I love it. I bought it a month ago and have already been out of it a total of 4 times. Each time I like it more. My first kayak a Scrambler XT flipped me into the water twice by the third trip. Here I am with the Magic - 0 for 4! It wasn't as fast as my friends 14.5' the hull is 12' long, but very stable. I weight 205 lbs. and it carries me fine. I haven't tried standing yet, but hear people do it.
It's been in the Indian River Lagoon, Banana River and done fine. I'm taking it next week to the Gulf of Mexico to try it out in the ocean. As mentioned, there's not much storage below decks, only a little watertight hatch where I keep phone, and wallet. So far, I love it.I was leery about purchasing this Kayak because all I heard was "best chair ever" or some similar comment about the chair. Now, I have to admit, the chair is comfortable. Sun-Up to Sun-Down fishing without a single pain nor do I have to re-situate on a regular basis.
Now, the real review...
I'm really impressed at the design. It appears to be more flat-bottom, but it can handle chop very, very well. I own an OK as well and this one is a much more smooth ride. It's very fast in calm water and tracks very well and it holds it's own in the chop while not being quite as fast as the more typical "V" style hulls. It is much more quiet in chop than the "V" styles also.
My opinion is that this is one of the best as far as small to medium lakes and is best in rivers... regardless of current flow. I have been in 25mph current and didn't have any problem at all going upstream. I attribute this to the flatter style which allows you to sit more on top of the water.
It's very stable and even though I could probably stand, I never need to because the chair really is as comfortable as all the hype you read. I weigh 210lbs and I never get wet... except when I paddle (even in big lake chop). The hardest thing you'll do is figure out how you want to accessorize... I would highly recommend purchasing this unless you frequent the salt water more than fresh.This is a fine boat. I got it used about two months ago and have had it out on only four occasions. The seat, as mentioned by others, is incredible. My nearly 60 year old back has become impervious to the pain I used to get from another boat.
The craft is stable and well rendered as far as conveniences. The Plug-N-Play system works well for the seat, paddlekeeper and rod holder that I have. I like the cutout in the molding aft of the seat that fits a milk crate.
Interesting story...I carried this Magic and my wife's Saluda 12 in the back of my Dakota pick-up recently. At 50MPH, the parting of a line sent both airborne on a local highway. (No other cars were involved.) We stopped, ran back and collected both boats. The Magic had crossed the road and ended up in a ditch. The Saluda slid along in our lane. BOTH boats suffered considerable road burns but NEITHER showed any evidence of hull cracks or other structural failure after hitting the asphalt at high speed.
Subsequent trips have shown that the watertight integrity of both boats is intact... I now have a rooftop Yakima rack for them.
The ONLY complaint I have with the Magic 12 is it's lack of close quarter maneuverability. Turning is NOT its strong suit. It does track well for a short open boat and it is easy to paddle. The seat, once again, is fantastic.Bought my Magic 12 in January, and haven't had any problems in the almost 4 months that I've had it. It's very stable, I am able to stand and push pole. It's fast, and the low profile doesn't catch much wind at all. I haven't got to fish with it in the river yet, but it handled the bay great!
The only thing I wish it had was a large enough hatch to store camping gear in. There is a small water tight hatch behind the seat, but its only really big enough to put a cell phone and wallet, etc. in. But I still gave it a 10 because I can still store anything anywhere.
The seat, WOW, literally THE most comfortable seat ever. Fully adjustable, and aluminum, so it won't rust. There really isn't anywhere to put flush mount rod holders unless you get one of the dash boards (available for front or back), so I just put 3 rod holders on my milk crate, and a Scotty in front. The plug and play system is great, very accessorizable; there's limitless possibilities for this great kayak!