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Reviews for Solar Kayak by Innova Inflatable Kayaks


Rated: 9.71/10 Based On: 7 Reviews


Length: ' " - Starting at: $
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06-06-2011
Submitted by: - Rating: 10 of 10
This review courtesy of www.altrec.com

     Folding Kayaks take a lot more care to be sure that you don't loose the fiddldey bits and parts that you need to bring every time to put them together. Also they take 7 to 10 minutes. What we do is connect an air pump and either run it off of the car or a solar panel. The kayak then will self inflate while you get on your other gear. Great for one man launches and when it is just you and your dog going exploring.
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Win a DVD
11-29-2007
Submitted by: Send Email
Rating: 10 of 10

     I would recommend buying a Sunny chair for use in the Solar to get off the wet floor of the boat. The Sunny chair is a combo seat and backrest. I cut the seat off and use it with the Solar backrest. It's perfect! I only have rave reviews of the Solar. It's so comfortable... I can sit/lay in it all day. One of my favorite things is to paddle out in the middle of the lake at night, lay down in the boat and star gaze through binoculars. WOW!
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10-10-2007
Submitted by: Send Email
Rating: 8 of 10

     I have owned the solar for six months and been out in various conditions several times in calm and moderate salt water. My Solar is the older design model. The Solar is light at 25 pounds and easy to carry, inflate and set up. I use a Bravo foot pump and can easily inflate and set up the Solar in 10-15 minutes. The boat is comfortable, but you do sit on the inflated bottom of the boat, so you will get wet if any water at all gets into the boat...and some always will! It is not fast, but paddles and cruises well enough for short-trip recreational use. I am 6'2" and weigh 225. I find the boat comfortable and it easily holds my weight. It also has room for fishing and other gear for short trips. If I were going to be in this boat for more than a few hours I would want to add a better seat with more back support. The front and rear deck cords are nice as are the front and rear carry handles. The boat can easily handle small waves of 1-2 feet, but will fill with water if you try to power through higher surf with it. Once past the surf, it will ride the swells very well and is very stable. The tracking fin is big help in control and I would not try to paddle this boat without it. The biggest advantage of this boat is that it packs down esily into a nice back pack, which is provided. It takes up little space in the house and can be transported in the trunk of a car or checked as airline baggage. One challenge of any inflatable is getting sand, dirt and water off the boat before returning it to the pack. I usually do a basic cleaning at the place where I am boating and then do a detailed cleaning and drying at home before returning the boat to the pack for long term storage. All of that is a lot of work, but then so is loading a heavy rigid kayak on and off the rack or truck. All in all, a fun, tough, lightweight, reliable, very transportable and reasonably priced boat.
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02-28-2007
Submitted by: S LeeSend Email
Rating: 10 of 10

     I've had my solar for about 3 months now and I am very pleased with it. I am new to kayaking and so cannot compare it with a hard shell kayak, but it does everything that I would wish from a kayak so far. It is quick to inflate, about 10 minutes from unpacking to in the water, appears to be very tough material, I've paddled over rocks which have barely left a mark, and feels very stable in the water. I recently paddled home from work along a local canal and averaged about 4 miles per hour, and to make the 30 min walk from the canal home easier I put the kayak into a medium sized rucksack rather than it's own bag which made carrying more comfortable, but because it is so light carrying it for that length of time was no problem. My only gripe is that with only a back rest I end up sitting in the water that inevitably collects in the bottom form drips and splashes, but i just wear water proof trousers to solve the problem. I've only paddled on canals and lakes so far and no moving water or white water and so cannot comment on its performance in those situations. All in all I am very pleased with this kayak.
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10-06-2005
Submitted by: ---
Rating: 10 of 10

     The Innova Solar is an excellent boat. Perhaps it is slower than a hard-shell of comparable dimensions, but if so it isn’t by much. I have used the Solar in 2-3 foot waves and the ride was very smooth, stable, and forgiving. One advantage of this inflatable is that it flexes over waves while hard-shells I have used have a tendency to get “bounced around” in similar conditions. The Solar assembles quickly and easily. It weighs only 22 or so pounds and easily packs down into a back pack that comes with the boat. This means that you can carry this boat anywhere.

