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No motor zone?

BarrellBarrell Posts: 1,259 Officer
I know its called the no motor zone but this is the coolest new innovation in kayak fishing since the Hobie was invented.


Well the last 20 years nothing has come on the market that's much different then what we had back then until now. Last year I boght a hadmade gas powered Solo Skiff from the builder/designer Tom Mitzlaff. He makes these glass boats one at a time and it takes him a week to build one. They are expensive and the waiting list to get one is crazy. But not anymore. The Solo Skiffs are now being produced in polyethelene at a fraction of the cost of the handmade with no waiting period to get one.

Paddle kayaks are great. Peddle kayaks are even better because they increase the range most guys can cover in a day. This bad boy will go 12mph through inches of water. It still freaks me out when running mine how thin I can get. The solo skiff is 41 inches wide and standing is what you do on it. Tom Mitslaff is a longtime designers of flats skiffs who left his comfy jobs with the big boat manufacturers to go out on his own with this unusual one man flats skiff. The design is so fast because it jumps up on plane quikly and only the rear 20% of the boat touches the water. And I wheigh 200 pounds. The motor falls down into a self bailing hull so you don't need a tiller extension when sitting at the balance point. The gunnels are wide enough to mount your heart out. I use the motor to get to my spots quikly, and then use a standup paddle to move around without scaring off fish in the shallows.

Why gas and not electric. Because electric motors wont let you fly on plane at 12 mph and the big heavy batteries needed cause all kind of extra work. A gallon of gas will get you 40 miles on a solo skiff. It would take 2 or more batteries to get you 40 miles on an electric and take all day long to do it. Ill be posting pictures all season of us fishing them as that's all I used last summer for flounder. The Solo doesn't replace the Hobie for stealth and no hand operation but it can do the other things better then any other water craft in the world.

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Replies

  • jcanracerjcanracer Posts: 4,344 Moderator
    I think its a pretty innovative idea, although not for me.
    I do the kayak thing because it is good exercise, so even when I get skunked I still win.
    Hobie Kayak angler for life!
  • Pescatoral PursuitPescatoral Pursuit Posts: 5,065 Admiral
    Me likey. You sound like sales staff and that's fine but if that's the case, it would be appropriate to say so.

    I know the glass ones retailed about 2.5k iirc. What are the plastic ones going for?

    Also max weight/ hp/ persons?

    How does it handle a hard, close 1' chop heading back to the ramp? Self bailing?

    Thanks
  • BarrellBarrell Posts: 1,259 Officer
    I will be a dealer back at my kayak shop in Nj when I reopen up there in April. I have no skin in the business down here in Florida. They handle chop better then flat calm. My solo skiff is the best thing I ever bought. I have a 50k power boat and many Hobie foot propelleds. The specs for the poly version are the same . According to Tom who has been test riding the prototype performance is identical. He himself is surprised that he doesn't notice ant difference from the composite. Note that the price of the composite boats have jumped to $3200 with the introduction of the poly version. Retail on poly is supposed to be $1700. Four colors and a front hatch/livewell the composite doesn't have.
  • jcanracerjcanracer Posts: 4,344 Moderator
    wow, with a used engine, that could end up cheaper than a Hobie Pro Angler (and similar size/weight too).
    Hobie Kayak angler for life!
  • WhelanWhelan Posts: 197 Deckhand
    Why are we peddling motorized vehicles in the No Motor Zone? A skiff isn't a kayak. Let's move this to the proper location .
    2014 Ocean Kayak Trident 4.7 Urban Camo
  • Nick561Nick561 Posts: 339 Deckhand
    Ya. Must have missed the part about no MOTOR zone. Cool though
  • jcanracerjcanracer Posts: 4,344 Moderator
    The members have spoken, moving this to general forum.
    Hobie Kayak angler for life!
  • Old SkoolOld Skool Posts: 102 Deckhand
    130 pounds. That'll be fun to cartop.
  • duckmanJRduckmanJR Posts: 20,928 AG
    $1700 for plastic?...seems way steep when the big box stores sell "plastic" boats in the 2- 4 hundred range...Looks like he'll make some mad cash if he sells any.

