Kayakfirst ergo

6 months 5 days ago #35732 by jaydidonna
Kayakfirst ergo was created by jaydidonna
I'm thinking about buying an ergo.  The Kayakfirst seems to be a nice unit at a good price.  Does anyone have experience with it?  Would you recommend it?  Thanks

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6 months 4 days ago #35735 by ccchappell
Replied by ccchappell on topic Kayakfirst ergo
Hi,
I own a KayakFirst erg and love it.   I also have the sliding seat option, and added a rotating seat.  
My thoughts/opinions:
-Compactness - Takes up very little space compared to traditional kayak ergs, including the height requirements.  Since the shaft is much shorter, not as much over head is needed...which was a big deal in my low ceiling basement.
-Sound - Much quieter, and a different type sound then my previous traditional erg, as well as our Concept rowing Erg.  Feedback from my family upstairs is not sure I was doing an erg when in past knew they knew if I was on kayak erg, or rowing erg.
-Max Resistance - I found on my previous erg I had to always have the drag maxed to make realistic.   On the KayakFirst this is not a problem.  Matter of fact, I have not used on the max drag setting for my current workouts.   Nice to have more drag available as I progress into my winter routine.   Will allow to do some more strength/lower cadence workouts.
-Realistic Catch - With the adjustable pulleys higher, you get a much more realistic catch IMHO.   When "spearing" at the catch, the motions seems very realistic - driving down vs more just pulling back like my traditional erg.  This was probably my biggest positive surprise when I started using
-High Cadence - My fastest cadence is 125 spm and this erg has no issues keeping up and since shorter lines not as much excess line flying around.   Sprint cadence seems very realistic like my marathon cadence (85-88).    
-Sliding Seat - This has also been a pleasant surprise.  A pricey option, but really does add to the realistic motion.  If my rotation/leg drive motion is not timed right, the sliding mechanism will reflect  this...giving way too much back and forth motion, ie wasted energy.  When I focus on my timing to get aligned, instant feedback with the sliding mechanism...like my K1.
-Mirror - Nice touch.   Not wide enough to see stroke exit, but definitely helping me with timing and top hand placement...great to work on muscle memory in off season
-Quality - Have had mine since April (didn't use much in summer) and no issues.  Very well built, sturdy and seems like will last long time. 
-Display/Monitor - Has been very reliable, nice to be able to create custom displays.  Meaning which of the fields you want to display and in which order.  Unfortunately does allow you to create your own default (have to set up each time).  They are working on this.  Also not HR connection..   Easy to solve, I just use my Garmin 520 on the pull bar.   
-Mobile App - Great idea, but still a work in progress to some degree.   I have raced against others which is a cool out of the box -no charge, but the setup and creation of workouts not where it needs to be yet.  They are working on this from what I understand.   I've been just using workings on my Garmin like I do on the water and works great.  Have the proper fields on the KF monitor, and workout on the Garmin
-Company - I'm in the US, and have had some phone chats, emails, etc with KayakFirst about setup and mobile app.  Great group and very responsive

Hope this helps, let me know if any additional questions
Chris
The following user(s) said Thank You: agooding2, jaydidonna

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6 months 4 days ago #35736 by jaydidonna
Replied by jaydidonna on topic Kayakfirst ergo
Wow, what a great review, thank you.  I am in the U.S. as well.

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2 months 13 hours ago #36317 by jaydidonna
Replied by jaydidonna on topic Kayakfirst ergo
I have owned the KayakFirst for about 4 months.  It has allowed me to greatly improve my technique.  I get a lot of use out of it, especially with our landing closures now.  Highly recommended! 

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2 months 4 hours ago #36318 by kwolfe
Replied by kwolfe on topic Kayakfirst ergo
Chris gave a great review for the Kayakfirst ergo.  Just a another perspective, I bought a used Kayakpro Speedstroke two years ago.  It's the only kayak erg I've had but it's built like a tank and I do love using it on the off season.  It's really great for focusing on form and technique.  Chris's comment is right on about the resistance.  I have mine set all the way and while it might simulate a K1, it's a bit lite for a surfski.

If you can find one used, they are great however new models are pretty spendy.  Not saying I wouldn't if I could but they cost 3 times more than a Concept rower which is a great workout.

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2 months 2 minutes ago #36319 by zachhandler
Replied by zachhandler on topic Kayakfirst ergo
Kwolfe do you need to lengthen your paddle shaft? I have a speedstroke gym. The original metal paddle shaft tends to collapse to the shortest setting and gets stuck there. With the shaft short like that i need to set the fan to a pretty high resistance number. I recently bought the new carbon shaft that is sold on their website. It feels much nicer in the hand and the shaft adjustment actually works. With the shaft set to about the middle of the range I would say 3-5 feels like a k1 and 10 feels like I am dragging a T-shirt  on a rope behind the boat. 

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1 month 4 weeks ago #36321 by kwolfe
Replied by kwolfe on topic Kayakfirst ergo
Well color me a dumbass.  I had it set at just over 7.  I must have bumped it along the way.  I put it back to 10 and that's better.  My shaft is 73" currently.  Yeah, I have the metal one it came with and my adjustment thing came unglued which I have yet to epoxy back.  I just have it taped for now.

They aren't like being on water, but then again I imagine if you asked a rower, they'd tell you that a Concept 2 isn't just like being on the water but they are a damn good substitute when you can't.  Easy to set up a camera (gopro or your phone) to check technique.  Also easy to set time or distance controlled splits.

I try and paddle as much of the year as I can until the water freezes but having an erg definitely makes bridging that gap easier.

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1 month 3 weeks ago #36340 by graysonhugh
Replied by graysonhugh on topic Kayakfirst ergo
Hello Guys, 
I am Gray - owner of KayakPro - thanks for the kind and positive comments about our ergometers.
Much appreciated.
I think typically, you get what you pay for and whilst I understand that our products are not within the budget, or comfort zone of some, they still represent great value, even after many years of use they attract a really high second hand re-sale value. A testament I think to the durability and performance. 
We are always moving forward with developments, the new Carbon shafts as a small but nice recent upgrade,  I am here to help always if people need advice on our products or indeed to fine tune. I also wanted to share with you the biggest development we have just made - which is the integration with the virtual interactive, Kinomap platform this allows you to paddle on over 45 - Geo-Located interactive, integrated videos - you become the paddler in the video, from your ergometer. 
See here for more information - here to help and offer assistance.
https://www.facebook.com/canoesport/videos/217109476364829

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