My new boat is HERE!

Discussion in 'General Paddling Discussions' started by pawsplus, Feb 20, 2018.

  1. pawsplus

    pawsplus Paddler

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    If you guys recall, I put on layaway, way back last October at the Sea Kayak Georgia Symposium (Tybee Island) an NDK Pilgrim Expedition. It was originally made for Eila Wilkinson, when she and Nigel were supposed to come to the Symposium (but were unable to, due to Trump-induced visa issues). It's got a white deck, black hull, and orange trim. :)

    My friend Joel and I drove down last Friday and camped over the weekend at the RV park/campground on Tybee. On Sat. we picked up the boat (named, appropriately, Eila) and then took two full days of semi-private instruction with Ronnie and Marsha of SKG.

    boat_on_car_shop.jpg joel_tent.jpg

    I was really unconfident the first day. Going from my short, fat WS Tsunami 140 to this was, as Joel said, like going from a Chevy Impala to a Maserati. It felt unstable and it was hard to find the edges without feeling as if I were about to go over. We piddled around a bit and then it was right out into the surf. When I was at Tybee before, I was all, "where are the bigger waves? Bring it on!" So it felt weird to be nervous and unsure. But by the second day I was edging it and getting the hang of it. The hardest thing to get used to is getting in and out. The "Smarty Hatch," which is a shallow hatch for sunglasses and camera right in from of the cockpit, interferes with my shins when I get in and out (not in a wet exit, fortunately). I wouldn't have gotten a smarty hatch if it had been my choice, but it was on the boat. It IS handy, esp for my camera, but the 2 inch bump-out into my legroom is taking some negotiating!

    DSCF0017.JPG DSCF0016.JPG DSCF0014.JPG DSCF0012.JPG

    The fact that it's a small cockpit, combined with the smarty hatch issue, means that I have to balance behind the cockpit and scull, instead of sitting down in the seat, while I get my legs in and out, and I'm not used to that! If I could have practiced in flat water for a few days, fine, but doing surf landings and launches while laid back on the rear deck was unnerving! Getting better at it and will practice on our lakes. And after all my worrying, I ended up being the only one out of us 3 students (me, Joel, and a WW instructor there to learn about sea kayaking) who didn't capsize in the surf LOL. I even learned to do a re-entry and roll, and worked on rolling up when I'm discombobulated and not in set-up position. It was a great weekend! No pix of surfing b/c everyone was too busy staying upright. Marsha probably could have gotten some from behind but the second day I forgot to put my camera in the smarty hatch. Didn't want it around my neck in case I lost it. :)

    Anyway, it's a brave new world! I am glad that I had already sold my Tsunami, b/c on Saturday I was almost ready to say "never mind!" and go back to what was comfortable! But I persevered and now I have a sleek, fast, edgy new boat! :)
     

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    Last edited: Feb 20, 2018
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  2. pawsplus

    pawsplus Paddler

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    And the backband sucks. I already removed it LOL.
     
  3. pawsplus

    pawsplus Paddler

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    I got a new (to me) SUV and a Hullavator, so I can haul the new boat in style (not in the back of the 20 year old pickup) -- no pix of that yet -- and re-did my carport to accommodate the new boat as well. Here is the carport before and after:

    before.JPG after.JPG

    The gable will eventually be painted and have a cute ornament of some sort on it.

    You can see in the first pic how obvious it was that there was a kayak within. The second pic was taken before the new boat arrived, but the upper lattice, the filling-in of the gable (because the boat is up a little higher) and the fact that the hull is black render it almost invisible from the road. Getting some locks for it as well. I'm going to get minicell to make hull-shaped rests on the saw horses for the boat. :)

    DSCF0022.JPG DSCF0021.JPG DSCF0020.JPG
     
    Last edited: Feb 20, 2018
  4. AM

    AM Paddler

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    Nice boat! Now go scuff it up...;)
     
  5. kayakwriter

    kayakwriter Paddler

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    Congrats! Wishing you many long, fun and safe voyages in her.
     
