You must be thinking the same thing as me........getting a bigger yak. I read the reviews for the 13 Prowler on KFS and they are all good. I also like the Drifter but the tank well is small. The 15 is a little bigger than I want. The reviews for the X-factor? If you are a really big guy or sight fish and want to stand up, it's for you, otherwise it is slow. I don't want one that's slower than what I have now, I'm big but not that big, and I don't ever sight fish. The T-14 is heavier and more expensive. Sorry Goby, we may end up with the twin yaks again! I think the Prowler 13 is the one I'm going to get but probably not until fall at least. I want to keep the Caper.
The prowler 13 is a nice boat. It is slower than the T-140 and whether or not it is more expensive is relative. If you like the crappie seat that comes on the 13 then you may save $75, but if you buy another seat then you are back at the same price. Also, though the footwells are better than the Prowler 15 they may or may not mach up with your feet and that can be very uncomfortable. The T 140 also comes with the paddle bungees, the seat is built in and if you decide to add a rudder then the WS rudder is about $60-70 cheaper than the OK. The Prowler 13 is only marginally faster than the Caper so If I were going to upgrade to a bigger boat I would go with the T 140, it is long but still short enough to carry in the back of you truck without a rack and easy to load and unload and it is a much drier ride than the Caper or the Prowler 13. As far as heavier, by the time you rig both boats out and add a seat they will be almost if not the same weight. Last, this is just the flip side of the coin, I am not starting the Prowler 13 vs. Tarpon 140 debate. I think the Prowler 13 is a great boat , but if I were to upgrade (and I did) I would go with the 140. This is just a personal opinion, I paddled only OK until recently and after buying the T 140 I think it is a much better design for fishing and it is a lot easier to rig.
Thanks for the input. I should probably try out both before I get a new one. Honestly, the Caper is a great boat, it's just the 'grass is greener' syndrome. The only kayaks I have even been in are my Caper, a couple Frenzys my 9' Perception SINK, and Calvin's Pungo. I need to get a little more time in on the Caper before getting another one. I'm seriously considering selling my Wellcraft next spring. It will be almost 3 years then since I got it so the hit I take on it won't feel so bad. If I do that I can get whatever yak I want and maybe another toy too.
If you want to paddle the Tarpon 140, let me know. Don't just paddle it and go, Sweet, I like it. Take it fishing and put it through the full test ride. That is the benefit of this website, other forums and TKAA. A lot of opportunity for info exchange and it saves people money, time and heartache.
I guess what has really got me is how much faster the Prowler was over the Caper. I knew he'd be faster, but not that much faster and seeing how my fishing partner is going to sell his boat...I need a boat that I can take on extended adventures. The Caper is fine around the bridges, but I want to do some traveling.
I'm trying to keep an open mind about brands and not get into the Ford vs Chevy thing.
Here is another question...Prowler 15, 13 or Tarpon 140? I don't think I can do the Tarpon 160 and I don't think the 120 will be that much of an improvement over what I already have.
Of course this is all a pipe dream.....I still rather just buy a boat.
I probably won't be able to stomach selling the boat. If I do, my wife may not let me get another one. My advice to anyone who wants a boat is to get one BEFORE you get married. I did. That way it's like a grandfather clause. They will always complain about it but won't MAKE you sell it. And if you want a different one, don't let them talk you into selling the one you have first. I am on my third since we got married and I always get the new one first.
Here is what sealed the deal for me. If you read reviews (like KFS) and paddle both boats (Prowler 15 and T 140) then there are small things that you may not like about the footwells that you may not like on the Prowler 15. No complaints about the 140 in that area in both my opinion and all the reviews I have read. Also, the T 140 is still capable of being transported in a 6 1/2 foot truck bed and being legal with a flag attached to it. By going up to the 15 you really need to get a rack or carry it on the roof. I like the convenience of being able to haul my yak fully rigged, drag it out of the back, sit down and go fishing. The Prowler is also only marginally faster than the 140 and more likely to require a rudder. Don't get me wrong, the Prowler 15 is and awesome boat and if the footwell issue didn't exist I would have given it more serious consideration.
I really like the idea of not needing a rack. Like you said there is nothing better then having the kayak set up and in the back of your truck ready to be pulled out. And I understand the foot well issue....it has to be the most complained about feature of the OK's, however my Pungo's foot pegs get crapped up all the time.
Goby, I'll toss a match on the gasoline and say go paddle a Hobie Quest before getting a P13, P15 or T140. I paddled them all today in Farmville at the Appomatox River Co demo on a lake there, and the Quest was my favorite.
Each of the boats ya'll are talkin about have detractions, and try as I might I could not find one on the Quest, other than length. Guys say the rear facing rod holders are too loose but a PVC insert fixes that. I want a 12 foot version for my river smallie chasing, not a 13 foot whale. The Hobie rep took note, but said a longer version is due out next. I did find the cockpit area on the Quest was just big enough for me, but I am a wide load at 5'10 and 250lb with a large butt and big thighs. It was a perfect fit, but noticably less wiggle room than in my Caper. No surprise as the Drifter & Caper are boats for big butts.
The Quest was fast enough for me, though I didn't race anyone to test it out. It was so stable I could open the front hatch on the water, stick my head down inside the hull and look back up to the stern. Did it twice and the boat didn't even bob or wiggle. Not to mention opening and closing the Quest hatch was child's play compared to the others. Heck the P13 is hard to open on dry land.
Don't overlook this new offering from Hobie. It's got lots of potential. Nice features, and a much drier ride for me than the P13, which surprised me.
You are right about the Quest. It looks good on the showroom floor and the demo paddle is great. However, I just don't know enough about it or know anyone who does that has put it through the ringer yet in the fishing environment (different story) and brought up anything that may be considered a detractor. I think the front hatch idea is cool but really believe that after it gets worn in it will leak very badly on rough days and surf launches. I also can remember the last time I needed something form the hatch and had to get it on the water, if so it would have been in my crate. Time will tell how it falls out with the other fishing machines. I also think it has a very shallow side wall that will result in a wetter ride when you are paddling in any water with chop on it at all.