04-02-2013Submitted by: oldmanrvr
Reviews for Dirigo 140 Kayak by Old Town Canoe
Based On: 28 Reviews
- Rating: 10 of 10 I have owed this boat for 5 years (I think), and use it primarily as a river tripper. I live in Middle Tennessee and have used it on the Stones River, Duck River, Elk River, etc. Primarily slow moving waters. Also have been on several trips to the Jacks Fork and Current Rivers in SE Missouri.
The boat tracks well, is super durable and easy to car top. The huge cockpit is a plus to me, as is the most comfortable, adjustable kayak seat I have ever experienced. It can carry lots of gear for trips of several days to a week. It is a little heavy, but once you get moving is a breeze to paddle at a brisk rate. I love my kayak!
01-14-2013Submitted by: splat_868
- Rating: 10 of 10 This is my first kayak and I love it. I got the angler version and find the rod holders useful. Being a beginner kayaker I feel this kayak is very forgiving and sturdy, I haven't tipped it over yet.
04-20-2010Submitted by: dirigo140
- Rating: 8 of 10 I've had my Dirigo 140 for 5 or 6 years now ...great kayak .. I've also had a Tsunami 165 another great kayak, also my touring kayak is a Impex Force Cat 5 .... I do a lot of paddling.
I traded my Tsunami in when I bought my Impex ...due to price, I will not get rid of my Dirigo 140.....it's a great starter boat & my fishing kayak ....it's a tank ....I bought a 1/2 skirt for it when I'm just paddling it ....works great for keeping the water off you ....I love my Dirigo 140, very stable, lots of storage in the rear hatch ... I've had it out in 2 foot rollers ....no problem ...stays pretty dry...no problems with the seat ..in fact I love where the seat controls are.
I would give it a 10 rating if it came with a rudder because of it's size it weathercocks a lot in a wind. It's a bomb proof kayak otherwise... I will never get rid of my Dirigo
09-28-2009Submitted by: bhaskell
- Rating: 9 of 10 I purchased a leftover Dirigo 140 with spray skirt for $399. For the price I couldn't pass it up. I had been looking for a SINK for winter paddling, although in Florida, SOT kayaks are usually fine. This is my 6th kayak, so I have experience with several different types and styles. At 27.25" wide, the Dirigo is just slightly wider then my RTM Tempo, which is narrow for a SOT. The Dirigo is supposed to meet in the middle for recreational and touring kayaks. I believe it does a good job at both.
I've taken the Dirigo on several trips, the longest being 11 miles. I've read the other reviews and agree with some of the comments, but not with others.
The boat tracks very straight. The defined from and rear keel help this kayak maintain a good line. The only issues is that because of the hull design, your paddling technique or lack there of gets amplified. I found that sometimes using lean turns is needed to get good turning response.
The kayak layout is very good. The dashboard is functional, equipped with dry storage container, cup holder and scotty rod holder. The foot braces are functional and sturdy. The seat is pretty comfortable and highly adjustable. I have read some negative things about the seat, but have not had any problems with it. The rear storage compartment is huge and water tight. I have not used the spray skirt yet, but I did test fit it and it seems like it would do the job, although when fitted, it does cover up the dashboard. The deck bungees have come in handy several times.
Overall, the kayak is an excellent performer. Does take some extra skill to paddle, but helps develop good technique. I'm 6' 210lbs and the kayak fits me perfect and lots of storage capacity for long outings.
04-07-2009Submitted by: dj18dsf
Nothing really to complain about, especially for the price!
- Rating: 7 of 10 I've had my Dirigo 140 for over three years. I have the complaints, one cosmetic the other two functional. Don't get me wrong I LOVE MY BOAT :) The first real complaint is the positioning of the seat settings. When you go to get out of the cockpit you place your hands directly over the controls and it the seat is released with downward pressure. The second is more personal. I do looonnnggg solos, longest being 112 miles. The seat back is not designed for that. If an extension or a higher seatback were available it would provide comfort and lumbar support not currently seen. The cosmetic prob.....I have a buckle directly under the front of the seat that has been there since my first season. I've placed blocking during the off season but it always returns. Overall I give this boat a 8 for long trips, a seven for maneuverability and a 10 for ability to carry enough gear and supplies for my long paddles.
07-15-2008Submitted by: catcab2000
- Rating: 10 of 10 I got the 140 over a month ago but due to inclement weather I've only taken it out a few times. It performs very well as expected when I'm solo, but yesterday was the first time I've brought my 4-year-old son along. I think the added weight actually made the boat more stable (though it's obviously plenty stable to start with), and he was perfectly comfortable in the seat for the hour he sat on it. After we paddled upstream and started drifting back down, he was able to lean back and rest against my legs. Afterward he kept asking when we can go again, which was great to hear!
