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We have a Puffin Saranac two person kayak. We are quite pleased with it.

I knew going into it I'd be too fat and awkward to climb in from the boat, but my wife and kids (teenagers...full sized people) can get in and out easily. We do have a swim platform, but my 17 year old boards it over the side of the boat all the time.

It takes him about 30-45 minutes to set it up on deck, it is light, stable and fast. Get the deck cover, you will want it since if it blows you will get wet. They also make a similar one person boat.
 

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Hi chesapeake1, we have an AE AdvancedFrame Expedition and Convertible. Only have one season with them so far, but am very impressed. They're stowable on our 37-footer. They paddle and track reasonably well, both can carry a load (especially the Convertible with one person in it) and they seem pretty durable.
Thanks Mike for the advice, I looked into advanced elements more and I like what I read. They seem to be built a little bit better than many of the sea eagle inflatables in my opinion. I went with the Advanced Elements Advancedframe Convertible inflatable Kayak. It came in the mail on saturday, and I was out on the water Sunday. I highly recommend it. Thanks again everyone for the help. :)
 

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My partner and I just bought a couple of Advanced Elements kayaks and used them this season. We have the same arrangement, with our boarding ladder off the side. I'm not very flexible, (and am overweight :(), but I was able to get in and out without tipping. We have covered kayaks, which makes it kinda tricky. If they were open, it would be very easy, but certainly doable either way.

I like the Advanced Elements Advanced Frame boats (we have the convertible and the expedition). They are not as nice to paddle as real kayaks (we used to do a lot of sea kayaking), but I'm quite impressed with the way they handle. They certainly do not cut as fine a line on the water, have more windage, and tend to flex in big seas, but heck ... they're inflatable!

Your back will get stronger if you paddle more, but good lower lumbar support is important. For Advanced Elements boats, I'd recommend getting the Lumbar Seat (which comes with the Expedition, but not the Convertible). I'd also recommend getting the optional backbone.
For the Advanced Elements and for other kayaks that they carry I would suggest purchasing them from REI and take advantage of their generous return policy if not satisfied with the kayak. We recently purchased a Convertible and the jury is still out.

Regards
Marc Hall
Crazy Fish - Maintaining, Upgrading and Sailing a Crealock 37
 

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Thanks Mike for the advice, I looked into advanced elements more and I like what I read. They seem to be built a little bit better than many of the sea eagle inflatables in my opinion. I went with the Advanced Elements Advancedframe Convertible inflatable Kayak. It came in the mail on saturday, and I was out on the water Sunday. I highly recommend it. Thanks again everyone for the help. :)
Good stuff chesapeake1. I came to the same conclusion after looking long and hard at all the other options. AE's Advancedframe boats are actually meant for semi-serious paddling and multi-day trips. They're not just a play boat (although they can do that too). They'll never be as nice as solid kayaks, but I'm still impressed with how well they perform.
 

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I have an Advanced Elements inflatable kayak. I use a boarding ladder; PLUS, a 'trapeze' configuration that allows me to 'pull straight up' directly over the middle of the kayak to get my 'mass' out of the kayak. Without the 'trapeze' the kayak would react by moving forward/backward/sideways, thus making the boarding quite difficult. Also, tying the kayak from its 'middle' directly to the sailboat so that the kayak doesnt move AWAY during the vulnerable 'weight shift' will help - a pre-measured tether with a snap shackle on both ends of the tether. To 'load' or 'disembark' one has to learn to get one's feet directly UNDER ones center of mass before standing up.
 

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Discussion Starter · #27 ·
I still haven't make a purchase, but still looking. Now an inflatable Saturn kayak(OK420) looks interesting. Large tubes so it probably doesn't paddle as well as the seaeagle fast track or the advanced frame convertible, but it might be easier getting in and out of. There are two removeable fins fore and aft which might help with the tracking. It says that the floor is raised like a cat rather than on the bottom of the tubes like the other kayaks. Looking for an objective review of paddling it. There is a good video of it operating in ocean surf on the Saturn website.

Also some of these kayaks have longer warranties than others. Not sure if that is significant or not.
 

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I didn't read all the other posts in this thread so excuse me if this one has been mentioned.

I replaced two sit-in kayaks with this model. It's a little pricey but the quality is excellent. It's extremely stable, to the point that you can stand up on it. Seats are moveable so that it can be converted to single person. And I added a GPS mount and cup-holders to the velcro rails.

Aquaglide Klickitat two:
Klickitat? HB Two | AquaGlide Kayak
 

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Discussion Starter · #29 ·
I'm also looking at that 12.5 foot Aquaglide Klickitat. I like the higher pressure that the floor can be inflated, but not sure if that much pressure is necessary. Only a one year warranty on that one, but good to hear the quality is there. Also no forward fin which I think would help in the tracking.
 
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