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#10797938 - 04/26/15 10:17 AM Outback vs Slayer propel - my thoughts after demo
MtnDew Offline
Pro Angler

Registered: 12/14/11
Posts: 926
Loc: Irving, TX
Just throwing this out there, I don't own either yet smile .. Thanks to Mariner Demo days yesterday, I got to spend time in all three boats outback, slayer propel 13 & slayer propel 10. All three seem like great boats.

It is said many times on here, that you really need to demo as everyone's needs are different.

I am 6' and 215lbs. With a left knee that is picky, sometimes I can ride my bike no issues, other days my knee will hurt afterwards. So the big difference was the force required and motion on the propel unit vs the mirage drive. Short answer for me, is using the non-turbo fins on the outback was much easier on my knee. The mirage drive had me peddling a little faster, but each stroke required less force. So for my body, I would rather spin my knee at a higher RPM and put less force on it.

The other big thing I noticed, is the propel unit's sweet spot was a very very slow cadence. I took the slayer propel 13 out first and found the drive harder to pedal than I expected. It took me awhile to figure out that you really need to peddle slow vs how you would peddle a bike. All kayak hulls have a top hull speed and if you try to go past that you are just wasting alot of energy. I could feel the force twinge my knee a little. Once I slowed way down, like 30 rpms I was easily going 3 mph on the gps.

The outback had the new 2015 stock fins, and I felt I could run it at 3mph easily as well, the motion was a tiny bit more cardo workout vs the propel was taxing my leg muscles when going above 3.5 mph. Trying to go 4.5 to 5mph was alot of work in either boat.

I also have size 11 feet and the bottom of my heel on my sandals would clip the bottom of the kayak or the hook for the bungie on the cover. My sandals are big, and maybe with a closer fitting water shoe it wouldn't be an issue. You may want to try it with summer shoes and winter shoes to be safe.

SEATS : I have a native ultimate now and I like the seat, however the seat in the slayer when mixed with the propel motion was not as comfy on my back vs the new outback seat. Hands down the new seat on the outback was my favorite seat. I really like the height adjustments. Having the option to change the seat angle would be great on a long day on the water and help my back and knees.

Deck Layout : was a toss up. The slayer is clean open, flat bottom for standing and I love all the built in track. The outback has the great center hatch, which I would upgrade to the rectangle one like on the pro angler. I also like the bow hatch was included on the outback. But no track anywhere on the outback and all the cut outs for little cup holders and stuff means you would have to put in little pieces here and there. The new outback deck did keep the water from the mirage drive in it's own well, so the floor by the seat and center hatch stayed dry. The slayer being flat all the way did seem to let water slosh upto the seat area. Native has the center console but anything you put there will have to be cleared away when you have to lift up the propel unit.

Hull Ride : The wind picked up, so I did get a chance to push both boats into some small chop. The slayer hull had a small edge over the outback. I felt like the outback still splash more spray up. BUT the outback tracked better. I felt myself making more rudder adjustments on the both slayers vs the outback when out in the wind 10mph + to 15mph. Paddling was a toss up. Turning with the stock rudders I would give the outback the edge.

Beaching and shallow water : The mirage drive ability to flutter kick in shallow water and fold up against the hull is awesome. of course the propel has reverse. Reverse was cool and I was able to hold the slayer in position better when pretending to fish a fixed item like a stump or bridge piling.

Durability : I noticed some rust on the bearings on the 2014 propel drive they had out there. The mirage drive seems easier to maintain and repair if needed.

Slayer 10 : awesome little boat. the outback sport is to small for a big guy like me. I think that slayer 10 propel is the perfect balance. Stable, not much slower than the slayer 13. I could fit that boat in the back of my small SUV and close the hatch. So no car topping, no trailer etc. I put my 12' ultimate in my SUV now but the hatch won't close and about 1 foot sticks out past the bumper.


I also tried the hobie revolution 13 with the turbo fins, fast boat, something someone should seriously consider if they want to cover alot of ground. Paddles nice as well, new vantage seat is awesome, but just a tad less stable vs the barges the slayer and outback are.

If I had to buy a kayak right now, I would buy the outback. I couldn't risk that much money on the propel drive and my knee. The outback seat was more comfy for me, the mirage drive motion and simplicity outweighed the propels reverse.

