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Any Disadvantage with a Sit On Top ?

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  • Any Disadvantage with a Sit On Top ?

    What if any,problems are there using a SOT kayak.For 20 years I've been using a sit inside kayak,but now my body thinks a sit-on-top might be more user friendly.:shot:
    So,I'd like to be informed by those of you that use SOT's,what would be any advantages/disadvantages ?
    Sometimes I just go out for a paddle but mostly I'm on a mission--fishing :think:
    I like the way Kardinal84 has his miniX rigged but I'm not really into too many gadgets.Seems like simple works better for me.Simple mind--simple pleasures.

  • #2
    Originally posted by Mark Collett View Post
    What if any,problems are there using a SOT kayak.For 20 years I've been using a sit inside kayak,but now my body thinks a sit-on-top might be more user friendly.:shot:
    So,I'd like to be informed by those of you that use SOT's,what would be any advantages/disadvantages ?
    Sometimes I just go out for a paddle but mostly I'm on a mission--fishing :think:
    I like the way Kardinal84 has his miniX rigged but I'm not really into too many gadgets.Seems like simple works better for me.Simple mind--simple pleasures.
    Haha I agree. Simpler is ALWAYS better. This most recent project has grown legs and I can't stop it from running! I know when I did research on getting into this, a lot of the advantage of the SOT was a beginner in theory could go out and fish in normal conditions right away due to the ease of self rescues. Where with a sit in kayaks you shouldn't wouldn't couldn't without really having your self rescue technique down pat...certainly not alone. So your long experience I think negates a lot of the perceived disadvantages of the Sit in yaks.

    The other issue is I sure like being able to move around on my SOT. I can have my legs in or out, I can side saddle in the kayak and cast if that happens to be the way I am drifting. I can't imagine being stuck in one position for the number of hours I like to fish. That would definitely limit my saltwater excursions.

    I hope others with more experience than I chime in. With my family, I see one higher end and two entry level kayaks for my kids coming in the near future...and I personally wouldn't mind if at least three of them were different models.

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    • #3
      When it is raining, snowing, windy, nasty - down right cold and wet - I sure prefer having half my body sheltered. Of course that can happen awful fast, too.
      "Punish the monkey - let the organ grinder go" - Mark Knopfler

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      • #4
        Now I don't have a lot of experience in kayaks but I did a ton of research before I got mine. Self rescue being the most important issue second only to my wife being able to come with me occasionally with no experience. Getting onto and off or landing the craft is much easier as you slip you feet off and stand up in shallow water. DOWN SIDE as I see it. Right off the bat the center of gravity is considerably higher but if you have a kayak balance already this wouldn't be an issue. The other would be exposure to the weather and that could be dealt with on what you wear. If weather will be mostly good I think a pair of cheap breathable waders with the neoprene boots cut out makes a great rain bib that is non-restrictive and won't fill with water if you do go to the wet side.

        These were my reasons for getting an SOT. Mine is an Oceans kayak Malibu two, it is a barge but it does exactly what I wanted. On a side note, in my research I found some footage of a guy eskimo rolling an SOT, very cool.

        George

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        • #5
          Since the center of gravity is higher, they usually make SOTs wider to keep them stable. Wider usually means slower.

          If the water gets splashy you will get wet on a SOT. Drysuits make good sense for most cold water kayaking, but even more so if you're kayaking in a SOT.

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          • #6
            I am a fishing, duck hunter that has a kayak. By no means a kayaker, my boat gets me out to play.
            For me stability, payload, accessibility of gear, and being able to get in and out easily led me to a SOT. I got a great deal on a Wilderness Systems Tarpon 160I about a year ago. It is great out in the bays, and gets me to some really nice hunting spots.
            It is definitely a wet ride, dry suit for sure.

            I really dislike being stuck upside down underwater as well, so that makes me a SOT man.

            It seems much less refined all around, I am sure a nice sit inside boat rides much better. This one is wide and holds lots of gear. depth finder, rod holders, and a milk crate full of junk, It also looks great with two dozen decoys bungeed down. Utility rig.

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            • #7
              AKmik,

              Love the vision of decoys hanging all around your boat...


              George

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              • #8
                Haha, yeah there was definitely a little trial and error on the loading. Even though it is 16' long, you run out of space pretty quickly.

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                • #9
                  Akmik,
                  Do you hunt while sitting in the kayak or just use it to get to and from?

