Tag Archives: inflatable kayak reviews

Product Review: StraitEdge2 Pro High Pressure Inflatable Kayak from Advanced Elements

Advanced Elements of Benicia, California recently introduced one of two new kayaks for the 2020 product year. The AE3027 StraitEdge2 Pro is a redesign and upgrade to the long-standing, AE1014 Advanced Elements Straitedge2 inflatable kayak for one or two paddlers.

The new AE3027 Straitedge2 Pro features the identical kayak materials and construction as the earlier AE1014, but with upgraded accessories and features. The Straitedge2 Pro now comes with a 4-6 PSI drop stitch floor, rather than the standard 1 PSI PVC floor. The increased floor rigidity enhances the paddling experience with better tracking and glide.
The Straitedge2 Pro arrived this past month so we took the opportunity – during a brief break in the heat spell – to put it through its paces. Here are details on the Advanced Elements Straitedge2 Pro AE3027, a 13 foot inflatable kayak for one or two paddlers weighing in at roughly 42 lbs.
Getting Started with the Straitedge2 Pro
The box as received weighs 59 lbs, measuring 39 x 21 x 13 inches.

A rugged, oversized, backpack-style carrying case (4.5 lbs) houses the kayak body with integrated floor (34 lbs), high-backed lumbar seats (2.5 lbs each), 2 sets of foot pegs, 2 rod holders, repair kit, fin and instructions. The kayak in the backpack with seats and parts weighs in at 45 lbs total.
Straitedge2 Pro Setup/Inflatation
We began by reading the manual, which gives excellent explanations on inflation, seating, peg installation. And here we come to AirKayak’s Tip #1: No matter how excited you are, take a good look at how the kayak is folded before you set the kayak up, so that you can get it back into the carrying case.

First step, unpack and unfold the kayak. (Please note: We will repeat some of the details previously mentioned in other writeups.)

Inside the bag are four identical plastic pegs, each with a foot pad, a lever and a number of holes – these are the foot pegs. By pressing on the lever, the foot pad can be moved forward and backward, locking into one of the openings.

Open the kayak body fully and you will see a series of 6 cloth pockets and tubes on each inner side – these are for the three seating positions. The first and third set are for tandem paddling while the second (middle) set is for solo paddling.

Point the peg with foot pad facing the paddler, and lever facing the bow. Insert the paddler-side end into the first loop, pushing back enough to then push the bow-end of the peg into the pocket. As these are tight, it is easiest to position it in the opening and then push on the foot pad to get it to slide all the way in.
Continue with the opposite

Original Source: AirKayaks >>

Product Review: Kokopelli Moki Inflatable High Pressure Kayak with Deck

We recently posted our Sneak Preview on the new series of Moki inflatable kayaks from Kokopelli Packraft – two exciting new models we’ve seen for 2020. What’s so special? The new Moki Series expands the Kokopelli product line, providing a traditional paddling experience.

Last month, the 2020 models started rolling in. We began the series with the new 13.6 lbs XPD, so we now turn to the high-pressure Moki inflatable kayak, a 12 ft 2-inch model with zip-off deck and spray skirt.
Getting Started with the Kokopelli Moki Inflatable Kayak

We unpacked the box and laid out the pieces – inflatable kayak body with high pressure floor, EVA seat, removable deck, spray skirt, foot brace, coaming tube, pump with gauge, repair kit, roller backpack, fin, deck rod, repair kit and instructions. The fin and the repair kit are found in a pocket inside the backpack.
Boxed up, the dimensions are 36 x 25 x 15 inches with a shipping weight of 58 lbs. The kayak weighs 33 lbs with the seat, floor, brace and fin – add another 1.75 lbs for the deck and 1 lb for the coaming and spray skirt. All packed up in the bag, everything weighs 46 lbs. The folded kayak size is 29 x 21 x 9 inches.
The generic instructions for Kokopelli’s inflatable kayak series include inflation and deflation techniques, deck, seat and skirt installation, but lack details on actual set up; we will outline the steps we took, below. In general, set up is straight-forward – unpack, unfold, inflate.

