V8 to V12

4 years 4 weeks ago #26748 by rhainan
Replied by rhainan on topic V8 to V12
I think most everybody can get used to just about any ski if they paddle it long enough. I certainly can paddle a regular V10 pretty well if that's the only ski available (as long as I have shoes on and there are non-slip stickers on the foot board). You normal sized dudes have it so good :cheer:

Western Pennsylvania Epic Kayak Dealer

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4 years 4 weeks ago #26749 by Aurelius
Replied by Aurelius on topic V8 to V12

kwolfe wrote: OK, since I think we have determined that it would be a big jump and given that the V8 is my winter boat because it's so stable, I think I might have to consider a v10s instead.

So here is a question, how hard is it to paddle a K1. They would be faster than my V8, good for sprinting and fun to have. How steep is that learning curve?


I asked the same question, thinking I might go to a K1 eventually. The answer I got from the Stellar dealer was that it's several orders of magnitude harder to paddle a K1 than any surf ski. I've watched some videos on YouTube of seasoned paddlers trying a K1. None of them could manage even one paddle stroke before falling over. Keep in mind also that a K1 will fill with water, so it's not just a matter of climbing back on board after you fall out.

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4 years 4 weeks ago #26750 by rhainan
Replied by rhainan on topic V8 to V12
It would be a long time before you would be faster in a K1 than in your V8.

Western Pennsylvania Epic Kayak Dealer

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4 years 4 weeks ago #26764 by WingSuit
Replied by WingSuit on topic V8 to V12
Just like surf skis, depends on the K1. Some are more stable than others. All are much more unstable than any surfski, though, I watched a woman learn to paddle K1, over two seasons. At first it was back and forth, next to shore, just laps. Now she's an animal, and winning races in her age group. If you wanted to learn, buy some airbags for it so it won't sink if it swamps. Get a more stable K1. Stay close to shore at first, and/or have someone safety boat/board you. Try to go every day, conditions permitting. You did say you paddle 99 percent flat water ...

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4 years 3 weeks ago #26803 by kwolfe
Replied by kwolfe on topic V8 to V12
So thought I would follow up with a pic of my typical morning on the water. This is what I train on. yes we get some windy days but this is pretty much it.
So that's why I was thinking about the jump to the v12. Plus the guy called me yesterday. He's going to be in Pitt at a race next weekend and said we could trade skis then. Ugh! I hate these decisions!

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4 years 3 weeks ago #26804 by kwolfe
Replied by kwolfe on topic V8 to V12
Sorry, no clue why it went sideways! Darn iPhone! :side:

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4 years 3 weeks ago #26807 by mamaru
Replied by mamaru on topic V8 to V12
Hello,
in my search for a new, narrower ski (damned vanity for an advanced beginner!) my top priority became not whether I feel safe sitting in, but whether I am able to remount with a certain rate of success: Some skis which feel pretty stable for me are impossible to get on again, while with one elite ski I managed 3/6 remounts with the first attempt!
I can ride a V 14 on flat water, but with thoroughbred K1 my distance to fail ranged between 0 to 15 m depending on which model I was on.
Since a few weeks I use a “master K1” which needs constant attention more than any ski I tried. It’s fun to ride such a “razor blade”, but the measurable speed advantage over my beginner ski is still disappointing...

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4 years 3 weeks ago #26809 by Dicko
Replied by Dicko on topic V8 to V12
Do it. If you fall out you can swim to shore. There's no ice.

The v12 is pretty stable on flat stuff. Hard work in side chop. Not going to get much side chop there. I had a mate bought one a few years ago. Went to the big city and paddled it on the river, bought it. Came home, we put in at the marina where we launch, kept up until we went out to sea. After we had gone a km turned around to see where he was and I reckon he was 800 metres back. Sold it the next day.

Having said that I reckon you could paddle it on the flat. Good primary and really easy to remount. You're not going to die paddling it in those conditions. The worst thing is you'll get wet. Practice remounting BEFORE you set off.

