Friday, 18 May 2012

Venture kayaks Islay 14 1st look.

 Take to the water! Its not all hard graft here at A.S. We do get to splash about a bit as well. Ewart has a quick spin in the new Venture Kayaks Islay 14.

 Jemma paddling smooth, no splashing. The Islay  is the new boat from Venture. It has design elements taken from the very successful P+H Delphin, a slightly Scandinavian look and feel about it and is generally pretty nice to paddle.

 A square-ish stern thats rudder ready and you can see there is plenty of rocker.
A roundish hull through the mid section with soft edges with a vee'd bow and stern. Initial stability is moderate, not massive but secondary is very good. This boat should suit a paddler looking for a smaller day/weekend touring boat that will be a bit more fun on moving water. It's not anywhere near as responsive or manoeuvrable as the Delphin and feels less planted than the Easky 15 but feels forgiving and easy but not too boring at the same time. Does that make sense?

 All the usual features, twin hatches, drop down skeg, decklines, the reccess to take the Venture deck pod and a paddle park.

Jemma and Ewart discuss the Islay 14 with Tim from Pyranha/Venture kayaks. Production has started with boats in stock very soon.

Thursday, 10 May 2012

First Impressions

 We have had the new Hurricane Tracer 165 in the shop for about a week. Ewart and Liam have both had a paddle. Here are Ewart's first thoughts.

 "I was pretty excited to get in this boat and give it a go. Firstly the finish and appearance is just awesome. It looks amazing, the pearlescent finish would not go amiss on a flashy boy racer car" (that is a good thing, not bad in this case).

Sweet out fitting that needs little adjustment.
 After checking it all out having a good look around the boat it was off to the A.S Testing ground. (Exeter Ship canal) for a Stig style test track lap.

                   Separate hatch rims are much drier (found on very high end sea kayaks) The hatch covers are easy to fit, even with one hand which makes a change compared to very tight single compound rubber ones.

"The very first thing I noticed when getting in the boat was that its not huge inside the cockpit but it fitted me instantly with no adjustment to the outfitting other than setting the Sealect foot rests. (very easy, done whilst sitting in the boat)."

"On pushing away from the pontoon the initial stability was not as much as I thought it might be. For me this is great, I like a nice active feeling boat. For a first time paddler it might feel a little wobbly. At my weight of 72kgs there was plenty of freeboard left and it sat quite high out of the water. So it could take a fair bit of gear and that would make it feel a bit more planted. But as an overall paddler size I reckon 6` and about 80kgs would be near the top end (plus a bit of kit)".

"The acceleration is amazing, it gets up to speed very easily and just glides through the water. Top speed was not as much as I thought but it took no effort to paddle.
This is down to the rocker profile I think. Its got a reasonable amount. As soon as you whack it on edge it just whips round. Awesome! As quick in the turn as the P+H Delphin. (which is also very playful.). Its also very stable on edge (due to the shallow Vee hull) which gives you loads of confidence to get it over and move about loads. Bank to Bank s turns were huge amounts of fun." (Hold on, flat water fun in a touring kayak? Is Ewart OK?)

Double locks and back with no real push was about 35mins (didn't time it properly though).

"In all I think this will make for a great day boat for coastal paddling, light weight over nighters and general touring.  A more in depth test when it stops raining and the rivers not pumping."

I know I will be nicking it for any staff paddles and might even just drive around with it on my roof rack- so shiny......oh, did I mention just how light it was? Perfect for my knackerd shoulder.

Thursday, 3 May 2012

Hurricane just blew in

We have taken delivery of the super shiney, and super light Hurricane Kayaks range. Demos are now available of the Phoenix 120 and Phoenix 130 sit on tops along with the Tracer 165 touring kayak.

Check out our brand preview here:

Hurricane kayakas, Leaders in light weight.

Ewart is very taken with the Tracer. He's not really into rotomoulded plastic sea kayaks as the weight is a bit much for his knackered shoulders and he likes to go fast with little effort (he's quite lazy! ).

So make sure you book ahead for a demo as you may have to prise it out of his hands.