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Reviews for Capella 160 RM Kayak by P&H Sea Kayaks


Rated: 7.25/10 Based On: 4 Reviews

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07-13-2009
Submitted by: RCRSend Email
Rating: 9 of 10

     Recently I tried a ton of boats: Avocet, Tempest 17, Zephyr 16, Whiskey 16, Capella 167 glass, Ikkuma 17, Scorpio. The dealer said try the RM Capella 160, and I immediately didn't like the outfitting - I just loved the Capella 167 glass - but came down to earth because I couldn't afford it. I wound up buying a Scorpio and had to wait a week for the boat in my color choice. So, in the meantime, they gave me a Capella 160 RM on loan. My second time in this boat has me literally blown away. I took it home and studied the outfitting again, and adjusted the thigh braces backward, and removed the seat pad so as to lower my body position.

Conditions this day were fairly calm but lots of disturbed water due to power boats. After a few minutes on the water I tried some edging, low brace turns, low braces, high braces, sculling braces, and was totally amazed how this boat did everything I asked without me feeling stressed about keeping it on balance - it just did everything beautifully. So my initial impression was totally off. In fact this boat works great with me - I'm 6'0" and 178 lbs. As others have noted, the 3-layer plastic is bombproof and if you're like me, you beat up that boat - I love glass, but I just know I'd become a sissy worrying about bumps and scratches.

This boat seems really simple and it is. I'd say this tried and true design totally hits the bullseye. The one defect on this boat is the skeg box. The tube running out of the box which contains the line jiggled out if its mount and it leaks from there. This is easily fixable with polyethylene sealant. Weight - I found it balanced and reasonable for shoulder carrying. Overall this truly is a world-class boat.

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11-12-2007
Submitted by: View Profile Send Email
Rating: 9 of 10

     I have been paddling this boat for about one year in all conditions. The most challenging was the Mayor's Cup Race Around Manhattan. I was a long way from first, but I was not last. The boat is not fast, but it will get you where you are going regardless of conditions. It is a bit heavy, but it is tough as nails. If you want a good compromise this is it.
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11-06-2006
Submitted by: View Profile Send Email
Rating: 9 of 10

     The three-ply hull yields a stiff and light boat with good durability. It's one of the nicest plastic sea kayaks I've paddled. The Capella is pleasing to the eye and performs quite well. It is easy to edge and turn. Primary stability is a tad light, but secondary is good, resulting in a lively boat. Acceleration and hull speed are very good and the bow sheds spray well.

While it is a relatively low volume kayak, the cockpit is fairly roomy, especially if you replace the factory seat padding. A medium or large paddler should be comfortable. You can adjust the foot pegs while seated without a problem.

The downsides are primarilly matters of personal preference. With an integral skeg, I'd rather have a larger stern chamber than the day hatch/compartment, especially with the lower volume boat. I'm not a fan of pop-on hatches. The seat could be lower, with less of a butt crack ridge. And, I'd prefer more aggressive thigh braces. But, given the outstanding performance, I'll still give it a high rating.

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09-19-2006
Submitted by: RLSend Email
Rating: 2 of 10

     The Capella 160 RM is being marketed by some distributers as a Kayak for smaller paddlers. I recently tried one, wonderfull Kayak but not at all for a small paddler. Maybe for the average smaller/medium man, but not for a smaller woman.The cockpit is very large, the deck very high and the thigh braces when adjusted as far as possible were on my knees, not my thighs.There is really nothing available in plastic from the better companies for a smaller woman at this time. Hopefully someday they'll make the P&H Vela or the Nigel Dennis Romany LV in plastic. I ended up with Romany LV in fiberglass. On sale it was about $1000 more, but it fits like a glove.It's worth every penny. I'm 5' 3" 100 lbs.
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