less demanding. The thing I like most is the way it drafts other boats. I've never been one to draft, but this boat makes it so easy I spend half my paddle zig zagging around to see what sort of wash I can ride.
Hope that helps.

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10 years 9 months ago #9232 by MelMM
Replied by MelMM on topic Re:Which ski ?
Mike C,

The Vault did not work out very well for my husband. He had been paddling a V10Sport, and had paddled a bit in a V10L that used to be mine. He was hoping the Vault would be more stable than the V10L, but he really didn't find that to be the case. He struggled with the Vault, and eventually gave up on it and ordered a Swordfish.

So the Vault became mine! I have played around with it some. I find it stable, but I also paddle an Atom, so everything feels stable to me. What I noticed about the Vault, was that while it usually feels pretty solid, it can get twitchy in a side chop. This is where my husband had so much trouble, and after paddling it, I came to understand why he was struggling. He actually felt like my Elite SL was more stable than the Vault, and while I don't agree with that assessment in general, in a side chop, it might be true. At least for us. I should note here that we are both light. Even my husband is only about 155, so that might affect our perception of the stability. Even in the side chop, when the boat starts to feel twitchy, it has good secondary.

As far as speed goes.... well, I'm not going to bother comparing it to the Atom. But I have done some tests in it vs. my Elite SL, where I paddled the same out and back course in each boat. Generally, the Vault is just a tad slower, but there is one situation where I actually go faster in it. That would be downwind, but just in really short wind chop. It can just pick up that tiny stuff that is beneath the dignity of a ski like the SL. In larger conditions, I would prefer to be in the SL. The Vault accelerates quickly, so that makes it easy to get on a wave, and it just picks up every little ripple.

I think whether or not you will like the Vault will depend upon your background, and what you want out of the boat. A lot of the people singing the praises of this boat seem to be people who have been paddling elite level skis and doing OK, and just want a bit more stability. If that's you, you might love the boat. If on the other hand, you are like my husband, and trying to move up from a stable ski like a V10Sport or an XT, you need to be aware that the Vault is not a happy medium between a beginner and elite ski. It skews a lot closer to the elite end of the spectrum than the beginner end. The other factor will be what kind of conditions you paddle in. If it's a lot of short stuff, you might really like the Vault, as it will pick up those little waves better than a long ski.

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10 years 9 months ago #9233 by Mike C.
Replied by Mike C. on topic Re:Which ski ?
Thank you so much for the detailed and thoughtful feedback - it is VERY helpful.

Regards,
Mike

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10 years 9 months ago #9235 by AR_convert
Replied by AR_convert on topic Re:Which ski ?

MelMM wrote: He was hoping the Vault would be more stable than the V10L, but he really didn't find that to be the case.


I was on a V10L for 9 months before I went to the Vault. Could paddle the V10L reasonably fast in everything but downwind conditions. You are right, the Vault doesn't feel a whole lot more stable than the V10L on the flat, BUT when conditions get uglier it is far more predictable.

MelMM wrote: What I noticed about the Vault, was that while it usually feels pretty solid, it can get twitchy in a side chop.


An example of the Vaults ability in ugly conditions was made apparent in a race I did about 5 weeks ago. I am not an elite paddler, currently finishing around 40th in races of 300+.

But over a 14km course against around 750 other ski's where the conditions were almost all ugly crosschop I came 13th! To be fair I did do a lot of training in these conditions, but this ski is able to be paddled very well in cross chop (That's a part of the reason I bought it.

MelMM wrote: If on the other hand, you are like my husband, and trying to move up from a stable ski like a V10Sport or an XT, you need to be aware that the Vault is not a happy medium between a beginner and elite ski. It skews a lot closer to the elite end of the spectrum than the beginner end. The other factor will be what kind of conditions you paddle in. If it's a lot of short stuff, you might really like the Vault, as it will pick up those little waves better than a long ski.


I agree that the Vault is probably more towards the upper end of the intermediate tag. Having said that it is still an achieveable step up from the XT or V10 Sport. I guess it depends just how confident you were in either of those ski's. I waited until I was what I considered bullet proof in my V10 sport before going to the V10L and really enjoyed the transition as it wasn't a huge leap for me. A mate just went from his V10 sport to a V12 and is flying in that ski, but he did a couple of seasons in the V10 sport.

I see guys train in the Evo/XT/V10 sports who are happy to plod along each week not really extending themselves and avoiding any challenging conditions. I think you need to be bullet proof in your ski in all conditions before thinking about moving up, otherwise you'll struggle too much.

Always looking for the next boat :)

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10 years 9 months ago #9237 by Dicko
Replied by Dicko on topic Re:Which ski ?
MeIMM sums it all up well. The Vault feels extremely stable to me. I don't think it has the same secondary stability as the legend but it has very predictable stability. There aren't any surprises.
I think that's what makes it fun to paddle. The rolling etc is all very predictable. It is a step down in stability for me but it doesn't feel like it. I actually feel like I can paddle faster.
I'm 94 kg, (95 after MrsDicko's birthday cake) and my boat is the glass layup so maybe this helps the stability.
The boat also responds if you get it on the plane. It seems to plod at 10.5 kmh but as you get up to 11.5 kmh it doesn't require to much extra effort to keep it there. In a race situation the boats ability to draft is a huge bonus

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