The first step is to unfold the kayak.

The Kokopelli Moki utilizes three main GRI push-push valves for inflation. These are very simple to use and feature an inflate mode (spring plunger is UP) and a deflate mode (spring plunger is DOWN). By using your finger to gently push on the plunger, it can be moved to the inflate mode (air goes in and doesn’t come back out) and deflate mode (air goes in and comes back out). Before you go to all the effort of inflating the board, PLEASE make sure the plunger is in the inflate position.

Next, set up the pump – this is not mentioned in the instructions. The Moki comes with a very nifty, collapsible, dual-action Nano pump and built-in pressure gauge. Fold down the feet and attach the hose to the side that says Inflate (there is also a Deflate side). There are two pieces of plastic tubes in the plastic packaging – these are screw on handles. Unfortunately, there is no place to attach/store the handles when removed so you may want to buy a mesh laundry bag to keep everything together. Or, don’t even bother attaching the handles as the pump is pretty easy

Original Source: AirKayaks >>

Sneak Preview – New 12 PSI AirVolution Dropstitch Inflatable Kayak from Advanced Elements

During one of our many trips to Advanced Elements earlier this year, we were invited to take a look at an upcoming new product.

Wow! Our first view of the AirVolution prototypes, Advanced Elements’ new 12-14 PSI high-pressure, dropstitch inflatable kayaks. The series consist of the 13′ AirVolution solo and the 14’6″ AirVolution2 tandem.

Advanced Elements subsequently send us a preproduction sample of the AirVolution single to test out.

Our first take on the AirVolution? This is a wonderful addition to the recreational flatwater paddling niche. It’s a rugged, stable, simple-to-setup kayak that paddles well – and it looks great!

The entire kayak is innovatively constructed using PVC Tarpaulin laminated to high-pressure drop-stitch material – this gives a smoother finish, increased rigidity and a sculpted outline for greater paddling performance. The v-shaped hull design in the bow and removable deep-water fin increase tracking performance, allowing the AirVolution to slice through the water.
Drop-stitch (DS) material is the same used in the inflatable paddle board market, where thousands of threads string the top and bottom panels together, allowing it to be pumped up to higher pressures, thus making it more rigid.

With only two chambers to inflate, the new AirVolution high-pressure inflatable kayak features a streamlined set up procedure, allowing one to get out on the water quickly. Two pressure relief valves ensure the kayak is not overinflated, releasing at roughly 18 PSI.

The open-deck design provides ease-of-entry, while a drain well with plug ensures that you stay drier.

The sculpted EVA foam seat can be ratcheted four-ways, providing maximum support, adjustability and comfort.

Front and rear bungee deck lacing provide plenty of options to attach gear, yet there are still options for storing small items under the decks
We took the AirVolution out for a maiden voyage. Both of us felt the kayak paddled and tracked well, was rugged and incredibly stable. The sculpted hull allows water to drain off, and the smooth skin is very easy to dry. Everything in the package looks great, from the graphics and sculpted silhouette to the EVA-foam molded seat and included accessories.

At 5’4″, I found that moving the seat up 12 inches from the rear well allowed me to be balanced and use the front deck as a foot brace. I also was able to easily stand up.

At 6’2″, my husband had the seat all the way to the back. While his knees were slightly bent, he actually prefers that position when paddling. Since I know we will get asked this, for reference we measured the seat back to the front deck as 45 to 46″. With “water socks” on, he was able to lay his legs down flat. So, I would feel comfortable saying the AirVolution can be paddled by customers up

Original Source: AirKayaks >>

Choosing an Inflatable Kayak – What Should You Consider

Gone are the days when inflatable kayaks were simply pool toys. With recent dramatic increases in technology, today’s inflatables have evolved into everything from family recreational fun to high-tech specialized  watercraft – some even rival the performance of hard shell kayaks.

An array of Advanced Elements Inflatable Kayaks
Benefits of Inflatable Kayaks
So why choose an inflatable? The biggest reasons are portability and storage.
Innova 100L Backpack for Innova Kayaks
The ability to travel with an inflatable – either tossed into the back of your car or RV, taking mass transit, backpacking into remote areas or flying around the world – is appealing to many.

