Closer Look: Nelo 510

2 years 4 months ago - 2 years 4 months ago #27971 by photofr
First and foremost, plastic kayaks - and plastic surfskis - have been around for quite some time. Today, we can benefit from somewhat lighter plastic surfskis, with plenty of stiffness, bundled with amazing agility on the water to have some serious fun.

The NELO 510 is a polyethylene surfski - made in France by ROTOMOD. They are available and on sale throughout Europe, since January 2017. They come in 3 colors: Apple Green, Italia Blue, and Bubble Gum Pink.

Both the Blue and Green are available in Brittany (France) for FREE DEMOS to anyone interested.

SPECS
515cm x 53cm
20.5 to 22 kilos - yes, there's still a 4% difference, just like composite skis.

STOCK FEATURES
Front and rear carrying handles
Long side handles for better balance
Rear tie downs and bungee
Front tie downs and bungee
Large oval rear hatch and heavy duty cover
Surf rudder - through hull - PE
Stern rudder-ready - with extra line length
DeBrito foot-actuated drain
Leash attachment
2017 footboard and pedals
Allen key insert - rear of footrest
Rigid padded foot bar
GoPro mount on foot bar
Quick release waterproof case on foot bar

OPTIONAL FEATURES
Stern rudder - flip up rudder
Front hatch

ON THE WATER
If you didn't have to carry the ski, you would have a hard time telling it apart from the popular Nelo 520 - at least in terms of SPEED. Most remarkable is how the 510 totally holds its own in huge conditions. It is super manoeuvrable in the surf. It still offers a nice glide on the flats - very close to the 520. The magic of plastic vs. rocks, vs. rocks, vs. transport will have you smiling (I say this as I just place my demo 510 on the rocks without worrying about it). The front end is still narrow - there's a Nelo trademark if I ever saw one.

The price isn't the only thing that will set it aside and above many composite skis... the 510 has plenty of storage, especially if you decide to add the front hatch. The seat on the 510 is slightly higher, giving you a bit of an edge when it comes to power.

STABILITY
There's a strange one: don't expect the new 510 to be a stable slow barge. In fact, its glide will probably really surprise you (it may be the fastest plastic ski on the market).

UPDATE ON STABILITY
With this comes the verdict on stability: 3 completely different paddlers (including myself) have come to the conclusions that:
- The 510 is fast (fact noted on our GPS)
- It glides well (pure feeling/feedback)
- Higher seating position
- Heavier to carry
- Didn't feel sluggish on accelerations

And get ready... "while we all agree that the 510 is nearly as fast as the 520, it's worth mentioning that the 510 didn't feel more stable than the 520".


Worth noting: the new 510 will not let you down if you are aiming kamikaze style.

Here are couple of photos...


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Ludovic
(Brittany, France)
The following user(s) said Thank You: Atlas

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2 years 4 months ago #27973 by photofr
Replied by photofr on topic Closer Look: Nelo 510
Performance for experienced paddlers?
Feb 2016, the Plastic Nelo 510 comes in second place on a downwind course. That's pretty good news in itself, but here's what blows me away:

The 510 did 48 km - with an average speed of 15.03 km/h.
The next day, a totally novice took the ski out for a spin.
Two days later, a SUP paddler was paddling the 510, getting a taste of some long distance paddling.

Heck, perhaps The surfski is going to be a more common household item in 2017.

Ludovic
(Brittany, France)
The following user(s) said Thank You: Atlas

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2 years 4 months ago #27975 by Sandy
Replied by Sandy on topic Closer Look: Nelo 510
Well , as soon as they show up on the US west coast call me....I'm in ! (BTW , any idea when that might happen ???? )

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2 years 4 months ago - 2 years 4 months ago #27976 by AR_convert
Replied by AR_convert on topic Closer Look: Nelo 510
Nice lines. Perhaps Oscar can come paddle the Avon Descent in one....(plastic skis are the largest field in this two day, 124km white water race) or better still send one over and I'll paddle it and give the plastic ski division a crack. Gratuitous promotion of this thrown in of course B)

Current - Carbonology"Flash" Vajda "Infusion II K1" Previously ~Finn"Molokai Mk II"~Knysna "Vantage Pro K1' Carbonology "Vault"~Epic"V10L & Sport"~ [/b]Fenn"Mill Double" ~Spirit"PRS"~Finn"Affinity"
Always looking for the next boat :)

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2 years 4 months ago #27980 by Uffilation
Replied by Uffilation on topic Closer Look: Nelo 510
Great pics. Nelo should really think of having you make photo sessions on their models to put on their web site.