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  6. pawsplus

    pawsplus Paddler

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    NO SCUFFS! I'm incredibly precious about it. Thank goodness for that soft Tybee sand LOL. I'm sure I'll chill about it eventually, but right now, not so much. I was screaming at everyone to stay away from me. :)
     
  7. JKA

    JKA Paddler

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    Yep, waaay too shiny! Remember, scars are simply souvenirs you can't lose.:)
     
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  8. LAM

    LAM Paddler

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    Very Pretty!! Congratulations!!


    Lila
     
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  9. JohnAbercrombie

    JohnAbercrombie Paddler

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    I "second that emotion" ! :)

    Sharp looking boat!

    Also, (IMO) good move on getting rid of the backband; the NDK seat with the sloping back works fine without a backband.
     
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  10. nootka

    nootka Paddler

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    That smarty hatch must be huge, cause I can get in my PilgrimX the normal method.
    While the PilgrimX is a bit long as a playboat, it can be used as such.
    PilgrimExAtSurge.jpg
     
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  11. JohnAbercrombie

    JohnAbercrombie Paddler

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    By 'normal method' do you mean butt-first?
    It wasn't until I was looking at sprayskirt specs that I saw that Pilgrim Expeditions seemed to be made with both small ('Ocean'??) and regular size cockpits.
    You've gotta post a picture of your boat in 'non-submarine' mode to see if that's the difference!
    :)
     
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  12. nootka

    nootka Paddler

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    Yes, Butt first. I wear jeans with a 30" inseam, and my footpegs are either at the far end of travel or in the first notch.

    Ah, I didn't know about the small cockpit John.

    On the other hand, I believe I have the same skirt as pawsplus.
    I measured my keyhole cockpit at 35"x18"
     
  13. JohnAbercrombie

    JohnAbercrombie Paddler

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  14. JohnAbercrombie

    JohnAbercrombie Paddler

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    My legs are about the same length and I can get into the Romany-size (Opening 32.25"x 15.25", To outside of lip 35" x 18") keyhole cockpit butt-first also. However if something (like an added below-deck compartment) was blocking the narrow front of the keyhole, it could get tricky, I guess.
     
  15. nootka

    nootka Paddler

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    I remeasured my Pilgrim and the coaming is 32x17 on the outside, 29.5x14 on the inside.

    On an unrelated note, it should be easy to do the hard rolls in the NDK Inuit Rolling Kayak, if only I could fit in it:

    It is an easy kayak to role along traditional Inuit design, length: 0 cm, width: 0 cm, depth: 0 cm, overall volume: 0 litres, front hatch volume: 0 litres, cockpit volume: 0 litres, day hatch volume: 0 litres, rear hatch volume: 0 litres.

    https://www.seakayakinguk.com/sea-kayak-range/inuit-rolling-kayak
     
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  16. drahcir

    drahcir Paddler

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    NDK makes pretty boats, wish I had one ... oops, I do.
     
  17. Seadddict

    Seadddict Paddler

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    Lovely boat, Paws. Congrats. Now that you're in a boat with significantly more capabilities, stand by for your skills to ratchet up accordingly. It's a beautiful thing.
     
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  18. pawsplus

    pawsplus Paddler

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    My inseam is 30" as well and my footpegs are at the end. It's amazing how much diff the 2" depth of the Smarty Hatch makes. I would be just fine w/out it. With it, there is much negotiation on entry and exit!
     
  19. JKA

    JKA Paddler

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    A friend of mine bought a boat with a hatch in front of the cockpit and had similar issues to you. I took to the below-deck compartment with a Dremel, while she averted her gaze, and tapered the wall facing the cockpit. A simple fibreglassing job later and her problems were over! :)

    They weren't really, she grew to dislike other aspects of the boat and sold it, and the new owner has no problems with the modification made.
     
  20. pawsplus

    pawsplus Paddler

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    I'll learn to deal with it. The Smarty Hatch IS a convenient place to put my waterproof camera, sunglasses, and a Clif bar. :)