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Old 11-06-2013   #1
Hood River, Oregon
Paddling Since: 2163
Join Date: Sep 2007
Posts: 295
Fluid Bazooka

Had the Fluid Bazooka out on the water for the first time the other week on an awesome late season Gore run. Great flows, fall colors, bald eagles, and the boat handled very well. I wrote up some of my first impressions on the boat in a brief review. Check it out if you're interested in this as a creeker:

Bazooka M First Impressions!

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Old 11-06-2013   #2
ednaout's Avatar
Boulder, Colorado
Paddling Since: 2005
Join Date: Jun 2005
Posts: 966
Nice review David! I didn't realize they sold their boats directly making them more affordable but i noticed it was listed at 970, on the info list to begin with, and 770 at the end of your review...
Regarding the hip shims - why do you prefer the closed cell vs their version? What's the advantage that would make you switch them out?
Great video! Oh, and nice boof at tunnel too! CLEAN!


"You know that old trees just grow stronger and old rivers grow wilder, everyday..."
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Old 11-12-2013   #3
Hood River, Oregon
Paddling Since: 2163
Join Date: Sep 2007
Posts: 295
Beth- The list price of the boat is 970, but it has been selling on their website for 770 (Bazooka - Whitewater Kayaks - Kayaks) for quite a while now. Pretty screaming deal price-wise. With free shipping, that is getting close to a lot of pro-deals out there.

I would need to look more closely at the hip outfitting next time I paddle it, honestly. They worked fine for me that day, but I'm not certain how easy it is to add hip shims that are not specifically made to work with the Fluid outfitting. It is always nice to be able to add any old slice of foam when you need it to customize fit on the fly.

Quite a fun day on the water. Bummed I haven't seen you out there for a while.
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Old 11-12-2013   #4
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bc, CA
Paddling Since: 2007
Join Date: Aug 2008
Posts: 316
Really nicely put together video, and great paddling too! Such an inspiration. I loved the song you chose but have never heard it before. What is it?
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Old 11-12-2013   #5
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Durango, Colorado
Paddling Since: 1990
Join Date: Mar 2009
Posts: 211
Glad you like the Bazooka. It's a great boat ! With a variable hull and more volume than you think, this boat can do quite a bit once you start to figure out the design qualities. It also excels as an overnight boat. Plenty of volume behind the seat and easy access. New for 2014 is a seat update which will provide greater stiffness with less seat movement.
To air is human, to get big air divine.
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Old 11-12-2013   #6
Hood River, Oregon
Paddling Since: 2163
Join Date: Sep 2007
Posts: 295
Brenda- The song is Les Petits Poissons Roses by a guy named David Lohstana. He doesn't seem to be on iTunes or anything, but I found his great folk instrumentals on Jamendo... a website/search engine for music that has been licensed for "creative commons" use. You can download it there for free personal use.

Dwave- that is a good point that I did not cover in the review. There is a ton of space in the stern behind the seat. I obviously didn't try packing in tons of overnight gear, but I did put my 5d MKIII and 2 lenses back there easily. No trouble with getting it behind the back band and found a good spot to carabiner it in. For this purpose though, there was almost too much space. I keep my camera set up in a Watershed Ocoee with a padded liner and in a lot of boats I've paddled, the bag fits just barely into the stern. This makes it somewhat of a pain to load the bag in the stern but, once inside, there is very little room for the bag to move around at all. That makes me a little less worried about the camera getting damaged in impacts because the bag can't move around/slam into anything.

That said, this could be solved by using a peli case or otterbox type drybox for camera protection in conjunction with the Bazooka instead of a drybag. While that is usually a pain with boats that don't have enough stern space to fit a bulky drybox, I bet the Zook would handle is easily... and dryboxes in the end are usually far more fool proof for camera protection anyway as they provide superior impact protection.

I can imagine that the boat would be really easy to pack overnight gear in.
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Old 11-12-2013   #7
Dwave's Avatar
Durango, Colorado
Paddling Since: 1990
Join Date: Mar 2009
Posts: 211
Hey Dave, I hear ya when looking at how much room is back there. There's quite a bit!! Here's my typical day run set up that is actually exactly the same for overnights just minus the amount of gear. Like you I'm totally into Watershed products. They're bomber. I use a padded out Ocoee like you for my 7D and lenses and I fit it up front in my lap because of the cockpit size and leg room in the boat. Behind the seat are Watershed Futa stowfloat bags. These take up the room nicely and can be blown up to occupy the space when not carrying all the overnight stuff. In there I always keep a set of hand paddles, a 1st aid kit, a pin kit, and a boat repair kit with Bitchathane, duct tape, and micro blow torch. These do not nearly occupy the space provided by the Futa bags. So...when pushed back, the space behind the seat nicely fits the Ocoee when I need to put it back there. I can also fit a small dry bag for lunch/snacks.

A couple of details about the cockpit and front pillar. The 2 holes in the front pillar immediately infront of the paddler in the pillar plastic are designed for bungee cords. When tied in there correctly, you can put a throw bags vertically through the 2 bungee cord loops so that you have a throw bag immediately accessible between your legs, on the pillar and not moving around. Super handy for safety. Another feature of the pillar design is besides it being a great carrying handle, the holes in the front pillar are there for your safety should you get pinned vertically. You can use these as steps to "walk" out of the boat or stand on. Other pillar systems that are foam cannot do this. Step on this foam and it blows out.

One more feature, when compared to the new outfitting from Confluence, the Bazooka is much lighter. Take a look at the plastic molding of our seat and components. Punched out plastic to make it lighter. No trays under the seat and excessive over engineering of the bulkhead which ends up being extra not needed weight which other manufacturers are doing.
To air is human, to get big air divine.
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Old 11-13-2013   #8
adgeiser's Avatar
Denver,, exhaustion
Join Date: May 2009
Posts: 578
i love my bazooka.
but also noted the seat wiggle. i solved this by adding some stick on foam pads in two places. first under my heels and next to the pillar... this helped reduce the side to side wobble of the pillar there. then i did the same right in front of the seat. this really helped a lot.
the only other complaint that i have is that the backband on the seat loosens as i'm boating. the ratchet straps backed out 2 plus inches just going down the narrows on clear creek. it was a constant problem of having to stop and retighten them multiple times a day. they are now dust taped... not a real solution, but it is working.

oh yeah... and i do need to add another 1/2" of hip shimming to each side.

"We should restore the practice of dueling. It might improve manners around here" -Edward Abbey
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