Friday, October 30, 2009

CETUS
Sea Trial
(photo by Leslie J.)
Okay, so the picture is on the pond, taken at Rutabaga the day I took delivery. Yesterday, however, I got down to the big lake (Michigan) and put her through her paces. Many observations:

First, she is made of Diolan and not noticeably heavier than the Romany which is almost 2 feet shorter. When I put the boat on the wall, I noticed it had more rocker than I had thought. That would explain a lot about how the boat handled.

Adjusting the foot pegs was all I had to do before being comfy. I was in a dry suit and fitted fine. The slightly too-high back strap didn't bother me, and I could still lay back.

In spite of the measurements of the boat (wider than the Romany), it is a Swede or delta form so the widest part is behind the hips. Forward of the hips, she was amazingly narrow, or at least felt that way. Suddenly, my 230 paddle was way too long, and I was more at ease with my 210 high angle blade.

I was in 20+ knot winds and, on the outside of the break wall, found some 3-4 footers where the bottom shallows up. A few were breaking. The boat rode them much like the Romany would and it turned just as easily. If anything, I think the ride was drier than in the Romany. The biggest surprise was running with the wind on the inside where there were only 6 inch to one footers. the boat got up and moved like the shorter Romany. At the end, there was a drop of water in the rear hatch, and I am not certain I had it properly closed.

I didn't roll, but I did scull and draw. Those went easily. I have heard that she goes past her secondary stability and goes over without the sense of locking in before tipping. I didn't test that today but will soon. (It won't likely be today as my grand daughter (Squeaky) is here soon to be joined by her older cousin Joe Joe. And you think kayaking is dangerous!).

The skeg worked well, and it will take just a few more times to get used to pinching the release before moving it. The bungies are new and quite tight. I don't know yet where I will be keeping my pump as I don't like it on deck. I also have to work out how to store the spare split up front (it doesn't , in my judgment, belong on the back). This is a long fore deck for me, and I need them secure yet reachable. I am thinking some small tubes under the most forward bungies into which the shafts could fit.

Bottom line: I had a good time and was happy with every aspect of the boats behavior. I now need to get into some rougher stuff and see how she goes down wind in a big blow, etc..

Paddle safe...
DS

12 comments:

Carri said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
RoyM said...

Does this mean that You plan to start the search for the perfect paddle again?

(nice looking new toy)

Best Wishes
Roy

Anonymous said...

Beautiful boat (envy!) - shame to scratch it up with paddle shafts. Have you ever though about those North Water Paddle Britches? I have friends who have tried and liked 'em. Personally, I have one blade for'ard and one aft, but that's just me ;-) Congrats!

Susan

Silbs said...

I probably have enough paddles, Roy. The narrowness of the boat just calls for a shorter one. Susan, I want to see how it goes with my Greenland sticks. I have seen, and like, the britches and am considering the task of untying the deck line to thread it through. I wonder if they fade.

Anonymous said...

The black'll look pretty sharp against the orange of the boat (very, um, "seasonal"), and paddling with a stick is always a sweet thing. Best of luck!

Susan

Rony said...

What a boat... What a color... SANSATION!!!!!!!!!!!!!
May all your paddelings be happy and safe!!!!and hae a lot befor icy winter is commimng.

Rony said...

IT IS MY COMMENT ! NOT RONY'S...!

Silbs said...

Thanks ?Rony. It says it isn't Rony's comment, and I am confused.

Silbs said...

Thanks ?Rony. It says it isn't Rony's comment, and I am confused.

gnarlydog said...

Silbs, I have documented a couple of options for storing paddles up front: http://gnarlydognews.blogspot.com/2009/03/shop-sea-kayak-paddle-park.html
I agree with "Anonymus": there is no need to scratch the deck while storing/removing spare paddles.
I am currently working on a system to have a sprare split Aleut paddle on deck.

Silbs said...

Great ideas. I've bookmarked that page. I am thinking of going with the little pair of pants.

John F - U.S.A. said...

the little pants work really well. So far, I haven't had a paddle come out.

Hopefully they fit well on the new Cetus LV (getting made right now). I offered to start a blog, and write a glowing review, but that didn't work for me, either.