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Old 12-31-2015, 12:39 PM   #1
Saluki
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Big man looking for small canoe

OK, I'm a big guy, 6'2" , 250+ and that's on a good day. Years ago I had an early Hornbeck 12 footer and it did the job fairly well for day trips. Now, I'm looking for a good solo canoe that I can portage to remote ponds but will also have the capacity to carry me and my light-weight camping gear on a several day trip. Suggestions?
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Old 12-31-2015, 01:01 PM   #2
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Hah! I'll be watching this thread. I fall into your weight category as well and would like a lightweight stable canoe that I can use for day trips but also overnights for a few days. The issues aside from capacity are weight (what is light?) and cost. Good luck with your query.
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Old 12-31-2015, 04:25 PM   #3
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You might take a look at either the Swift Keewaydin 15 or the Swift Pack 13.6
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Old 12-31-2015, 05:08 PM   #4
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I am completely happy with my pbw rapidire. I have carried it along with a small daypack into several ponds. I carried into upper Preston, Stoney, grizzle ocean, and clockmill ponds to name a few. Also paddled the rapidfire up fishing brook, jessup, Kunjamuk, Minerva stream. I weigh in at 210 on a good day and have to say that the buying experience and follow up service by Joe and his staff is exceptional.
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Old 12-31-2015, 05:23 PM   #5
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I started out with a Wee Lassie II strip canoe and it was a little too small for me to be comfortable. I am 7' and 200#. This year I built a Kite, a design by John Winters and it is so much more comfortable and maneuverable and generally better. It is rated to 280 if I remember right, so it might be slightly on the small side for you but it is a great design to consider if you are thinking of making your own. Other folks on here have them too but I am not sure of their weights.
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Old 01-01-2016, 08:22 AM   #6
Rich Lockwood
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Why not move on to the the joyous world of single blade solo canoeing? I trip in a 25# Colden Flashfire and considering our weight difference, I think a lightweight Wildfire would work. I much prefer smaller solos for lots of reasons.
happy New Year,Turtle
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Old 01-01-2016, 09:44 AM   #7
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I too have a home built Kite...its design load is 283 lbs, your weight is well within that. I built it a bit too strong (is that possible?) and heavy, full up weight is 39 lbs. It could have been closer to 30 - 32 lbs.
It's a very capable hull, and shapely too.
Don't know if a strip build is within your aspirations or abilities, but there's no less costly way to get a high performance boat.

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Old 01-01-2016, 08:42 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Saluki View Post
OK, I'm a big guy, 6'2" , 250+ and that's on a good day. Years ago I had an early Hornbeck 12 footer and it did the job fairly well for day trips. Now, I'm looking for a good solo canoe that I can portage to remote ponds but will also have the capacity to carry me and my light-weight camping gear on a several day trip. Suggestions?
Do you want to sit or kneel?

The RapidFire (Placid) will fill your bill if you sit and double blade. You can get it built for kneeling but you are a tad tall for that stance in the Rapid.

Coldem/Bell/Placid Wildfire is a good boat for a keeling single blade paddler.

My Colden is 31 lbs. Rapid 23. The Keewaydin is a boat I have paddled and do not have. Another good candidate. You might actually fit a 14 but I think the 15 might be best.
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Old 01-02-2016, 08:00 AM   #9
Rich Lockwood
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I agree with Yellowcanoe. I own a Kee 14 and it would be too small. The Wildfire,although it is the same length,is fuller and handles more weight better.
Turtle
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Old 01-03-2016, 12:24 AM   #10
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Osprey & Rockstar

