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Old 07-08-2007   #1
Join Date: Jul 2006
Posts: 5
Better Boat?

Which is better for a 5'7" 140 lb beginner....

Jackson Fun
Wave Sport EZ
Wave Sport EZ G 50 (what's the difference between the EZ series and the EZ G series anyway?)
Liquid Logic Vision 44

I'm looking for a standard beginner playboat/river runner that will be easy to roll....all of these come highly recommended but I have no idea.


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Old 07-08-2007   #2
Join Date: Nov 2006
Posts: 18
Jackson Fun is easy to roll and is a great playboat. I have a smaller friend and she loves her boat stable and a all round fun boat

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Old 07-08-2007   #3
Big Building with Gear
Boulder, Colorado
Paddling Since: 2002
Join Date: Jun 2007
Posts: 112
The EZG series is a little wider, more stable than the EZ series which also make them a little less stellar in the play category and a little better as a river runner. You should also consider checking out the Prescription series from dagger. Its their version of the EZG series as a river running playboat goes but in my opinion (and from waht other have told me) is easier to roll and alot more playful than the EZG. You'd want to try the prescription in the 6.7 size. We've got the EZG and Prescriptions in our shop in Boulder, but you'd have to head down to Denver and check out the Jackson kayaks at Confluence.
2510 47th St #A1, Boulder
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Old 07-08-2007   #4
Redpaddle's Avatar
Newport, Oregon
Paddling Since: 1989
Join Date: Jan 2007
Posts: 206
I would go for a Jackson Star. I found that for myself and everyone else that I have ever paddled with that they all wished they would have purchased a more aggressive first boat. I started with a Dagger Crossfire because it was next to free, but wish I would have put the money down for a playboat.

right now, there are apparently some issues with Wave Sport, their boats and their warranty. Check the previous posts. But the EZ is a good (but big) river/play boat, the EZG is a hybrid between an EZ and a ZG (which is a playboat). According to my friend the Vision has some real sharp rails and doesn't roll that easily. But he is from Latvia, so what does he know?

SO, my opinion is that a good playboat like the Jackson Star or a Dagger Kingpin or something like that is a perfect starting boat. Many disagree, and to each their own. Demo them if you can. That I think everyone can agree on.

PLUS women have better control over their bodies and learn faster than men so don't worry about getting a boat above your abilities. I guarantee you everyone has a boat that is above their ability. Except EJ.
"Paddle silently, boof loudly"
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Old 07-08-2007   #5
Telluride, Colorado
Paddling Since: 1492
Join Date: May 2006
Posts: 207
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With good technique all of these will be easy to roll.
Definitely try out the Jackson Fun. They're great boats and they really stand behind the product.
But demo as much as possible to get a feel for what fits you best.

You might want to include the LiquidLogic CR (I think the 125) in your list. I think it actually matches up better with the other boats you're looking at than the Vision, which is more of a playboat.
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Old 07-09-2007   #6
Winter Park, Colorado
Join Date: Apr 2005
Posts: 52
I LOVE LOVE LOVE MY FUN. I paddled a Inazone for 4 years, when my friend got a FUN last year as a beginner she loved it and let me try it one day. I am 5'7" and a little heavier then 140, my friend is a little shorter, but probably about the same weight as you.

Yes to each their own, however...I would discourage a beginner from getting a true playboat. The Star and KingPin are too agressive a boat for a true beginner and unless you want to be primarily a play boater (only hangout in playparks) or you plan on catching every surf wave down the river (which I high doubt as a beginner boater), there is really no sense in getting one of those two boats. You will get discouraged easily in a true play boat. I have seen beginners get tossed around in a less stable boat and they have no confidence out there.
But this is also advice from a solid boater who is playing mental games with her boating. So take it as you will.

FUNs are super easy to roll (I just got my offside for the first time last week) and are fairly stable. I had a great time on Brown's last weekend and was still able to play a little on some easier waves.

I think the fact that FUNs are popular right now too will help if you do decided that after a season it is not aggressive enough for you...someone will snatch it up! Same goes for the boats in the WS series (although I have never tried one)

And as acetomato said...demo demo demo, if you have that option. Alot of places will allow you to put the money that you spent to demo towards a new boat...or at least they use to.

Redpaddle: big difference between a Crossfire and a Star, and really shouldn't be compared at all in the sense of beginner boats. I think there are better progression options out there.
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Old 07-09-2007   #7
Join Date: Jul 2006
Posts: 5
How about a perception method?
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Old 07-09-2007   #8
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Summit, Colorado
Paddling Since: 1996
Join Date: Jul 2005
Posts: 2,085
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Method...hmmm.... Good boat. Runs rivers well. Slicey enough to throw ends. Easiest boat I've ever rolled. Should be able to get a good deal on it because it's older. But definitely try it out first as it has a very low cockpit that can be an uncomfortable fit for a lot of people.

I really like the EZ and EZG as beginner boats because they are stable, good river-runners, and play well too. The Jacksons are great boats but definitely lacking in primary stability=tippy. Awesom playboats, and good river runners but can be a little squirly for a beginner.


"The world would be a better place if everyone kayaked."-Brad Ludden (Valhalla)
"You only get one chance to run a drop blind."-DD
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Old 07-09-2007   #9
Redpaddle's Avatar
Newport, Oregon
Paddling Since: 1989
Join Date: Jan 2007
Posts: 206
well of course there are differences between a crossfire and a star. about 4 feet and 20 gallons of difference. I never put a comparison between the two. I paddled the crossfire for probably 6 runs before giving it away for a gift. I paddled an innazone through most of my learning curve and once I sat in a playboat (a RAD 185) I knew what I had been missing all the time.

And playboats arent just for playing. You can run up to class V in a playboat. And yeah, the learning curve is steep but it is well worth it. You will learn a lot of things much faster like edge control and keeping your body centered. You dont have to be a playboater to sit in a small boat.

But a good point about the Fun series. They wont stay unwanted for long. I have never sat in a method, but from my limited experience with them, they will be a solid downriver boat but a Fun would be a better option.

my opinion is that if you are going to stick with the sport and put some days on the water, go for an agressive boat. It will take you further faster. If you are going to paddle <10x a year, go for a river runner.
"Paddle silently, boof loudly"
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Old 07-09-2007   #10
the fort, Colorado
Paddling Since: 2001
Join Date: May 2006
Posts: 672
i have an ezg 50. good downriver boat. surfs well. pretty stable after i moved the seat all the way forward to avoid getting stern squirted so much. pretty comfy, too. my guess is that at 5-7 and 140#, you'd fit into an ezg 42, which would be a bit more playful than the 50 at your size. i like it better than my friend's kingpin for the simple reason that it's more comfortable and is a bit easier to roll, presumably because of the shorter cockpit....pretty good surfer and spins and squirts easily too. i'm sure if i was a better playboater that i could do other stuff with it, but that's about all i get into these days.

of course with all of the bad press wave sport has been getting on the buzz recently, the jackson boats might be a better place to start. never paddled one of them. like others have said - demo whatever you are looking at before you buy it.

By the waterside I will lay my head.
Listen to the river sing sweet songs to rock my soul.
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