Before getting this kayak I read all the reviews and so was expecting something more lively than the standard sit on top models I have been using up to now. I got thrown out twice in the first five minutes but shouldn't have been surprised.
I have now read up on primary and secondary stability and would say that this kayak is spot on. Stable kayaks are like riding tricycles and tippy kayaks are like bikes - you have to learn how to ride them.
I took sensible precautions and practiced getting back into the kayak in deep water. This is almost impossible as demonstrated in the Decathlon video but using a paddle float with the other paddle blade going through the front side strap and onto the bow you get a pretty decent outrigger. I also have a bilge pump as the kayak is a single volume construction and fills with water. The only issue is that the seat floats when flooded - you need to attach the seat with some sort of strap or you could lose it completely out at sea! Being able to get back in gave me the confidence to progress.
I have now practised everything except rolling (next challenge) and have been out in choppy conditions and force 4 winds. It is fairly easy to keep on track and it goes well.
I am very pleased with the performance so far. I am not so pleased with the customer services. I was unlucky enough to puncture the hull (my fault...oops) but the glue for the patches is not supplied in the kit and is not available online. On reading the specs on the website there is a MAJOR issue with the materials description. For the 1 person it is marked 95%polyethelene and the 2 place marked PVC. Which one is right? The adhesive for one does not work with the other and going out 1km offshore could prove fatal. I have still not had a response from the technical team and need to repair the kayak so I can get out on the water. The shops don't know and customer services don't know!
The boat gets a 5 star review from me but the customer service brings that back to 3 stars as they only deserve 1. Come on Decathlon Customer Services- get your act together. I have been a fan of your products for over 20 years and you are letting the side down!
Response from Sport Leader
Firstly, we apologise for the uncomfortable product experience created by our product. We take great care to ensure that important matters such as this are properly managed. The issue has been already passed to the production line and we will keep striving for the best on the quality issue.
Due to the safety issue, the inflammable product including the glue is prohibited to sell in our store so as the repairing kit doesn' t know include the glue.
For the materials of the kayak, the drop stitch in between the skin of the kayak is made of double layers of PVC, for the skin and other parts are made of Polyethylene and 5% of Polyester.
In addition, may we understand more about the adhesive one which may cause fatal when offshore 1km? It would be great if we can gain more information and provide better assistance on this issue.
Once again, we would like to apologise for the inconvenience created by the related product.
You are welcome to visit Tseung Kwan O Store for the maintenance service once you become the member.
Address: 3/F, TKO Spot, 2 Tong Ming St, MTR: Exit A1, Tseung Kwan OPhone number: 9165 9233
Thank you for your support and wish to see you again soon.
Should you have any enquiries, please do not hesitate to contact Kayaking Sports Leader - Natalie Yiu via firstname.lastname@example.org for further assistance.
Decathlon Hong Kong Watersports Team (Service & B2B)