The Nelo 510 sure looks great. Nice green. It's esp. the higher seating postion which w.b. a plus for me (short upper body lol) over the V7.

20.5 to 22 kilos
that is 1.5kg difference looking at the "extremes". Does that refer
to differently outfitted boats or "naked" boats? Colors?

However, for the same color, the demoulding weight should be the allways same, as one would allways load the mould with the same amount (weightwise) of PE+foaming agent.

Differences then should only occur after cutting out the hatch(es),
if there are different wall thicknesses in these areas, or?

Hmm, wondering, if operators keep all parameters reproducable from the start-up to the end of shift and different shifts, means program for rock/roll movements/duration, heating/cooling temperature profiles, foaming agent, ..., then differences should be less as wall-thicknesses in the cut-out areas
should reproducable, not?

Else, boats made at different times of the day (heating up of system to a steady state) have different weights. I wonder though how differences in wall-thickness of hatch areas would lead to 1.5 kg in difference max for a semi-automated process.

As coloring agents can also affect wall-thickness built-up/distribution/foaming, I wonder if the are weight differences between differently colored boats? As an example only: e.g. green boats being more often ligher than the blue/white or vice versa (for same outfits)?

Would be interesting to know, imo.

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2 years 4 months ago #27985 by photofr
Replied by photofr on topic Closer Look: Nelo 510
Thanks – and I wish we could convince Nelo to hire me to take care of their photographic needs.

Regarding PE ski weight differences, please keep in mind that I have some of the “very first ones” ever built. From personal experience, I would guess that the weight difference will eventually level out a bit more.

I’ll be happy to talk about built-process regarding composite skis, ways to save weight, but someone else will have to explain why plastic skis have been weighing in at different weights. Epic was the same (yet a completely different factory) – some V7 were 20 pounds, others were in excess of 23 pounds.

Honestly, and for about 1400 euros, I am okay with the weight difference that I have found on my 3 Nelo 510s – though it would be even nicer if they were all identical in weight.

Being the (perhaps) more optimistic type, I am happily surprised at the details found on the Nelo 510, and the comfort of the ski.

Ludovic
(Brittany, France)

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2 years 4 months ago - 2 years 4 months ago #27995 by Uffilation
Replied by Uffilation on topic Closer Look: Nelo 510
I agree, things level out with time.

However, keeping track of the weights depending on color, would be a good thing (look for composition effects below).



In a nutshell, biggest influence on weight (all IMHO) has:

o obviously the amount of material added into the mould ...
> If the amount is kept constant for each production cycle,
- demoulding weight is obviously constant too,
- "trimmed weight" though depends on the wall-thickness in the cut-out areas
> Wall-thickness and its distribution depends on process conditions, such as
- material composition (kind of polymer and its flowability, kind of color, other additives, amount foaming agent)
- temperature time profile over the moulding cycle (heating/cooling of the mould, e.g. using an oven or a mould with integrated controlled heating/cooling)
- order/duration/speed of rock'n roll movements of the mould, programm controlled movements vs. hand-operated start/stop etc.

