Originally Posted by michael.bone
I have owned both and paddled both. I used the Burn III M all last season in Colorado, before switching to a Shiva and 9R this season. I like the Burn III L a bit better for my size and what I carry. I am 5'11" 145 with no gear on and the weight that my boat REALLY feels with gear (drysuit, helmet, paddle, pfd, rope, shoes, base layers, skirt, pin kit, dry bag, first aid, breakdown, water, etc) is probably closer to 175 give or take. Here is the comparison:
Burn III vs 9R
-Burn has more primary stability, because it is wider.
-9R has less primary stability, it is narrower, but I like this feeling better, also adds speed and quickness edge to edge. It rewards paddlers with good edge control, and holds a line better than any other boat I have paddled. If you lean back, you will get punished, so lean forward and paddle hard!!!
-Both have edges, but Burn is edgier and the edges are beveled compared to the 9R edge which is not beveled, this gives a bit more forgiveness in harder whitewater, but I can feel the edge on the stern of the 9R when I find myself leaning back or out of balance.
-9R forces you to lean forward to keep the boat aggressive, not a boat for beginners or weak paddlers, you want to charge in this boat to maximize.
-Burn does eddy turns way more crisply, and is very snappy into an eddy, 9R also does eddy turns well, but maintains that speed coming into an eddy, so you have to figure out how to manage the speed once you cross the eddy line, and need to peel out with same speed and edging technique.
-9R is way faster, but that is going without saying, the speed comes from the stern length and the tapering of the rocker in the stern.
-9R has much more bow rocker making boofs and staying on top of waves, holes and rocks much easier, I find the "wave deflectors" actually do deflect water away from the face.
-Burn performs better at lower speed and is better for a paddler who does not charge all the time but prefers to stay the same speed as the flow or slower.
-9R performs best when you paddle into a rapid heading straight and fast, moving faster than the current. When traveling faster than the current the 9R is better.
-Both boats surf waves like a dream, but the 9R is a bit faster on a wave, also great for attainments.
-I would take 9R on a multi-day with gear in the back over my Burn, but the Shiva is the king of carrying the heavy load in the stern for multi days.
-Paddled Burn in big water and I prefer it over the 9R, probably because the shorter length of the boat provides less chance of getting spun out when in bit water. 9R is great big water boat, I just prefer the Burn III in big water scenarios.
They are both very high performance boats and make your local run or Class IV way more fun than any other creek boat or river runner because they have edges! I personally like to charge so I prefer the 9R, but this boat isn't going to be the answer for all paddlers. Personally I will paddle my 9R on class IV+ to V- runs but I will always go to the forgiveness of the Shiva for V and V+, mank, and very steep runs with slides like OBJ for example. The 9R is a boat that needs to be paddled fast and aggressively and designed to hit things straight. It does occasionally get pushed around, but it rewards paddlers with good edge technique. For waterfalls, I would prefer the Shiva.
PS: Don't listen to any of this talk about one boat being easier to roll than the other, if you take the time to perfect your roll technique in different situations, and dial in your outfitting the way you should, i.e. hip shims that FIT you, knee block/thigh braces that provide adequate body to boat contact, and ankle blocks to protect your feet and legs in a piton situation, you will be able to roll in most any boat. Pyranhas new outfitting (seat) is amazing and allow for simple adjustments that provide the most efficient body to boat contact and transition of movement. I feel that most boaters who constantly miss rolls is due to the fact that they are not able to roll mentally, they have outfitting which simply has not been properly set up to fit their bodies, and have not taken the time to practice and perfect their roll technique. That however is a whole different topic... PS the 9R is a totally different boat than the braaap, so forget that comparison.