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Hurricane Skimmer 128? (Update: I got it!)

UPDATE: I got it. Pics below.


I've been wanting to upgrade from my Old Town Loon 138 for several years to a SOT but have been put off by the weight of most SOT's. I doubt I could cartop a 60+ pound kayak by myself.

I found the Hurricane Skimmer 128 which weighs in at 47 pounds. All things consider it looks great and I should be able to car top it easily on our Honda Pilot since the weight is very close to my Old Town.

The one thing I don't like about it is that the angler edition doesn't include flush mount rod holders behind the rear seat like most angler kayaks have and it doesn't appear that adding them later is an option. I have added some on my Old Town and use them regularly. I know I could always add a milk crate with rod holders attached but it seems like they be harder to reach when trolling.

Does anyone have any experience with the Skimmer 128 or any other 12'+ SOT's weighing less than 50 pounds I should consider?

Here is a link to the specs on the Skimmer if anyone is interested: http://hurricaneaquasports.com/our-kayaks/sit-on-tops/skimmer-128-2/
 

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Hello yakfisher......and it appears that you have done your homework on light weight SOT kayaks....Congrats!!!

I have a 2014 Hurricane brochure in my desk, and your numbers are perfect....and THEN I saw you posted the link to the Hurricane website....LOL!!

I work at an outfitters down here in JAX and we stock and sell all three models of Skimmers, and people who need a lightweight, easily loadable, and easily riggable solution love them!! They are especially nice for smaller people or people who have had shoulder problems, tennis elbow, or carpal tunnel syndrome......and they are typically 20-30 pounds lighter than other products their size and length......

The "Trylon" plastic material is very light weight, had UV protection built into their yaks, keeps the color vivid for many years, and honestly is very impervious to "oyster rash", altho they make a sound like "fingernails on a chalkboard".....LOL!!

DO NOT BUY an "Angler Version" since you can purchase that anchor trolley and anchor and one flush mount rodholder from your your local dealer and get BETTER products installed where you want them!!!
Flush mounts are only "holders" and NOT intended for trolling and they are cheap ($5 for a dealer) and they also keep your expensive rods/REELS down near water level which will allow them to get splashed all day by paddle wash, wakes, and waves)
Buy the accessories separately and get better products for less than the "Angler Pkg" and position them where you want!!!

The Hurricane Skimmer is not the most "stable" kayak in the world, with a hull design that is "mostly" rounded except for a 1/2" (approx.) keel line down the center of the hull.

The only SOT similar to the Hurricane series is the Wilderness Systems Tarpon 120 UL....very similar to the normal Tarpon but it is made of the same U/L material, and is 12' long, 30" wide, holds 350#, offers a hull design "similar" to the normal Tarpon hulls, and weighs 43#. They are no longer manufactured, but some dealers have them still and offer nice discounts on them....
Thx for reading!!! It is more stable than the Hurricane Skimmer.....by a small margin.
JohnYaksJax
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Thanks. The oyster rash resistance is very good to know. That is the biggest problem with my Loon. Even though I only fish saltwater a couple times a year it has taken a beating on the oysters.

I'm going to try to arrange a demo over the next month or so to check out the stability. Out of the two reviews I found online one reviewer mentioned it. I have seen the specs on the Tarpon 120 UL but unfortunately can't find anyone close that still has one.

I'm a short guy at 5' 7" and even though I can lift a heavier yak, getting it onto the top of an SUV without a step is difficult. Thanks for the info and tips.
 

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Another question if you don't mind. You said that Trylon was scratch resistant but how is it as far as impact resistance? We have a lot of shallow rocky rivers and the boat could take a decent hit every now and then. It seems it wouldn't be as flexible as a rotomolded boat to absorb the bumps.
 

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Another question if you don't mind. You said that Trylon was scratch resistant but how is it as far as impact resistance? We have a lot of shallow rocky rivers and the boat could take a decent hit every now and then. It seems it wouldn't be as flexible as a rotomolded boat to absorb the bumps.
I had a Santee 116 and now I have a Phoenix 120. The boats are fine for normal use, but I wouldn't take one down a rocky river. Don't ever drop it! I dropped mine and busted the stern, but Hurricane repaired it and it looks really good. You don't have to baby them, but you sure can't bash them like you can the plastic boats.
 