NOW am I buying an outback. Probably not yet. I was not in love with the deck layout, the hull slap etc. I am hoping to find away to spend some more time in a propel. I think I may have gone too hard to early on my first outing and upset my knee. Also my knee and legs are not in the best shape, I have not been on my bike in months, so my knee always hurts when I first start biking in the spring. I may try to ride more and get my knee and legs in better shape and then try out the propel again. The idea of being able to throw that slayer 10 in the back of my car, close the hatchback and know it is safely secured, goto work and then after work go fishing is very appealing.

Anyway, just my thoughts ..

-rob
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#10798001 - 04/26/15 10:53 AM Re: Outback vs Slayer propel - my thoughts after demo [Re: MtnDew]
Carver Offline
Extreme Angler

Registered: 11/14/07
Posts: 1622
Loc: Garland, Tx
Good objective review. Thanks for sharing.
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#10798135 - 04/26/15 12:28 PM Re: Outback vs Slayer propel - my thoughts after demo [Re: MtnDew]
MtnDew Offline
Pro Angler

Registered: 12/14/11
Posts: 926
Loc: Irving, TX
Forgot to mention, that the newer propel and the new seating position on the slayer vs the older mariner is like night and day. No offense to anyone that owns a mariner, but I demod that a bunch and never liked it. The video of native saying how they redid the slayer to make it better aligned for the propel drive appears to be true. So if you demod a propel unit a few years ago, and didn't like it you may want to try it now.

Also, those viking kayaks looked sweet. If I had the cash I could see owning one of those for days I want to paddle.

-later
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#10798210 - 04/26/15 01:28 PM Re: Outback vs Slayer propel - my thoughts after demo [Re: Carver]
Jimbo Offline
TFF Guru

Registered: 01/18/03
Posts: 15799
Loc: South Texas
Originally Posted By: Carver
Good objective review. Thanks for sharing.


This review is more objective for someone with bad knees just to clarify.

I have bad hips and knees also but more from arthritis where exercise can be beneficial.
An injury would be a whole different animal and something that would only improve maybe with surgery or rest.
I try to exercise which helps to keep those joints loose but there will always be some pain.
Someone with the above conditions should be certain before making a choice on one of those pedle drive kayaks.
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#10798266 - 04/26/15 02:16 PM Re: Outback vs Slayer propel - my thoughts after demo [Re: MtnDew]
formula462 Offline
Extreme Angler

Registered: 09/08/13
Posts: 1562
Loc: arlington, tx
If its painful why not just go conventional and use your upper body.Good to have demoed the different types of drive though at least you know what your getting.

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#10798337 - 04/26/15 03:09 PM Re: Outback vs Slayer propel - my thoughts after demo [Re: MtnDew]
MtnDew Offline
Pro Angler

Registered: 12/14/11
Posts: 926
Loc: Irving, TX
I really like the hands free part, painfull would be to strong of a word. I know my body and the soreness/tightness I felt was how my knee feels if I ride my bike in to high of a gear. On my bike I can shift and spin. But It has occured to me that I may not be a canidate for either peddle type yak. I almost never ride my bike for over an hour or so. but I could see myself trolling for hybrids or stripers for way more than an hour. I may just ride and get my knee and legs stronger, paddle my ultimate and if a used slayer or outback comes up this fall / winter then I would risk it. if it didn't work out I could re-sell it back. No rush on myside.

Anyway, my knee issues aside I think the 2 peddle systems are very different and I urge everyone to demo before they buy. We have so many great kayak shops in our area it is just to easy to demo.

-later
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#10799700 - 04/27/15 07:36 AM Re: Outback vs Slayer propel - my thoughts after demo [Re: MtnDew]
RogerB Offline
Extreme Angler

Registered: 05/14/12
Posts: 2625
Loc: McKinney, Tx
Excellent write-up Robert. I think both boats are so close to each other, a person has to do exactly what you did - demo each to see how it personally fits for you. I do think it's time for Hobie to consider a re-designed outback - the new seat is great but the deck and hull has not kept up with a lot of today's offerings. With that said, the Outback is obviously still an excellent boat and strong contender and Native did a great job with the propel. So many good boats on the market today - wish we had these offerings 20 years ago - you guys just now getting into yakking really have some great choices.