07-03-2008Submitted by: DANDIX
- Rating: 10 of 10 I love my new Dirigo 140. Purchased at the Old Town 2008 tent sale for $469.00 plus tax. It's a blem but I can't find anything wrong with it. Took it for a 4 day trip to the Allagash Wilderness water way it performed excellent. I've also used it in local ponds and rivers. Very stable and tracks well. Plenty of storage and very comfortable fun to fish out of as well.
Going to buy the Dirigo 120 for my wife. Great boat Old Town! 1 very happy customer!!!
05-31-2008Submitted by: dirigo140
- Rating: 10 of 10 My 2nd year with the OT Dirigo 140.
I found it to be a very stable, roomy, and versatile yak. It is extremely fun for day trips or for weekend trips. The seat, and ease of controls, are a definite plus. Plenty of storage; built like a tank. I only wish it came with a rudder... it would be a great help in rough water.
12-12-2007Submitted by: live2paddle
- Rating: 9 of 10 Update after 1 year of use. Great boat, however my seat always falls out of the seat adjusters on the side during transport and sometimes while paddling. I have to stop often and get to put my seat back in the tracks. This is the only flaw with mine.
11-20-2007Submitted by: jfinney
- Rating: 10 of 10 This is my 2nd review as I did one a few months ago here after minimal use, however my first impressions have lasted the entire summer...this is a great choice for recreational lakes without hassles entering or exiting, at 6-1 225lbs I find the seat comfortable and adjustable, plus even our 80lb lab can ride with me although snug, it works and is fun...we also have a 12 footer for her and she loves it too...I think those worried about performance may want to lift some weights as we are the motor and I can get this puppy flying...very pleased.
07-10-2007Submitted by: M
- Rating: 7 of 10 Great boat, horrible seat!
On mine it is not the parachute cords that I am having issues with, it is the backrest. First it lost all bounce. It flopped around, and now the entire thing just pops off. This is not good when you loose that support while going down a river or out in the surf. Does anyone know of a aftermarket seat for the old towns? PLEASE HELP. I may just sell mine and get another make/model with a more durable seat.
05-22-2007Submitted by: J Finney
- Rating: 10 of 10 Just got new Dirigo 14, first Yak ever for us, I'm 6-1, 225 lbs, did research as wanted comfort for my size, ease of access, fishing, stability and performance/handling... pleased to report it is all of above. I have a touchy lower back, but have spent 3 hrs so far and no problems at all, this is recreational stuff as we live on a larger lake, it is perfect. I'd have trouble imagining squeezing into a smaller cockpit as I like the relatively open roomy cockpit (although it isn't too roomy), especially for fishing, plus I can get this yak cruising at very good speeds, it tracks very well and turns OK and handles waves. I figure I can get going at 5 knots as it seems to cut the water very well. We have guests to the lake, and this is perfect also for novices who want to experience all this without hassles entering or exiting cockpit or worries of capsizing... overall very good recreational boat and well made, we got the Carlisle Magic fiberglass paddles which seem perfect as well ($90), no regrets at all.
03-12-2007Submitted by: TT
- Rating: 5 of 10 bought a new 06 dirigo, took it back the next day. am i glad i didn't sell my loon 138! way better yak!
an upgrade sounded good, but was a huge mistake. if it ain't broke....... don't try to fix it!
02-26-2007Submitted by: David Martin
- Rating: 9 of 10 This is my first Kayak....had some test rides in Pungo, Necky, Perception, and more. It came down to the Pungo14 and the Drigo. I setteled on the Drigo. I love the rear hatch design and the dry storage up front with the molded in drink holder . The seat is too cool also, no problems with the seat, I'm 5'9" and 150 lbs, maybe the big guys are too much for the seat?? Anyway, The yak is superior in craftsmanship and fit and finish, yes it is a little heavier, but once in the water not much of an issue. I will probably get a Pungo 12-14 for my guest boat and I may switch off too. I do like that boat too! With the Old Town, I got the "cloud" finish and love it, it is very soft and easy on the eyes. I do need to re-GOOP the rear bulkhead tho, it was loose from whatever??? The only flaw in the boat, but I see this all the time on these boats because the sealant doesn't stick well to the haul material. Some Goop will do the trick tho and the yak will be 100%. Very happy with the boat for average to extended day trips in calm to light chop waters in the back bays of SW florida...Pine Island area.....would have given it a 10 if the weight was about 5-8 lbs lighter.
