Inspired by the Striped Marlin whose Latin name is Kajikia Audax, Audax is a Latin word usually used to denote bold, daring or adventurous. We wanted to produce a kayak that reflected this spirit of adventure in wide range of coastal and open water environments.
The Audax is a long waterline, open water kayak built to join the growing ranks of plumb bow fast tourers that have proven so successful and popular in Australian conditions.
For decades now the local market for sea kayaks has coexisted with the ocean racing ski market and so the arrival of leaders in this niche such as the Rockpool Taran and Pace Tour appeared to many of us as an obvious progression for kayak design. These shapes probably appeared less radical to Aussie kayakers accustomed to sharing the coastline with surfskis.
Our aim with this kayak was not to replace other plumb bow designs in our range, but instead to add another kayak that would appeal to those who are looking for an efficient modern touring boat with enhanced stability and maneuverability. The fact that the kayak is built in Australia will no doubt also appeal to many as it offers support to local small businesses and also provides new levels of flexibility for customisation.
The final hull shape was the result of repeated prototype testing across a range of conditions and paddlers, over a period spanning just over two years. We aimed for an efficient hull that was easy to drive at cruising speeds but still accelerated well to catch runners, but we also wanted the boat to turn well at all quarters to the wind and above all to have predictable stability in conditions both rough & smooth.
The best of the plumb bow kayak designs have proven themselves to be highly capable and sea worthy craft for everything from easy cruising to long distance expeditions so we felt no hesitation in using this shape for the Audax. We added a little rake at the bow to make the boat easier to slide off the beach when launching and maintained the upswept sheer line synonymous with our favourite classic kayaks.
From an ergonomic point of the view, the deck is quite steeply angled forward of the cockpit to allow an upright stroke. The cockpit is wide between the thigh braces so most paddlers can paddle “knees up” or “knees under” as required and the deck is high enough to allow for a comfortable bend at the knee in either position.
Audax kayaks use our “Bigfoot” footplate system, an adjustable composite seat and foam back-band. Other seat options include the Winkworth foam seat or the famous Gurney Gears Bumfortable (to order).
We have enjoyed the challenge of bringing this project to fruition after a couple of years of development and are delighted with the Audax’s performance and build quality. We hope you enjoy paddling it as much as we do.
Audax Specs (Click HERE for colours)
Length 5.6 Metres Max Beam 53cm
Stern (includes day hatch compartment) 149.07 litres. - Bow 100.13 litres - Cockpit 154.13 litres Total 403.5 litres.
1 Kajaksport large Oval hatch
1 Kajaksport 10” Round hatch
1 KajakSport 8” Round
Decklines - 6mm retro reflective black with gold and silver fleck.
Shockcords – 5mm.
Towpoint – Wichart cast stainless.
Deck tensioners – Alloy Buckles.
Rudder: Smarttrack transom mount.
Footplate: EK “Bigfoot”.
**note weights can vary +/- 5% depending on gelcoat colours and atmospherics when the laminates are cured.
Ritchie Kayak Compass - $189.00
EK Pump Kit (installed) - $745.00 (switch, bracket, high capacity Lithium battery and charger)
Audax Expedition Elite $5490 - Vinylester resin, Infused deck & hull, Soric core, kevlar cloth, carbon reinforcements, flanged deck to hull join with taped seams. Approx 23.5kg
Audaux Ultra $5990 - Vinylester resin, Infused hull, deck and seat, Soric core, Kevlar, with carbon and glass reinforcements. Flanged deck-to-hull join with taped seams. Approx 22kg