Expedition vs Airfusion Elite

AE1009-R Ultralite(2006)
AE1009-Y Advanced Frame Expedition(2007-Present)

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Expedition vs Airfusion Elite

Post by Salas » Mon Jul 06, 2015 12:24 pm

Hi there,

I am new in this forum, although I've owned an advanced frame convertible for quite a while. I like the versatility that this kayak offers me, but now I'm thinking about buying something lighter for myself, as I think 52 lbs is a bit too much to paddle solo in rough conditions.

So, the question comes: Expedition with backbone or Airfusion Elite?
Where I live we get wind quite often and it seems that the expedition has more volume outside the waterline, therefore making it harder to paddle in windy conditions, I guess. Besides, from what I gathered reading the forum, almost everybody agrees that the Airfusion is quite faster than any other AE kayak. There is also the weight issue. The Airfusion is just 32 lbs, so that's another point to the Airfusion.

On the other hand, people also say that the Airfusion is tippier, more unstable and has less room for gear and supplies, and that the Expedition is a very reliable and safe kayak.

I would use the kayak for sea kayaking mostly, exploring the coast and maybe snorkeling a bit, and I would like to be able to cover, at least, 12-15 miles in a paddling session without getting too sore. I'm not a very experienced paddler but I'm in a good physical condition. I'm 6,1 and I weigh 175 lbs.

So, which one should I buy?

Thanks in advance!

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Post by JCOOLEY » Mon Jul 06, 2015 12:33 pm

Advancedframe Expedition w/backbone

You'll have better control for coastal paddling and you really don't get pushed around by wind anymore than you do in the AirFusion.

Plus you have more storage for any gear for snorkeling.

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Post by PJohanson » Mon Jul 06, 2015 9:54 pm

I agree -- choose the Expedition.
I have paddled mine more than 15 miles a day on kayak camping trips. Plenty of room for gear inside, and the kayak's carry bag gets rolled up/pressed flat and bungee-d to the back deck.
People who find the Convertible rather heavy to lift and carry might find the Expedition much more convenient.

You'll want to look at the ambassador Lee's posts about using his Expedition in windy conditions, as he's closer to your size than short & stocky me. For me, I can feel the Expedition does catch a cross-wind a little more than my Necky Eliza sea kayak with a low back deck. But it is stable!

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