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Thread: Maiden Voyage for New Revo 13

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Apr 2013
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    Default Maiden Voyage for New Revo 13

    Today was my first outing with my new 2018 Revo 13. John Rentch and I launched at Jonas Green at 0730 this morning. Actually, the parking lot looked like a Snaggedline Meet & Greet. Over half the spaces were taken by vehicles with kayak racks when I arrived near sunup. Word must be out that stripers are in the Severn.

    For those interested, Iíll share my initial impressions of the new boat.

    Here it is at its initial splash down:

    P1030160.jpg

    Bear in mind that I pedaled a 2012 Revo 13 for the better part of 5 seasons. I am therefore very familiar with the Revoís speed and stability in choppy water. Iím glad to say that nothing has changed with regard to those key characteristics.

    But there have been notable improvements. Foremost is the seat. While I was never one to complain about the comfort of the old-style seat that hugged the floor, I did not like the fact that water often accumulated in the seat basin producing a wet ride. That issue has been solved with the new Vantage seat which sits above the floor. In fact, that was the first noticeable difference when I entered the Revo. Even though I had the seat on its lowest setting, I sat higher in the boat -- but not where my stability felt compromised. At this point I see no need to raise the seat and I likely will keep the chair bottom on its lowest setting.

    In addition to multiple settings for height, the seat has adjustments for the angle of the chairback and lumbar support. Each setting can easily be accomplished while you are seated in the boat. Itís a simple matter to find the appropriate settings for a comfortable ride. And a comfortable ride it was. I felt no fatigue in a session that lasted almost 3.5 hours.

    A change that I did not expect is that I have more leg room in the new Revo. I can only guess that the Vantage seat is positioned slightly farther back in the new Revo. That certainly eases the pedaling function by allowing me to fully extend my legs. I could not do that before. And that brings me to the Mirage Drive.

    Today was the first time I pedaled Hobieís Glide Technology. Indeed, it is smooth. It has a softer feel than my old Mirage Drive which had ST fins just like my new one. Also, I believe my new drive requires less effort than my old drive. I covered a lot of water today between the two bridges and beyond on the Severn. (In fact, mid-way through our outing, I went all the way back to the launch from the Route 50 Bridge for a pit stop. You cannot buy coffee, only rent it!) On my final trip back to the launch, I pedaled into a growing wind and choppy water from well past the Route 50 Bridge all the way to the beach. That posed no problem and it was as easy as strolling down a sidewalk.

    P1030169.jpg

    Another nice feature is that the Mirage Drive is the 180 version with reverse. I used that only minimally today when I was casting poppers near docks. The current would drive me toward the dock. But with a simple pull of the shift mechanism, I easily backed away. Today I mostly trolled so I had little reason to back up. But I can see the utility of the 180 when I target cast and I look forward to using it more.

    A couple of other changes on the new boat worthy of mention are the rubberized pocket nets on the gunnel storage compartments. They expand more than the older vinyl nets and presumably will reject wayward hooks. There is a spring-loaded scupper under the seat to release water that comes over the side. The rudder control is more recessed on the left gunnel and less obtrusive. That will be really nice when I fly cast. My fly line would occasionally hang up on the rudder control on my old boat. Also, this Revo is Lowrance ready with a plate on the bottom of the hull to insert the transducer and it has pre-drilled plugs for quick wiring. The irony of that is that I am not putting electronics on it. I had a Lowrance HDI-5 on my last Revo but I never fully mastered nor appreciated its functions. Frankly, I prefer fishing without electronics. For me the screen was a distraction.

    Lastly, if the first fish in a new kayak is precursor of good things to come, I think Iím going to enjoy this boat. I caught and released this guy trolling a 1/2 oz. Rat-L-Trap on the east side of the river near the oyster bar just south of the Route 50 Bridge:

    P1030165.jpg

    Iíd like to tell you there were many more like him today but there werenít. It was actually a tough bite. I hope the others who were there today did better. I caught only two other stripers, both on an X-Rap. They were undersized.

    But my appreciation of the new Revo is not undersized. The improvements from my 2012 model are striking but the excellent handling characteristics and seaworthiness of the original Revo 13 remain. Iím very pleased with my new ride.
    Mark

    Slate Hobie Revolution 13
    Hidden Oak Native Ultimate 12

    Author: The Simple Joys of Kayak Fishing (Tips and Tales From an Old Guy in His Plastic Boat)
    Available on Amazon.com

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Mar 2015
    Location
    Clinton,Md
    Posts
    350

    Default

    Nice new ride Mark!! I like that color. That's a great way to get Pepe' Le Pew off her and get the fishing Mojo going

    Yak67
    2017 Hobie PA-12 Camo
    2016 Hobie Outback LE#217

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jul 2016
    Location
    Baltimore-Annapolis
    Posts
    383

    Default

    I also think that may be the best new color in the Hobie lineup
    First Lady: Hobie Ivory Sand Dune Hobie ProAngler 14 Lowrance Elite 7 ti TotalScan

    Backup Babe (Girlfriends Ride): Carribean Blue Hobie Outback Lowrance Elite 5 HDI w/ Pumpkin Spice Latte holder

    Learning the Ropes & Living the Dream

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Apr 2013
    Location
    Pasadena, MD
    Posts
    2,855

    Default

    Thanks guys.

