Carbon fiber Tyr aims to be the superyacht of sit-on-top kayaks
While sit-on-top kayaks have become very popular with anglers, most of the boats are fairly tubby, heavy, plastic-bodied things. Apex Watercraft's Tyr is different, though, in that it's sleek, lightweight, and made of carbon fiber.
The Tyr is the brainchild of Eric Jackson, who is a four-time world champion whitewater kayaker, a champion kayak fisherman, and founder of well-known watercraft company Jackson Kayak. Among the people joining him on the Apex team are Russ Emanis, who previously ran the composites program at Lockheed Martin, and Bob Blair, who has designed award-winning racing stand-up paddleboards.
Featuring a foam-core body covered in a hand-painted carbon fiber shell, the Tyr reportedly tips the scales at around 40 lb (18 kg). For comparison, a quick Googling shows that traditional plastic sit-on-top fishing-specific kayaks weigh anywhere from 60-plus pounds up into the low hundreds.
Additionally unlike most other sit-on-tops, Jackson's boat has a flat planing hull that allows it to venture into fairly shallow water without bottoming out. And while flat hulls generally don't track as well as keeled displacement hulls, a fin on the bottom is claimed to help keep it going straight while remaining highly maneuverable.
The Tyr's bow is also noteworthy, in that it's designed to speedily slice through waves as opposed to riding up over them. Any water that does slosh into the cockpit simply runs out the back of the open stern – this means that the kayak doesn't require any scupper (drainage) holes, which Jackson tells us can increase drag and water noise.
The paddler sits in a molded carbon fiber seat that swivels from side to side, and which can be slid fore or aft up to 12 inches (30.5 cm). They can also stand up, with traction being provided by a layer of natural cork that covers the deck. Gear is stored in a forward cargo compartment, the hatch of which is held shut magnetically. Integrated neodymium magnets in other areas allow metallic items (such as tools or lures) to be held in place without the use of straps or clamps.
Should you be interested, the Tyr is presently the subject of a Kickstarter campaign … and it ain't cheap. A pledge of US$7,999 will get you one (along with a fishing rod and carbon fiber paddle), when and if they reach production. The planned retail price is $10,999.
You can see the kayak in action, in the following video. And Tyr, by the way, is an ancient rune symbol associated with victory in competition.
Sources: Kickstarter, Apex Watercraft
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