OC-1 recommendations for larger paddler

I am looking for recommendations for an OC-1 for Southern California for a larger paddler (6’3”, 210). The emphasis is for speed and good in So Cal bumps.

I read the forum on this topic, posted 2 years ago: (Scorpius XM, The Pueo, or Osprey???) http://www.ocpaddler.com/forum/2009/scorpius_xm_pueo_or_osprey

The general consensus seemed to be, go with the Pueo or the XM.

Do you think this forum is still topical, or have there been developments over the last 2 years that are game changers?


Submitted by So Cal on Thu, 10/20/2011 - 1:06pm

For your size, either the Pueo or XM would meet your needs. Try both if you can, then decide. Good luck.

#1 Thu, 10/20/2011 - 1:20pm

i'm 6' and about 255. I picked up the OC Fusion because of its ability to carry the weight. I have tried a friend's Pueo on calm water in Hawaii Kai and i definitely sit lower in the water. Haven't tried the Pueo in the surf though.

#2 Thu, 10/20/2011 - 1:50pm

I'm similar to you in height and weight so I'm interested in responses as well. I've heard the huki V1-R would be good too. No personal experience paddling one yet though.

#3 Thu, 10/20/2011 - 4:56pm

I'm in the same boat sortof and lucky to have a Zephyr and comfortable and find it well built and fast.

#4 Thu, 10/20/2011 - 6:41pm

come and paddle with us in Long Beach--Mothers Beach on Sundays,
8:15 am
I'm 6'5", 255, and in flat water, and on down wind runs, my XM is perfect.
Also have paddlers on Fusion, Huki, and Kaimana who are as big as you are,
I'm sure that you can measure up the performance of each.

#5 Thu, 10/20/2011 - 7:22pm

Hello all,

I am a larger paddler as well 6' 205lbs and searching for a oc1 as well. However, I see here on the Kai Wa'a's website that the ideal rider for the scorpius xm is 160-190 lbs. Isn't it possible for heavier paddlers to end up cracking their own boats? Why wouldn't they just get the regular scorpius?



#6 Thu, 10/27/2011 - 8:59pm

The Ma'a Afi by pineula va'a is a great oc1 for large paddlers. Great glide and surf. 6' x 250lbs x 33" inseam no problem.
"Big Boys Kick & Glide" "Water Cures All"

#7 Thu, 10/27/2011 - 11:11pm

...the ideal rider for the scorpius xm is 160-190 lbs. Isn't it possible for heavier paddlers to end up cracking their own boats?

It's possible if the canoe was out of the water sitting on two cradles, but when sitting in the water where the weight is distributed fairly evenly across the entire hull, it shouldn't. Most of the more recent canoes being mentioned have higher gunwhales in the seating area so they have a lot more stronger cockpit/center area than some of the older canoes.

Why wouldn't they just get the regular scorpius?

I know several guys in the 220-250 lbs range that have tried, paddled or owned both (regular Scorpius and Scorpius XM) only to find the XM to be a better paddle than the regular Scorpius. I've even found the XM to still be a bit large to paddle and I'm in the ideal weight range (185 lbs).

As others have mentioned, only way to find which canoe is right for your weight and or paddling style is to try as many of them as possible before buying one on blind faith.

#8 Thu, 10/27/2011 - 11:56pm

I'm 6'7 225 and found the XM lacked necessary volume, Scorpius is a better call. Reportedly an XL version is in the works, might be worth waiting for.

#9 Fri, 10/28/2011 - 6:16am

bigjed--where did you find a scorpius to fit your legs, I paddle on an XM because the China-made boats have an extended cockpit, I even have a couple of inches left over, I need 43" from the back of the seat to the footwells, and the scorpius that i demo'd was too short. Did you order it from Kai?

#10 Fri, 10/28/2011 - 11:18am

China made XM .

#11 Fri, 10/28/2011 - 12:45pm

Jdeppe, I tried a boat from Tom Bartlett on Kauai, and both the Scorpius and XM were too short, but I believe they were Hawaii made. Sounds like the China boats have more legroom? Still, the Scorpius volume felt much better in the surf than the XM, which I buried a lot on a fairly windy day. I'm still riding a Fusion, which is great for me downwind.

#12 Fri, 10/28/2011 - 2:13pm

Jdeppe, im interested in the XM... "Ocean Ohana" here in SoCal sell "China" made canoes... i spoke with Kai via email with questions regarding these canoes and he said that the canoes that "O H" sell would fit me very well... im 6`6" and weigh 218 right know... planning on loosing a few pounds more during "winter season" to be better for 9man.
Any input would be well received... being that your an owner and a "clydesdale" also... ;)
Mahalo nui loa

#13 Sat, 10/29/2011 - 6:11pm


For tall guys - important to make sure that your buttock is not sitting too far back on the canoe, the canoes with the footwells adjusted forward are going to help surfing - a lot!

As for the shape of the hull, if you are riding big swells on downwind smoking days (ie Hawaii) then I would go for a max volume you can scorpius or Zephyr or fusion. If it is small swells then the lowest wetted surface area with the longest hull (ie the more slender long hull, long waterline) will do you better (as with any paddler weight actually).

you could always consider the Wainui or Hiko, Maui K made them and he really makes great canoes for his body weight. They are a good compromise I think for bigger guys. Plus he is FAST!

