I Finally Ordered a Quest 155.

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Apathizer
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I Finally Ordered a Quest 155.

Post by Apathizer »

Well, after much hemming and hawing I finally ordered a Quest 155. It should arrive either late this week or early next week, meaning my maiden paddle should be in about two weeks. I won't write any extensive impressions until I've had it for at least a few weeks and paddled it in a variety of conditions.

I'm really looking forward to having and discussing many great experiences with fellow Pakboat paddlers. :D

DLee
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Re: I Finally Ordered a Quest 155.

Post by DLee »

That's awesome, congrats!

I would love to hear some first impressions. Often we forget what those were after we've been into the boat for a while. So, as much as I look forward to your impressions once familiar with the boat, some 'unboxing' thoughts would be great as well.

Pretty exciting... don't forget about pictures.

d
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chrstjrn
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Re: I Finally Ordered a Quest 155.

Post by chrstjrn »

I wish I was getting one, but don't have the cash for that use, right now. Lucky you got one now-- I understand they aren't making them any more.
Chris T.
~'91 Klepper A2 w/ BSD schooner rig.
'64 Klepper Passat/Tradewind and T12 restoration projects.
Non-folding: Early '90s Old Town Canoe.
Previously owned '04 Pakboat Puffin II and '05 Swift (prototype), as well as an '84 Hobie 16.

Apathizer
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Re: I Finally Ordered a Quest 155.

Post by Apathizer »

DLee wrote:That's awesome, congrats!

I would love to hear some first impressions. Often we forget what those were after we've been into the boat for a while. So, as much as I look forward to your impressions once familiar with the boat, some 'unboxing' thoughts would be great as well.

Pretty exciting... don't forget about pictures.

d
I haven't received it yet, but hopefully by Friday (fingers-x'd) since the weekend is forecast is perfect. I'd like to have my maiden voyage Sat or Sun. I won't have any pix initially, but will try to post some eventually.
chrstjrn wrote:I wish I was getting one, but don't have the cash for that use, right now. Lucky you got one now-- I understand they aren't making them any more.
Yeah, unfortunately they just didn't sell the way Pakboats hoped, but they're still committed to service and parts for them. Tentatively Pakboats is looking at replacing the Quest with a new version of the Puffin.

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chrstjrn
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Re: I Finally Ordered a Quest 155.

Post by chrstjrn »

Yes, last I knew Pakboats has full manufacturing capacity-- at a limited scale-- in-house at their facility in New Hampshire. That's how they build the prototypes, after all. So warranty service shouldn't be any problem.
Chris T.
~'91 Klepper A2 w/ BSD schooner rig.
'64 Klepper Passat/Tradewind and T12 restoration projects.
Non-folding: Early '90s Old Town Canoe.
Previously owned '04 Pakboat Puffin II and '05 Swift (prototype), as well as an '84 Hobie 16.

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chrstjrn
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Re: I Finally Ordered a Quest 155.

Post by chrstjrn »

I should say "capability", not capacity. They manufactured in-house up until about 11-12 years ago...
Chris T.
~'91 Klepper A2 w/ BSD schooner rig.
'64 Klepper Passat/Tradewind and T12 restoration projects.
Non-folding: Early '90s Old Town Canoe.
Previously owned '04 Pakboat Puffin II and '05 Swift (prototype), as well as an '84 Hobie 16.

Apathizer
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Re: I Finally Ordered a Quest 155.

Post by Apathizer »

I received it a few days ago and my maiden voyage was on Sunday (6/7/15). I only took it for a 3 hr paddle in protected water (lots of boat traffic), so my impressions are still very cursory. I'll provide more detail with experience, but here are my initial perceptions (somewhat relative to the Folbot Cooper, the only other folder I've owned):

Quality and design - For the price the materials seem exceptional. The aluminum tube walls are thicker, and the diameter is narrower than those on the Cooper, and they also seem more durable and stiffer. The bottom portion of the hull seems thicker/tougher than the top half, with a reinforcement strip along the keel. True to Pakboat's philosophy, the Quest seems to be designed to be as simple as possible without compromising function and performance.

