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PostPosted: Wed Jul 06, 2011 7:07 am 
I've noticed that it's very hard to find any information on the XT-15 from owners or operators. It's been on the market for a while now so I expected there to be much more out there. Alas, I have searched for hours over days never finding the information I am looking for. I am hoping some people on this board can enlighten me.

In particular, I am having trouble finding out what this boat is actually capable of out in the real world. Is it just for flat placid bodies of water or is it a practical sea kayak? And what kind of whitewater can it handle?

Due to my location in the SF Bay Area, the most realistic allocation of time I can be in each water type is:

Calm lakes - 50%
Ocean, Bay - 40%
Whitewater Class I-III - 10%

There are plenty of lakes and reservoirs nearby and, of course, the Pacific and SF Bay, with my whitewater adventuring typically taking place on the Rogue River in Oregon. 

I'm not terribly interested in getting the "best" kayak for each water type, just one that can survive ocean waves, whitewater, and the occasional rock without catastrophic failure. I've spent years using less than ideal rental boats and gear of all kinds and am finally looking to purchase my own. I'm not new to kayaking but I'm definitely new to shopping for one, and what I'm trying to figure out is if the XT-15 might be a respectable all-rounder for my purposes. From what I've read, it does not make a 'good' sea kayak because the deck is not sealed and it does not make a 'good' whitewater kayak because it is long and not solid. 

Any XT-15 owners out there not just paddling calm placid waters? What's the most abuse your boat has taken? How has it failed you? How comfortable do you feel in whitewater?

Joel120


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PostPosted: Wed Jul 06, 2011 5:41 pm 
Talk to David and Patti at kayaksailor.com. They use XT-15's a lot and speak very highly of them. They have some videos on their site where they use those to show their sails.


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 Post subject: We have an XT-15
PostPosted: Tue Jul 19, 2011 4:47 pm 
lord high faltbotmeister
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Joined: Fri Sep 25, 2009 10:46 am
Posts: 525
Location: inland Pennsylvania, USA
We bought an XT-15 last year from Charles Snider (an outdoor guide and Folding Kayaks Forum member who has used Pakboat canoes in Alaska and Patagonia and swears by them even in Class II and III whitewater.) Don't know if he still participates here (he is pretty busy and often on the road) but I believe he still has one himself and could tell you more.

We have been very pleased with ours and feel it paddles comparably well to our rigid sea kayaks and to my much more costly Feathercraft folders (it feels most similar to the Kahuna I used to have.) So far we have had it out on mostly flatwater, from broad slow rivers to bigger lakes with some chop, and one trip down some Class I sections of a local fastwater stream, scraping gravel bars and sliding over rocky shelves. It paddles easily to good speed, tracks well and turns favorably. We got it primarily for my 5' 9", 190 lb boyfriend but I have taken turns with it too (5' 5" 155 lbs) and found it very enjoyable.

I would feel quite comfortable taking it off shore in moderate conditions in the Great Lakes or coastal Atlantic with full flotation bags and possibly a sea sock. I would not want to use it in Class II and up not due to any lack of durability but due to it just being too long to be maneuverable (just as I would not take my 15' or 18' touring hard boats on whitewater.)

Due to the lack of a completely watertight seal around the deck rim (it's velcro), it would not be ideal for a lot of deckwash, surf entry, rolling or a lot of sculling/edging. For river and lake to lake touring we expect it to be super -- loading the hull is a breeze with the peel-back deck. Set up is a lot easier and quicker than my Feathercrafts have ever been (I call the pretzel athletics they require "kayak yoga") an the adjustable/inflatable seat in the XT-15 is so comfortable we've nicknamed it "The Barcalounger". The cockpit is generous enough to allow butt first, then legs entry but well-designed to hold a touring sprayskirt in place. You do need to buy or rig a foot brace. Pakboat sells an inflatable one and a rigid metal one that fastens to the frame. We rigged one similar to the "floating" foot platform in my Wisper using a poly cutting board and nylon buckle straps attached to the frame.

I do advise you carry the nicely equipped patch kit with you. We accidently set up the seat wrong beofer its maiden voyage and the frame punctured one of the 6 blow up sponsons when we launched. Didn't ruin the day -- we just deflated the same one on the opposite side and kept paddling. The ladder type side frame and other sponsons kept it rigid. It was an easy fix later on.

For the money I think it's one of the best values going in folders as far as lightness, ease of setup, performance and features.

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Current:
Feathercraft Wisper
Pakboat Quest 135
Pakboat Puffin 12
Pakboat Swift 14
Greenland SOF
P & H Easky 15LV
Previous:
Feathercraft Kahuna
Feathercraft K-1 Expedition
Pakboat XT-15


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PostPosted: Wed Jul 20, 2011 4:51 pm 
faltbootemeister

Joined: Tue Apr 08, 2008 1:37 am
Posts: 149
Location: Vancouver BC
I just did an 8 day trip on the west coast of vancouver island. with a friend in a pakboat XT-17, slightly different than the 15 (it has a rudder) but very similar. It seemed to hold up very well in the waves and swell, open ocean conditions. I was fairly impressed. Still not sure just how much bashing around the frame can take, but it did do 8 days in tough conditions without issue.


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PostPosted: Wed Jul 27, 2011 3:04 pm 
faltbootemeister
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Joined: Fri Sep 08, 2006 3:43 pm
Posts: 207
Location: Vancouver, Canada
Quote:
I would feel quite comfortable taking it off shore in moderate conditions in the Great Lakes or coastal Atlantic with full flotation bags and possibly a sea sock.


If the XT-17 has the same cockpit size as the 17, try a Feathercraft seasock. Apparently it fits quite nicely.
A seasock is a safety feature no folding kayak should be without. It also keeps the interior clean.

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PostPosted: Wed Aug 03, 2011 8:54 pm 
faltbootemeister

Joined: Tue Apr 08, 2008 1:37 am
Posts: 149
Location: Vancouver BC
paragilia, the feathercraft seasock fits the XT-15 like it was made for it. Jose picked one up after trying Ochidos a few weeks back when you met us at Golden Ears. He bought one right after and took it to Nuchatlitz. Worked very well and in my mind it's a must have for touring.


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PostPosted: Tue Nov 22, 2011 12:27 pm 
lord high faltbotmeister
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Joined: Fri Sep 25, 2009 10:46 am
Posts: 525
Location: inland Pennsylvania, USA
Since I have a Feathercraft sea sock with my Wisper, I also tried it on our Pakboat XT and it does indeed fit nicely. Since the design is pretty simple I bought coated oxford nylon to make a duplicate of it for the PB rather than pop for another pricey FC one.

I also found the standard cheap Harmony touring skirts that turn up often on Ebay (usually around $30 in red or yellow) fit the PB XT.

Another useful accessory (since the PB's don't come with deck rigging) is the flat braided bungee cords with the Delrin plastic clips that you can find in hardware stores and Big lots -- a couple of them clipped to the perimeter d-rings and crisscrossed gives you a place to slide the spare paddle and to clip a drybag or stash a water bottle. SInce the d-rings sit below the removable deck, you don't want to lace standard deck cord over it because it would interferer with peeling it back.

_________________
Current:
Feathercraft Wisper
Pakboat Quest 135
Pakboat Puffin 12
Pakboat Swift 14
Greenland SOF
P & H Easky 15LV
Previous:
Feathercraft Kahuna
Feathercraft K-1 Expedition
Pakboat XT-15


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