Viper (Frachella) C1 vs. River Elf

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Viper (Frachella) C1 vs. River Elf

Post by Gallandt » Sun Oct 01, 2017 2:25 am

Anyone paddled both that can offer a comparison?

A friend loaned me a Viper and I'm slowly getting used to not feeling my feet, and I guess getting fond of the boat.

Has me thinking that I may need to branch out from OC1 to C1.

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Re: Viper (Frachella) C1 vs. River Elf

Post by wildwaterc2 » Sun Oct 01, 2017 4:33 pm

They are both C1s but are basically different in every other way, and I have one of each.

Viper is slalom-ish - fast and carves compared to a River Elf, which is shorter, slower, and more forgiving.

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Re: Viper (Frachella) C1 vs. River Elf

Post by Sir Adam » Sun Oct 01, 2017 11:27 pm

Likewise I have one of each - both great boats for what they are, but both very different.

A full volume Viper is a great cruiser; cut it down and it stern squirts (or stern pivots) very well, and very controllably.

The Viper is arguably a better front surfer, the Storm Chaser a better side surfer.

For creek-ish runs and bringing more gear, Storm Chaser is the way to go.

For surfing, cruising, and perhaps a bit of playing in eddy lines, Viper.

Another plus for the Storm Chaser is it is lighter....

Where are you located Gallandt? There are a few of us out there that have both I believe, and if you are near upstate NY (Lake George / Saratoga Springs area) you are welcome to try mine out on the Hudson here in front of our house (flatwater, but very convenient!)
Keep the C!

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Re: Viper (Frachella) C1 vs. River Elf

Post by Gallandt » Mon Oct 02, 2017 1:43 am

Thanks for the comments and comparisons. I probably should have guessed that I would ultimately need (want) one of each!

I suspect that the boat I'm using must be full cut as I'm 210 lbs. and it is floating me pretty well; just a bit of water over the stern.

I'll check in with you in the spring Adam, perhaps when I'm in NY for the Clinton, or sooner if I have an excuse to travel south. I'm in Maine.

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Re: Viper (Frachella) C1 vs. River Elf

Post by Mike W. » Mon Oct 02, 2017 2:17 am

I have a couple of Vipers. I once did a lunch break in a River Elf. The Viper is my go to big water boat. It's fast, forgiving, surfs well in the river and ocean and gives nice, smooth stern squirts.

The River Elf is faster than it looks, very light and very responsive. It surfs short, steep waves much better than i expected.

For Gauley type water, where I have to make my moves and need speed to do it, I'll take the Viper every time. For high water attaining workouts where I'll also get some time on eddylines I'd pick the Viper.

I think for more technical runs where I'd have steeper waves, I'd love to have a River Elf.

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Re: Viper (Frachella) C1 vs. River Elf

Post by PAC » Mon Oct 02, 2017 5:31 pm

Agree with all above. Sold my Viper wish I still had. The RE was fun to test run and can see it being a good boat to have in the quiver too! :-)
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