Compact surf ski (under 4.5m)

1 week 4 hours ago - 6 days 18 hours ago #38991 by mirovich89
Hi All, 

Long time lurker, first time poster :) 
I had to sell my very beloved Epic V8 as I moved to a new place with a smaller garage space :/.

I’m in the market to buy a second hand ski  thats under 4.5m. After a little bit of research, I found something that ticks all the boxes which is Epic v5, however it seems like it’s impossible to find it second hand. The other option is S14S but seems to be way too exy and it’s more of a SOT kayak than a ski. 

I also found Wavemaster Recreational 3.8 made by an a small Australian manufacturer in Newcastle. It doesn’t look bad and found couple second hand as well. It’s lightweight (15kg) but doesn’t have a rudder which is not necessary (I think) as it’s a pretty short ski. The construction of the wavemaster is quite confusing to me:
“ THE 3.8 REC SKI IS A HAND LAMINATEED SKIN USING A COMBINATION OF HIGH GRADECLOTH AND MATS WITH POLYESTER RESIN AND GELCOATS IN A WIDE RANGE OF COLOURS. WAVEMASTERS HAND LAMINATING PROCESS PROVIDES A SPECIAL BLEND OF STRENGTH AND DURABILITY. THE STRINGER MATERIAL IS CLOSED CELL POLYSTYRENE, WHICH PROVIDES BUOYANCY AND WILL NOT ABSORB WATER. THE REC SKI IS HOLLOW IN CONSTRUCTION FOR LIGHTNESS.” 
https://www.wavemastersurf.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/09/23.9.3.8-REC-SKI.doc-new.pdf
Never heard of a ski build from mat and cloth (another word for fibreglass?). I couldn’t find much about it online so I thought I’d ask here if anyone own it or tried it before. I’m not looking to race or anything. I just want something nimble and stable in the ocean :) Appreciate any advice. 

Thanks!

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6 days 1 hour ago #38994 by zachhandler
Yes, the cloth refers to woven fibers (fiberglass or kevlar or carbon). The mat is some sort of coremat, the stiffening material that is interposed between in the inner and outer layers of cloth. So it sounds like standard surfski construction. I know nothing about that particular model of ski however. 

Current Skis: Kai Wa’a Vega, Nelo 550L g2, Epic V12 g2, Carbonology Feather, Think Jet, Knysna Sonic X

Former Skis: Epic V12 g2, Epic V12 g1, Epic v10 double, Fenn Elite S, Custom Kayaks Synergy

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6 days 1 hour ago #38995 by mirovich89
Ah that makes sense. I think the design of the wavemaster is more like sit on top of  still water rather than slicing through the water like traditional skis do. 
It seems like it’s very difficult to find a short ski without being designed for  kids. 

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6 days 1 hour ago #38996 by waverider
i know someone with an older model wavemaster, not this short one though. They have a very flat cross section and are more like a sit on life safer board. Stable and fun in the waves, but it wont feel like a traditional ORS. I would see if you can try one of these types of skis first to see if the style is what you want. Not really a direct comparison to a V5.

Your weight will be a consideration when contemplating shorter skis

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6 days 1 hour ago #38997 by mirovich89
Yea it seems like it. 

Im 174cm and weigh fluctuates between 75-80k as I do weight training. My legs and hips are bit Chucky due to lifting. I used to feel a bit cramped in v8 when I go for a long paddle. I’ll have to wait for lockdown to be over before I can go test it out. 

I was thinking about Knysna Jester but I think it might be too small for my build. 

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5 days 2 hours ago #39004 by waverider
One issue with boat length is the enclosed volume required for the bouyancy to support your weight. This is why most skinny K1 flatwater boats (4.5m) only have low paddler weight capacities and thats on flat water were you can cut the margin more. An open water shorter boat will have to be much wider, and end up more like like sit on top kayaks than skis. So you want one as long as you can get away with given your space restrictions so you are not over compromising on width. larger and smaller volume boats of the same model, where available, are typically done by having a deeper hull.

Spec skis have the upswept nose to minimize burying due to being shorter, increased hull volume is also achieved by often having shallower cockpits/ seat wells. Shorter boats will also bob around more on open water. Anything under 16' (4.8) even in the sea kayak/sit on top world is regarded as being less than ideal.

skis get their "feel" by having rounder bottoms, rather than the flat bottoms of sit on tops. Even the composite fishing "skis" have pretty flat bottoms and dont really have that ski type handling feel.

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5 days 2 hours ago #39005 by mirovich89
Thank you! Thats very informative. Looks like I'm kinda out of options here. It's either fork out the cash and get a new Epic V5 or settle for SOT style.  

