Thermoplastic Surfskis, Racing Skis

3 years 4 months ago - 2 years 4 months ago #24999 by Uffilation
Made the list to seek for a downriver (stone hitting) alternative for the flatter days(+family/guests "abuse ski"), maybe someone has a use for the list for his/her own quest. I guess there are more thermoplastic surfskis and SOT-type-Ski-Hybrids on the market, so you are invited to add the list or correct mistakes. tia

Actual prices s.b. outdated or differ or be lower or ...:

Spirit PRS SKI, Spirit PRS Elite SKI
Manufacturing process: rotomoulding
Made in: Australia
Material: PE
Length: 567cm
Width: 50cm
Moulded weight: 20.5kg
Moulded weight, Elite: 18.3kg
Weights fully outfitted: ?
Colours: white+many others as per google
Price: from AU$1595, 1190€

Spirit Racing SKI
Manufacturing process: rotomoulding
Made in: Australia
Material: PE
Length 496m
Width: 51cm
Moulded weight: 19.5kg
Weight fully outfitted: ?
Colours: white
Price: from AU $1295

Spirit Fury Racing Ski
Manufacturing process: rotomoulding
Made in: Australia
Material: PE
Moulded Weight: 19kg
Moulded Weight: Elite 17.6kg
Length: 570m
Width: 47cm
Price: from AU$ 1895.00

FINN Molokai
Manufacturing process: rotomoulding
Made in: Australia
Material: PE
Length 590m
Width: 47,5cm
Moulded Weight: 18kg
Price: AU$ $2150 (website)

FINN Endorfinn
Manufacturing process: rotomoulding
Made in: Australia
Material: PE
Length: 520cm
Width: 54cm
Standard Weight 18kg plus deckout 5-6kg
Lightweight 15kg plus deckout 5-6kg
Standard AU$1399 (website)
Lightweight AU$1649 (website)

Cobra Surf Ski
Manufacturing process: rotomoulding
Made in: New Zealand
Material: PE
Length: 520cm
Weight: 21 kg?
Price: ?

VAJDA Raptor Ski
Manufacturing process: thermoforming
Made in: Slovakia
Material: double layered ABS-type with outer acrylic layer
Length: 535cm
Width: 53cm
Weight fully outfitted: 19.5kg
Colours: pearl white, metallic: orange, red, blue
Price: 1250-1350+- €

Epic V7
Manufacturing process: rotomoulding
Made in: South Africa ? (test paddled one with Made in USA sticker though, anyone has details?)
Material: PE, solid skin with foam layer
Length 520m
Width: 54cm
Moulded weight: <19kg
Weight fully outfitted: 22.7kg (from EPIC website)
Colours: white
Price: $1495, Au$ 1995, 1295€

THINK Nitro/Pyranha Octane
Manufacturing process: rotomoulding
To be made in: England?
Material: PE
Length 535cm
Width: 53cm
Color: orange, white

Liker Surfski PE
Maker: Liker Kayak, China
Length: 505cm
Width:55cm
Depth:35cm
Weight:21kgs

NELO 510, PE ... ????
pops up in the 2016 pricelist for surfskis , so?

Please Log in or Create an account to join the conversation.

3 years 4 months ago #25000 by Uffilation
ok, posted it under "Surfski Innovations" albeit some of the AUS/NZ ones date way back ...

Please Log in or Create an account to join the conversation.

3 years 4 months ago #25001 by Ranga
I see some of the your weights come from their web sites. Wish they would give finished weights, not pre outfitted ones.
Not sure what you can do with a ski without a steering system!

Please Log in or Create an account to join the conversation.

3 years 4 months ago - 3 years 4 months ago #25002 by AR_convert
Living in the home state of both Spirit and Finn skis we are very familiar with these boats and they dominate our white water marathon races for their durability, stability and value for money.

Who makes the fastest ski has always been a contentious debate. In years gone by both Spirit skis creating a "Team Spirit" racing team and Finn flying over top paddlers for the Avon Descent to ensure they placed highly in the field, thereby being able to claim bragging rights over one another. You can see claims on both websites about being the fastest skis ;)

(The Avon Descent is an iconic 124km White Water marathon raced over 2 days each year in Western Australia in August)

Spirit seem to have had the better of the marketing , as the Spirit PRS is by far the most widely owned ski in our state. Finn to a degree also shot themselves in the foot in the early days trying to go too fast and too light, with many intermediate paddlers finding the first series of the Molokai being unstable and due to trying to go too light, prone to warping or splitting.

