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USCA K1 Sea Kayak Specs and Models

Extracts from USCA Competition Rules
The extracts for both the Sea Kayak class and the Touring Kayak class specs are given here.

From Section V.I:
  2. Sea Kayak: any single kayak, sit-on-top or surf ski with a maximum overall length of 18' and a 4'' waterline beam of at least 8.5% of length, 40 pound minimum weight, bulkheads plus hatches fore and aft with the exception of pre-year 2000 models, in which case they may have airbags in lieu of hatches and bulkheads.*
    Note: Delegates at the 2011 Annual Meeting voted that surfskis not be required to have bulkheads or hatches.

  3. Touring: any single kayak, sit-on-top, surf ski with a maximum overall length of 20' and a 4'' waterline beam of at least 18''. *
      * Additional rules for the above K1s
        1. Flip up rudders not included in length.
        2. No hull modifications.
        3. Must have sufficient flotation to support a 25 pound weight in a boat full of water.

From Section II.B — Equipment and Assistance:
  4. Weights and Flotation may be added to canoes or kayaks in order to meet requirements of minimum weight and buoyancy. The materials used may be at the discretion of the competitor. All weights and flotation must be securely fastened or permanently built into the canoe or kayak. Securely Fastened: When a canoe or kayak is turned upside down or submerged, the weight or flotation must stay in place.

Most Sea Kayaks also fit Touring Kayak specs, though most Touring Kayaks don't fit specs for Sea Kayak.

Table 1: Examples of generally recommended sea kayak models for racing in the USCA Sea Kayak class.
The models listed in this first table are generally recommended for racing in the Sea Kayak class as "competitive or reasonably competitive designs". These are regarded as good examples, not the only choices.

 Manufacturer  Model Specs Image
 Chesapeake Light
 Pax 18  Length: 18'  [5.5m];
 weight 38 lbs
Note: these come as a kit with only one hatch; a second must be added to meet USCA specs for sea kayak.
 Current Designs  Solstice  Length: 17'7''
 weight 49-50 lbs
 Epic  V8  Length: 18' [5.5m];
 weight 29-40 lbs: V8
 Club (40 lbs) meets
 specs; other layups
 need added weight
 KayakPro  Nemo  Length: 17'11.5''
 weight ??lbs
 Kirton  Inuk  Length: 18' [550cm];
 weight 42 lbs
 Surge  Sea  Length: 17'7.75''
 weight 38 lbs
 image to come
 Think  Fit  Length: 17' 0.76'' [5.2m];
 weight 34 lbs
 Valley  Rapier 18  Length: 17'11.5''
 weight 46 lbs

Table 2: Examples of sea kayaks not generally recommended for racing in the USCA Sea Kayak class.
Not all kayaks that technically fit USCA's Sea Kayak specs would be good choices for competitive racing in the Sea Kayak class (while they may be fine for other recreational purposes). Examples of poor choices (for racing) include those that may be significantly heavier, wider, or shorter than USCA's Sea Kayak class specs, such as those listed here:

 Manufacturer  Model Specs Image
 Eddyline  Samba  Length: 13'10'' [4.22m];
 weight 43 lbs
 Necky  Looksha
 Length: 14'1.5''
 weight 57 lbs
 Perception  Carolina
 Length: 14'0''
 weight 53 lbs

Table 3: List of kayaks that meet USCA Sea Kayak class specs: they may or may not be suited to racing.
The following is a growing list of models that appear to fit USCA Sea Kayak class specs according either to manufacturer's published measurements or as the result of measuring a single example.  NOTE, HOWEVER, that actual dimensions may vary from boat to boat with the same model name. Actual measurements of the individual boat are what counts. You should measure your boat, especially if the manufacturer's published measurements are close to the limits of the USCA class specs.

Appearance on this list is neither a recommendation for nor against the use of the model for racing in the USCA Sea Kayak class. As a general rule, however, kayaks that are shorter than, say 16'6'' and/or weigh more than 55 lbs are unlikely to be good racing models.