Inflatables also solve storage problems – the bags and backpacks can easily fit in a closet  or trunk of a car, and there is no need for cumbersome and expensive roof racks.
AquaGlide Chelan 155 HB XL Kayak for 1-3 paddlers
Many of the inflatables are lightweight – making it easier to manage – and can hold one, two, sometimes three paddlers, making it great for family fun.
AquaGlide Blackfoot 155 Angler HB XL for 1-2 paddlers
Most are rugged and incredibly stable, appealing to those nervous about the water and leary of “tippy” hardshells. Many have hulls which can take scrapes, bumps and submerged sticks and logs without a blip. And in the remote chance that you do puncture your kayak, most can be easily repaired with the included maintenance kits. Simply cut a patch, put on glue, apply pressure and let sit overnight.
Inflatable Kayak Styles and Definitions
With the number of new inflatables hitting the market, there are now many styles to choose from for a wide range of water activities – from oceans to ponds, slow moving rivers to white water or wave running.
Here is an overview of some kayak styles to consider as well as some of the terms you might not be familiar with:
AquaGlide Klickitat 125 HB XL Self-Bailing Inflatable Kayak for 1-2 paddlers
Self-bailing kayaks: These are typically used in whitewater situations. Self-bailing kayaks have numerous ports – or holes – located in the bottom of the kayak. When in a fast-moving whitewater situation, this allows water to enter the kayak and pass back out, ensuring the boat doesn’t fill up. Expect a wet ride. Conversely, if you are on calm water, water will come in through the floor ports unless the kayak has plugs that can be opened or closed. Many self-bailers don’t have tracking fins, meaning they may not perform as well in flat water.
Advanced Elements StraitEdge 2 for 1-2 paddlers
Sit-on top kayak: An open design kayak. This is great for people who have difficulty getting in and out of an enclosed shell, those who tend to feel claustrophobic, and for those in warmer climates. Conversely, water will splash

Original Source: AirKayaks >>

Product Review: New Convertible Elite High Pressure Inflatable Kayak from Advanced Elements

 Advanced Elements of Benicia, California recently introduced one of two new kayaks for the 2019 product year. The AE1007E Convertible Elite is a package upgrade to the long-standing, popular AE1007R Advanced Elements Convertible inflatable kayak for one or two paddlers.

First launched in 2003 as the AE1004 AdvancedFrame2, the original model featured an integrated deck for double paddling. The kayak was reintroduced in 2006 as the AE1007R AdvancedFrame Convertible, sporting an open cockpit design which could be enclosed with optional single and double decks for solo or tandem paddling.
The new AE1007E Convertible Elite features the identical kayak materials and construction as the current AE1007R, but with upgraded accessories and features. The Convertible Elite now comes with a 4-6 PSI drop stitch floor, rather than the standard 1 PSI PVC floor with i-beams. The increased floor rigidity enhances the paddling experience with better tracking and glide.
The Convertible Elite arrived this past month so we took the opportunity – during a brief break in the rains – to put it through its paces. Here are details on the AdvancedFrame Convertible Elite AE1007E, a 15 foot inflatable kayak with high-pressure floor weighing in at roughly 54 lbs.
Getting Started with the Convertible Elite
The box as received weighs 60 lbs, measuring 34 x 21 x 12 inches.

Inside, the rugged backpack-style carrying case houses the kayak body, floor, seats, thwart, repair kit and instructions. The kayak with backpack and parts weighs in at 52.4 lbs, while the kayak body is 44 lbs.

Please note: A quick “overview” of set up is now sewn into the inside of the carrying case – we highly recommend that you read this.
Convertible Elite Setup/Inflatation
We began by reading the updated manual. This, too, has evolved over the years and gives excellent explanations on inflation, usage, refolding, etc. And here we come to AirKayak’s Tip #1: No matter how excited you are, take a good look at how the kayak is folded before you set the kayak up, so that you can get it back into the carrying case.

