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Tue, Sep 27, 2016
KC Kayaks "K12"

KC Kayaks "K12" Hot

 
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KC Kayaks K12

Kayak Make & Model

Brand:
KC Kayaks
Model:
K12
MSRP ($):
1,399.00
Length (ft):
12

The KC Kayaks “K12” is a unique and stable platform for sight kayak fishing. Though it was designed for the flats, this kayak is very versatile and will be a good fit in many different fishing conditions. The hull design on the K12 makes this boat great for standing and fishing. Kayak anglers have the option to sit in a low-seat position, high-seat position, or even standing from the one-of-a-kind platform. The wide-open deck and large tank wells offer lots of room for fishing and all your fishing gear.

Features:

  • Casting platform
  • Large tank wells
  • High-Low position seat
  • 2 flush mounted rod holder
  • Drain plug

Specs:

  • Width: 34"
  • Weight: 60 lbs
  • Capacity: 450 lbs

 

Photos

Editor review

(Updated: July 04, 2013)
Overall rating 
 
3.4
Speed 
 
2.0
Stability 
 
5.0
Durability 
 
3.0
Features 
 
4.0
Value 
 
3.0

One of my top three kayaks to fish from!

In February 2012 I was contacted by Corey of Kajun Custom Kayaks (KC Kayaks) to see if I would be interested in trading a K12 for a few months of advertising space. I knew that they were fairly new to the industry, so I didn’t mind helping share their new product. I always love trying out new boats!

After talking to Corey, I decided to do a bit of research on the K12. I learned that it is the product of a design done by the legendary Tim Niemier and his company “On the Water Designs”. For those of you who aren’t familiar, Tim is credited with introducing the Sit-on-Top (SOT) design many of us fish from today. Tim was the original creator of Ocean Kayak (which he later sold to Johnson Outdoors) then went on to create his own design company “On the Water Designs”. They have designed other such popular kayaks, including the original “NuCanoe” and the “Diablo”.

The K12 has a unique catamaran style hull design with a nice large, flat deck. This kayak is made using a process called thermoforming instead of rotomolding, which is what gives it the shiny, glossy look. There are large tank wells in the bow and stern of the boat, which are great for storing both a cooler and my tackle crate. Every K12 comes standard with a track system, flush-mount rod holders, and a dry storage hatch.

The seat can be in either a “low-seated” position, or flipped over and used in a “high-seated” position. While in the “high-seated” position, you can step up onto the seat and use it as a poling or sight-casting platform. This is a cool feature when you are fishing shallows or flats. I used this feature while fishing the 2012 President’s Day Boondoggle in Chokoloskee, FL.

The seat is mounted to a track system that runs almost the length of the boat. Having the seat mounted to the track system is nice because it allows you move the seat forward or aft to better distribute weight. You can also add a second seat to paddle tandem. To be honest, since I fish mostly freshwater here in Kentucky I swapped the seat out for a swivel seat I borrowed from my NuCanoe and I mounted to a piece of starboard to attach to the track system. This has become my-go to seat option when fishing the K12 or the NuCanoe.

Paddling
I found paddling this boat quite easy, but you are certainly not going to win any races. While paddling the boat around in Chokoloskee I did notice a lot of hull slap, which I have not noticed much of since I have fished it here in Kentucky. Perhaps that was just due to the wind and choppy water that we faced down there. The sides of the boat seem relatively high in relationship to the deck, which causes it to catch wind and affectionately earned it the nickname “The Bathtub” at the Boondoggle. I do recommend investing in a longer paddle; I typically paddle this kayak using a 260 – 270cm paddle.

Fishability
Fishing out of this boat is awesome. I absolutely love the large, flat deck that allows me to walk around. The hull design lets me easily stand and fish, stand sideways and fish, use the standing platform if necessary, and literally walk from bow to stern to grab either a cold beverage from the cooler (stored in the bow tank well) or tackle (stored in the stern tankwell).

My two cents
This boat is up there in my top three or four kayaks to fish from. I enjoy fishing from this boat so much that I am willing to deal with the lesser speed of paddling. Weighing in at 60lbs, I like that it is lighter than some of the other boats in my top favorites. One concern that I do often have is that I’m going to break or crack the plastic. It may just be a mental block, but I just don’t trust in a thermoformed kayak the same way that I do a rotomolded model. If I only fished the grass flats, I probably wouldn’t think much about it. Since I often fish small creeks and rivers, it’s at the front of mind a lot.

So with it being one of my top three or four kayaks, I would have to say that I recommend it. I would certainly recommend adding it to your list of kayaks to demo.