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4 years 3 weeks ago #26810 by Dicko
Replied by Dicko on topic V8 to V12
Also thoroughly check the boat for soft spots etc. The epic ultra layup has a reputation for being a bit fragile. Check it in the light for ripples and dents.

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4 years 3 weeks ago #26829 by kwolfe
Replied by kwolfe on topic V8 to V12
So I have to say, I think I'm going to bail on the V12 (sigh). It's just not the ideal situation by a long shot. I talked to the guy yesterday and If we were to both driving 3.5 + hrs to meet, it would be to trade and I would just hate to get a ski that I really don't like. I think a V10 would be perfect.

On another note, I did find a Fenn Mako 6 for under $1000 and it's not that far from me. Might have to just bite the bullet and have 2 skis. This way I can use the M6 when the water is warm and I can practicing a more difficult ski. However On really chopping days (yes I get them on the larger lake/river) or when the winter roles around and the water is cold, I can stay safer and more confident on the V8.

Anyone here paddle the Mako 6 ever? Its the carbon layup so about 27lbs. From what I have read, it should be a decent step up the difficulty ladder from the V8. I'm 6ft, 192lbs. 34" waist.

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4 years 3 weeks ago #26832 by Aurelius
Replied by Aurelius on topic V8 to V12

kwolfe wrote: So I have to say, I think I'm going to bail on the V12 (sigh). It's just not the ideal situation by a long shot. I talked to the guy yesterday and If we were to both driving 3.5 + hrs to meet, it would be to trade and I would just hate to get a ski that I really don't like. I think a V10 would be perfect.

On another note, I did find a Fenn Mako 6 for under $1000 and it's not that far from me. Might have to just bite the bullet and have 2 skis. This way I can use the M6 when the water is warm and I can practicing a more difficult ski. However On really chopping days (yes I get them on the larger lake/river) or when the winter roles around and the water is cold, I can stay safer and more confident on the V8.

Anyone here paddle the Mako 6 ever? Its the carbon layup so about 27lbs. From what I have read, it should be a decent step up the difficulty ladder from the V8. I'm 6ft, 192lbs. 34" waist.


I started with a Mako XT, and later inquired about upgrading to a Mako 6. The Fenn dealer warned me that the Maco 6 is one of the most difficult skis to handle due to its instability, and that if I didn't plan to race, I would hate it and probably never use it. It was the first time a dealer had ever talked me out of a sale! I'd still love to try one, but for me it isn't worth the 3 hour drive to the nearest Fenn dealer.

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4 years 3 weeks ago #26833 by kwolfe
Replied by kwolfe on topic V8 to V12
Interesting. I thought for $800 I could give it my best shot. I am the knucklehead who was looking at a V12 as a next step from a V8. Especially since it won't be my only boat. Really curious if anyone around here has paddled on before.

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4 years 3 weeks ago #26834 by photofr
Replied by photofr on topic V8 to V12
I found the V12 to be more stable than the Mako 6. Could be because of my lightweight, I don't know, but that doesn't even matter that much. Making a step from a V8 to a V12 or to a Mako 6 isn't the end of the world; it's just a big stretch. By the same token, I know people who have never paddled before and made the move from no paddling to a K1 Cleaver (older tippy flat water racing kayak).

Nothing is impossible. It really depends on YOU... your determination, your fitness, time on your hand, etc...

What ever you get, just try to put some time into it and enjoy it.

Ludovic
(Brittany, France)

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4 years 3 weeks ago #26836 by Aurelius
Replied by Aurelius on topic V8 to V12

kwolfe wrote: Interesting. I thought for $800 I could give it my best shot. I am the knucklehead who was looking at a V12 as a next step from a V8. Especially since it won't be my only boat. Really curious if anyone around here has paddled on before.