First step, unfold the kayak. (Please note: We will repeat some of the details previously mentioned in other writeups.) The AdvancedFrame series of kayaks feature an “inner rib” in the bow and stern, which is basically a u-shaped aluminum rib, about a foot long and one-half inch wide.

This comes “pre-assembled” meaning it arrives already inserted into two sleeves inside the kayak cover. Unless you remove the inner bladder, they remain in position. When the kayak is pumped up, the inner bladder with rib presses against the kayak cover – that, in conjunction with two bow and stern plastic sheets, give the kayak a sharp silhouette which aids in slicing through the water. (Please note: We removed

Original Source: AirKayaks >>

Visit AirKayaks Storefront for Inflatable Kayaks, SUPs and gear

Browse through the following categories:
AirKayaks Main Page Categories
Inflatable Kayaks

Inflatable Kayaks for Solo Paddling
Inflatable Kayaks for Tandem Paddling
Under 30 lbs
High Pressure Kayaks
Self-Bailing Kayaks
Kayak Fishing

Inflatable Paddle Boards
Paddling Accessories
Manufacturers

Advanced Elements
Aire Tributary
AquaGlide
Hala Gear
Innova
Kokopelli Packrafts
NRS
Red Paddle Co
Star Inflatables

 
 

Original Source: AirKayaks >>

Product Review: New Hi-Pressure Sport DS™ Inflatable Kayak from Advanced Elements

Earlier this spring, our first shipment of the new AdvancedFrame Sport DS arrived in port, becoming the fourth addition to the popular Advanced Elements DS series* of high pressure inflatable kayaks.
Manufactured by Advanced Elements exclusively for AirKayaks.com, the new Sport DS features the same footprint as the current low-pressure AE1017 Sport, but with high-pressure floor and upgraded accessories for added comfort and performance.

Following are details on the AdvancedFrame Sport DS AE1017DS, a 10’5″ hi-pressure inflatable weighing in at roughly 28 lbs with an MSRP of $499. (Please note: some of this will be repeated from prior reviews.)
Getting Started with the AdvancedFrame Sport DS Kayak
The box as received weighs 36 lbs, measuring 31 x 18 x 11 inches.

Inside, the rugged carrying case measures 33 x 19 x 11 inches, and houses the kayak body, high-backed lumbar seat, high pressure floor, repair kit, double action pump, gauge and instructions. The kayak and pump in the case weighs 30 lbs, while the kayak and seat alone are 28 lbs. The case has just enough room to include a breakdown paddle (not included). AirKayaks note: Take a good look at how the kayak is folded BEFORE setting up, this will help during breakdown.
AdvancedFrame Sport DS Kayak Setup/Inflation
The instructions are located in a small plastic pocket inside the carrying case. The manual included is for the standard low-pressure Sport, with an additional sheet on using the high-pressure DS floor. The inflation procedure is similar for both versions of the Sport, with the one difference the floor inflation pressure of 4-6 PSI for the dropstitch floor.

Additionally, a short version of the DS inflation can be found on the tag attached to the rear carrying handle.
First step, unfold the kayak. The AdvancedFrame Sport DS – along with all AdvancedFrame models – features an “inner rib” in the bow and stern, which is basically a u-shaped aluminum rib, about a foot long and one-half inch wide.

This comes “pre-assembled” meaning it arrives already inserted into two sleeves inside the kayak cover. Unless you remove the inner bladder, they remain in position. When the kayak is pumped up, the inner bladder with rib presses against the kayak cover – that, in conjunction with two bow and stern plastic sheets, give the kayak a sharp silhouette which aids in slicing through the water.

The kayak features 5 inflation chambers – two military valves and 3 twist-loks. The military-style plunger valves are simple to use – twist up to inflate (this is the closed position where air goes in and doesn’t come out) and down to deflate (air goes in and comes back out).

The pump comes with a screw-on adaptor for the main chamber, but a standard Boston valve adaptor will friction fit

Original Source: AirKayaks >>

Product Review: New AirFusion EVO Dropstitch Inflatable Kayak from Advanced Elements

Nearly eight years ago, Advanced Elements debuted the original AirFusion kayak – an inflatable hybrid designed to rival the handling and speed of skin-on-frame kayaks. The AirFusion was unique in that it featured a blended design of aluminum alloy frame poles and pressurized air tubes, resulting in a high performance rigid frame system.