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4 days 23 hours ago #39006 by mirovich89
I found another 3.8m ski that doesn't look bad:
www.koastalkayaks.com/

Weighing in at just 15kg the Enduro XTR LITE makes your paddling a whole lot easier. Easy to get to and from the water, easy to load on your car and easy to paddle.  
Weight Length Width Capacity Colour
15KG 3.8m 60cm 90kg White
  • Trailing rudder
  • 3 x hatches
  • 3 x heavy duty handles
  • Front and rear deck bungee storage
  • Backrest
  • Adjustable footplate and footstraps
The ENDURO XTR LITE is an excellent entry level surf ski, suitable for flatwater and surf paddling. The lightweight construction is achieved by adding a layer of closed cell foam to the high grade superlinear polyethylene outer hull. This creates a hull that’s flexible where it counts but retaining strength to handle everyday paddling.

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4 days 22 hours ago #39007 by waverider
Thats like the Spirit and Finn plastic kayaks used in adventure river races, except a bit shorter
This is a good vid of plastic skis in action in WA, though they are longer ones

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4 days 22 hours ago #39008 by mirovich89
Thanks! Awesome video! Yes its like the Spirit CTR but little short and lighter! 
I think this would give a better performance than the Wavemaster rec. 
My only concern is the construction of the boat: 
"The lightweight construction is achieved by adding a layer of closed cell foam to the high grade superlinear polyethylene outer hull. This creates a hull that’s flexible where it counts but retaining strength to handle everyday paddling."

Flexible hull? That sounds a bit iffy. 

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4 days 22 hours ago #39009 by waverider
All plastic hulls are flexible thats why they dont break, and one reason performance is handicapped.

For what you are asking you are going to have to compromise somewhere. You may even want to consider a plastic RTM disco sit on top which is more "sporty" for a sit on top. Anything plastic is going to be heavy


personally I would try stretch to something like a V5 is you want anything like ski performance that is still short, or try to get around the need for short

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4 days 21 hours ago #39010 by mirovich89
I'm not a big fan of the rotomoulded either because they are heavy but the Lite ver of XTR is only 15kg, so its very tempting. 

I agree V5 is prob a better option but its 3x the price of XTR. I'll demo the XTR and see if it tick my boxes. 

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4 days 21 hours ago #39012 by waverider

Spirit CTR Ski at 4m is also an option if you can find one

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4 days 21 hours ago #39013 by waverider
also viking javalin at 4m

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4 days 21 hours ago #39014 by mirovich89
I have looked at CTR and Javelin before but the weight put me off. They are about18-19kg. Also, not possible to find them in sydney unfortunately, I think they are discontinued?

I just found a local shop selling XTR Lite as new and willing to take 30% off the price, so I might give it a try and see :) 

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4 days 3 hours ago #39020 by JoELMaN
My parents have a 3.8m recreational wavemaster at their holiday house that I paddle when I'm there. With the absence of a rudder it is very hard to keep in a straight line in anything but completely calm conditions. It does get on small wind chop, but then has a mind of its own. Going upwind is hard going as the nose slaps in to each wave rather than cutting through. Add that to the very wide paddle entry and inability to leg drive, and its not real enjoyable coming from a proper surfski. It is very much a recreational ski that anyone can get in and paddle.
I've looked into buying a shorter ski to keep there so I have something a bit more inviting to paddle when I'm there. I had narrowed it down to the fenn Bonito and Knysna Jester, but am yet to paddle either. I've been told the jester can accommodate up to 183 and 90kg.

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3 days 19 hours ago - 3 days 19 hours ago #39022 by mirovich89

JoELMaN wrote: My parents have a 3.8m recreational wavemaster at their holiday house that I paddle when I'm there. With the absence of a rudder it is very hard to keep in a straight line in anything but completely calm conditions. It does get on small wind chop, but then has a mind of its own. Going upwind is hard going as the nose slaps ....


I'm glad I didn't buy it. Saw some videos and performance looked very questionable in choppy water. 
I'm currently in the process of ordering the Enduro XTR Lite which ticks all my boxes.

My sister had the Jester but I never tried it. I asked few local shops about the Jester and I was told its meant for paddlers up to 178cm and weigh 55KG or less. 

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13 hours 5 minutes ago #39039 by balance_fit

mirovich89 wrote: Yea it seems like it. 

Im 174cm and weigh fluctuates between 75-80k as I do weight training. My legs and hips are bit Chucky due to lifting. I used to feel a bit cramped in v8 when I go for a long paddle. I’ll have to wait for lockdown to be over before I can go test it out. 

I was thinking about Knysna Jester but I think it might be too small for my build. 


Greetings, I was about to recommend the Fenn Bonito, which fits with your hull length requirements. But, it might fall short regarding foot brace length: I'm 180 cm tall, and on my wife's Bonito, even though it floats my 75 kg, I can't push the foot brace far forward to achieve proper leg engagement.
I paddle a V5. Even though it is also short (We have the same storage space issues that you have), it paddles well, and is surprisingly agile in downwind runs, particularly on short period wind waves. It'll fit your leg length and hip clearance requirements. 
Be well

Simple, not easy.

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