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Kit advice required!!

Info on rolling, river features, kayaking technique, advice on kit purchase...

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Postby Roo » Fri Feb 18, 2011 8:24 pm

To throw a whole new dimension in there.... the club helmets are fine on the sort of water your doing, buying a good dry cag will make life waaay more comfortable, that and some sort of wetsuit bottoms/ drypants. I dunno Its worth considering. Helmets do make you look really cool though! I dunno, my first kayaking present off parents was a good cag. Didnt get a posh helmet till id been boating a while. Its whether you value Kudos or comfort. Roo
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Postby Nic1234 » Fri Feb 18, 2011 8:30 pm

Roo wrote:To throw a whole new dimension in there.... the club helmets are fine on the sort of water your doing, buying a good dry cag will make life waaay more comfortable, that and some sort of wetsuit bottoms/ drypants. I dunno Its worth considering. Helmets do make you look really cool though! I dunno, my first kayaking present off parents was a good cag. Didnt get a posh helmet till id been boating a while. Its whether you value Kudos or comfort. Roo


I would disagree... and say actually the club cags are fine with enough layers underneath. Some of them are damn good! and whilst the club helmets are fine for beginner rivers Alex is starting to progress well and is going to be pushing her level further... and for that a good helmet is vital. The rivers she will be paddling will be getting faster and rockyer.

Plus... she would look damn good in a posh one!
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Postby Jake » Fri Feb 18, 2011 8:38 pm

I use club kinetic cags for playboating and have done for almost a year now.
I wouldn't if they were no good and although it is nice to be dry, the club cags keep the wind off you, keeping you warm enough and although the club helmets are fine for club use, you have to remember that if you do your head in you wont be able to appreciate how dry you are. So a good helmet should always come first if you want to push your boating beyond club paddling.
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Postby peterH » Fri Feb 18, 2011 9:01 pm

I think the differance is you know yours id dry, I agree with Roo, warm kit will will get you out paddling more but it is easyer to get this second hand.
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Postby Roo » Fri Feb 18, 2011 9:27 pm

Any free kit is always good! Im making no comment on the club kit. I'd go as far as saying that Id paddle everything i've paddled in the past in the club kit! In fact if it came down to it the Protec would probably be better at taking an impact than my skook. People have paddled in those helmets on gnar for donkeys, stuff that mortals like me will never paddle. The cags are good cags, but one that fits and is yours is always better. You could buy a half decent paddle for the same as some helmets which would improve your paddling? just suggestions. Dont hang me out to dry.
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Postby Dárragh » Fri Feb 18, 2011 11:21 pm

Roo wrote:... People have paddled in those helmets on gnar for donkeys, stuff that mortals like me will never paddle...


Sure the Russian's still do it in MOP 2! :P
Although that's true, folk have also paddled/rafted the gnar, and the proper cold stuff (1st Descent of Dudh Kosi) in latex free cags, homemade cags and BA's
To be fair Roo you've just hit a nerve, LUUCC have always been adamant about getting your own good helmet as soon as people start thinking about their own kit.

There is no doubt that the helmet you wear doesn't add to your paddling ability in the slightest, and that good thermals and cags/drysuits definitely will help boost your learning curve and ultimate enjoyment of rivers. BUT;
- How many people would/do currently paddle anything with a leaky/damaged cag, ill fitting dry trousers and primark thermals, and would you do the same with a damaged/ill fitting/cheap helmet?
- We'd all prob buy a 2nd hand boat, paddles, throwline and cag (I still use my ebay bought £50 Cag), but would we buy a 2nd hand Helmet?
Unlikely...
(Admittedly I did before I knew what I was doing, wouldn't do that again!)
It's those differences that clearly shout that having a good personal helmet is the best/most valued part of a paddlers personal safety/clothing/kit. Same as Jake's and Nic's sentiments really...


Alex - I'm almost sure you currently have your own handed down? cag for use on rivers? as well as your own wetsuit and BA... so bar a bit of Scottish, freezing cold water, you should be fine with a load of decent thermals+fleeces and your current kit for the moment...

Personally I'm off the opinion when collecting kit;
- Get sorted with a helmet (and take the time to do so)
- If your current clothing will do for a while/you're warm enough in it, focus on trying out as many different paddles as you can and whittle it down to what you like feather, length, blade size, make Vs what you're willing to spend on them materials, make, cranks/straight, durability, performance (again take the time to do it! We're all happy to lend/swap kit on easy stuff)
- New/2nd hand Cag+dry trousers (depending how your Cag's holding up)
- Suitable BA, Boat (Try out/borrow every type you can), Footwear, Safety kit blah blah blah.... everything else

The last bit is my own opinion, and not the word of God/what others may agree with... but it's good to take in the various opinions of people who have built up their kit/paddle lots! :D
Hope you don't get a sore head after all this reading haha! x
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Postby Jamess » Sat Feb 19, 2011 12:00 am

hmmmm not that i'm slagging the gear secs from previous years... (no hard feelings about not being voted in at all...) but when i was in first year, most of the club cags were either old, or the neck seals were gone, and i found that being warm is important.


its one of those things really, a lot of things contribute to boating experiences, and the vast majority of them come under the title of KIT. i'm not a regular boater so my advice is probably pointless. but when i used to race competitvely every weekend, one thing that made me seriously unhappy was knowing you've only done 1 race, and there were two to go and its was snowing..... honestly, when i bought my kit, i got a cag first, dry trousers second, then a helmet. the helmets go through rigerous testing (as i learned from sexy boy jake) to ensure that when our lovely freshers go on the water, they are safe. therefore, i would say go for a nice cag first, get warm and continue to use the club ones, then when the summer loan comes in (i assume that one comes in for the summer time...???) buy a helmet with that. but hey, i'm a club boater so what do i know...........
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Postby DanW » Sat Feb 19, 2011 12:08 am

Aww I would love a rocker but the next bit of kit I buy will be some dry trousers that dont leak.

Good song james
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Postby jack » Sat Feb 19, 2011 2:17 am

One slightly a different note maybe consider getting yourself some good thermals as they will keep you warm if/ when you you get wet and are useful for other sports as well
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Postby Pyro » Sat Feb 19, 2011 4:30 pm

Order of priority to me:
1) Cag
2) Thermals
3) Helmet
4) BA
The only exception I'd make to that is if, like Paddy and Steve H, you've got a large and/or odd-shaped bonce and therefore can't find a club lid that fits.

As the reader will note, everyone has their own opinion on the subject of kit priority, but as with Silcock above, I've found that the club helmets tend to be in better shape than the cags.
"Sometimes you dig your own."
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Postby Nic1234 » Sat Feb 19, 2011 4:41 pm

Considering freshers at Cardiff wear waterproofs on their beginners trips cause the club can't afford cags, I think we're pretty lucky! x
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Postby chrisg991 » Sat Feb 19, 2011 5:14 pm

I got an SR Standard for £40 at Tyne Tour and it feels pretty solid for the kind of rivers that we'll be paddling. I'd recommend it.
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Postby brync » Sat Feb 19, 2011 7:25 pm

chrisg991 wrote:I got an SR Standard for £40 at Tyne Tour and it feels pretty solid for the kind of rivers that we'll be paddling. I'd recommend it.


I'd call it solid for most rivers, end-of.
I'm not in Aberystwyth.
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Postby harry » Sat Feb 19, 2011 8:58 pm

i'd start with getting a GoPro.
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Postby Jake » Sat Feb 19, 2011 9:03 pm

harry wrote:i'd start with getting a GoPro.


Good choice
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