    I can buy and sell 13 and 15 gheenoes all day long with a trailer in the 5oo - 7oo ramge. A Tracker 14 ft Topper is right at $750.... and both can mount a trolling motor up front.
    There are many roads to travel
    Many things to do.
    Knots to be unraveled
    'fore the darkness falls on you
  • fsustevefsusteve Posts: 96 Greenhorn
    Initially I liked the concept when I saw it at the MBS but not enough to seriously consider it. I have a fishing kayak and a flats boat, two completely different paradigms to me both with upsides and downsides. My reasoning for kayak fishing is a slower pace and zero cost, this thing takes away both those for me and puts me back in the boat with no room.
  • BarrellBarrell Posts: 1,259 Officer
    I don't think the solo skiff is a replacement for your kayak. Its a compliment when speed and distance cant be reached in your kayak due to conditions or age. Ive sold 17,000 kayaks and I hear almost daily guys saying the love kayaking but want to go further. The other aspect of further is faster. Many of those guys have gone to Hobies to gain that edge. I was one of the first Hobie dealers in the country. I saw the advantage to go further and faster especialy in current with the Hobies. Now guys want to go further and faster then the Hobie takes them. Many have tried electric motors out. Electric motors are quiet but have too many other negatives llike limited battery power and xtra wheight. A couple gallons of gas is equal to 120 pounds of batteries.
    fsusteve wrote: »
    Initially I liked the concept when I saw it at the MBS but not enough to seriously consider it. I have a fishing kayak and a flats boat, two completely different paradigms to me both with upsides and downsides. My reasoning for kayak fishing is a slower pace and zero cost, this thing takes away both those for me and puts me back in the boat with no room.
  • fsustevefsusteve Posts: 96 Greenhorn
    Like I said that's just my thought, if I'm gonna do this then I'd look at gheenoes and really be able to run. But I guess one can argue the $3k tab for a PA versus $1k for other kayaks, they sell so there must be a demand. I think it's a neat concept thou.
  • linesider 159linesider 159 Posts: 828 Officer
    So how is it better than a gheenoe? I wish him the best but the market for this thing is so minscule he needs to be selling them for a ton more to make a real big business out of it. I bought a 2001 gheenoe with a suzuki 15 4 stroke for 2100. I could go anywhere and it was an awesome boat.

    It looks like a cool fun project, I'm just not sure that many people will run them. Would have also been nice if you had stated in the beginning you were going to be a dealer.
    2016 Sterling 220XS (SOLD), see build thread here: Here
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  • jcanracerjcanracer Posts: 4,344 Moderator
    duckmanJR wrote: »
    $1700 for plastic?...seems way steep when the big box stores sell "plastic" boats in the 2- 4 hundred range...

    To be fair though, the ones from the big box stores in the sub $700 category tend to be crap.
    A decent Ocean Kayak for fishing is already over the $1k mark (Trident 13 Angler sans rudder = $1100), and don't get me started on the price of Hobie's Mirage kayaks (love them, but my wallet and my wife are not amused).
    Hobie Kayak angler for life!
  • Roc N RolRoc N Rol Posts: 1,352 Officer
    my understanding of the no motor zone is that if your boat has a motor even if you put the motor up you're still not allowed in A no motor zone is this correct
  • cprcpr Posts: 9,309 Admiral
    jcanracer wrote: »
    To be fair though, the ones from the big box stores in the sub $700 category tend to be crap.
    A decent Ocean Kayak for fishing is already over the $1k mark (Trident 13 Angler sans rudder = $1100), and don't get me started on the price of Hobie's Mirage kayaks (love them, but my wallet and my wife are not amused).

    LOL very true on all points.

    I have to say a new gheenoe will set you back a lot more then this rig.
    "The test of a first-rate intelligence is the ability to hold two opposed ideas in the mind at the same time, and still retain the ability to function." F. Scott Fitzgerald

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  • jcanracerjcanracer Posts: 4,344 Moderator
    Roc N Rol wrote: »
    my understanding of the no motor zone is that if your boat has a motor even if you put the motor up you're still not allowed in A no motor zone is this correct
    Yes, but to clarify: the topic of the thread is a reflection that it was originally posted in the No Motor Zone section of this forum.
    Hobie Kayak angler for life!
  • FlatsFrenzyFlatsFrenzy Posts: 893 Officer
    fsusteve wrote: »
    My reasoning for kayak fishing is a slower pace and zero cost, this thing takes away both those for me and puts me back in the boat with no room.

    This is my situation and reaction as well.