Pros & Cons

Pros:
Tell us what you think the pros of this kayak are.
Cons:
Tell us what the cons of this kayak are.
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User reviews

3 reviews

Overall rating 
 
3.3
Speed 
 
3.3  (3)
Stability 
 
4.7  (3)
Durability 
 
3.0  (3)
Features 
 
2.7  (3)
Value 
 
3.0  (3)
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Ratings (the higher the better)
Speed
Stability
Durability
Features
Value
User Info
Pros & Cons
Comments
Overall rating 
 
3.2
Speed 
 
3.0
Stability 
 
5.0
Durability 
 
3.0
Features 
 
2.0
Value 
 
3.0

Shallow Water Kayak

KC (Kajun Customs) Kayaks is a kayak company comprised of four graduates of Louisiana State University. It's no surprise that their K12 design is thought of with the saltwater and skinny water fisherman in mind. Recently I spent a few days in one, a bit out of its element in a deep freshwater lake. At the same time I tested out two new offerings from KC, the white bass boat style seat and the metal support frame that goes with it.

The Good


This is a skinny water kayak. As soon as I pushed off from the ramp I could feel the glide. I wanted to try to turn and with one paddle stroke the kayak spun about 135 degrees. It was impressive. Paddling was an easy task as well. At 12 feet, the K12 tracks pretty well. It has minimal nose walk. Sitting up high in the upgraded seat you will want a longer paddle (probably 260 for most folks) and it will also help when standing and paddling.

Speaking of standing, the KC is pretty darn stable. At 34" wide with a lot of surface area on the hull, the K12 is one of the easier kayaks to stand in that I've tested. Having a higher seat makes that task even easier.

The other place where the K12 will shine is with fly fishermen. The deck layout is very clean and free of clutter. The additional non slip foam in the floor also helps you keep that stance while whipping a fly.


The Needs Improvement


It's no secret that I like under deck storage and this kayak has almost none. One hatch toward the bow gives you some access but not enough to store camping gear below deck. It does have large tank wells above deck where you could lash things down. A curious thing about that, though there are eyelets mounted throughout the kayak, there is no bungee included.

While the K12 is stable, it is also tall. Tall in the water and the ease with which it glides also causes it to be windblown. You will want an anchor trolley (if not two) if you plan to hold your position in any kind of wind.

Probably the most frustrating thing on the K12 was the included tracks. The seat is anchored to these tracks. Unfortunately the upgrade seat that mounts to the metal frame and then slides into the included track doesn't fit. The frame uses t-bolts and they wouldn't fit in the included track. I also tried my RAM rod holders which use t-blots and then my small screw ball mounts. None of them fit. The track was too small. I had to use some southern ingenuity to get the seat to mount and it didn't feel as stable as it should. If you are going to offer track, it has to work for multiple items.

Final Thoughts


For the fly fisherman, the flats stalkers and the river runners, this is a pretty good kayak for you. If you are going to be on lakes, you'll want to look into the trolling motor mount or go a different direction. Stability is pretty good so if you want to stand and fish, this could be a great option for you. It's not versatile enough for my uses but has a definite market out there.

Pros & Cons

Pros:
lightweight, easy to maneuver
Cons:
windblown, track needs work
Was this review helpful to you? 
Overall rating 
 