For example:
If one keeps all conditions constant (process control ...), things should be reproducable.
Let's say, one ends the rotomolding too early though with the boat upside down, one might get a thicker deck area, which leads to a thicker wall-thickness at the "to be cut out"-hatch area. Same as with any other variation in the order and duration of movements, temperature or composition that leads to a different wall-thickness distribution.


o The composition
> Use of different colors leads to different compositions which affects crystallization, flow and foaming and thus the formation of wall-thickness and its distribution;
- as the molder would have to guarantee minimal required wall-thicknesses in delicate (stressed) areas of the boat, he might increase the amount of material to be put into the mould for certain colors to make sure the wall-thickness does not fall below a limit in certain areas;
- however, this increases the overall wall-thickness and thus the overall weight,
- this why I think, that it would be interesting to keep track of the weights depending on color.


o The human factor
> Different operators in different shifts using different process conditions, material amounts or composition depending on their "personal preference on how to run the process" instead of sticking to the "specified process settings".


o The environment
> Climate controlled vs. non-climate controlled moulding facility, if you production
starts cold in the morning and the facitily and equipment heats up to steady state later the day,
conditions are different, leading to different wall-thicknesses/distributions (by flow/foaming);
- to compensate this, operators might change compositions/process settings or vary the amount of material to be put into the mould to guarantee required minimal wall-thickness
- or do nothing, different temperature conditions lead to different wall-thickness distributions and thus to different weights of cut-out areas.


Just guestimating with the above, but I rotomold chololate Santa Clauses with the kids for xmas and that should be similar lol.

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2 years 4 months ago #27996 by photofr
Replied by photofr on topic Closer Look: Nelo 510
Rotomolded chocolate?
Now you are talking my language. Back in 1975, i specifically remember receiving giant Easter bunnies with my brother. No doubt about, I felt cheated - my chocolate figure had far less material than HIS.

Times have changed... we kinda feel cheated when we have more material, more weight and more mass ahahahahahah.

All jokes aside, I'll do my best to keep tabs on color and weight of the 510s I receive.

Your list seems tells me that there could be.a combination of it all. Regarding weight differences of plastic skis, I would lean towards:
- temperature for that day
- humidity for that particular day
- choice of colors
(In that order... but it's purely a guess)

Ludovic
(Brittany, France)

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2 years 4 months ago - 2 years 4 months ago #28036 by photofr
Replied by photofr on topic Closer Look: Nelo 510
We spent couple of days making the brand new Nelo 510 available for tests. We traveled along the coastline, and settled for three different areas:
Flat water
Super Windy (35-45 km/h - with stronger gusts)
Rough Ocean (1.5 to 2 meter open ocean)
River (with a very descent current)

The 510 excelled; I am actually overwhelmed by how many intermediate paddlers enjoyed the ski.

Here are a few photos I felt we should share with you guys...

10k PADDLE TO THE ROCKS
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PASSING THE BRIDGE, ETEL (FRANCE)
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202CM PADDLER
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SOMEONE'S SWIMMING
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FLAT WATER
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VERY RELAXING
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Hope you enjoy the photos.

Ludovic
(Brittany, France)
The following user(s) said Thank You: Atlas

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2 years 4 months ago #28037 by Uffilation
Replied by Uffilation on topic Closer Look: Nelo 510
Is there a river rudder option?
If not, diy retro fitting s.b. not prob. though.

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2 years 4 months ago #28038 by photofr
Replied by photofr on topic Closer Look: Nelo 510
Yeah, there are couple of options for rudders.
1. Stock surf rudder (included) - made in PE.
2. Weedless rudder made in PE - available as an option
3. Carbon surf rudder, also available as an option
4. Flip up rudder - available as an option. This rudder is a stern mounted rudder, using all existing lines.

Ludovic
(Brittany, France)
The following user(s) said Thank You: Atlas

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2 years 4 months ago #28048 by Uffilation
Replied by Uffilation on topic Closer Look: Nelo 510
Nelo should promote option 4 more (or at least mention it here and then, e.g. on website, etc. and tell dealers) ...

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2 years 4 months ago #28063 by photofr
Replied by photofr on topic Closer Look: Nelo 510
I totally hear you... and I agree: more info should be available. Personally, I thought I would place the 4 options here FIRST.

I can't tell you when Nelo International will be updating you with details on their stern-mounted rudder, but I can tell you that Nelo France will provide more info once I am able to take photos of the system.

Basically, mounting a stern rudder is super easy:
- One bolt to attach the rudder.
- Two existing ropes to tie-off.
- Paddle away and steer as you normally would - with a kick up rudder.

It will be a great addition for those seeking rivers.

