Spinera Hybris Drop Stitch Inflatable Kayak | Our Initial Review

Spinera Hybris Drop Stitch Inflatable Kayak | Our Initial Review

If you’re looking for a performance drop stitch inflatable kayak and one that offers unrivaled value for money then the new Spinera Hybris series should be on your radar. Being produced in three sizes (320, 410, 500) allows you the option to cater for one, two or three paddlers.

Drop stitch technology has long been popular with our staff and customers.  This manufacturing process has been increasingly used in kayaks and stand up paddleboards in recent years, being initially reserved to boost the rigidity of floor units in white water rafts.  So what is drop stitch and how is it beneficial in your kayak?  The technology add hundreds of threads within the bladder, essentially connecting the top and base.  In doing so the bladder is supported and torsional stiffness improved.  The pressure (psi) figures for a standard hollow bladder are markedly less than drop stitched alternatives, perhaps as much as ten times.  On the water this stiffness results in more forward speed, glide and improved tracking.  As such, the new Hybris from Spinera certainly packs a punch on the performance front.

So, what else is new?  Taking inspiration from their extensive SUP range the Hybris uses PVC side bladders.  These heavy duty single skin chambers again offer excellent pressure figures and benefit performance.  However, there are also secondary benefits away from pure performance.  The nature of this fabric means less saturation, reducing drying time and thus enabling you to pack up in double quick time.  The lack of separate internal bladders should also pay dividends with less maintenance requirement over the life of the Hybris.

Spinera’s new offering is not short of quality accessories either, coming complete with padded seats and backrests.  Not only do these aid the paddler from a comfort perspective, they also promote a more upright and active paddling position for improved power output.  The carry case provided allows the boat to be quickly folded without the need to struggle.

One interesting feature with the Hybris is Spinera’s decision to add two tracking fins.  Traditionally, inflatable kayaks have used a single tracking fin approximately one third from the stern.  This is hugely effective in promoting straight line tracking compared with models relying purely on waterline.  However, the effectiveness of the single fin layout is reduced when paddling into wind, with a light bow likely to be pushed off line.  By adding a second tracking fin the straight line performance will be superior across all conditions, as well as offering you the versatility to attach one skeg fin when desired.  It would even be possible for paddle finless in shallow waters.

In summary, the value for money offered by the Spinera Hybris appears to blow the mid priced competition away.  We see it as being best suited for those looking for a touring style boat, aiming to cover distance with ease.  The overall length of the three models will give excellent glide, while the ability to add two tracking fins means your paddle strokes will result in extra ground covered.  This is in contrast to certain models where more time is spent correcting direction than moving forward. 

The Hybris is available in 320, 410 and 500cm, equating to one, two or three person capacity.  Of course, these recommendations are not set in stone and the two larger kayaks will no doubt work well for solo and tandem use, allowing for more leg room and storage space. 

Our staff would love to show you the Hybris in our Leeds based store.  Of course, not all customers are able to visit and thus please get in touch with any questions you may have.


Robin Hood Watersports

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