11-21-2006Submitted by: Cyrus Bearden
- Rating: 7 of 10 I purchased the Dirigo 140 in May 2006. I have been on 5 kayaking trips with it. Very Impressed with the boat ... not impressed at all with the seat. You would think by spending $800+ on a boat, it would have a more durable seat. I am very disappointed in Old Town because of this new seat design. I want something that is going to Last a long time and the para-cord used in this seat does not last! Also, the rubber thigh protectors deteriorated after the 2nd trip. Now let me say this, I am 300lbs and the boat fits me very well. I can get in and out with ease. The boat handles the Bigger paddlers very well. The bottom line is, I love the boat, but I hate the seat! You can do much better, Old Town!
10-20-2006Submitted by: live2paddle
- Rating: 10 of 10 I paddle with my 3yr old daughter and I wiegh 215lbs. This boat tracks great with no rudder or skeg. It is very stable for both of us. My daughter can walk around, go fishing, hang over the side, and even take a nap in it with minimal effort on my part. This is a great Rec boat that I have paddled on trips over 5 hrs in one day, the down side of the stablity is that it is not a fast yak. You just have to sit back and enjoy the ride. The cockpit is very comfortable and roomy for both of us. My yak came with a seat up front for my daughter, the downside is that her seat is not padded so you have to be creative. The hatch system is the best I have ever used! It is very easy to open and access, and seals great. The only other downside to the boat is that it is heavy for one person to carry. I can load it by myself but carrying it to the water can be grueling if it is anything greater than 50' by yourself. Overall a great yak to enjoy nature with yourkids! If you can handle it, use a powerstroke paddle or wideblade. It makes it a really fun boat.
06-06-2006Submitted by: oldmanrvr
- Rating: 10 of 10 I purchased the Dirigo 140 in early May and have been on two river trips in TN. The first was an 8 miler on the shallow Stones River in Middle TN, where there are plenty of obstructions, deadfalls and islands to negotiate. The Dirigo handled like a charm. It tracks well, is reasonably fast with a good glide after you get some forward momentum.
My second trip was an 18 mile overnighter on the Buffalo River. It was Memorial Day Week-end and there were a million canoes on the River. I am an Old fart, 56, and this is my first Kayak. I had canoed for 10 years when I was in my 20s. I more than held my own with speed, manuverability and effort, as my 21 year old friend and his 23 yr old friend had trouble keeping up with me in their Perception kayaks.
The seat is the best I have ever seen. There is plenty of room for the biggest paddler and plenty of gear. The craftmanship is Old Town standard, best in class.
I think some of the negative reviews are by people that don't really understand the recreational class. This is not a whitewater or touring boat. It is the best compromise for comfort, stability, durability and value that the recreational class represents.
05-22-2006Submitted by: G2gGolfing69
- Rating: 9 of 10 I am 6' 2" and was trying to find a kayak that I could actually use the footpegs in because I have longer legs. This Kayak was one of the few that I could sit in for more than an hour. The cup holder and water tight compartment for keys, camera is a great feature except in the smaller versions I found that it seemed to get in the way. The only reason that I gave it a 9 instead of a 10 is because of its length it does not manuever as easily as hoped but seeing as it is longer than a normal kayak it is expected. I found that it glides through water nicely but it does displace quite a bit and if you are not in decent shape you might have problems on longer trips.
05-15-2006Submitted by: bonkers1919
- Rating: 8 of 10 I am 6' 200 lbs. I bought the 14ft DIRIGIO for FISHING and SHORT daylight trips of 4 to 8 miles.I use it on the upper portions of the Delaware river.It is a heavy stable boat well suited for fishing and photography. I would not use this boat for anything else.
It is so stable that its almost impossible to roll. I have stood in the boat and cast my fly rod.
It being a heavy boat, slow to accelerate and hard to turn. MIne is heavier than when I bought it, anchor, fishing rod holders and other items.
The seat looks comfortable...BUT IS NOT........I am in the process of replacing the seat. The first one was adjusted by knobs on the side of the boat. These tighten or loosen short pieces of parachute cord. THEY WORKED FOR THE FIRST HOUR. Old Town is sending my dealer a replacement seat that has STRAPS, NOT PARACHUTE CORD for the seat adjustment. We will see how the new seats works. If it doesnt work, I will put a different seat in the boat, because it is a great stable fishing platform.
I you are thinking about buying this boat DO NOT BUY IT UNLESS THE SEAT HAS THE STRAPS FOR ADJUSTMENTS. I can assure you that the parachute cord adjustment does not work well at all.