Assembly: First assembly took about 90 minutes, which is to be expected I suppose. Several steps in the assembly took me several minutes to figure out. Most of these are fairly simple and should only take a few seconds after practice and familiarity makes me more confident... I hope. :P I'll let you know how long assembly takes once I'm competent.

Performance: The hull feels much stiffer than the Cooper, with little to no flex in the mostly easy-moderate conditions so far. I could feel the hull ripple with water motion, but this might have been partly because I was overly cautious when inflating the air-tubes (I kept the pressure pretty low). Otherwise, overall performance seems indistinguishable from similarly proportioned hard shell boats, but I'll hold off drawing further conclusions until I've had more experience.

So far the water-seals are better than I expected, and significantly better than the Cooper. While it was protected paddling, I was repeatedly bombarded by powerboat wakes and there was no indication of leakage at the deck-hull velcro interface.

I'll write a more comprehensive review after I've had more experience, but this probably won't be for at least several weeks (probably not until early October at the earliest), but in the meantime, feel free to ask questions and continue the discussion.

Apathizer
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Re: I Finally Ordered a Quest 155.

Post by Apathizer »

I also wanted to ad a note about the seat: I'm happy to say the seat issues seem to have been resolved. The Quest seat is positioned about 1-2 inches above the hull, providing the most comfortable platform I've ever had. Since it's suspended just above the hull, the seat is comfortable, but also highly stable. More details to follow...

siravingmon
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Re: I Finally Ordered a Quest 155.

Post by siravingmon »

Congratulations! Glad to hear from another happy Quest owner :-)
Looking forward to hearing more from you about your experiences with the 155
Simon

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Apathizer
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Re: I Finally Ordered a Quest 155.

Post by Apathizer »

Yesterday I went for about a 12 mile paddle. The first two miles or so was on the open water of Puget Sound, but the conditions were very calm so I didn't glean many further insights into performance. I did perform more leaned-turns this time out, and it responded well. I didn't lean all that far, but there was minimal-to-null leakage through the deck-Velcro seam. The seam position and tube pressure seems to provide an effective seal. While it's not completely watertight, so far leakage hasn't been an issue at all. So far performance continues to seem comparable to hard shells.

Assembly time improved considerably the second time: It took me just over an hour, working at a moderate pace. Once again I made a couple rookie errors (i.e. initially misplacing the seat), but even with these I was happy with the improvement. Once I'm capable of assembling it without instruction a 30 min assembly time still seems very reasonable.

Apathizer
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Re: I Finally Ordered a Quest 155.

Post by Apathizer »

Just a quick update: I went for a paddle yesterday. The third assembly took about 45 minutes. Assembly time and ease is improving faster than I expected. I didn't need to look at the instructions much, though this did lead to a minor mistake: I slid the air-tube support rods from the stern end instead of the bow end. :oops: This wasn't a major problem; it's just easier to slide them in from the bow end as instructed. They slide in really easily from the bow end, and while I did manage to get them in place from the stern it was more cumbersome. [Mental note to self: Slide the air-tube support rods from the bow end! :mrgreen: ]

I went for a 4 hr paddle on a ridiculously busy Lake Washington. Wind waves were only about 1', but there was a crazy amount of boat traffic. When I paddled through the Montlake cut, the turbulence was pretty intense. I'm happy to say the Quest 155 behaved like a good, stable hard shell; even though I was bounced all over the place it handled the situation really well and never felt like it was going to capsize. I'm really loving this yak so far... :D

salish25

Re: I Finally Ordered a Quest 155.

Post by salish25 »

Apathizer wrote:Just a quick update: I went for a paddle yesterday. The third assembly took about 45 minutes. Assembly time and ease is improving faster than I expected. I didn't need to look at the instructions much, though this did lead to a minor mistake: I slid the air-tube support rods from the stern end instead of the bow end. :oops: This wasn't a major problem; it's just easier to slide them in from the bow end as instructed. They slide in really easily from the bow end, and while I did manage to get them in place from the stern it was more cumbersome. [Mental note to self: Slide the air-tube support rods from the bow end! :mrgreen: ]

I went for a 4 hr paddle on a ridiculously busy Lake Washington. Wind waves were only about 1', but there was a crazy amount of boat traffic. When I paddled through the Montlake cut, the turbulence was pretty intense. I'm happy to say the Quest 155 behaved like a good, stable hard shell; even though I was bounced all over the place it handled the situation really well and never felt like it was going to capsize. I'm really loving this yak so far... :D
Apathizer,

I have a Pakboat Puffin 12ft kayak and I work near the Montlake Cut in Portage Bay. I sometimes go for a paddle around noon. My only experiences with Pakboat is with my 12ft Puffin, which I love, but I'd really like to get a look at your Quest.

