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Thread: Clipper Solitude

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Dec 2005
    Posts
    260

    Default Clipper Solitude

    Maker's Spec

    no pics available


    Std Features: Bucket seat, footbrace, flotation tanks, bow & stern thwarts
    Options: Gunnel covers, black trim package, wood trim package, foam thigh pads, wilderness lash system, contoured yoke, expedition spray skirt.
    SPECS:
    Length: 15' 6"
    Beam: 28" 30" (@ 4"Waterline)
    Bow Height: 16"
    Stern Height: 14"
    Center Height:13"
    WEIGHT:
    Fiberglass 52lbs
    Ultralight 40lbs

    Maker's Write Up
    The Solitude provides versatility for a wide range of solo paddlers. As with all Jensen designed canoes, it is fast and tracks well. It is harder to turn than the Packer but responds well when leaned.
    The seat is adjustable fore and aft, allowing for adjustments to the canoe’s trim. The paddler is also able to adjust the height of the seat. The lowest setting naturally provides the most stability, and is recommended for novice use. The middle height seat position is most commonly used. For training or competition, place the seat in the top position. Adjustments to the height of the seat must be done while on shore. The Solitude will keep up with most tandem canoes and is well suited for wilderness tripping.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Nov 2008
    Location
    Burns Lake, British Columbia, Canada
    Posts
    312

    Default

    I use this boat for all of my flatwater cruising or tripping. Along with my sprayskirt, I wouldn't hesitate to take the safe line through grade 3 WW or pretty much anything on rough flatwater. Cruising speed for me, classic paddling, is 5.5-6kms per hour. I've also installed kneepads, and paddling while kneeling is quite comfy in this asymetrical boat. My glass layup comes in at 50lbs. Trimming is easy because of the sliding seat.

    Here's a couple of pics of my baby...








    Thanks, Canoeheadted.

  3. Default

    Hey Ted, fancy meeting you here! That sure is a sweet looking craft, I really really do want to try it out!

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Nov 2008
    Location
    Burns Lake, British Columbia, Canada
    Posts
    312

    Default

    Sorry Andrew, just saw this post.

    You can take her out anytime!

    Canoeheadted.

  5. #5

    Default Skirt?

    Great pictures of the Solitude. Who made the skirt? Is it a custom job?

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Nov 2008
    Location
    Burns Lake, British Columbia, Canada
    Posts
    312

    Default

    Hey Richard, the skirt is made by Northwater.

    The only custom part of it is the bungi around the perimeter with S-hooks for quick and easy attachment. Reduces time to install from 10 min to 2 min.

    Just a tease...this boat will be for sale very soon!

    Take care, Canoeheadted.

  7. #7

    Default

    Just out of curiosity, why are you selling?

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Nov 2008
    Location
    Burns Lake, British Columbia, Canada
    Posts
    312

    Default

    I'm selling my Solitude only because I just acquired an ultralight Souris River Tranquility solo canoe.

    This has been my dream boat for quite a few years now, so I have to compromise. I've also started spending more time paddling freestyle or heeled, so this boat will be great for that. Right now I usually take our 17'6" Prospector for this and spend less time in the Solitude.

    AND...it only weighs 32lbs!!!

    Canoeheadted.

  9. #9

    Default

    Ah, very interesting. Have you posted anywhere your decision process on the Tranquility? I have looked with interest at it, and also at the Souris River 16S. And also at the Solitude. I think I will have an opportunity to try the Solitude, but probably not any of the Souris boats - at least not unless I plan a trip back east.

    I'm interested also in your comment about freestyle. I have not done any myself, although I am interested in various paddling stances, i.e. Canadian style and North Woods style. Both of my solos do not seem to benifit from or take kindly to being heeled and I'm not sure if it is the lack of rocker, the asymmetrical design, or the elliptical Hull, or something else...do you have any thoughts or comments on this?

    The tranquility LOOKS similar to the Solitude - are they similar? I'm interested because this is an area I don't know much about, but am interested in, and it sounds like you have some first hand experience...

    Any thought would be appreciated.

    Richard

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Nov 2008
    Location
    Burns Lake, British Columbia, Canada
    Posts
    312

    Default

    Richard, I haven't asked before because it was never really an option for me.To get my hands on one would have required an outrageous freight bill.

    If you like the SR16S, then you should have a look at Hellman's Quetico 16. All you would need is the centre seat and there's the exact boat. We've owned several of these and they are a nice stable, light boat that tracks very well. They're located in Nelson.
    The Clipper Solitude us geared way more to the cruiser side. Very narrow, fine ends, and lots of tumblehome.
    Have a look at the new Hellman Solitude. It's geared a little more to the WW side of the spectrum. Mostly because of the increased rocker and width. Looks like a nice boat by the numbers.

    With regards to the freestyle, I don't really mean the heeled to the rails and feet all which way kinda stuff. I'm talking about paddling Canadian style and sitting in a hurdlers position and other slightly different paddling positions.

    Flared hulls and V hulls tend to be the best for heeling because of the great secondary stability.
    More rounded hulls that have a lot of tumblehome never really feel stable in the heeled position because they always want to keep moving. (lack of secondary)
    An asymmetrical design does add another level to the learning curve because the water does different things to each end of the boat. This happens because each end is different. Though once you practice enough, you learn what to do and when with any hull. I can easily paddle my Solitude slightly heeled in comfort, just not lots for playing around.

    The Tranquility is symmetrical and seems to be fuller in the bow. I'm guessing that it may perform better in rough water with tight turns (WW) or surfing waves (big water) because of the symmetry.
    The Solitude is asymmetrical and has a finer bow and much wider stern. The widest part of the boat is slightly behind the paddler.

    Though they do look similar, I'm gonna guess that there will be some big differences. I'll have to let you know after I can log a few hours in it.
    For now I'm craving the simplicity of a symetrical boat and the weight loss is incredible.

    Canoeheadted.

  11. #11

    Default

    Thanks CHT,

    I was just reading on the Solo canoeist site (http://www.solotripping.com/) when the notification of your post came through. There is a discussion on there on the Tranquility vs several other similar boats. What I got from it is that the Tranquility is a fast good tracking hull with extra capacity for long trips. They seem to favor Swift, Wenonah, and Bell canoes in the same class, but granted, they are mostly Americans and Charlie Wilson is good friends with the folks at Swift - having shared technology and perspectives. Swift never answered a single e-mail I sent them, so I'm not too likely to try and get my hands on one of their boats, but I have good feelings for Wenonah and Bell. I would like to try several of their solos, particularly the Wenonah Encounter and Prism, and the Bell Magic and Merlin.

    Interestingly my brother lives across the street from Hellman canoes and I had a chance to talk with Bob and show him my boats. I got the sense he had very strong opinions on hulls and was a whitewater man himself - or was it kayaking, can't remember, but he identified, summed up, and more or less dismissed both my boats. I was unaware of their Solitude, though, so perhaps when I am out to visit my brother next I will have a look. Thanks for the heads up on that one.

    Thanks also for the clarification on the effect of tumblehome on heeled boats. That lines up with my experience.

    I look forward to reading your review after you have had a chance to paddle the Tranquility.

    Thanks again,

    Richard

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