    Gary -- Your positive comments to my PM queries about the 180 drive was one factor in my decision buy another Revo.

    Michael -- My intention was to buy an Ivory Dune. But when I saw the slate blue in person, I was impressed with that color.

    However, my primary reason for the post to let those with older Hobies know that the seating and drive improvements in particular are very nice and if they're contemplating a new boat, I think they'll be pleased with the upgrades.
    Mark

    Slate Hobie Revolution 13
    Hidden Oak Native Ultimate 12

    Author: The Simple Joys of Kayak Fishing (Tips and Tales From an Old Guy in His Plastic Boat)
    Available on Amazon.com

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Mar 2011
    Posts
    200

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    thanks for the review Mark!

    I like the new color...
    2015 Hobie Revolution 11

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Feb 2016
    Location
    Hampstead, MD
    Posts
    676

    Default

    That was a very concise review, and I appreciate it. I know I've been saying it for a while, but I really think either this winter or spring I'm going to buy a hobie. I just don't know whether it'll be an outback or revo. I like the extra space that the outback has (and the square hatch option), but the lightness/quickness of the revo is really appealing. I bet it's much easier to paddle than an outback too, because I know I will often find myself paddling for a change of pace. I do enjoy paddling, but having my hands free while covering ground is just too good to pass up, and I feel like there are so many more things you can do with a pedal boat than with a paddle one.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Apr 2013
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    Pasadena, MD
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    yakscientist,

    The difference in interior space between the Revo and Outback is significant. I spent considerable time pedaling my friend's Outback last year and I felt surrounded by plastic on a very stable platform. But there is no doubt in my mind that the Revo glides better through choppy water, turns easier and requires less exertion to pedal. Further, it is surprisingly stable for a narrow boat. I never came close to rolling my old one and I've been in some heavy water. Cross my fingers, I hope I can say the same after using my new one for a length of time. As I mentioned in the review, I will not place the seat in the high position to minimize that possibility.

    Also, I never stand while kayak fishing and the Outback allows that. To stand (for long) in a Revo would require you to have the balance of the Flying Wallendas. As to the space issue, I carry less and less tackle the more I fish in my kayaks. Deck space is limited in a Revo so I use a Blackpak for storage. But frankly, even that is too large for what I carry on outings now. My Blackpak doubles as a rod holder and that is its primary value to me, not tackle storage.

    So I think both boat models are excellent fishing kayaks. The difference in cost between the two is negligible. That was not a factor in my decision. The difference in weight is about 10 pounds in favor of the Revo. That was a factor for me. Also, the Revo's narrower beam makes it easier for me to grasp and car-top than if I was trying to lift an Outback. In fact, I looked closely at the new Compass and its width was a deterrent for me because I knew it would be hard for me to lift even though it is lighter by a pound or so than the Revo. So those reasons and my good experiences with my old Revo are the main reasons I chose a new one.

    There are plenty of Outback vs. Revo videos on-line. Many were produced in Australia and they compare the seaworthiness of the two. No doubt the owners of each model think theirs is the best and if you get a pedal boat, regardless of the model you will feel the same after you get comfortable in its use.

    Good luck in your decision when the time comes. The good news is that it's damned near impossible to make a bad decision in this choice.
    Mark

    Slate Hobie Revolution 13
    Hidden Oak Native Ultimate 12

    Author: The Simple Joys of Kayak Fishing (Tips and Tales From an Old Guy in His Plastic Boat)
    Available on Amazon.com

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Jun 2016
    Posts
    23

    Default

    Mark:

    I loved your comment above: "Also, I never stand while kayak fishing and the Outback allows that. To stand (for long) in a Revo would require you to have the balance of the Flying Wallendas.!! Funnnnnnnnny! and True! Standing in my 2014 Revo makes me feel like I'm a lumberjack in a log rolling contest in a lake, or a cowboy in a bull ridding contest! Won't be long before I would be "swimming with the fishes"!!

    Your new Revo sounds great! Enjoy.

    Gary
    Gary G

    13' Hobie Revolution

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Apr 2013
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    Pasadena, MD
    Posts
    2,855

    Default

    Gary,

    Indeed, we both know that Revos provide a great ride and plenty of fish over the gunnels. No need to tempt fate by standing when you can catch stripers like this one flinging topwater while comfortably and safely seated:

    P1010981.jpg

    Congrats again the nice catch.
    Mark

    Slate Hobie Revolution 13
    Hidden Oak Native Ultimate 12

    Author: The Simple Joys of Kayak Fishing (Tips and Tales From an Old Guy in His Plastic Boat)
    Available on Amazon.com

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