IK decision - Mountain Buzz
 



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Old 11-02-2013   #1
 
Enfield, New Hampshire
Paddling Since: 1990
Join Date: Nov 2009
Posts: 390
IK decision

Trying to choose bet the Tomcat and the NRS outlaw. Both cost the same, and price is an issue so not looking at the others. Have read lots of good reviews re the Tomcat but not much re the Outlaw. The only comment about the outlaw that I hear consistently is its a wet ride.Iam 210 lbs with gear and I dont plan on doing heavily loaded trips.
So any thoughts re these 2 would be helpful. Cannot demo them easily either.
Thanks,
Jimmy.

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Old 11-02-2013   #2
 
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North Denver, Colorado
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I have a solo tomcat at its great. It fills up with water but bails quick, I think all IKs fill up with water in whitewater. Cant go wrong with Tomcat, do a search there is a lot of talk about these and some people around your size said they love their Tomcat.
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Old 11-02-2013   #3
 
Montrose, Colorado
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Jim, I have had my tomcat single for going on 6 years now and am extremely pleased with it's overall versatility. The nrs bandit is strictly a single person boat with little to no room for any extra gear. The tomcat can hold extra gear and even a second person or pet can be put in front. I live in western colorado and have logged about 1000 river miles, along with my kayaking buddy Ed, who paddles the nrs bandit. We do mostly class III and some moderate class IV. I have had to rescue Ed and his boat on many class IV rivers, because the bigger waves simply destroy the little 20 lb. bandit.
Overall the tomcat is much more stable and much more cheaper than the bandit and just a much better boat, even Ed agrees after all these river miles we have gone together.
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Old 11-02-2013   #4
 
Jackson, Wyoming
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Well, the Tomcat is a known quantity, and as has been noted, there are lots of available opinions -- mostly positive. The Outlaw is brand new -- maybe somebody here will chime in, but nobody has direct experience with long-term durability. I bet you would be happy either way. I think if I were planning to beat it up a bit, I would go Tomcat -- a bit heavier than the Outlaw -- but still quite manageable. On the other hand, if you are kind to your boats and don't hit many rocks (big water vs. more technical/creek-type), you could opt for the benefit of a lighter one -- just knowing you are among the first adopters, so some uncertainty. Like I said, I bet you would happy either way -- so you could just pick based on how they look to you! I guess one big difference is that floor on the Outlaw -- I have no experience with that kind of floor -- that might be another thing someone else should chime in on. (Nicer valves on the Outlaw, but not really a big deal.)

Edit: you might ask the TheBoatPeople -- pretty straight shooter.
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Old 11-02-2013   #5
 
Join Date: Oct 2003
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I have spent a lot of time in a Tomcat Tandem, which I just recently sold. Bought a solo Outlaw late this summer, and have about 5 days on it. I liked the solo Outlaw so much, that I bought a tandem Outlaw. No experience in a solo Tomcat.

Tomcat Tandem was a good, but not great boat. Actually thought stability was a bit unpredictable. It didn't flip that much - but it didn't flip when I thought it might, and would flip when I had no thought that it would. When inflated, the bottom is far from "flat" and I think the cross currents would easily catch the protruding tubes. It's definitely heavy, and can make quick moves difficult, especially when in whitewater and the boat fills up with water, making it heavier yet. But, it would drain completely, even if a bit slowly. It's also long. Did seem to be a very durable boat.

Compare that to the solo Outlaw - while not as much use at this point, it came off as VERY stable. Drop stitch floor is very rigid - no taco-ing. And it's flat - nothing for cross currents to catch on. Haven't flipped it yet - even when I thought more than one time it would. I weigh about 180 without gear, and had a LITTLE water right where I was sitting, but otherwise, it drained as well as the Tomcat. VERY maneuverable. A lot of that probably because it's much shorter than a tandem - but I think the rocker profile and how light it is also factor in. I used to hardshell kayak. The outlaw was not far off from what I remember in terms of maneuverability. Again, no direct comparison to the single Tomcat - but I bought one of those at the same time as the solo outlaw to compare side by side, and it felt like I was sitting lower in the outlaw, it has a wider footprint, a little shorter. That did translate to great stability and maneuverability on the water.

On the other hand, the tandem Outlaw has already been returned. While the solo was not a big deal at all with water draining, the tandem was really poor. A couple of inches of standing water the whole time. Even though it's obviously bigger than the solo, I guess the weight of two people still threw off the balance point. So, not sure where that point is on the solo, and maybe at 210 it wouldn't work well for you in terms of draining/standing water.

FWIW, though I had the opportunity to buy another tandem tomcat after the tandem outlaw went back, I decided to go with the Aire Outfitter. Got a good deal on it, though still more expensive than the Tomcat. I think it will be a better performer.
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Old 11-02-2013   #6
 
Enfield, New Hampshire
Paddling Since: 1990
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AIRE single person CAT yak

Just received a pic of an AIRE single person CAT yak from someone wanting to sell. Have never seen or heard of this IK on AIREs website.Is about 11' long with a frame and a cheetah seat. Seems to have largish tubes with dual chambers on each side, but minimal rocker. Has AIRE DEMO written on each tube on the outside.
Does anyone have a clue what IK this is?When did AIRE make/stop making it?
Would love to get the scoop on this, or will have to contact AIRE next week.
Thanks a lot for any info.
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Old 11-02-2013   #7
 
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Sandy, Utah
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JIMM View Post
Just received a pic of an AIRE single person CAT yak from someone wanting to sell. Have never seen or heard of this IK on AIREs website.Is about 11' long with a frame and a cheetah seat. Seems to have largish tubes with dual chambers on each side, but minimal rocker. Has AIRE DEMO written on each tube on the outside.
Does anyone have a clue what IK this is?When did AIRE make/stop making it?
Would love to get the scoop on this, or will have to contact AIRE next week.
Thanks a lot for any info.
I may be remembering this wrong (happens as I get older ) but I think they call it a cheetah seat because it started out on the Aire Cheetah cat yak. I have a fuzzy memory of this boat from many moons ago.
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Old 11-02-2013   #8
Jared
 
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Dundee, Oregon
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I had a buddy with a Cheetah, he took it on the Jarbidge on a high water trip (pushing 3K at the put it) and it did pretty well. He ended up not liking it too much and sold it in a year.
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Old 11-03-2013   #9
 
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Fruita, Colorado
Paddling Since: 2002
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NRS Outlaw all the way!

Jim,
In my opinion there is not a better IK (around $650) than the outlaw.

Weight: The outlaw is 26lbs. while the tomcat is 40lbs. The lighter weight of the outlaw allows it to be much more maneuverable.

Floor: The outlaw has a flat and stiff floor. Which is great for quick direction changes, stability over breaking waves (less tendency to "pancake or fold")

Paddler Position: Paddling the outlaw, I sit lower in the IK than the tomcat. This allows a more secure and stable sitting position (for both my hips, butt and legs/feet), which means more overall control of the IK
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Old 11-03-2013   #10
 
Enfield, New Hampshire
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re outlaw

Gtown, thanks for your response.What do you feel re the water draining slowly out of the Outlaw? Is it a significant isssue at 210 lbs? Does it run drops OK?
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