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Thread: Nova Craft Prospector 18

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Dec 2005
    Posts
    260

    Default Nova Craft Prospector 18


    PROSPECTOR 18’
    The ultimate in load carrying capacity and seaworthiness, the Prospector 18 is great for extended tripping wherever you paddle. It tracks well and is surprisingly maneuverable. Comfortable for two adults and three children, it can handle virtually any combination flatwater and whitewater. You’ll appreciate its inherent stability and manageability whether you’re paddling the great Nahanni River or your favorite backwoods lake. All of this in a classic, instantly recognizable Prospector package.
    Specs:
    Length: 18”
    Beam: 36”
    Center Depth: 15’
    Bow Depth: 23’
    Bow Rocker: 2’
    Stern Rocker: 2’
    Capacity: 1400lbs

    Weight:
    Fiberglass: NA
    Kevlar Cap: NA
    Kevlar Spectra: NA
    Blue Steel: NA
    Royalex lite: 74lbs
    Royalex: 84lbs
    SP3 Poly: NA



  2. #2

    Default It sure is big

    Lots of canoes are 18', but when Novacraft makes a Prospector 18', it has much more volume than most. This one will haul more than I care to portage, and then more still. I have long suspected that Royalex becomes progressively more difficult to work with as the size of the boat increases. This canoe supports that, as even though it is quite heavy, it is not very stiff, and paddled empty the bottom is a bit soft. I don't think this is Novacraft's "fault" per se, but if you want a canoe to perform well, avoid big plastic tubs. If you understand performance as hauling several hundred pounds through rough water - this one might do it. The design is nothing special, but is predictable and stable in rough water. Obviously a lot less sporty than it's 16' brother, but a reasonable expedition boat.

    I had an old Tripper XL in Royalex that was better than this canoe in every way . . . except it weighed about 50lbs more (not the listed 105, closer to 140), so if you want big and Royalex you have to choose between heavy or floppy, it would seem.

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