#14 Sat, 10/29/2011 - 6:36pm

Bigjed- try the China XM. MArk Rigg (6'6") and MAtt Debrue won their age goup in very rough conditions on the CHina XM. Watch the video of the KAuai World Challenge (see thread on this forum or go to KauaiHoeWaa.org) and look for the yellow XM in Segment 4. Great video. Fusion is a great canoe for big guys in surf as well. Main thing- if possible try both and see what feels best to you.

#15 Sat, 10/29/2011 - 10:19pm

Will do, thanks paddlefast. Good enough for Riggy is good enough for me! Rigg/paddling trivia question for everyone. At age 55 this year, Mark Rigg was part of Occ's 7th place finish. Is that the highest finish by a non-steersman over 55 in the modern paddling era?

#16 Sun, 10/30/2011 - 12:40pm

I bought my XM from "O H" , and I was able to demo both XM and Scorp. The Scorp. that they had was still way to short for me, But I hear that the new Container of boats will fit. I have had my XM 8 months now, only issue is the cover that comes with the boats, and the seat-- sat too low for my comfort--If I was still on Kauai, I would want the Scorpius, but in Southern California, XM is perfect. Novel Idea about weight classes for the racing series, My only chance at hardware vs. the flyweights. Cheance----how about a heavy-weight div--200+

#17 Sun, 10/30/2011 - 5:59pm

At 6'4" and 300 lbs, the Scorpius floats me great. Lots of volume, and even very dry on a good size Makapuu run. Tried an XM and loved it. Already placed my order for one. I found it to have plenty of volume for a good size Hawaii Kai run day, and a little better at picking up the small stuff. We'll see how she handles the larger Makapuu run days, but I think it will be because of me if she doesn't handle well.

#18 Sun, 10/30/2011 - 8:23pm

To demo & purchase, I see Ocean Ohana listed as a source in Southern California. Are there other retailers/distributors that are good to consider?

#19 Mon, 10/31/2011 - 10:56am

Bret-san, was that XM from China?

#20 Mon, 10/31/2011 - 1:16pm

No, it was MP's Kai made XM. We switched back and forth on a Sunset to Haleiwa Run.
The nose on the XM did want to aim up a bit more for sure, but I was faster on it. More comfortable also. It sits lower to the water by about 1.5 inches. When I got back on my Scorpius, all I wanted to do was get back on the XM, and I am extremely comfortable on my Scorpius. I just liked the way the XM was lower to the water. Very nice.
Not sure if the XM will be big enough for a big Makapuu run now, but I'm hoping once I'm down to 230 or so, it should be fine. We'll see. :-)

#21 Mon, 10/31/2011 - 1:53pm

Yeah, a BIG BOY thread. I go 6' 3", about 255 lbs. (give or take....more give than take...) and love my Scorpius. BretC, my man.....6' 4", 300 lbs., boo-yah, you the man. You tried the XM and it carried you. Damn, I have 40+ lbs. to spare. Need to give the XM a go. I like the Scorp, but get killed in the small stuff. However, when its nuking, look out, that Scorp carries and flies!

Reading the thread above and wanted to share a video I made a few years back. The video starts out with Tyson "Big Boy" Kubo killing it on a Hurricane. I believe at the time Tyson weighed in at about 225 lbs. He just destroyed that Hurricane....watch him pull that boat over and through all the bumps. BTW, he won the Maui to Molokai that year. The link is below, but if you cannot link to it, go to youtube, Maui to Molokai 2008. One more BTW...Tyson paddles a Scorp now.


#22 Mon, 10/31/2011 - 3:30pm

The XM will handle anything your leash can handle. Ive surfed overhead waves and eaten it so hard that my leash broke and the canoe was completely undamaged. But on a normal downwind run its as good as a scorpius but a bit easier to get into the bumps.

#23 Mon, 10/31/2011 - 4:58pm

If anyone is interested... i have been emailing Jill and Jeanne from "Ocean Ohana" and have lots of dialogue with both... i am a "Clydesdale" paddler... 6`5" and around 218... anyway, they have said that they have put "a good amount" of guys over 220 on the Scorpius XM... and that they are expecting a container before the holidays with Scorpius and Scorpius XM... even the Scorpius is coming with extended footwells this time and there is only a pound or two difference between Carbon and Glass boats...


#24 Sun, 11/06/2011 - 9:58am

Kaolele has adjustable foot pedals so the tall guys can center their weight. Too many tall paddlers settle for a crunched, bent knee OC-1 style so their weight is not too far behind center. The Kaolele is the only OC-1 canoe that can allow the extreme length paddler to sit in the correct balance point of the canoe. You wouldn't paddle your surfboard even an inch behind the sweet spot right? And like all surfskis, which have the seat fixed in one place. Not to mention the Kaolele has ample volume for the 200 + lb. class, surfs unreal and is comparable in the flat to the other like kind canoes. Finally have the product polished and production in place. Will have stock in Hawaii by mid December. see www.paddlesportsinternational.com.

#25 Sun, 11/06/2011 - 10:58pm

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