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Old 11-02-2012   #11
Colorado Springs, Colorado
Paddling Since: 2010
Join Date: May 2012
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Originally Posted by BryanS. View Post
Don't get the XP. I made the mistake of getting one...
Originally Posted by BryanS. View Post
Not sure why you would call us haters...

Originally Posted by storm11 View Post
More rocker, narrower and has an actual ww footbrace.
The Fluid has tons of rocker and the footbrace.

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Old 11-02-2012   #12
BCxp's Avatar
Staghorn Springs, Colorado
Paddling Since: 2011
Join Date: Jun 2012
Posts: 147
Re the XP hatch leaking: My 2012 aft hatch didn't leak a drop, even when hosed hard. Yes, it still may be damage prone due to that plastic tab, but I think LL may have addressed the leaking.

Don't get the hater thing since we've said some good stuff about the XP. Ditto the WS. Looks interesting. You might find a key point about a footbrace/bulkhead vs. pegs is comfort. It can be real nice to have real estate to mover feet around on. Moreover, pegs can allow feet to slip off, not real cool at times, especially in a steep brace. a great thing about the Zen is the on-the-fly adjustability of the foot rest/bulkhead. Very nice!

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Old 11-02-2012   #13
BryanS.'s Avatar
Prineville, Oregon
Paddling Since: 2010
Join Date: Jun 2012
Posts: 308
I guess it does sound like I'm hating when you take what I said out of context. I said don't get it to learn in. With the tab, you can drill new holes between the factory slot that holds the bungee for the hatch and the rim. Then loop bungee over back of finger hold(behind the slot it usually sits in). Use the high speed setting on the drill, or you'll crack the tab like I did.
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Old 11-03-2012   #14
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Staghorn Springs, Colorado
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+2 on the learning, although I guess one could argue that it's so stable that it'd build confidence. But what gives it that stability also makes it harder to move around. Wonder how the 9 compares to the 10. The XP is a nice boat, one just has to understand exactly what one wants and how that meshes with the XP's personality. And again, no one boat does it all.

Re the Tab: Interesting! ++ re drill speed. Also be sure to use a real sharp bit. I'd also want to put some tape down first then dimple it to prevent the bit from skipping.

However even with all that, I still would be shy about the strength of the aft tab, especially in cold weather. Maybe paranoid, but lift the hatch wrong and it looks like that tab might snap. If I was using it in heavy water, I'd probably install a retaining strap with chute buckles like you see on some sea kayaks. But it's great that the leaking seems to be fixed.

You sure can carry a lot in that thing. Re the footpeg issue, I put stow floats up front, then a JK Happy Feet against them which gave me plenty to push on without the slippage of pegs, plus the ability to move feet around for comfort.

Looking back at the OP, maybe we're missing a point here: For a 15 year old, depending on how he's built, it might be much too big a boat, even the 9.

JD: How tall is your son? How much does he weigh? What are his shoe and inseam sizes? How strong/athletic is he? All these measurements will affect how he relates and likes a certain boat. I suggest going to Jackson, Dagger, etc websites and looking at all the posts where folks about boat size.
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Old 11-04-2012   #15
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Kansas City, Kansas
Paddling Since: 2010
Join Date: Oct 2012
Posts: 9
I have an xp 9.. super comfy boat on long trips especially with the taller seat option only problem with that is you can't get a spray skirt over the tall seat. I have taken it down a couple of creeks and def would not suggest doing that lol.. but on big open water it is a great choice and handles the rapids just fine fully loaded!! I have had trouble with the hatch so get some dry bags cause the hatch is less than perfect.. I like to take long overnighters wether it be on a calm clear stream or ones with some white water and it handles it just fine..
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Old 11-04-2012   #16
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Staghorn Springs, Colorado
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I was able to get an IR Shockwave XXL deck L Tunnel over the LL tall seat back on my XP 10 and I'm not a skinny person. However, that will restrict torso rotation a bit.
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Old 11-12-2012   #17
Washington, Washington, D.C.
Paddling Since: 1982
Join Date: Nov 2012
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Thanks everyone for the thoughts / insights. I really appreciate it. I think the take away here is be prepared to try several. Whatever I used on the New last summer (rental) was shite. It was ALL over the place which translated into my being on the wrong line for multiple rapids. At the end of the day what will likely trump all other features is hull design.

