Down River Equipment IK? - Mountain Buzz
 



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Old 01-15-2009   #1
 
Carbondale, Colorado
Paddling Since: 2007
Join Date: Mar 2007
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Down River Equipment IK?

Hey Y'all and Happy Winter!

I am interested in getting a couple of IK's for the coming season so the wife and I can do some paddling...we have a Maravia Williwaw II oar rig that just isn't the friendliest 2-person rig due to its size and weight.

I figured a couple of IK's would be a little more exciting for the weekend floats down Shoshone, Grizzly, and the Roaring Fork when I am not in my Maravia or hard shell Mamba. Basically an outting with the wife and dog is what I am getting at...

Obviously as part of my own 'economic stimulus plan' I am looking to buy a couple of reasonably priced IK's whether used or new...doesn't seem like a whole lot of used ones out there (obviously this time of year). But I also realize that when it is paddling season they seem relatively hard to come by used for a decent price.

Has anyone paddled the Down River Equipment Hypalon IK's? They seem to be reasonably priced right now for a new Hypalon boat. Their denier count isn't close to that of the Hyside Padillac's but they are also half the price.

Any suggestions out there or any connects on used tandem IK's?

Thanks and hope everyone is enjoying the snow!

-Cal

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Old 01-19-2009   #2
 
Carbondale, Colorado
Paddling Since: 2007
Join Date: Mar 2007
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Bagging the Ducky Idea!

Thought long and hard on this topic and will be bagging the idea of Duckies for either a Hyside Mini-Me or Paddle Cat.

I think the mini-me or paddle cat will be more fun, eh?
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Old 01-19-2009   #3
 
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Durango, Colorado
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Probably a wise move nixing the tandem ducky. My wife and I have a tandem Tomcat, and a friend of mine remarked when we got it, "oh, opted for a 'divorce boat,' eh?" The tandem thang works fine if both paddlers are of equal ability. Otherwise, it can be a, uh, challenge!
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Old 01-19-2009   #4
 
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Leadvillian, Colorado
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I think two solo IK's would be a great set-up for a couple with some whitewater experience.

I own a small whitewater rafting company and we've been using Down River boats for about three years.

The "outfitter" quality boats are certainly more durable, but the thinner "rec" models are of excellent quality as well. It's better if you don't store them rolled, but rather reinflate them when you get home and lie them some where flat and indoors. It would probably be easiest to stack the two IK's in a garage or outbuilding.

The beauty of Hypalon is that any minor problems that occur after a few years of use can usually be remedied with a jar of glue and some elbow grease.

I have two of their lighter material boats and have been very pleased with them even using them commercially. And the lighter material also means more performance and ease of transport as a trade off for the durability. Buying from a smaller retailer / manufacturer has really paid off for us with higher customer service and a personal relationship.

Good luck!
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Old 01-19-2009   #5
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Eastern Slope, Colorado
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The thinner hypalon ducks are shitty and get holes when they come into contact with rocks.

I love the mini-me for 2-3 people or for a one-man oar rig. It's fun, it fits in a car, and it is WAY better than the tandem duck! I'm not sure if you can still get a paddlecat, but they're pretty sweet too.
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Old 01-19-2009   #6
 
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Or get one ducky, and you can trade rowing the raft and the ducky, and throw it on the back if you both want to be on the boat. I bet the dog would like the boat better too.
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Old 01-19-2009   #7
 
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Leadvillian, Colorado
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you can certainly get a paddlecat from either of the manufacturers who make them...

jacks plastic or airtight inflatables

only hyside that I know of dropped their "shredder"

Randaddy - have you personal experience with the quality of the Down River IK?

I can only say that my 11' and 13' of the same fabric have been holding up exceptionally well as I don't own nor have I paddled the IK.

but, everyone occasionally makes a lemon... I know because I got one of Hyside's last year
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Old 01-20-2009   #8
 
Carbondale, Colorado
Paddling Since: 2007
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Shredder is Available this year!

I spoke with a rep at Hyside and she did confirm that after relatively popular demand they will be selling the Paddlecat aka Shredder this season...right around $1400...it is of the Rio Bravo series but does have bottom Urethane chafers which is a nice feature.

Leaning towards one of them right now...any owners of the Paddlecat out there that can vouch for their fun-factor, stability, reliability, confidence boosting features for inexperienced river runners, etc.?

The mini-me?

thanks!
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Old 01-20-2009   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Matt J View Post
Randaddy - have you personal experience with the quality of the Down River IK?
I used a DR duck a few times this summer from an outfitter here in the Fort. I saw 2 holes in a boat that was just a few months old. This isn't the only boat that had this problem. When I was looking at the holes I remember thinking that the boat was made of ridiculously thin hypalon. I would never ever ever buy any hypalon craft that is less than outfitter thickness now. I almost bought the Rio Bravo Mini Me at the start of the summer until I saw a Rio Bravo boat up close - much lower quality with shitty hypalon handles tearing off.

As for the Paddle Cat, I didn't get much chance to hop in one this summer, but I was around for many a Paddle Cat adventure. Some friends ran the Middle and Lower Narrows on the Poudre in theirs at low water. It may have been a Rio Bravo craft. He got it for about $1400 and stopped by to borrow hypalon and glue at the end of the summer....

The Mini-Me is an awesome R2 machine, as well as super fun to row. The nice thing about the Mini is that 3 -or sometimes 4- people can fit in it. It's more stable than the Puma (maybe not the foam floor Puma, but I don't think you can still get those) and easy to flip from the water and hop back in. I don't think there was a day this summer in my Mini Me where I didn't say "you would have to be retarded to buy a tandem ducky." It's a much better two person craft.

I hope this helps. I guess the moral of the story is don't buy thin hypalon. You'll regret it. The thicker Expedition, Outfitter, and Pro models are made to last a lifetime. The Rio Bravo types are made for one summer in the swimming pool.
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Old 01-20-2009   #10
 
Richmond, Virginia
Paddling Since: 1990
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My .02

I love my Puma for R2. It can also be rowed and I have used it comfortably with 5 people ON FLAT WATER! It handles like SH** with that many in the boat in comparison to just two people. I really want to get a shredder style craft and saw the hyside version for the first time last week and thought that it was awesome. The guy paddling it was with a female friend whom he said had never paddled before and they were doing fine! Don't know if this helps but Good luck!
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