I'm your size and I have found the John Winters' designed Swift Osprey and Dave Kruger's Bell Rockstar to be more than capable for 1-2 week solo trips.
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Old 01-03-2016, 09:13 AM   #11
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I'm your size and I have found the John Winters' designed Swift Osprey and Dave Kruger's Bell Rockstar to be more than capable for 1-2 week solo trips.
The Osprey is essentially the same hull below the waterline as the Kite.
I have a buddy that strip built an Osprey (around 30 lbs, IIRC) and does not like the way it handles. He plans to sell it soon. It's a well crafted boat and nicely finished...He's on this forum occasionally.
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Old 01-03-2016, 03:35 PM   #12
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What didn't he like about the handling? I had thought that he had gone from a Wee Lassie II to an Osprey/Kite like I did, and I thought the Kite was almost an infinite improvement, so I am curious.
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Old 01-03-2016, 03:47 PM   #13
Rich Lockwood
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Isn't the Osprey stripper hull different from the Swift one? I'd been looking for a lighter Osprey and may be interested.
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Old 01-04-2016, 02:27 AM   #14
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A longer length canoe will give better stability for heavier loads and will usually track better. If stability is a worry you can always add sponsons or outriggers. I had some outriggers custom made from Calif. but they went out of business. They allow me to stand up in my canoe to fly fish yet are very light since their flotation is made from foam. I recommend a stripper too.
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Old 01-04-2016, 10:25 AM   #15
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Isn't the Osprey stripper hull different from the Swift one? I'd been looking for a lighter Osprey and may be interested.
Turtle
A wood hull of the same design will always turn out different than a composite as wood tends to go to straight, resisting bends. Loon Works Nakoma and Bell FlashFire were almost the same boat..almost. The Nakoma( wood) pulled in more due to the gunwales( wood) resisting a bend. There may be other differences in the tumblehome shape too

I have a infused gunwale Rapid Fire. I ordered a spray cover for it. The spray cover was too narrow. It had been designed for a wood gunwaled Rapid Fire.

Tripping I would never use sponsons. Stability underway depends on hull shape. A short round log is just as stable as a long round log. ie. not. Flatter bottom boats are more stable initially. Flared hulls are more stable at the tipping point.

If you fish of course sponsons are good if you stand.
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Old 01-04-2016, 10:58 AM   #16
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There are lots of choices from Hornbeck (and their imitators) & Placid BoatWorks if you're OK with a sit-on-bottom canoe and double blade paddle. Both brands are well made and have their various advantages over the other, but I prefer a more traditional (higher) seat and single blade canoe paddle.

I'm 6' and 235 lbs. - I shopped around when I was in the market for a lightweight solo canoe a few years ago, and I chose a Wenonah Wilderness solo at 15'4" in ultralight Kevlar at 32 lbs. It's comfortable and stable from a seated position (not low on the bottom of the boat, and I don't kneel), and it has plenty of volume. Couple that with a yoke, and you're good to go for long trips with many carries.

(the red canoe in my avatar is my older Wenonah Solitude; also good for trips, but much heavier at 50+ lbs.)
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Old 01-04-2016, 12:35 PM   #17
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I'm 6'2" and 245. I paddle a Bell Magic, sitting. It feels a little tender, but it's actually pretty stable, especially with a load. You can really eat up the miles with this hull.

Take it easy,
Bob
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Old 01-04-2016, 03:14 PM   #18
Bob K
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If OK paddling double blade from bottom of boat, I'll second the PBW Rapidfire. I was 205# (now less!) and bring lots of stuff canoe camping, including cooler, chair and many creature comforts. Yes I have to double the occasional portages for overnights. I take extra stuff in my boat when tripping with friend using a 12ft Hornbeck.

It is seaworthy and paddles smoothly - and I do prefer double blade. I do have a homemade spray cover I've used only infrequently in high winds (Cranberry & LTL). My friend's loaded 12ft Hornbeck could not handle the waves on LTL this summer and we aborted the traverse.

I don't have experience paddling the other boats mentioned.
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Old 01-04-2016, 07:56 PM   #19
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I also have a PB Rapidfire. I have the high seat mounted on rails, higher than any of the 3 different floor mounted seat options. Joe will also make seat with reinforcement bands to hang an even higher seat from the gunwales. I wish I had one of those. I have a custom spray cover that I also bought from Joe, and it works very well.

I have the high seat because my preference is to paddle exclusively single blade, with the exception of a few times when I have paddled that boat in the 90-mile Adirondack Classic race. Unfortunately (IMO) in the 90-mile race class that was created for that type of boat the rules require a double blade during the race. A slender straight wood or bent carbon single blade is far more responsive and enjoyable for me.
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Old 01-08-2016, 12:15 AM   #20
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OK, I'm a big guy, 6'2" , 250+ and that's on a good day. Years ago I had an early Hornbeck 12 footer and it did the job fairly well for day trips. Now, I'm looking for a good solo canoe that I can portage to remote ponds but will also have the capacity to carry me and my light-weight camping gear on a several day trip. Suggestions?
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