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#10800041 - 04/27/15 09:49 AM Re: Outback vs Slayer propel - my thoughts after demo [Re: MtnDew]
yakintime Offline
Pro Angler

Registered: 01/23/12
Posts: 765
Loc: Dallas, TX
We sure enjoyed having you out at the demo and THANK YOU for taking the thought and time to put together such a thoughtful review of your experience!
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#10800160 - 04/27/15 10:29 AM Re: Outback vs Slayer propel - my thoughts after demo [Re: MtnDew]
reelfisherman Offline
Pro Angler

Registered: 05/22/06
Posts: 942
Loc: Fort Worth Texas
I have a knee that needs surgery but I am able to use the mirage drive fairly comfortably. It's a low and mid back issue more than anything. But that issue was there even with the three paddle only drive yaks I owned as well. As to the question posed of why not paddle? Well for me I don't kayak for the sake of kayaking. I like to fish from the conveyance. If I'm in really thin water, have tired legs or knee issues, I have the option of breaking out the paddle. I've also had the misfortune to have been is some difficult wind conditions on the coast and used both drive methods at the same time to travel the distance into it. Having a drive system allows more opportunity for minimal hands needed for drive to maintain position while working a artificial bait. Sort of like having a trolling motor on a bass boat. If you are a paddling enthusiast/purist then a drive system boat may not be for you. However I can use my Hobie on the thin waters of the Brazos below PK with the drive hole plug in to only use the paddle for the scout canoe/kayak race or throw in the Mirage drive and fish for crappie around docks on Eagle Mountain lake with equal ease. The drive capable kayaks are a sizable investment and not always really easily manageable price wise for the entrance level kayaker. But it's good to see they are still working to improve the products and innovating in the industry to bring in more interest.
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#10800796 - 04/27/15 01:35 PM Re: Outback vs Slayer propel - my thoughts after demo [Re: MtnDew]
MtnDew Offline
Pro Angler

Registered: 12/14/11
Posts: 926
Loc: Irving, TX
After re-reading my own post, I wanted to mention, that it was on the propel that my sandle's heel would hit sometimes. To be far these were some big sandles. I don't think it would be an issue in closer fitting water shoes, but something you should try with the type of shoes you would be wearing.

It would be great if Native made different pitched props for the propel, that would make it perfect and let you adjust the gearing to fit your preference.

Hobie : can we get some cooler color choices smile .. I know color isn't that functional, but the hobie colors are a bit boring smile.

-rob
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#10801655 - 04/27/15 06:30 PM Re: Outback vs Slayer propel - my thoughts after demo [Re: MtnDew]
RogerB Offline
Extreme Angler

Registered: 05/14/12
Posts: 2625
Loc: McKinney, Tx
Originally Posted By: MtnDew
After re-reading my own post, I wanted to mention, that it was on the propel that my sandle's heel would hit sometimes. To be far these were some big sandles.

-rob


Most propel owners tend to have small feet.

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#10801745 - 04/27/15 06:56 PM Re: Outback vs Slayer propel - my thoughts after demo [Re: MtnDew]
The Black Hammer Offline
Pro Angler

Registered: 04/11/08
Posts: 928
Loc: Grand Prairie
Yes Roger.. The Black Hammer has small feet.... roflmao roflmao roflmao

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#10801753 - 04/27/15 06:58 PM Re: Outback vs Slayer propel - my thoughts after demo [Re: MtnDew]
RogerB Offline
Extreme Angler

Registered: 05/14/12
Posts: 2625
Loc: McKinney, Tx
Well, everyone BUT the black hammer. I'm sorry.......I meant The Black Hammer....sir. smile

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#10802125 - 04/27/15 08:43 PM Re: Outback vs Slayer propel - my thoughts after demo [Re: MtnDew]
Jerry Hamon Offline
TFF Celebrity

Registered: 12/31/06
Posts: 7340
Loc: Van Alstyne, TX USA
Yes we do! Better to kick back sides with.

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#10802184 - 04/27/15 09:01 PM Re: Outback vs Slayer propel - my thoughts after demo [Re: MtnDew]
Rhino68W Offline
TFF Celebrity

Registered: 11/06/14
Posts: 6481
Loc: Benbrook, TX
Awesome review. I have paddled a PA12 (Thanks HAWK) and a propel (Elliot) and know that it will take a lot more demoing to decide. Luckily I have a couple of years before I get to that point. Reverse seems to be the biggest advantage to me though.
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