Finn rectified this in the second model, Molokai MkII, and have never looked back (with a Mk III and beyond) , but that first model (from my perspective) really did hold that boat back.

Finn introduced the retractable scupper long before we saw them in Epic Skis which does make a big difference in the boats speed. However despite its advantages it can be a weak spot in white water if not looked after.

My own observation has been in the local races with mere mortals paddling them, that the Finn Molokai is the fastest ski. (I have owned both and have settled on the Molokai) This is how much fun I get up to in it too :P


Although still a big recreational ski manufacturer Finn have been busy putting out a range of boat tenders that I'd imagine would be a more profitable line for them and so to a degree have stepped away from the battle for speed argument for the time being.

Spirit released the Spirit Fury a couple of years ago and it is quite fast but much lower volume than the other skis and big paddlers may not fit in the bucket and will have the tail end of it dragging. It has been the go to ski for the (sponsored) elite end of the Avon Descent plastic class and with Finn not serious about challenging for line honors the Furys have claimed most of the top finishing plastic spots.

All of these plastic skis are not bulletproof however and as a spectator taking video of the Avon Descent a couple of years ago I saw many of them split and folded towards the end of the race, so they still need to be looked after.

Away from white water, they are as mentioned a great boat to have for kids and friends to play with and to take on holidays where they can take some abuse (the reason I own one).

The not so fast models but probably just as big sellers here are the Finn Endorfinn and the Spirit Ski, both shorter and more stable, they are a great all round play boat for kids, family and are also very popular amongst part time paddlers/ adventure racers.

As far as speed goes the Epic V7 would probably be placed amongst these two skis, however for its speed it is by far the most stable ski of that size around.
The roto moulding is done very differently and creates a much more rigid boat.
It irks me to say it as I love to support local brands and manufacturing but If I was looking for an all round fun/family ski the V7 would be my first choice.

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 :)
The following user(s) said Thank You: Uffilation

Please Log in or Create an account to join the conversation.

3 years 4 months ago #25003 by AR_convert

Ranga wrote: I see some of the your weights come from their web sites. Wish they would give finished weights, not pre outfitted ones.
Not sure what you can do with a ski without a steering system!


Ranga is spot on, expect a boat closer to 22-23kg.

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 :)

Please Log in or Create an account to join the conversation.

3 years 3 months ago - 3 years 3 months ago #25004 by Uffilation
Hi AR, thanks for the detailed insight.

I ended up betweeen the Epic V7 and the Vajda Raptor, the Raptor being 3kg lighter fully outfitted (longer+narrower too and likely faster) than the V7.
Regarding material (stiffness, durability, repairability, etc) +manufact.process+weight +dimensions and alleged speed + "made in", I'd also prefer the thermoformed ABS-type Raptor, have yet to test-paddle it though.
However, for the intended use (+familly/guests/friends) I would opt for the V7 (for its insane stability + remountability due too a wider/shallower bucket of the V7 vs. higher side walls of the Raptor, but I would need to test that). If the V7 is made in South Africa, that is a plus for me too, be it a big brand or not.

Anyone going to do a "Hammer test" :evil: (as known from YouTube for thermoformed abs-types: eddyline US, barracuda kayaks NZ, Delta, CD, etc.) on a V7 vs. a Raptor? :whistle:




Waiting to test paddle the Think Nitro, too.
Spirit: difficult to get in europe, if then used. The last one I read about in a forum was a "warped banana" PRS and a discussion arose if it was due to wrong storage or manufacture. If the latter were the case, I guess the Aussy-boards w.b. be full of such discussions, so I'd conclude it was wrong and long side storage.

@AR_convert
PS:
"to take on holidays where they can take some abuse (the reason I own one)", another reason for me too, or for the WE-trip where you end up wherever (rivers/lakes/ocean and their possibe stony entries/passages) and have to tie that thing to the car/tent ungarded when hiking.

PPS: "All of these plastic skis are not bulletproof however ...", I'd agree for rotomolded PE, although some V7 dealers seem to choose to select the "indesctructable" statement
(yeah, compare thread here > 18417-stellar-sr-advantage-vs-epic-v7 ) together with "the fastest plastic kayak on the water" phrase. For ABS, I think there will be a long wait for reviews from paddlers, until some paddle such a ski downriver and hit a rock and decide to post lol.