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Against my better judgement I bought this without trying it out first but I can return it for a full credit for 90 days so I wasn't too worried about that. I just couldn't find the time to set up a demo. After looking at it I don't think I will regret it.

My initial thoughts are that this thing is light. I don't know exactly how much my Old Town Loon 138 weighs but the Skimmer 128 seems much lighter and with the handles on the sides it is much easier to maneuver while carrying than the Loon. The hatch covers seem to be nice quality and hopefully watertight. The finish is fantastic, it's a great looking yak. Everything seems to be made of quality materials.

The mesh seat back and padded seat seem nice but I'll have to update after I get it in the water on Sunday.
 

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Against my better judgement I bought this without trying it out first but I can return it for a full credit for 90 days so I wasn't too worried about that. I just couldn't find the time to set up a demo. After looking at it I don't think I will regret it.

My initial thoughts are that this thing is light. I don't know exactly how much my Old Town Loon 138 weighs but the Skimmer 128 seems much lighter and with the handles on the sides it is much easier to maneuver while carrying than the Loon. The hatch covers seem to be nice quality and hopefully watertight. The finish is fantastic, it's a great looking yak. Everything seems to be made of quality materials.

The mesh seat back and padded seat seem nice but I'll have to update after I get it in the water on Sunday.
I'm looking forward to your review. Hurricane changed their seats and the new ones don't look as comfortable as the old ones, but let us know!
 

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I went out for about an hour and a half today. It was hot so I kept it short. I decided instead of going to the lake I'd go to a newly opened access point on one of the local rivers. Keep in mind I am coming from an Old Town Loon 138 which is so stable you would almost think it had outriggers so take anything I say with a grain of salt. These are just my first impressions and I'm not going to be overly critical of anything until I spend a little more time in the seat.

Initial stability was pretty low, I expected as much from the few reviews I had read about the Skimmer 128. I didn't feel like I was constantly on the verge of tipping but it took a little time to get used to. By the end of the paddle I hardly noticed it anymore.

Secondary stability was very good. You could tell that in the right circumstance you would roll but typically it shouldn't be a problem. I was able to sit sideways in the yak easily and reach the rear well without feeling unsteady.

Maneuverability was excellent. The Skimmer turns on dime even in current. I was impressed. Tracking is dead on, staying straight is very easy even better than the Loon which I've always thought tracked well.

Speed was decent. Not quite as fast as I'd hoped but it's easy to keep a decent pace and it glides well.

Loading and unloading the Skimmer is a breeze. Lifting it up and balanced it on my head I was able to go up and down a tall set of stairs with ease.

The seat seemed comfortable, I haven't figured out exactly how to set the backrest to suit me just yet but I'll get there. Adjustments were quick and easy while underway.


All in all I think it was money well spent. I think the Skimmer will be a great fishing yak once I get it set up how I want it. I do know that sooner or later I'm going to roll this kayak, it will not be as forgiving of inattentiveness or careless paddling as the Loon.
 

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Discussion Starter #11
Update #2:

After a few more miles under my belt I have a couple very minor complaints, a wet seat and a flexing floor.

I wanted to be sure I could get back in the yak if I rolled so I praticed my exits and re-entries yesterday. Nothing to it, but due to the angle of the seat, once it gets water in it doesn't drain so you're sitting in water unless you sit to one side and splash the water out with your hand. More of an annoyance than a true problem.


As for comment above about the initial stability, I'm over that. I think my old boat being so stable caused me to get lazy and my form to suffer. After a few trips, the stability in the Skimmer is fine. I was able to stand up in the yak for a couple minutes with ease, I doubt I'll be able to stand and fish but I didn't expect to. When standing the floor flexed a little bit too much for my liking.

I'm still very happy with it. While it may not be faster than my old Loon 138 it is close and it is easier to keep at cruising speed. Paddling it 7 miles left me wanting more instead of dog tired like it did in the Loon.
 
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