Thanks,
Cliff

Apathizer
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Re: I Finally Ordered a Quest 155.

Post by Apathizer »

salish25 wrote:Apathizer,

I have a Pakboat Puffin 12ft kayak and I work near the Montlake Cut in Portage Bay. I sometimes go for a paddle around noon. My only experiences with Pakboat is with my 12ft Puffin, which I love, but I'd really like to get a look at your Quest.

Thanks,
Cliff
Feel free to send me a PM if you'd like to see it sometime. I'm available most weekends.

Update: Working at a moderate pace, I can now assemble the Quest, bag-to-boat, in about 35 min. I generally feel pretty competent with assembly, though I do still seem to make one or two minor mistakes which add about 5 minutes to the overall assembly time. At this point my assembly time will probably only improve modestly. When fully competent, 25-30 min assembly seems reasonable.

Last weekend I went on my first camping trip, spending 3 nights at a water-trail campsite on the NE corner of Vashon Island. There is ample space in the aft storage area.:D I have a 65L Sea to Summit "Big River" dry bag that fits easily and completely when fully loaded with plenty spare room. There's enough space for an 80L dry bag (I don't know of anyone who makes one that big). I put all my camping gear and clothing in the aft storage area, and the boat-related equipment (repair kit, etc.) in the smaller fore-storage without any difficulty. I'm also a backpacker, so tend to be a pretty minimalist camper, and the Quest 155 has ample room for me. It seems to have more storage space than the Folbot Cooper, and it's also easier to load since the cross-ribs are completely open at the top.

After a few days of easy day-paddling, for my return to the mainland I paddled all the way to Seacrest Park from Vashon (about 6-7 mi); this was my first extensive, somewhat challenging open-water paddle on the Quest. Even though it was a clear, warm day, I started somewhat late in the morning, so I had to deal with moderate afternoon wind/waves for the last 1-2 hrs. There was also some occasional opposing/variable current, but it seemed pretty weak.

Overall the Quest did very well. It handled the moderate wind/waves (prob about 5-7 kt/1-2') without any major problems. There seemed to be a bit of weather-cocking, but it was pretty easy to deal with: While it might take a couple strokes to engage, the Quest responds well to leaned-turns and corrective strokes. I have foot-pegs and hip-pads, but no rudder (rudders are evil :twisted: EVIL :!: ). Both are necessities for me. I have narrow hips, so the hip-pads help for leans and other maneuvers, though stockier paddlers might not need them.

Compared to the Cooper, the Quest is stiffer, more maneuverable, and seems a bit stabler. The Cooper did seem a bit faster, which is probably expected because it's a foot longer. [Note: I was about 4 years younger when I had the Cooper, so age is also likely a factor. :lol: :( ] The Quest water-sealing seems better. Minimal water gets through the deck Velcro seam, which is also up high enough that you have to go pretty deep on leaned-turns to submerge it. [So far I've only had to lean over a moderate degree.]

I'll paddle it at least a couple more times before writing a more comprehensive review.

vagabond
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Re: I Finally Ordered a Quest 155.

Post by vagabond »

I'm also considering the purchase of a Quest 155. I am 6'2" and 200lbs. Do any of you know if this boat would be a good fit?

Apathizer
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Re: I Finally Ordered a Quest 155.

Post by Apathizer »

vagabond wrote:I'm also considering the purchase of a Quest 155. I am 6'2" and 200lbs. Do any of you know if this boat would be a good fit?
I would contact Pakboats for info. It would be fine for day trips, but if you'll be doing overnight trips it might be a bit small. I had about 45 pds of gear on my overnight trip and there was plenty of room and weight to spare, but I'm only 5'9" 160.

Again, check with Pakboats. The XT-17 might be a better fit for you, but don't take that for granted.

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