I also own an Innova Sunny and can offer a few comments on how these two boats compare. Obviously, if there are times that you will want to take another passenger along, the Sunny is the only way to go. The Sunny can be configured as both a single and a double while the Solar is strictly for the single paddler. When paddled as a single, my GPS says that I generally move a little faster in the Sunny than the Solar, but this isn’t surprising since the Sunny is 2 ˝ feet longer.

A friend of mine who weighs about 225 pounds actually found that the Solar was a bit sluggish. The boat seems to ride lower in the water when he is paddling it than when my 160 pounds are on board and I suppose this affects performance. Perhaps this is why Innova says that the maximum capacity of the Solar is 220 pounds. My tentative conclusion from this is that if you weigh much over 200, the Sunny which has a maximum capacity of close to 400 pounds, may be a better choice even if you are going to paddle it solo. The greater carrying capacity and larger size also makes the Sunny a better bet extended camping trips. However, if you weigh less than 200 and do mostly day excursions or short camping trips, the Solar is a great boat. I use mine more often than the Sunny when going solo because it’s more compact, significantly lighter in weight, and takes even less time to set up.

One other difference between the Solar and Sunny worth noting is the seats. The Solar’s are somewhat cushier, but the Sunny’s comes up a little higher on the back. I find the Sunny’s seat to be slightly more comfortable, but I know some people who feel the opposite. The Sunny’s seat has a bottom that keeps you off the floor, while in the Solar you are sitting on the inflatable floor. This means that if there is any water at all on the floor from paddle drip or anything else, you will be sitting in it. The Sunny seat keeps you a little higher and drier. I obtained a Sunny seat from Innova to use in my Solar, even though the Solar seat works almost as well for me.

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06-30-2005
Submitted by: BTSend Email
Rating: 10 of 10

     I purchased an Innova Solar from The Boat People who proved to be most helpful with advice and information. I needed portability in a small yak for fishing when it was not suitable to haul a hardshell yak with me. The Solar is exceptionally well built, far more stable than I could have imagined, and paddles very well on flat water when the skeg/fin is attached. Moreover, it handles rough water far better than my SOT hardshell yak

The Solar does not come to a near stop like a hardshell when you are paddling into waves. it glides over them. What it lacks in flatwater speed (and it is not slow), it makes up for in speed when paddling rough waters.

I attached a piece of rope to the seat mount on each side of the seat and ran it through the footrest strap. thus, I can attach my paddle leash, rod leash, tackle bag and whatever for security reasons. I use it to fish the Gulf area bays in Louisiana. Inflates in a very few minutes and off you go fishing.

I am yet to puncture it, but I use caution and avoid sharp objects. I probably would not try to land a shark in it, but it works very well for flounder and redfish. Hose it down, spray 303 on it (and the valves) and I can see no wear or tear from saltwater use. You do get curious looks from other fishermen and "did you buy it at Walmart" cracks. I just keep catching fish while they are spending a lot of money and trying to start their outboards

I did order a Sunny seat which has a higher backrest. The salesman was most helpful. The Sunny seat is far more supportive and fits in the Solar just fine.

If you use caution and don't ram broken bottles or nails and such, I highly recommend the Innova Solar. it rolls up so small and weighs so little that you literally have a small boat to take along wherever you might go. Exceptionally well made for a bargain price, very stable when you get used to it, most comfortable, and will fish ocean bays and reasonable waves with confidence. Get a small folding anchor and it will stay in place even in strong winds. I am delighted with the Innova Solar. Compared with many other high end inflatable yaks, it is a bargain and far better built than the low end inflatable yaks so widely advertised on the net and elsewhere. If you are looking for a most portable and stable little yak from which to fish, the Solar would be very hard to beat. I strongly recommend it. I will purchase another Solar if and when this one every wears out.

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06-06-2003
Submitted by: ---
Rating: 10 of 10

     I highly recommend this inflatable. Very good quality and built like a tank. Set up is fast and easy. The Bravo 1 bellows pump works just fine, no need for an electric pump. The Solar comes with a tracking fin which is a must for an inflatable that is going to be used on flatwater.
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