This is the first weekend in 4 weeks that I haven’t been racing so I bought a new boat and took her out for a spin.
It was the next logical step up the learning curve.
This Stellar SEL is 17.1″ wide so once I master her I’ll be looking to go sub-17″ in width.
Not sure when that will be or what boat that will be but I’m open to suggestions.
I paddled after work this evening for a little over 11 miles in the Stellar SEL Gen 2 and have some conclusions to share with you. The closest boat I have to compare it to is the WSBS Thunderbolt-X at 21′ x 18″ so keep that in mind. (Stellar SEL is 21’2″ x 17.1″)
- I can get the SEL up to 6mph much quicker than I can with the Thunderbolt-X. And then it is fairly easy to keep it there.
- Maintaining a decent/comfortable fitness/training pace in the Tbolt-X is somewhere around 5.8-5.9mpg while the same effort in the SEL is around 6.1-6.2mph.
- After reviewing my logs with average speeds, top speeds, heart rates, etc., I crunched the numbers and have determined I’m 5-8% more efficient in the Stellar SEL than I am in the Thunderbolt-X. So yes, that means with the same effort I’m about 5-8% faster in the SEL.
- I’ve been able to get the SEL up to 7.4mph on flatwater with no wind. I have not been able to achieve that speed in the Thunderbolt-X without wind at my back.
- My hunch was right. It took me 100 miles in the boat (just got there this evening) to become very comfortable and confident with it. It might be a different story with current, wind and chop, but I think I’ll be able to handle it reasonably well at this point.
So there you have it, the Stellar SEL is a faster boat than the Thunderbolt-X, but it definitely is significantly less stable. I figure 1″ of width with these rounded hulls is worth about 5%.
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Kayak balance trainer: https://bit.ly/2HsqFCK
DIY kayak ergometer from Nordic Track ski machine: https://bit.ly/2qc6wHh