I'd really like to see some day, how material/processes compare dep. on conditions of use (saltwater, wave bending, , UV, down river impacts etc.):
rotomolded PE vs. rotomolded skin/foam PE vs. thermoformed ABS-types vs. ????

But not much too find on the boards (except e.g. your post) even for Spirits, which are around more than a decade despite marketing statements, that Vajda made the "first thermoplastic ski ever in production" (if then thermoformed, not thermoplastic) whereas Epic introduced "Industry's first plastic ski".

Please Log in or Create an account to join the conversation.

3 years 3 months ago #25007 by AR_convert
May I suggest there is a difference between plastic kayaks and skis in the way they are made and what attributes they need to perform.

While the hammer test is impressive, I also noted the plastic wobbling about, fine if its rec kayak not expected to perform. As we know from composites, stiffness helps with getting speed out of a hull. So its a balancing act between stiffness/rigidity and impact resistance.

In our Australian heat if they are stored upside down or on the hull, they will sag. It can be fixed by turning over in the sun to restore the right shape. The tip I got years ago was to store them on their side.

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 :)
The following user(s) said Thank You: Uffilation

Please Log in or Create an account to join the conversation.

3 years 3 months ago - 3 years 3 months ago #25008 by Uffilation
Reg. the second video+wobbling, m.b. an unassembled half was hammered? Here wobbling = just conducting impact energy to other zones, w.b. different if clamped in a frame, e,g. if both halfs were glued/welded together for that test.

For the barracuda kayak >
these are two halfs joined together (the the full boat) , any wobbling there? Ok was hammered at a different spot + the boat is moving away ;-. though. Like a small plastic "Smart" car does when hit by a SUV :ohmy: ... so.

I'd guess a thermoformed(vacuum formed) ski as the Raptor is stiff (see bow/hull lines for add. stiffness?), because also the used material s.b. stiffer more impact resitant than rotomolded PE. Impact durability should be similar to the hammer test seen in the Barracuda Video: "similar" materials, same manufacture. Only way to find out is to test the "stiffness feel" V7 vs. Raptor myself ... So far I can say, the V7 flexes, one can really feel that and also see it: had a cam mounted on the Stern > the hatch cover was pumping like a loudspeaker membrane on drum&base. But from the feel on the water, that flexing did not bother me.

Would also like to read someday from Aussie paddlers reg. sagging of V7 PE vs. Raptor ABS, although that my not be an issue in northern Europe, but rather southern Europe, albeit not as tough as Aus sunwise.

May be in the end, I end up with both.

Cheers.





EDIT:
Plastic Fantastic - The Epic V7 & Vajda Raptor Arrive
expeditionkayaks.blogspot.com/.../plastic-fantastic-e...
17.03.2015 - Made from Styrolite, a lightweight ABS plastic with tremendous stiffness and impact resistance.
The following user(s) said Thank You: AR_convert

Please Log in or Create an account to join the conversation.

3 years 3 months ago - 3 years 3 months ago #25009 by photofr
Speaking for the only Plastic Ski I have tried so far:
Epic V7 - two came in at 20.2 kilos, and one at 21.1 kilos*.

* Note: this was complete with water bottle, leash, and obviously the steering.

20+ kilos is quite light for a "plastic" surfski, when you consider that most regular ocean kayaks are in the 25-kilo market. 20+ kilos seems heavy when you are used to paddling a top-notch ski that's only 9 kilos or so. The fact that I'd like to point out is that I was so surprised to see how nicely the "plastic" ski worked once on water.

They have all certainly come a long ways…
Will we be seeing a semi-rigid inflatable surfski soon ?

Thanks for posting the list. I didn't even realize so many people made them.

Ludovic
(Brittany, France)

Please Log in or Create an account to join the conversation.

3 years 3 months ago - 3 years 3 months ago #25011 by merijnwijnen

Will we be seeing a semi-rigid inflatable surfski soon ?


The inflatable has been done by the masters of the folding kayak: Feathercraft.
Discontinued in 2012:
Jetstream

No idea how it paddles, I have never seen one.

Regards,
Merijn

Seakayak, flatwater racing and a surfski on order.
Looking for other ski paddlers in South East Netherlands (Maas / Waal)

Surfski: Nelo 560 on order :-)
K1:Kirton Tor
Sea kayak: NDK Explorer HV

Please Log in or Create an account to join the conversation.