Anyway, see you on the water!
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Old 11-13-2012   #18
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Buena Vista, Colorado
Paddling Since: 2005
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Originally Posted by BCxp View Post
Having owned both the XP and a Pyranha Fusion, and having spent a day in a Jackson Rogue, I'd vote the Rogue (no, I have no hook with JK). The Fusion is not as stable as the Rogue, however the Fusion would be good if you're doing mostly WW, the Rogue too, but it's also good on the flat . I had the Fusion out in 25-28 kt. wind on flatwater and while it was fun to surf, it was a handful. Moreover, the quality left something to be desired compared to either the Rogue or XP. One thing the XP has which can be good for lazy flatwater days without a skirt is the elevated seat back, however the JK backband can be positioned quite high,too. Personally, I like the Rogue's skeg mechanism best of all. The Fusion's jamcleat toggle was finicky, the XP, while seemingly the stoutest of all, it was a bit awkward for me, whereas the Rogue is straight forward and mechanically very simple.
Having paddled all 3 fully loaded my vote goes for the Fusion. It is the fastest, and has the closest thing to a "whitewater" design in the crossover category. I agree the skeg can stick a little, but it is the longest and makes the boat track super well. I have paddled it fully loaded through some "big water" III-III+ and was very happy with the responsiveness and handling. Not sure where the "quality" is inferior to LL or Jackson.... Pyranha's plastic is a little less stiff, but I have found that it is less likely to crack for this reason. It will dent on serious pitons, but Pyranha's plastic is easier to get those dents out then LL or Jackson IMO. I am also partial to Pyranha's outfitting, but I prefer simple. It may not be the fanciest outfitting on the market, but the important parts are made of metal, which is better then I can say for the other 2.
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Old 11-13-2012   #19
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Staghorn Springs, Colorado
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Long post; Father/son sports experience is a big topic. First re a couple of the above posts and boats.

Re Fusion quality: 1) My skeg never stuck, but didn't not drop down very far (4.5" from hull to tip of skeg). Several Fusion videos show a much deeper drop which would make a big difference. Factory said mine was within design parameters. so, if you elect the Fusion and plan on lots of flatwater,I'd suggest you check the amount of skeg drop before buying. Skeg's jamcleat was finicky. Hull oil canned a bunch, too. Outfitting was comfortable, hatch pretty dry, but tough to get on compared to Rogue or XP. The storage gizmo that sits under the fwd. deck bungees is useful for small stuff, but adds weight, windage, and doesn't stay in place in heavy conditions unless you add industrial Velcro or other aids.

One of the nicest things about crossovers if you do a lot of flatwater is the deck bungees for carrying water/snacks that are easily accessible depending in if you elect using a skirt which, IMO, is always a good idea--flatwater winds can arise rapidly and make for wet rides, even enough to swamp some boats. So the deck rigging helps with not having to pop the skirt to get at whatever. A disadvantage to carrying stuff on deck is it can sometimes radically affect the performance of your boat. And it can hinder your self-rescue if you don't have a roll (with skirt!).

If you don't plan on a huge amount of big flatwater but mostly WW, I can attest that the Jackson Zen is surprisingly good on the flat when you paddle it right and known for its WW ability. It is extremely stable initially (better than Fusion or Rogue by a smidge IMO and arguably about the same as Remix XP10. Ok for surfing, great for eddy hopping, a fun boat for learning strokes on flat and WW, yet has quite a bit of room for overnights. (No, I don't work for JK.) And no, it's not the best choice for a day of long mileage. But, smaller lighter boats like the Zen have the advantages of being easy to load on the vehicle, and easy to portage. "Heftability" can affect how you take to the sport.

The quiver of boats approach is the most desirable, depending on what your family really wants to do, the accessibility of different kinds of water, time on the water, shuttle issues (flat and WW), ease of getting good instruction (highly recommended).

Having kids and grandkids, my guess is your son will dig WW so maybe lean that way with a good used boat. The Remix is good, as are several of the Jackson, Dagger, WS, and other boats. If you can, demo, demo, demo, but know that if he likes the sport, chances are the first boat will likely be just the start.

How fast is he growing? Height and weight affect comfort and boat performance. Like buying clothes for kids, you need to allow for growth. So used is likely the best choice. This is a good time to shop for used kayaks. Buy right and when its time to change you may even break even, certainly won't lose as much

Can you consult with other families with kayaking kids near your son's age? In person or online? Maybe Google to find parental remarks and experiences.

Fair winds in your search and experience. It is an incredible activity in so many ways. A caveat though, from decades of teaching families to ski and sail, and from having my own rug rats: Caution is advised when teaching kids. Parents teaching spouses or kids usually doesn't work nearly as well as having both under the tutelage of an experienced instructor. The emotional connection between family members will, in most cases, dampen learning or enjoyment. Not saying that's going to happen in your case, but it usually does. I'd *highly* suggest considering you and your son go to a full immersion kayak school/camp for a week. There are several good ones around the country such as Rocky Mountain Outdoor Center in Colorado and Nantahala Outdoor Center in NC. Not only would you learn faster, safer, and better than on your own, but you and your son would likely have an experience to last for years. Flip side is, it'd tell you pretty quickly, and maybe cost-effectively, just where you both are at with the sport. Mid-teens is a super time for that. Or, if it's doable, maybe treat the whole family to a week in Ecuador or Costa Rica. That'd be something everyone may cherish. Kayakers can kayak, others can hike and more. Could open a can of worms, though.

Long, but HTH. And hop it all goes well.
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Old 11-13-2012   #20
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Staghorn Springs, Colorado
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Yes, hull design is key, but also don't overlook sitting comfort--things like foot/leg numbness, placement of thigh hooks and seat shape especially perhaps a bit of elevation at the fwd. edge of the seat for leg circulation reasons (Jackson's inflatable Sweet Cheeks or foam might help there), hip pad location & shimming, and the ease of carrying it about. You'll be sitting in one for perhaps hours at a stretch so ergonomics can be critical, as is portaging and getting it off and on the car. Everything adds up over time.

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