Ludovic
(Brittany, France)
The following user(s) said Thank You: Atlas

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2 years 4 months ago #28066 by Spacehopper
Replied by Spacehopper on topic Closer Look: Nelo 510
Lovely pics as usual. The quick play I've had in the 520 and 560M certainly give the impression that Nelo are making very nice boats - and making the ski landscape more colourful...

But...what is it with the 'soft' hatches? Why reinvent the wheel when standard pop-on sea-kayak hatches are tried and tested. The soft hatch on the V5/7 was a complete own-goal on an otherwise great boat - and the Epic retrofit hard cover just looks a bit of a bodge.

If part of the market for these skis is cross over from sea-kayaking then why put on a feature that compromises the watertightness (and therefore safety) of the boat, with no obvious benefit?
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2 years 4 months ago - 2 years 4 months ago #28067 by Uffilation
Replied by Uffilation on topic Closer Look: Nelo 510
@spacehopper, since you paddle the V7, too, any insights reg. V7 vs. 520?
As far as I saw, besides the soft (yellow cover), one can also use another cover? See pics on Nelo FB with that black/grey two-tone cover or see that 510 video at 0:16 min, where it is pulled over the soft cover? Is the two-tone cover a hard cover or soft as well? But you are right, I am also puzzled when seeing those "soft" covers.

@photofr, thanks for spreading the infos, you are doing a good job on that part. It happened a few times to me already, that certain options were said not to be availabe according to dealers (different brands), but they actually were > but "nobody of the dealers knew". Still wondering why it is so hard to put all specs and options of a boat on the website.

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2 years 4 months ago #28068 by mamaru
Replied by mamaru on topic Closer Look: Nelo 510
As far as I understand from my V 7 the deck is simply too soft to put a kayak hatch cover on. I did not have any issues with the soft cover yet, but I didn't go over the top too often either. Still I would not like to use it with a load...

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2 years 4 months ago #28069 by photofr
Replied by photofr on topic Closer Look: Nelo 510
Here's some info you guys may be smiling about...

SOFT COVERS
I can see why Epic wanted to use soft covers: They clearly save weight, about 700 grams to be exact, which is almost two pounds for the people still using the Good Ol' American system (or British, or what else have you).

Either way, Nelo also wanted to keep the weight down, so we have a thicker but still lightweight and flexible hatch cover. It is my understanding that it has been tested in chaotic conditions, without a sign of anything taking on water.

HARD COVERS
Hard covers are available as an option for all Nelo 510s. Again, be prepared for more weight.

SKI WEIGHT
I had the delight to compare a V7 and a 510 - side by side, and on the same scale. The blue 510 came in at 21.9 kilos and the V7 came in at 23.7 kilos. Both were Ocean-Ready.

RUDDER
I just placed an order for the rudder system. I hope to get some photos out to you guys in a couple of weeks.

Ludovic
(Brittany, France)
The following user(s) said Thank You: Atlas

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1 year 4 months ago #30800 by antenio
Replied by antenio on topic Closer Look: Nelo 510
Since there is only one 510 surfski size I wonder if I can fit in it being 1.85 m tall, 90Kg with athletic build ... Thanks

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1 year 4 months ago #30801 by robin.mousley
Replied by robin.mousley on topic Closer Look: Nelo 510

Since there is only one 510 surfski size I wonder if I can fit in it being 1.85 m tall, 90Kg with athletic build ...


I asked Oscar Chalupsky. He replied, "Yes easy I am 1.93 and 100kg"

Rob

Currently Fenn Swordfish S, Epic V10 Double.
Previously: Think Evo II, Carbonology Zest, Fenn Swordfish, Epic V10, Fenn Elite, Red7 Surf70 Pro, Epic V10 Sport, Genius Blu, Kayak Centre Zeplin, Fenn Mako6, Custom Kayaks ICON, Brian's Kayaks Molokai, Brian's Kayaks Wedge and several others...

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1 year 4 months ago #30802 by antenio
Replied by antenio on topic Closer Look: Nelo 510
So there should be no problem ! This may be my first surfski , looking foward to testing it.
Thanks

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