I like the boat alot, but I only use it for fishing. I have several other boats for playing and touring so i know what i am saying about this boat. If you want a boat for day touring or any other reason than fishing or photos.....check other boats.
01-16-2006Submitted by: REAJR
- Rating: 9 of 10 Purchased the Dirigo 140 for recreational/family purposes, i.e., exercise, day touring of our local lakes, occasional fishing and short recreational outings with my daughter.
I found the Dirigo 140 to be a definite winner in its class as an all-around family recreational boat. It is exceptionally stable (you would have to aggressively assist this boat in order to tip it). It tracks and glides quite well, in fact, I find it to have decent speed too (I'm 5'-8" and weigh-in at 165 lbs. for reference purposes). It actually performs quite nicely into the wind. On a recent 5 hour tour of some local lakes, the wind kicked up to approx. 15 knots with at least a 1 ft. chop, the Dirigo performed beautifully (I could however sense that secondary stability as I expected, would be questionable in choppier coastal conditions - the standard cost for having exceptional primary stability).
The Dirigo 140 is TRUE to Old Town's renowned craftsmanship - it is a beautifully crafted boat from its hull, deck design and finish to its rear watertight storage (bulkhead) compartment. Old Town's easy to open "space hatch" is ACTUALLY watertight. The large open cockpit design makes entry and exits a breeze and allows for exceptional ease for fishing and stowing of your equipment, etc. The included child seat I find works quite nicely, remove it and again you've got a nice open space for a relatively good sized tackle-box. The small dashboard waterproof compartment is a really nice feature too for your wallet, keys, cell, etc. Old Town's new open cockpit control panel design really allows for a great deal of comfort, flexibility and control of the boat. I added a “Seals Sneak Spray Skirt” for my day/tour outings to keep dry – the large cockpit design does lend itself to paddle drip inside the cockpit. Personally, I also found the fully padded "Extrasport" seat with its on-deck adjustment controls to function extremely well - it provides adjustably great support and comfort. The Dirigo is also equipped with a generous amount of functional deck bungee rigging.
In closing, my only reason for not giving the Dirigo a rating of 10 is due to what I presume was an arguably rare flaw in the foam thigh control pads - approx. a week after receiving my new Dirigo (shipped directly from the factory) I found the foam thigh pads were deteriorating. I called "Old Town" direct - they informed me they would promptly ship replacement pads but I was courteously instructed to place a warranty claim through the retailer I purchased my Dirigo (Cabelas). Cabelas' great customer service dept. contacted Old Town directly on my behalf and my replacement pads were shipped - I've since replaced them and they're holding up fine to date. Although the boat was shipped well wrapped by Old Town, it did arrive with the gratuitous shipping and/or pre-wrap dents and scratches, however I must say that Old Town's Poly Link 3 material does display a great deal of resiliency (it's unquestionably highly-durable).
The Dirigo 140 is definitely a winner in its class!
09-27-2005Submitted by: phf
- Rating: 6 of 10 I'll prefix this review by stating that I am new to the sport and am looking for my first kayak so I'm by no means an expert. I've tried a number of boats with mixed results. The Pungo seemed tippy (for a novice anyway) but I liked the Perception Americas 13.5. Once it came out though, I fell in love with the Dirigo (on paper anyway). I finally got a chance to paddle one up at LL Bean and was disappointed though.
The seat, which looked like it should be VERY comfortable felt flimsy at best. I'm a big guy (6' 250lbs) and just didn't feel stable in the seat. Also, while the cup holder seems like a perfect idea, it comes down right where your let wants to be. I had a chance to paddle a Loon 138 back to back with this boat and was much more impressed. Both boats tracked well, but the Loon was much more comfortable and tracked a bit better. A number of people at Beans said that they were less than impressed with the new seat and that they were constantly fixing the ones in the rental fleet.
Like I said, I'm no expert but I'm going out to buy a Loon! *grin*
08-08-2005Submitted by: ---
- Rating: 10 of 10 This is a follow up to my previous review. People should read and research a product before they buy it. If you plan on long drives carrying a ton of gear, you would not buy a mini cooper. If you want a sleek and fast kayak, you do not buy a Dirigo 140, simply look at the design! However, if you want a rugged highly stable boat that is great for fishing and photography etc., a Dirigo is a great choice!
I use my boat all the time and have gone from "casual" paddler to "avid" paddler as a result. In fact I had it out on Lake Michigan last weekend in some moderate waves (2-3 feet) and it handled great and was a heck of a lot of fun. Okay, I might not do a 20 mile trek in it (if I want to do that I will get a Sea Kayak) but for most everything else it's great! I am going back to the big lake this weekend and will spend hours out there fishing and relaxing! I love my Dirigo!