Manufacturer ModelSpecs, if available
Chesapeake Light Craft Pax 18 Length: 18'0'', Weight: 38 lbs
Current Designs Solstice Length: 17'7'', Weight: 49-50 lbs
Dagger Specter 15.5 Airalite (thermoform/trylon) Length: 15'3'', Weight: 55 lbs
Dagger Alchemy 14 (poly/plastic) Length: 14'0'', Weight: 51 lbs
Epic 18X Length: 16'0'', Weight: 34-45 lbs
Epic V8 Length: 18'0'', Weight: 29-40 lbs
Hurricane Santee 135 (thermoform/trylon) Length: 13'5'', Weight: 43 lbs
Hurricane Expedition 140 (thermoform/trylon) Length: 14'0'', Weight: 54 lbs
Hurricane Tampico 140S (thermoform/trylon) Length: 14'0'', Weight: 45 lbs
Hurricane Tracer 165 (thermoform/trylon) Length: 16'6'', Weight: 50 lbs
Jackson Journey 13.5 (poly/plastic) Length: 13'6'', Weight: 50-54 lbs
Jackson Journey 14.5 (poly/plastic) Length: 14'0'', Weight: 56-60 lbs
KayakPro Marlin Length: 17'11.5'', Weight: ?? Lbs
KayakPro Nemo Length: 17'11.5'', Weight: ?? Lbs
Kirton Inuk Length: 18'0'', Weight: 42 lbs
Native Watercraft Inuit 13.5 (poly/plastic) Length: 13'6'', Weight: 55 lbs
Native Watercraft Inuit 14.5 (poly/plastic) Length: 14'6'', Weight: 51 lbs
Necky Looksha 14 (poly/plastic) Length: 14'1.5'', Weight: 57 lbs
Necky Looksha 17 (poly/plastic) Length: 17'6'', Weight: 54 lbs
Necky Manitou 14 (poly/plastic) Length: 14'4'', Weight: 49 lbs
Old Town Cayuga 13 (poly/plastic) Length: 13'1'', Weight: 50 lbs
Old Town Cayuga 14.6 (poly/plastic) Length: 14'6'', Weight: 53 lbs
Perception Cadence 14 Airalite (thermoform/trylon) Length: 14'3'', Weight: 42 lbs
Perception Carolina 14 (poly/plastic) Length: 14'0'', Weight: 53 lbs
Perception Essence 17 (poly/plastic) Length: 17'0'', Weight: 65 lbs
Perception Essence 17 Airalite (thermoform/trylon) Length: 17'0'', Weight: 50 lbs
Perception Tribute 12 (poly/plastic) Length: 12'0'', Weight: 41 lbs
Perception Tribute 12 Airalite (thermoform/trylon) Length: 12'0'', Weight: 34 lbs
Perception Tribute 14 (poly/plastic) Length: 14'0'', Weight: 48 lbs
Surge Sea Length: 17'7.75'', Weight: 38 lbs
Think Fit Length: 17'0'', Weight: 34 lbs
Valley Rapier 18 Length: 17'11.5'', Weight: 46 lbs
Wilderness Systems Tempest 16.5 (poly/plastic) Length: 16'6'', Weight: 55 lbs
Wilderness Systems Tsunami 135 (poly/plastic) Length: 13'6'', Weight: 48 lbs
Wilderness Systems Tsunami 145 (poly/plastic) Length: 14'0'', Weight: 56 lbs
Wilderness Systems Tsunami 160 (poly/plastic) Length: 16'0'', Weight: 62 lbs
Wilderness Systems Tsunami 165 (poly/plastic) Length: 16'6'', Weight: 62 lbs
Wilderness Systems Tsunami 175(poly/plastic) Length: 17'6'', Weight: 65 lbs
Wilderness Systems Zephyr 16 (poly/plastic) Length: 16'0'', Weight: 54 lbs
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