Sabalo 15 or Wadefish 2?

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Floridave
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Joined: Sun Jul 28, 2013 10:37 am
Type of boat I like: Sabalo wahoo or bluefin

Sabalo 15 or Wadefish 2?

Post by Floridave » Sun Aug 04, 2013 9:24 am

After much research, I've narrowed my choice for new fishing kayak to these two. Any thoughts or advice from those with experience would be greatly appreciated. I have kayak fished for years out of an old sit in fiberglass yak, but it's time to replace it. I have built a stitch&glue West River 180, just finishing it as a matter of fact.

Some notes about how I'll use the fishing kayak.
I plan to build using the SS&G method. First time using strips.
I am going to try to NOT install or use a rudder, just for simplicity, but will add one if I decide I need it.
I tend to try to minimize equipment to what I actually need, rather than hang every accessory made on my kayak.
Will be fished mostly in saltwater, Florida flats, but I want to do more fishing out in the Atlantic, so prefer to compromise the boat toward handling ocean conditions over the perfect flats boat.
I am 5'10", 190lbs.
Will be car topped to water.

My observations on the two kayaks...
Seems the Sabalo has the bigger following and I've seen more picks of it fully geared for fishing.
I like the flat foredeck and verticle front cockpit wall on the sabalo.
I have to wonder how much better the Wadefish paddles, especially with no rudder. I will paddle miles to get to some spots.
I see several picks with people sitting sideways on Sabalo, not Wadefish.
But I see mentioned that Wadefish is considered more 'seaworthy' and a later generation boat.

Based on what I'm looking for above, which do you guys think would make the better build for me?

Thanks!
Dave H

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jem
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Re: Sabalo 15 or Wadefish 2?

Post by jem » Sun Aug 04, 2013 7:29 pm

Wadefish will do better in shallow water and will be easier to get in and out of. Sabalo is popular because it tracks hard and is a little shorter build.

I don't think you could go wrong with either. But if you do plan on fishing the flats and jumping in and out occasionally, get the wadefish.
-Matt. Designer.

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PiratePete
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Type of boat I like: Wadefish + Mirarge Drive.
Location: Tassie, Australia

Re: Sabalo 15 or Wadefish 2?

Post by PiratePete » Sun Aug 04, 2013 8:13 pm

I can sit sideways on my Wadefish without any problems & can even turn around in the boat..

I also have stood up & poled the boat with the paddle in extremely shallow water so I could see the shallows & the fish in the water.

I mainly fish in salt water in the local estuary & haven't had it in too much rough water but I know I can take the local swell side on with out to much trouble. Plus the local inter state ferry puts up a 1.5m wake & she handles that well.

Floridave
Posts: 5
Joined: Sun Jul 28, 2013 10:37 am
Type of boat I like: Sabalo wahoo or bluefin

Re: Sabalo 15 or Wadefish 2?

Post by Floridave » Sun Aug 04, 2013 9:36 pm

Thanks for the replies guys. I'm not concerned about a wet ride in our mostly warm Florida waters, but which is better for offshore?

Matt, what would the impact be if the Wadefish were built with a flat front deck like the Sabalo has, rather than the peaked deck?

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jem
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Re: Sabalo 15 or Wadefish 2?

Post by jem » Sun Aug 04, 2013 10:10 pm

Less storage under the deck and less wind cross section.
-Matt. Designer.

BigMal
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Joined: Tue Aug 28, 2012 9:36 pm
Type of boat I like: Wadefish 15-32
Location: Taranaki, New Zealand

Re: Sabalo 15 or Wadefish 2?

Post by BigMal » Mon Aug 05, 2013 3:06 am

I have built the Wadefish 15-32 and use it soley for fishing offshore ... and I love it; with a few relatively minor modifications (i.e, storage, rod holders etc) it is perfect for the job. It handles swell & chop with ease.
Sorry but I have not seen or paddled the Sabalo in real life so cannot provide a comparison.
My usual paddle is around 2km of the beach and it does this comfortably.

I chose the 32" wide model because I needed the load capacity (I'm larger than the average bear :D ) but I reckon the narrower Wadefish 2 would be perfect for offshore fishing. My first vessel was a Cobra Fish 'n' Dive and I rate the stability of my Wadefish as almost equal, and it is much easier to paddle.

As for the front deck; I sually launch from surf beaches and the peaked deck helps the water wash off the side rather than into the cockpit, but from a build perspective definately made it harder to get a hatch to seal nicely. (I think I have it nailed the third time around ... results yet to be published).
It should be simple to change the wadefish foredeck to be flat if that is what you prefer.

From my experience I would recommend a rudder but coming from a sit-in background you are likely a much better paddler than I am, and may do just fine without.

Good luck with the decision but from what I have seen I don't think you will be too disappointed with either.
"Life is measured in achievement, not in years alone" Bruce McLaren

Floridave
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Joined: Sun Jul 28, 2013 10:37 am
Type of boat I like: Sabalo wahoo or bluefin

Re: Sabalo 15 or Wadefish 2?

Post by Floridave » Mon Aug 05, 2013 9:43 am

BigMal,
Would love to see how you handled the front hatch with the peaked deck, and actually would love to see the other mods you mention.
One reason I like the flat deck is just for that reason of easier to manage access, but I see your point on water entry in rough seas.

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jem
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Re: Sabalo 15 or Wadefish 2?

Post by jem » Mon Aug 05, 2013 9:49 am

The Wadefish was designed to have a hatch on the forward wall of the cockpit (the angled forward wall by your feet).
-Matt. Designer.

Floridave
Posts: 5
Joined: Sun Jul 28, 2013 10:37 am
Type of boat I like: Sabalo wahoo or bluefin

Re: Sabalo 15 or Wadefish 2?

Post by Floridave » Mon Aug 05, 2013 11:13 am

jem wrote:The Wadefish was designed to have a hatch on the forward wall of the cockpit (the angled forward wall by your feet).
Feel kind of silly that I didn't realize that!

Floridave
Posts: 5
Joined: Sun Jul 28, 2013 10:37 am
Type of boat I like: Sabalo wahoo or bluefin

Re: Sabalo 15 or Wadefish 2?

Post by Floridave » Mon Aug 05, 2013 11:39 am

Staring at pictures and reading build logs has taken me about as far as it's going to take me. I went ahead and pulled the trigger on the Wadefish plans. Now I have to go clean out my garage for a workspace!

Dave H

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