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Old 08-11-2012   #1
pueblo west, Colorado
Paddling Since: 2012
Join Date: Aug 2012
Posts: 2
mamba or diesel

just started kayaking this summer, love it. I've looked at a lot of river runners and have it narrowed down to either the mamba or the diesel. I'm 5'11 and 200lbs. Any input or advice on these two would be great. I live in pueblo, so I do the arkansas river mainly.

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Old 08-11-2012   #2
SummitSurfer's Avatar
Summit County, Colorado
Paddling Since: 2006
Join Date: Jun 2010
Posts: 435
This months issue of Rapid Magazine has a write up on both these boats, and they are great reviews! The mamba and diesel have very different characters. I would encourage you to pick up the mag.They say the Mamba is intermediate to advance boater running bigger water and creeks.
They say the Diesel is fast and punches holes easily, along with the fact it has harsher chines so play boaters feel more at home in this boat because of the similarity of playboat edges.
I've got the newest Diesel 70, and all I know is that it's easy to roll, very quick, a sports car in the curves and very stable on edge.

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Old 08-12-2012   #3
surrounded by mountains, Colorado
Paddling Since: 1981
Join Date: May 2004
Posts: 475

Diesel. It's the SUV of kayaks and super fun at any water level on any river. Buzzards are going to start adding other suggestions to your choices, but, given your two chosen picks, the Diesel remains one of the best choices always.

Enjoy your boating!

No risk, no reward. It is not that we have to, it is that we get to. Preparation and education are essential to self-confidence and success. - KV
"If there is no risk there is no adventure."- Bill Briggs
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Old 08-12-2012   #4
Commercial Paleontology
Join Date: Jul 2006
Posts: 182

I started out with a Diesel for my first boat & it fit the bill perfectly for me. It's kinda hard to go wrong with that boat whether you are new to the sport or a seasoned kayaker....That being said... I actually have an older model..a 75gal..I'd sell...they only made two volumes initially..65 & 75..It would be the perfect volume for your body size..It's definitely got some scratches on it but the outfitting is in real good shape & would be a great starter boat that would get you into one fairly cheap..I don't really use it anymore ..I have other boats.. though I did use it on the Grand this spring...Food for thought....
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Old 08-12-2012   #5
boulder, Colorado
Paddling Since: 2012
Join Date: Jun 2012
Posts: 6

If the poster is not interested in your diesel. I may be. I'm in the same boat.
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Old 08-12-2012   #6
Ft Collins, Colorado
Join Date: Apr 2005
Posts: 198
+1 for the Diesel. It's like a Volvo station wagon. Not the best at anything, but it does a lot of things really well. I'm ~ 5' 10", 150 lbs and the 65 was perfect for me.
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Old 08-13-2012   #7
Columbus, Indiana
Join Date: Aug 2011
Posts: 135
Go demo a Diesel, Mamba, and Burn. They're all fairly similar, and they'll all take you as far as you want to go in paddling. All very good boats. You'll likely figure out that one just "feels right" to you if you go paddle them.

For example, my wife paddles a mamba, and I paddle a burn. She just likes the way the mamba paddles, and I like the way my burn paddles. It's just personal preference. Neither boat is "better than the other." They're all really solid choices.
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Old 08-13-2012   #8
Vail, Colorado
Join Date: May 2009
Posts: 112
To be honest you cannot go wrong with either boat. Both boats are made in the same factory and chances are assembled by the same hands. I learned on the Diesel then bought a couple of burns and now I am in a Mamba. BEST BOAT YET! The 2012 Mamba is a boat that will take you far into your paddling career. With a semi-displacement semi-planing hull you truly get the best of both worlds. On top of that the chine is similar in aggression to the Diesel but dissipates at the stern. This means it is easier to roll and wont hang up on eddy lines as easily.
On a side note-a couple of our kayak instructors have been Nomad loyalists for the last few years. This year they bought Mambas.
Also, at 200 lbs definitely get the 8.6 Mamba or Diesel 80. Keep in mind too that the 8.6 Mamba is 89 gallons and the Diesel 80 is 80.
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Old 08-13-2012   #9
MikeThulin1972's Avatar
Conifer, Colorado
Paddling Since: 2008
Join Date: Mar 2012
Posts: 135
I'm the same as swim team.... Live in Southeast and work for a outfitter that sells,Jackson,pyranna,dagger,wavesport, and LL and I've tried a lot of boats .. But settled on 2012 mamba ...
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Old 08-13-2012   #10
pueblo west, Colorado
Paddling Since: 2012
Join Date: Aug 2012
Posts: 2
thanks everyone, I think im getting the 2012 mamba

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