Search 15 Kayak
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Product: Search 15 Kayak

  1. #1
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    Aug 2006
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    Default Search 15 Kayak

    Product Manufacturer: Perception
    The Search is a sit-on-top kayak that is weather friendly and stable. The bow of the Search is very buoyant giving it superior performance in the surf.

    With flush mounted rod holders, a Scotty rod holder and convenient storage pockets/knee pads and a tackle box, this boat will become a favorite among anglers. The 15 provides more room in the tankwell for storing your gear.
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  3. #2
    Join Date
    Aug 2006
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    Default

    Price Paid: 550
    Recommended: yes
    Cons: lacking a rear deck, shallow factory molded flushmounts, capacity only so-so
    Pros: glide, acceleration, tracking, molded seat, round gunwales, huge tankwell
    Initial Impressions after 1 trip... Will update as I learn more about the boat.

    Got it out on the water and it behaved about as expected. Comparing to my Redfish 14:

    Seems to push less water than the Redfish, gets moving more quickly and has a little less primary stability. Doesn't turn as well as the redfish (which is not saying much). I noticed more hull-slap than on the Redfish. The molded seat felt awesome at the beginning but wore on the old tailbone after a couple hours. Gonna need some more padding down there. The extra foot of length was not really noticeable at all while fishing (not much difference between 14 and 15 feet).

    The Search is a nice boat to paddle - sides are lower and are definitely more curvy than on the Redfish. The reduced width was noticeable. Side handles are more of a pain than on the Redfish - frequently rubbing/bumping them, at least when relaxed paddling. Not a problem when you sit forward and reach, but I'm not always in race form. May need to research a suitable handle replacement.

    My Search didn't come with scupper plugs - I figure par for the course with Perception/Wilderness boats. At 240ish lbs, I had a good inch of water in the bottom of the footwell (footwells are sloped downward toward the front of the boat so the water pools at the front). Front scuppers were under water, rear just at water level. This is definitely wetter than my redfish without scuppers. (I almost always use the scuppers)

    The Search 15 has a couple more inches of legroom than the Redfish 14, which is plenty (for a 6'4" person). I had the foot pegs at the next to last stop and it was very comfortable. I didn't notice play in the footpegs. My rudder slides in the Redfish have the horizontal play for the rudder but they've also got some vertical flimsiness from being so far extended from the hull. So the footpegs in the Search were much more stable than what I'm used to.

    The molded flushmounts behind the seats in the Search seemed shallow and they are - only 5.75in deep compared to over 8in for my through-hull externally mounted flush mounts on the Redfish. I didn't have any rod leashes with me and was a little concerned about how far up the rods stuck out of the holders. Also had no good way to anchor them, but everything worked out ok - fish hit, drag pulled, fish caught, photo'd and released (7 times - not bad). Will need to find some kind of leashing system that works for me.

    The molded rod holders are also aimed straight back parallel to the centerline of the boat. I prefer my rear flush mounts to have a little angle out to the sides to separate lines more when trolling.

    There's not much of any usable rear deck space behind the seat on the Search - the tankwell and the cut-out for the included tackle tray take most of it up. I have a shock cord decking rig on the rear deck of the Redfish. The only thing I've used it for is to secure the reel handles while in the flushmounts. Will probably have to connect something to the tankwell rigging or my crate for securing/leashing rods back there.

    Inside the hull was bone-dry. The Search has the rubber hatch at the front of the seat area, so the nylon bag lays on the hull and in any water that might get inside the boat. That hatch is great for access on the water, but I think I prefer something that holds valuables up and out of any condensation/leakage (I know - there shouldn't ever be any).

    I bought it to have a 2nd, fully-capable boat to take kids & friends along, and to have a different style boat available for me. Some pluses and some minuses comapred to my Redfish, but all pretty minor. The Redfish has the advantage right now of a rudder and transducer. I'll definitely buy a spare transducer so I can swap the FF between boats. Not as sure if I'll step up to the rudder($$$).

    - - - - - - - Update after about a year of use - July 2008 - - - - - - - - -
    I still love the way this boat cuts through the water. I wind up using this one about half the time - would probably use it more if it had the FishFinder. I just bought a transducer, so the Search will probably see more action once it gets loaded out with accessories.

    Now that I've spent a year with a rudder on my other boat (Heritage Redfish), I'd really like to have one on the Search too. Would make a huge difference in turning ability. The shallow rod holders have not caused any issues. The seat area is a little wetter than on the Redfish, I think due to the sloping area around it - seems to collect some paddle drip. Folgers can fits perfectly in the nylon bag in the small hatch - keeps everything perfectly dry.

    - - - - - - - Another Update - Oct 2008 - - - - - - - - - -
    After more use, I'm finding the molded seat uncomfortable. Much prefer the Heritage seat on my Redfish. Also have some leaking into the hull - could be from all the christmas tree connectors holding the seat and the tackle pockets in place, or could be something more sinister. I find that I do not use the tackle pockets at all. Dropping my rating to a 7.

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