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Old 11-18-2005   #1
Front Range, Colorado
Paddling Since: 2005
Join Date: Jun 2005
Posts: 274
Anyone tried out the Fluid Solo yet?

Specifically, looking for anyone who can review it against the Jefe (I know, I know, that can of worms... ).... thoughts? Feedback? Would you drop your $$ on one over the other and why??

I've already been in the Jefe (only twice, though) and am now looking to demo a Solo as one final consideration before making my purchase. Just thought I'd gauge preliminary reaction here: thanks a bunch, guys!

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Old 03-18-2009   #2
Dekalb, Texas
Join Date: Aug 2008
Posts: 56
found this old thread... was curious of the same

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Old 03-18-2009   #3
Fischer's Avatar
Durango, Colorado
Paddling Since: 1999
Join Date: Jul 2008
Posts: 44
I recently purchased the medium for myself. . .Theses boats have incredible safety features, no question the plastic is bomber. Some say the boat is a bit slow, but I think that is an acceptable quality in a creek boat (have good technique on your forward stroke). .. I also tried and think that the JEFE is a great boat (made in America) as well but over all I am VERY satisfied with the SOLO. When compared side by side - design is very similar on the two boats. May come down to outfitting and $ for you.
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Old 03-19-2009   #4
Indian Hills, Colorado
Join Date: Oct 2006
Posts: 221
i have a L solo and find it comfortable and easy to roll. but i cannot give you a great review of the way it handles as i only have a few days in it. plastic seems better than most. somewhat heavy. cool plastic bulkhead system bow/ stern.
Jace Crane
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Old 03-26-2009   #5
Portland, Oregon
Paddling Since: 2003
Join Date: Jan 2009
Posts: 6
Solo L -Jefe

Just broke my second Solo. Can't complain this time 'round as I was not IN the boat when it broke. Great hull design. Ton of rocker makes for easy corrections, won't "lock in" on a line. 'Course, that bow can get turned if your paddle's not active. Resurfaces well. The raised chines, though soft, do carve when you put it on edge. Semi-planing hull is very stable. Wide thigh indexing is nice. Well balanced volume. Stern pushes you out of drops, bow won't dive (see Nomad). It is sluggish when boofing and attaining initial speed. Thigh braces kind of bite and don't have a lot of range. The seat is very flat. After racking the boys a couple of times on big drops, I added a Happy Seat. The boat is unbelievably heavy. Whenever a fellow boater picks it up they comment with disbelief.

After breaking my first Solo, I demoed the Jefe Grande. Loved it. Super stable, super comfortable. Great outfitting. Tracked well but still spun/corrected with ease. Eddied surprisingly great considering the apparent lack of chine. Stayed on top and resurfaced nicely. But, at 5'10" and 175lbs, I felt the 87 gallons was too much. Boofing was solid but I would need to improve my technique as this big-a$$ boat didn't always want to release its stern Also, it felt corky. I would sometimes be bobbing while forward stroking. Odd feeling. Probably should have demoed more than once, because it is a damn nice ride.

If my Solo weld doesn't hold, I may demo the Grande again. I'll also try the regular Jefe, which I've avoided demoing because the thigh indexing is so narrow. I've talked to a few Jefe paddlers in my weight range and above who switched to the Grande and love it. I wish LL would widen the Jefe a bit.

Hope that helps,
random nwpaddler
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