    I don't even like peddle kayaks honestly...prefer to paddle as that allows me to get skinnier while being quieter.
    -
    Chris
    Gulf Coast of FL
    @flatsfrenzy #flyonly #onelessspinrod
  • Pescatoral PursuitPescatoral Pursuit Posts: 5,065 Admiral
    duckmanJR wrote: »
    $1700 for plastic?...seems way steep when the big box stores sell "plastic" boats in the 2- 4 hundred range...Looks like he'll make some mad cash if he sells any.

    I can buy and sell 13 and 15 gheenoes all day long with a trailer in the 5oo - 7oo ramge. A Tracker 14 ft Topper is right at $750.... and both can mount a trolling motor up front.

    This guy is priced on the low side of the stuff he it's competing with. Crazy as that may seem.
    Roc N Rol wrote: »
    my understanding of the no motor zone is that if your boat has a motor even if you put the motor up you're still not allowed in A no motor zone is this correct

    The only NMZ I'm familiar with is the Banana River north of the 528 xway and your are not allowed to have a motor on your boat, period.


    I don't see this as a replacement for a gheenoe, but for kayakers that want more range. It's one man, perfect for a truck bed, and vastly increases your range while still being shallow and I assume, light to pole. Of course it's a niche product but it seems to fill the niche well. I am curious to see how well it glides, particularly in comparison to the glass version, or if it's like my plastic yaks that seem to have an invisible auto brake feature: I stop paddling and they stop moving.
  • duckmanJRduckmanJR Posts: 20,928 AG
    It's one man, perfect for a truck bed, .
    At 130 lbs it's not a "one man" that I want to jack around with....It sure as heck is not going up on the roof rack.
    And at 14 + feet....it doesn't exactly scream no trailer needed. Maybe a long bed truck with a hitch extension thing.....

    A niche market...perhaps.
    A "value"...doubtful

    That Tracker 14 can be had brand new with a brand new little outboard plus a trolling motor and battery..for the same $$.....
    AND...will fish everywhere that will.
    There are many roads to travel
    Many things to do.
    Knots to be unraveled
    'fore the darkness falls on you
  • Mark O.Mark O. Posts: 3,453 Captain
    This would make a nice stitch and glue kit. I think one benefit over gheenoes is it's self bailing...but I would only want to fish it in warm weather
  • timmcollinstimmcollins Posts: 858 Officer
    Hmm.... I wonder how it would handle in the ocean? Would be nice to zip back to your launch point on the days of swift current (No cab fair needed). Looks stable enough to cast net from.
    "Life should NOT be a journey to the grave with the intention of arriving safely in an attractive and well preserved body, but rather to skid in sideways, martini in one hand, Cheeseburger in the other, body well used and worn out and screaming WOO-HOO What a Ride!"
  • BarrellBarrell Posts: 1,259 Officer
    jcanracer wrote: »
    Yes, but to clarify: the topic of the thread is a reflection that it was originally posted in the No Motor Zone section of this forum.

    Talk about De Ja Vu, 20 years ago when I was announcing the Hobie foot propelled system to the kayak fishing world it got the same reaction. As the population gets older many paddlers struggle with shoulder and wrist issues. I posted this as a way better alternative to going electric which there are plenty of posts about on the NMZ.
  • jcanracerjcanracer Posts: 4,344 Moderator
    jcanracer wrote:
    Yes, but to clarify: the topic of the thread is a reflection that it was originally posted in the No Motor Zone section of this forum.
    Barrell wrote: »
    Talk about De Ja Vu, 20 years ago when I was announcing the Hobie foot propelled system to the kayak fishing world it got the same reaction. As the population gets older many paddlers struggle with shoulder and wrist issues. I posted this as a way better alternative to going electric which there are plenty of posts about on the NMZ.

    I was clarifying for Roc N Roll who seemed to have misconstrued the topic of conversation as being the no-motor-zone geographical locations versus the no-motor-zone sub forum. That's all I meant by that comment Barrell.

    The rise of the Mirage drive is indeed seen as "cheating" by paddle purists, and yes I get my fair share of crap for that from my touring kayak friends. I choose to ignore it because at the end of the day its still a kayak and I'm as interested in fishing as I am in kayaking.

    The increased number of posts regarding motor retrofits to kayaks can, as you correctly pointed out, be attributed to older enthusiasts who require a bit of assistance. On the other hand, it can be seen as a sign of kayak owners who have motorized ambitions but NMZ budgets. For both of these groups I am sure the Solo skiff and other micro-skiff companies will be able to present a desirable product.
    Hobie Kayak angler for life!
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