08-03-2005Submitted by: souhami
- Rating: 5 of 10 After selling my loved OT Loon 138 which I owned for over 8 yrs., I decide to upgrade to a Dirigo 140. I purchased a demo at REI as I had with my Loon 138. I am 6' 240 fit. This boat was uncomfortable this new seat is complicated and pops out of its bracket. I miss being able to slide back and forth in the Loon. I tracked well but was very slow it's basically a tub!! It displaces a lot of water has little glide. The water comes up to the gunwale. I returned it. I wanted another Loon 138 REI no longer carries them LL Bean online was my only choice. I decided to go with a Pungo 120 instead. I have owned several WS boats before including a Pungo classic I was generally please with all of them. I will try it this weekend if the Pungo doesn't work. I will order another Loon from LL Bean. As far as the Dirigo is concerned I can see it being a good fishing platform, I don't fish.
06-20-2005Submitted by: ---
- Rating: 10 of 10 The Dirigo 140 is an outstanding kayak. I picked one up in March and have used it extensively for fishing since then on small to midsized lakes including busy days with a great deal of "chop" due to boat traffic. I have had no problem in chop or large wakes from other boats.
The fit and finish are top quality. The material that Old Town uses is not only great looking but durable and stiff. Stability is excellent and speed and tracking have been great. The seat is very comfy, there is plenty of storage and the deck lines are a nice touch. I have fished from my Dirigo for as many as 8 hours at a time and have had no problems with comfort. Modifying this yak for fishing is easy with many options. If enough folks are interested, I will post some of the mods I have made. I have also purchased every conceivable option imaginable (spray skirts, cockpit cover, deck lighting, rod holders, anchors, etc.) and am happy to share what seems to work best.
To the guy that compared it to a Prijon, no kidding the Dirigo is slower, but then my Infinity QX4 SUV is slower than my Audi Quatro. They are two different yaks for two entirely different purposes.
I also own a Wilderness Systems Pungo which is a nice boat but nothing like my Dirigo. The Dirigo is a much more "solid" craft with greater speed and stability.
The only caveat I have about the Dirigo 140 is the weight. It is not a lightweight 10 foot boat. This is a full 14 feet long and is a bit on the heavy side. I get it up on top of my car by leaning it upright against the back and then "sliding" it up top. A smaller paddler may need some assistance car topping it.
For comparison/comfort purposes, I am 5'10" tall, weigh 185 pounds and have more than enough room inside the cockpit for comfort and gear.
06-13-2005Submitted by: mtr
- Rating: 10 of 10 This is the best "bank for buck" kayak a family guy can own! This is the only yak I found that allows you to take your small child (under 60 pounds) with you. You can't beat the stability of this hull. It is not the fastest, but it can carry a ton. The Extrasport seat is very comfortable. You can adjust the seat angle and lumbar angle via external controls that are mounted on the gunwhale. I would recommend this craft to any recreational rower.
06-01-2005Submitted by: ---
- Rating: 10 of 10 I bought the Dirigo 14 to be used for fly fishing. The roominess of the cockpit makes it ideal for this. It is a great day trip boat, very stable, tracks good. I will use it on the Puget Sound for searun cutthroat fishing. It is ideal for moving along the shoreline and estuaries. It would be nice if it had a spray skirt.
05-23-2005Submitted by: maximadude
- Rating: 5 of 10 Wife and I paddle Prijons. Catalina and Calabria. We rented a third kayak recently to accommodate a guest. Ended up with a brand new Old Town Dirigo. I had the honours. Good quality plastic, excellent seating system with cool adjustable lumbar system. Boat is rather on the heavy side, displaces a lot of water, thus paddles a bit like a tub compared to what I am used to. It does track relatively straight, especially when going into, or alternately down small rapids. Trouble is, despite being the strongest paddler in our threesome, there was no way I could, despite by hardest strokes, keep up with the Prijons. They paddled with ease and left me far behind. Not a boat for readily covering any distances. Not a lot of glide and no feeling of "lightness". Would not recommend for even those planning extended day trips, unless you plan to not cover too much distance.
05-12-2005Submitted by: JD
- Rating: 10 of 10 This is my first kayak, I shopped around and talked to several people. I wanted a kayak for weekend camping, flatwater, nice flowing NC rivers as well as comfort. I think I got it all. I paddled six hours the first time I put it in and had no problem with tracking or stability, nor was I sore or achy the next day like most of buddies said I would be. Great boat for the money, great features, and plenty of room. I'm 6'1", 265 lbs. I paddled with comfort all day long...
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