3 years 3 months ago - 3 years 3 months ago #25013 by Uffilation
@photofr, @AR_convert
just stumbled across a similar thread in France on rotomolded PE vs. thermoformed ABS surfskis:
www.kayakdemer.eu/forum/showthread.php?9...t-!&highlight=raptor

Reg. pros&cons of composites vs. ABS, instead of focussing on specific trade-offs why not bring those two worlds together to gain durability, impact, stiffness, weight & reduce reg. sagging+weight:
a vacuum-formed ABS lower hull half for durability and an upper composite half glued to it, one could also add composite bulkheads and stringers before bringing both shells together.

EDIT: ok, next time I'll google before I post see Zegul 550 ABS Composite hybride
4-paddlers.com/230/20ae62f7-e943-4b25-bd...st_Daten_Review.html

Ah well, if family schedule wouldn't prohibit any useless man-does-questionable-DIY-projects-on-the-WE-in-the-garage, I'd really like to take that old K1 from the 1960s I got on ebay 2 years ago and use the lower hull as a mold for forming thick ABS-sheet over it (w. a hot-air blower), laminate/infuse a composite upper half with surfski bucket and glue them together. Just for the fun of it w/o caring if that makes sense or not lol.

I mean why are so many inland flat-water paddlers looking at surfskis? IMO, they want an "easy-to-remount K1" that allows to be paddled in chop+wind+winter. So they end up on a surfski made for downwind+surf but with less rocker if lucky and lift the seat position by padding.

The "THINK FIT" was the right concept, imo, but it seems it never really took off? (I guess if one goes for such a concept, easy remountability is key, lower those wall lol). I also like the CARBONOLGY Sport - K1 Sit on top - downriver.

IMO, if the surfski market is getting even more crowded, the manufacturers might adress those needs of the random fitness paddler again, eg having low volume entry skis with higher seating position etc. Or the K1-manufacturers do it by providing a SOT-SKI-K1.

Yeah I know, there are skis already for flatwater speed, was just thinking out loudly lol.

Please Log in or Create an account to join the conversation.

3 years 3 months ago - 3 years 3 months ago #25014 by Uffilation
With all that tupperware hitting the market, it might also stirr it up, wonder when SUP-people convert to these stable things.
In the past youv'e been thinking forth and back which entry level ski to get for the wife/family in order to get them addicted too lol, now, instead an Epic V8 New - Performance or similar entry ski, I'd now get for the price of that V8 (roughly rounded as used in subjective calculation):

two V7, one V7 and a Raptor, two Raptors, two Nitros, a V7 and a Nitro, a Raptor and a Nitro OR when applying subjective calculation an comparing with a V8-Ultra: a V7 and Raptor and a Nitro.

OK, the weight issue though, the Raptor is only 2.5 kg heavier than the V8 performance and 3 kg lighter than the V7, faster but tippier and it seems no kick-up stern rudder for the Raptor? ok, diy retro-fitting no dea, but c'mon ...

Please Log in or Create an account to join the conversation.

3 years 3 months ago #25015 by photofr
In the end, you'll probably also notice that there are a LOT of boat builders, but not that many surfski paddlers. Sure, the numbers of paddlers seem on the rise… and that's a good thing… but we have a long ways to go.

If every boat manufacturer came up with "two more models" to satisfy shorter people, Flat Water seekers, or any other group, I believe that we would be saturated with boats on the market. Sort of like houses for sale… plenty of them, but not too many willing to spend any money (yet).

I don't want to poke at your enthusiasm, but perhaps you can too can do something to help:
For 2016, find 10 more people who have never ever paddled a surfski. Get them in a V7, V8… heck, I don't care what you get them in… but get them into something to have fun.

I believe that if every paddler did this, current and future paddlers would gain tremendously:
- Newer models would come up quicker
- Prices would come down (or should)
- More accessories would come up
- More fun

In the end, you may see your K1 surfski - and plenty of models to go around instead of 3 that I currently know of.

Ludovic
(Brittany, France)

Please Log in or Create an account to join the conversation.

3 years 3 months ago - 3 years 3 months ago #25016 by Uffilation
@photofr,
or wait to get hands on a used Van Dusen Mohican K-1 in europe or convert an K1 myself (if I'd get the time lol: make it a cabrio and fit repro-molded surfski bucket into it) or have than done by a smaller K1-builder

reg. snowball-effect: actually I do not want to have more people on the lakes just to get a model one day that I want :whistle: ... uhhhm, I do not even want to share Gaya with any other people at all (except those I know) :evil: LOL. Gimme my boat and everybody should start nordic walking again, water sports are "uncool" :laugh:

Please Log in or Create an account to join the conversation.

