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Old 03-16-2014   #1
Nashville, Tennessee
Paddling Since: 2014
Join Date: Mar 2014
Posts: 13
Newbie tandem IK decision

Hello all, I am in the market to purchase my first IK. I am looking for one that I can take to the lake and fish with my gf and wiener dog, take on solo overnight camping trips and start to go down some class I-III rivers (solo and with gf). I live in Nashville and have read about a some rivers around the TN,NC border. We have been canoeing many times on slow rivers and went rafting on the Ocoee last year and love the rapids.

I have researched a bunch of kayaks and would like to know which would be best for what I want to do. Not looking to break the bank on.

Sea Eagle 370 - I read to stay away from these but money wise a good deal and you get oars, pump with them.
Sea Eagle explorer 380x - looks to be better material than the 370
Aire tributary Tomcat tandem - heard great reviews, how would it be in a lake?
Advanced Element straightedge 2 -

Any help would be appreciated.

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Old 03-16-2014   #2
Fort Collins, Colorado
Paddling Since: 2011
Join Date: May 2012
Posts: 10
I bought a Used Zoik, from Gravity Play Sports. Shipped quickly and so far has been great. The only thing I did not like is the seat setup. One of the buckles broke , and I had to redo it. Looks like they may be out of stock for that one but have a tandem Aire. Gravity Play Sports

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Old 03-16-2014   #3
Jenks, Oklahoma
Join Date: Oct 2004
Posts: 1,407
Hard to beat any inflatable kayak made by Aire.

Do a Mt Buzz search as there have been lots of discussions on IK's
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Old 03-16-2014   #4
Denver, Colorado
Paddling Since: 1974
Join Date: Jan 2010
Posts: 140
I have a tandem trib. I have paddled several rivers tandem and solo up to III in it.

Not sure about your concern in a lake?

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Old 03-16-2014   #5
Jackson, Wyoming
Paddling Since: 1966
Join Date: Jul 2009
Posts: 427
There is always a bit of a trade off between whitewater maneuverability and easy tracking on a lake.
That said, the Aire Tributary line is a great value.
Their Strike line of Tribs is advertised to do well on both lakes and rivers (also have a look at the Sawtooth in the Trib line while you are at it -- that one leans more toward touring -- lake).
AIRE | Rafts, Catarafts, Inflatable Kayaks Whitewater Rafting Accessories and Boats
You might think a bit more about your intended use (what would you do most) and what trade offs would be most acceptable to you (some lack of tracking and speed on a lake, or some lack of maneuverability in whitewater).
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Old 03-16-2014   #6
k2andcannoli's Avatar
Denver, Colorado
Paddling Since: 2002
Join Date: Feb 2012
Posts: 657
Used Boats

If price is a primary concern, look into used gear over cheap gear.

These Thrill Seeker boats are hand made in West Virginia. So you'll save on shipping too.
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Old 03-17-2014   #7
Nashville, Tennessee
Paddling Since: 2014
Join Date: Mar 2014
Posts: 13
Thanks on the responses.

I like the tributary and straitedge2, the gf likes the looks of the sea eagle.

The tributary looks likes a better white water kayak and will work with fishing. I read you can get them for about $600 used. What is the best place or time to find one?

The straitedge looks better for fishing, has fishing rod holder's and can handle the rapids I would do.

Either one I am sure I will be happy with just have to find the best deal.
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Old 03-17-2014   #8
2kanzam's Avatar
Charleston, West Virginny
Paddling Since: 1996
Join Date: Aug 2012
Posts: 461
Originally Posted by nashwillisX View Post
Sea Eagle 370 - I read to stay away from these but money wise a good deal and you get oars, pump with them.
Sea Eagle explorer 380x - looks to be better material than the 370
Aire tributary Tomcat tandem - heard great reviews, how would it be in a lake?
Advanced Element straightedge 2 -
Right off the bat, scratch the SE 370- it's basically a pool toy. I've put my hands on one-you don't want it.

The AE Straightedge, well I couldn't find anything on the material, but every AE boat I have seen is crap and all the ones I've researched are like the SE 370: pool toys. Not to mention at the price I saw ($799) you can get into a (better?) boat made by a reputable company.

Now the SE 380x: I have one and like it (3 years now??). It really is a pretty tough little boat. SE has made some design improvements over mine that I like (like the extra bailing holes and floor cut to drain better) and it should benefit from them. One thing I did notice when I got a replacement seat awhile back is the seat materials & hardware got cheaper feeling than my originals...haven't had issues just didn't like the feel. I hope the other materials don't suffer from the same "downgrade" (and doubt they do).

The SEs do come with a lot of accessories that other boats don't so that helps the overall price of getting into one. When I bought mine they were about the most bang for your buck as far as quality but now the Aire tribs and NRS outlaws are eclipsing that threshold and SE are pricing themselves out of it.

The aire should track better than the SE...but I think the SE might have better primary stability (I can stand in mine) but I bet the Aire hase better secondary stability. The aire is heavier...the aire has a 1 year warranty (might be no fault though) and last I checked SE had a 3year but it certainly is NOT a no-fault warranty.

The SE with deluxe seats is freaking really comfortable, even with me and my GF in it. It has a reall high carrying capacity (aire is probably close) but I think there is more room inside the tubes of the SE than a Trib. The SE tracks like crap and is slow on flat water. Rapids in the Class III can be done but it just isn't a great whitewater boat compared to the Trib. One thing I REALLY like about the SE is that ability to close the bailing holes. I like to run dry most of the time and you don't get that in other boats.

Ulitmately it boils down to this:
The SE is great platform for tandem fishing, camping, moving rivers up to class II and staying dry when you want to.

The aire would be more whitewater worthy and probably better for a lake (read faster/better tracking), however you are sacrificing a little comfort and interior space. I wouldn't want to fish with me and my girlfriend out of it.

As much as I like my SE, I am looking to buy more whitewater worthy ducky like an outlaw or Trib, but keeping the SE. There is a place for both in my quiver.
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Old 03-17-2014   #9
scotttoland's Avatar
LAX to SEA, 90032
Paddling Since: 2009
Join Date: Sep 2011
Posts: 27
My wife and I plus two dogs have had great success with the Aire Super Lynx. Does everything you asked for and will last a lifetime. They warranty them for a decade! Probably save you money in the long run.
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Old 03-17-2014   #10
wildsoles's Avatar
Belfair, Washington
Paddling Since: 1995
Join Date: Feb 2013
Posts: 40
I'm not familiar with SE, so can't comment one way or another on those.
But I would definitely put a plug in for Aire boats. We have had rafts, cats, and IKs, all from Aire. And, for awhile we had an original Aire (very old!) catboat that they still warrantied. Fabulous customer service. You can't go wrong with them.

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