This was followed by the AirFusion Elite, which featured a streamlined set up procedure with fewer poles, a wider beam and integrated rear storage hatch.
At last summer’s Outdoor Retailer show, Advanced Elements unveiled their 2018 inflatable kayak product line with announcement of the new AE1042 AirFusion EVO a 6-8 PSI high-pressure model constructed from dropstitch material, with a Barbie-sized 24″ waistline.
Just this week the first AirFusion EVO arrived, a double cardboard box measuring 37 x 25 x 12 inches and weighing in at 47 lbs.
Getting Started with the Advanced Elements AirFusion EVO
The rugged carrying case/backpack houses the kayak body, seat, repair kit, foam floor, screw-on and Boston pin adaptors, instructions (located in the small plastic pocket inside the backpack), two thwarts, nose and stern bags, and anodized aluminum poles. The kayak folded size is approximately 34 x 17 x 8 inches. Everything in the case weighs 37 lbs, while the kayak with seat is 33 lbs. The case has just enough room to include a small pump and breakdown paddle (not included). AirKayaks note: Take a good look at how the kayak is folded BEFORE setting up, this will help during breakdown.
The manual is pretty well-written though initially a little daunting. (AirKayaks note: Some of the initial AirFusion EVO boxes contained instructions for the droptstitch floor. The AirFusion EVO does not use an inflatable floor, so you can just toss those.) After the first read-through it seemed simple enough – piece together the poles, position the floor, pump up side chambers partially, insert bottom pole through the thwarts connecting both ribs, pump up thwarts, finish pumping up side chambers, pump up bow & stern tubes, attach seat, inflate coaming tube. Done!
AirFusion EVO Setup/Inflation

Unfold the kayak body, locating the kayak bow (front) and stern (rear) – this is easy as the integrated storage hatch is located at the stern.

Next, put the foam floor into position, setting the wider end inside the center of the cockpit – this will position the small rectangular cutout over the velcro tab in the floor. Make sure you pull the velcro tab through the cutout. Tip: the foam floor only covers the area where your feet rest.

Layout the bow and stern thwarts. Each of these is tapered. The front airbag (which also acts as a foot brace) is larger than the rear airbag, while the larger side of each airbag faces the cockpit/center. Lay

Original Source: AirKayaks >>

Video: Advanced Elements AdvancedFrame Inflatable Kayak

Our latest AirKayaks video on the AE1012 AdvancedFrame inflatable touring kayak from Advanced Elements, which updates our previous video from 2007.

The AdvancedFrame inflatable kayak from Advanced Elements, a classic model blending performance, price and portability. At 10 ft 5 inches, a weight of 33 lbs and a 350 lb payload, the AdvancedFrame is perfect for all ages and experience levels. It’s maneuverable, speedy, and glides through the water. Great for lakes, small rapids, rivers, bays and coastlines.
Also read our detailed writeup – Product Review: New Advanced Elements AdvancedFrame Inflatable Kayak – which covers setup, features, specifications and performance.
To purchase or for more info, visit our AE1012 AdvancedFrame product page at AirKayaks.com.

Original Source: AirKayaks >>

Video: Expedition Elite Inflatable Touring Kayak from Advanced Elements

Our latest AirKayaks video on the new Expedition Elite inflatable touring kayak from Advanced Elements.

At 13 ft in length and a capacity of 450 lbs, the 42 lb Expedition Elite is comfortable for long paddles along the ocean yet can carry enough gear for an extended trip. The streamlined body – in conjunction with the 4-6 PSI high pressure floor – provides great tracking and glide. Great for lakes, calmer rivers, bays and coastal ocean.
Also read our detailed writeup – Product Review: New Advanced Elements Expedition Elite Hi-Pressure Inflatable Kayak – which covers setup, features, specifications and performance.
To purchase or for more info, visit our AE1009-XE Expedition Elite product page at AirKayaks.com.

Original Source: AirKayaks >>