                  George

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                  • #10
                    Here Is The Kayak I'm Using Now

                    Click image for larger version

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ID:	2479151This is the kayak I currently am using.I made this and a similar one for my wife.I've caught a lot of fish out of this boat and used it for hunting in tide water down in Washington.Nice boats if I do say so myself.It sure does blend in well with swamp grass and it only needs a couple inches of water to float.
                    I don't have many pictures of the boat in the water but this shot kinda gives you an idea....
                    Last edited by Mark Collett; 04-14-2011, 08:44. Reason: Add some more info

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                    • #11
                      That looks like a great hunting rig.

                      George,

                      No, I just use it to get out to the little islands and set decoys. I would probably be swimming pretty quickly if I tried to shoot out of it. I did make a nice camo cover that makes it invisible in the rocks and sea weed, so I just ditch it and sit in the rocks.

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                      • #12
                        Mark,

                        I have both a Sit-inside-kayak (Necky Looksha 17) and a SOT (OK Trident Prowler 15) and I've fished from both. The most noticeable disadvantage that I feel is the sustained speed of the SOT. The difference in sustained speed for the two kayaks that I own coupled with my paddling skill is about 0.5 mph to 1 mph slower (per my Garmin GPS) in the SOT.

                        And because most of the time when I am trolling for Kings or Silvers I'll be paddling at about 2.5 mph, the top sustained speed of my kayak becomes an non-issue.

                        IMHO, the advantages that you'd gain with a SOT in terms of stability, comfort, and most importantly, accessibility to your fishing gear, is well worth the sacrifice on speed.

                        JT

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                        • #13
                          I think where you'll be fishing has alot to do witht he choice. SOT would be fine for ocean, lakes, ponds, and large slow rivers. I'm planning on using the kayak to get into narrow streams and faster rivers for trout fishing as well as for ocean, lakes and ponds. etc. the Class 3 water immediatly says "Sit in" for me.

                          but then I kayaked for quite some time and rolling, and other recover maneuvers dont' bother me.

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                          • #14
                            I have a Ride by Wilderness Systems that is a SOT. I have never fished out of a sit-in kayak so can't comment about how good/bad they are, but can comment on mine as well as other SOT's I've used. As mentioned above, self-rescue is far easier with a sit on top. I used to launch from beaches with waves down in Cali and always felt better that I could jump off and hold the yak instead of staying in and getting flipped. It didn't happen too often, but timing on the waves was critical and sometimes that was what had to happen.

                            Stability - I imagine that there are sit-ins that are very stable, but stability is a huge key to SOT's. I have seen photos of folks using the yak I have for red fishing in Texas where they actually stand on them and pole themselves along. I have stood on mine a number of times - just for fun, not fishing. Very stable. With stability also comes the ability to move around. I prefer to fish on my yak sitting sideways with my feet dangling. Far more comfortable than being in the paddling position that you are sort of stuck in with a sit-in. I have a pretty big hatch up front that I have no trouble moving up to for getting things out also. The storage is great, although I imagine you would have a good amount in a sit-in as well.

                            Stability = wide = SLOW. The more stable you get, the more slow you go. Definitely a trade off. I've paddled with folks using thin sit-ins and even SOTs thinner than mine that are way out in front when paddling to a destination. For me, I'd rather have the stability safety factor and take longer to get where I am going, but it is slow at times.

                            SOT's are pretty heavy. I don't know about sit-ins, but my SOT is somewhere around 60-70 pounds I think. Not terrible, but double walled all the way around makes them pretty heavy, especially one you add rods, holders, etc.
                            Never count your days, but rather, make all of your days count.

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                            • #15
                              It's Time For Me To Change

                              Thanks to all of you that have replied with your hands on expertise.I've been doing a lot of research on other forums,websites,etc. and have decided to give a SOT a try.I'm sure there will be a learning curve of sorts,but my many years already on the water will make it a short curve. :think:
                              Now come the harder decision----which boat to get ?????
                              The selection here in Soldotna is very limited to say the least.The new Sportsmans Warehouse has an Old Town Angler that I could make work but it wouldn't be my 1st choice.Shopping online would work but then of course there will be shipping charges,delays,and haveing to wait when I want it now.Oh decisions decisions.......Are there any places in Anchorage that have a decent selection of kayaks ?
                              Time to do some more research.
                              Anybody interested in that camo boat----I'll make you a good deal :topjob:

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