3 years 3 months ago #25017 by Uffilation
Google > buzzard-sit-top

Kayak Centre Buzzard >
also an inspring cover for winter-paddling (whitch is what I thought of to do one day as a DIY-cover for winter paddling)

Please Log in or Create an account to join the conversation.

3 years 3 months ago #25020 by photofr
That's pretty funny actually. Seems like more work than it's worth when there are plenty of fast ski very capable on flat water. Check out the post under Training.

Ludovic
(Brittany, France)

Please Log in or Create an account to join the conversation.

3 years 3 months ago #25023 by zachhandler
"I mean why are so many inland flat-water paddlers looking at surf skis?"

There is really no purpose for a kayak unless you are doing a multiple day trip and need to carry gear, are running technical whitewater, or are entering a race with ICF rules. Even for flatwater paddlers inland, the surfski is better in every way. It is faster for any given level of stability, or more stable for any level of speed. It is safer in all conditions and water temperatures, and does not require knowing how to roll. With the closed deck it is much much less intimidating to learn on. There just isn't a downside, even on flatwater.

Please Log in or Create an account to join the conversation.

3 years 3 months ago #25024 by merijnwijnen
As much as I am fascinated by skis, to me that sounds a bit naive. I agree about the safety, but on smaller inland rivers that is no issue.

Faster for any level of stability? The essential difference between a ski and a kayak is above the waterline. Any kayak can be made a ski, and any ski a kayak. So in theory they are just as stable. That skis are faster is a result of the purpose they are made for, not inherent to the seating position.

And for many purposes, current skis are not practical. Rock hopping, narrow winding WW1 rivers, shallow water, serious white water, rodeo, eskimo rolling for the fun of it. Of course it is possible to design a "ski" that is able to handle these conditions (except the last 2 may be), but is is not what people here consider to be a ski.

Actually, by far the most paddle boats I see on the sea during the summer are those wide and heavy sit-on-tops. They are in the ski category, though not what this forum is about. And if you ask me, they are totally boring.

Seakayak, flatwater racing and a surfski on order.
Looking for other ski paddlers in South East Netherlands (Maas / Waal)

Surfski: Nelo 560 on order :-)
K1:Kirton Tor
Sea kayak: NDK Explorer HV

Please Log in or Create an account to join the conversation.

3 years 3 months ago #25025 by red_pepper
I would disagree about the safety on inland rivers; if you've ever turned over a kayak on a fast-flowing river/creek and tried to figure out how to get to shore to empty it out while the current is pushing you along, potentially against rocks, etc. you'd understand why a ski works on rivers as well. Skis also work pretty well in shallow water - I've outrun guys who couldn't pop their ICF boats in the shallows while my ski took off. And I've run my 21' boats down some pretty narrow winding creeks. With the new River/Multi-Sport layups from Think and Stellar, you can have a pretty tough ski for those rocky creeks.
The following user(s) said Thank You: Spacehopper

Please Log in or Create an account to join the conversation.

3 years 3 months ago - 3 years 3 months ago #25026 by zachhandler
They make kayaks of course that have a 21 foot x 17 inch hull just like a surfski. But at least in north america, as soon as surf skis arrived, people abandoned high performance racing kayaks very very quickly. Most paddlers don't have a bomb-proof roll. Cockpits that allow knees together paddling don't lock the paddler in very securely so even with a paddler who is skilled at rolling, they are risky. A lot of paddlers never put themselves in situations where they might capsize, but eliminating the fear of capsize by paddling a ski is liberating for them.

I own surf skis, K1, sea kayak, and I have in the past owned these high performance ocean racing kayaks. I have been a sea kayak instructor. I do most of my interval workouts in a K1 (Kayakpro Aurum). You like kayaks and I like skis. Who cares. My point is that huge numbers of paddlers have changed from kayaks to skis and will never look back. These people are not idiots. There are very sound reasons why they made the switch. I am trying to explain those reasons.

By all means continue to enjoy your kayaks!
The following user(s) said Thank You: Spacehopper

Please Log in or Create an account to join the conversation.

Latest Forum Topics

SpaceSputnik's Avatar

Customization Advice Needed (5 Posts)

2 hours 1 minute ago
SpaceSputnik's Avatar

What material boat bags are made of? (5 Posts)

2 hours 20 minutes ago
Protected by R Antispam