Only $800? That's a bargain I'd find hard to turn down. Even if you decide in the end that it's not the ski for you, you can always sell it without losing much money, if any.

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4 years 3 weeks ago #26841 by Simon Haywood
Replied by Simon Haywood on topic V8 to V12
kwolfe; Interesting. I thought for $800 I could give it my best shot. I am the knucklehead who was looking at a V12 as a next step from a V8. Especially since it won't be my only boat. Really curious if anyone around here has paddled on before.

I did at the start of my paddling go V8 - V10S - V12 - in under 12months - I could only paddle the V12 on the flattest of days (river use only). I bought the V12 (cheap as a fixer upper- under 1K, so i couldn't sit in it at the time of purchase ) just for marathon racing, funny thing the V12 has a shorter leg length than the other Epic skis so I had to have it modified.
It all depends on the type of paddling and water you're going to be doing...I now have several skis to choose from and with my balance (lack of) and ability they have their own wind/wave range and I optimize the ski to suit the situation.

In a bygone time - I now paddle Stellars:


Previous craft: Affinity, Endorfinn, Multisport, Epic V8, V10sport, V10, V12, Fenn Swordfish, Spirit PRS Elite; Stellar S18S, SR, SE, SEL, S2E, S2EL

Current Skis:
Huki S1-R
Stellar S18S - Excel
Stellar SR - Ultra


Skis on order: None!
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4 years 3 weeks ago - 4 years 3 weeks ago #26844 by kwolfe
Replied by kwolfe on topic V8 to V12
Yeah, that is now kind of my dilemma. The Epic is a nice ski and might have better resale then the Fenn around here however there is something very enticing about having two skis. One for the challenge and one for those days when the wind is howling, the water is cold and chop is messy.

BTW, how tall are you that you had to have it extended? I'm 6' with about 32" inseam, (at least that's what my pants are).

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4 years 3 weeks ago #26848 by red_pepper
Replied by red_pepper on topic V8 to V12
If you're planning to make a big jump, it's good to keep a stable ski alongside the new thoroughbred. If you make too big of a jump, you'll more than likely screw up your paddle stroke as you work to keep upright rather than putting down the power to move forward, and then you'll spend two years trying to regain your stroke. On the other hand, it's good to have a more challenging boat to use for working on your balance skills.

I had a V12 Performance for a while, and I really liked it, but that was after moving up from a V10L Ultra. It was a fun, fast boat and very comfortable for me. Interestingly, I bought it from a guy in western PA who bought it new as a newer paddler (he said it was recommended to him), but did so much swimming he bought a Stellar SEL (1st gen at the time) and was far happier. I, in turn, was happy to get a great deal on a perfect condition V12. :) I actually did the same as he did later and sold the V12 to pick up a 1st gen SEL (I sell Stellar so I figured I should be racing/demoing my own brand...). I thought my speed might drop, but I think it actually picked up slightly; the extra stability of the SEL offset the theoretical advantage of the V12 and allowed me to put down just a bit more power. As a side note, when I picked up a 2nd gen SEL I sold the V12 to a newer paddler who was young, athletic, and determined because he wanted a fast boat for future racing (I did warn him it might take some adjustment time, but he was up for it). He later bought the 1st gen SEL from me along with an S18S to back up a bit on the stability chart. :) So, I guess you might want to consider a 1st gen SEL and short-circuit the process. ;)

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4 years 2 weeks ago #26898 by kwolfe
Replied by kwolfe on topic V8 to V12
Just to follow up in case anyone was wondering, this weekend didn't get me any further towards my dream! I didn't make it out to Pitt for the race and V12 swap because things just got too busy. Also, the Mako 6 sold so there goes that opportunity. Oh well. Still on the hunt for a another/replacement ski.

I did get to get in a few 5 milers with the V8 though. I do like the ski, but I have been working a lot on my technique and really do think its time to move up. Keep the dream alive! :lol:

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