4.8
Speed 
 
5.0
Stability 
 
5.0
Durability 
 
5.0
Features 
 
4.0
Value 
 
5.0

KC Kayaks K12...a Great Fishing Platform

The Kayak Fishing ClassicS recently added KC Kayaks to our list of fantastic sponsors. We do not do so lightly as every sponsor product we recommend must met a tough set of standards in quality, durability, function and of course price. We received our K12 kayak model from KC Kayaks and began our tests and this is what we found.
I helped the FedEx delivery driver unload the K12 and immediately unpacked it. What I saw was even nicer than in the photographs. I inspected the workmanship throughout the kayak and it was startlingly perfect, no easy task in a thermal molded boat. I had requested an all white K12 for our purposes which are twofold; we wish to wrap the boat in the future and all white hull seems a natural for this however, more importantly is that the color of high gloss white will show every flaw in the forming of the material. Well long story short, perfection is a beautiful thing.
At first look at the functioning hardware of the craft, there is a certain Spartan appearance to the K12 that is minimalistic yet refreshing. Upon inspection of the fastening hardware; all were very secure and well sealed. The T channel on the gunwale, port and starboard is made from a super strong and lightweight polycarbonate material. They run the length of the cockpit and are used to secure the seat.
The seat is molded with 4 beverage holders and glides easily in the tracks and is secured firmly in place with large knobs for ease of use. The seat may also be flipped over and secured in same fashion to be used as an elevated fishing platform or for scouting fish. That’s a great idea and is very effective however if you wish to sit in a more standardized fishing chair, KC Kayaks offers a swivel chair that secures into the glides as well. If you go that way you may use the stock seat as a companion seat or you may wish to flip it and use as your scouting/fishing platform.
Speaking of standing in your kayak, the K12 is very stable. I don’t mean it’s just ok to stand up; I mean you can walk around in it without all the tipping commonly involved or associated with standing in a kayak. As a bases of a standup fishing platform, the K12 is as solid as it gets and that’s considerable.
The 12’ boat maneuvers on a dime but has more room than most 14’s do. The aft cargo area is huge and you can stand back there and fish if you like just to give you an idea of its usable size. If you are going camping you will certainly have more room for gear than 1 or 2 people would need just in the aft.
The bow cargo area is also quite large. With all of your gear stowed away in the aft cargo area, the bow area is perfect for stripping fly lines so need for a line basket with this kayak. The scuppers are deep welled so the water that comes in while moving about the K12 is largely retained there until discharged. This keeps the deck nice and clean as well as dry or you can simply put in plugs if you like.
The K12 is perfect for those who like to use electric trolling motors. KC Kayaks has a very well made mount that easily removes with the pull of a spring loaded pin. Our K12 came with this feature so we plan to put it to use. Electric trolling motors are very nice for pre-tournament scouting and fishing as it saves our anglers a great deal of valuable time. There is a molded area in the aft cargo to place your battery and still have plenty of room for your gear…nice.
With all of this being said it raises the question; so how does she swim? Well let’s talk about that. We took a long hard look at the hull of the K12 and wondered how well she swims and how quite she would be in a choppy environed. I put my engineering background to work here and looked at the hull from every angle. I turned the boat over onto foam blocks for a closer inspection. I pulled some measurements and calculated those against the average paddle stroke length of a kayaker to gather hydro flow rates at slack tide. Hmmm, interesting. I then figured the surface flow rate of the water over the hull while paddling. Another hmmm please. I figured in the displacement factor of the K12 which is surprisingly minimal and the hull configuration and concluded that I must try this out on the water. I couldn’t stand the excitement. I had concluded that the K12 would have to be a dream to paddle if my figures were correct.
I loaded the K12 with my fishing gear, small cooler, a couple of rods and launched at dockside. I pulled once with my paddle and was shocked! I took a few more strokes and just could not believe it. Are you kidding me? Now granted, I waxed the hull before use as I always do but this was just ridicules. I know that a 12’ kayak is easier to paddle than say a 14’ kayak but this was crazy slick. She had the glide rate of a 14 but paddled with very little effort. Nice! She tracked straight as an arrow and really was a joy to be in. By the way the K12 weighs in at only 63 lbs with a 12’ length and 34” beam.
She is very quite in the water and poles like a cloud. Standup paddling is also very easy and quiet and doing so with the seat reversed is easy and stable. The K12 is really an amazing kayak and is perfect for the beginner or experienced kayak angler alike. We are very impressed and know you will be too.
So how was the fishing? Well let’s just say she won’t catch the fish for you but you can sneak up on them with ease… With this said I would like to welcome KC Kayaks to the Kayak Fishing ClassicS and let you know that we will be awarding 2 of the K12 kayaks in our National Championship Classic. Please visit KC Kayaks at www.KCKayaks.com for more information and a location list of dealers and take a look at their forum while you are there. Thanks for reading and see you on the water.

Pros & Cons

Pros:
Stealth, smooth paddling, quiet, solid-stable
Cons:
Some may want a high back seat
Was this review helpful to you? 
Overall rating 
 
2.0
Speed 
 
2.0
Stability 
 
4.0
Durability 
 
1.0
Features 
 
2.0
Value 
 
1.0

Won't be picking this up

My buddy recently bought a KC kayak and I was excited to try it out, it looked pretty cool on the website...

First this kayak is way to expensive for what you are getting. I'm not sure how much they cost to to make but $1,399 just seems ridiculous. I weigh 195lbs and when I got into the kayak the deck started flexing and felt very soft.

The space on the kayak is great there is plenty of room to move around and store your gear.

The seat is just a hard plastic bucket that you can either flip one way to be in a raised position and flip the opposite way to sit sunken down into it. I've sat in other seats before and this is not even in my top 10.

The overall durability of the kayak I also question. Although it is very light and easy to manage I don't think it would survive being dropped or being dragged across some oyster bars.

Paddling this thing is like a barge, it is also so high up in the sides if it is at all windy the kayak acts like a sail.

Positives: light, easy to move around in while fishing, great high perch if you have the seat in the high position especially if you are standing on the seat, tons of room to store stuff would be great for hauling your camping gear if it didn't' suck so bad to paddle.

Cons: durability I'm not sure how long this kayak would last, high sides make wind a real pain, paddles like a barge, unconformable seat, expensive for what you are getting.

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