Z Pro Tango Inflatable Kayaks - An Honest Review

Z Pro Tango Inflatable Kayaks - An Honest Review

While the Z Pro range includes several models we feel their Tango is a stand out choice, offering an unmatched balance of price and performance.  So what’s all the fuss about?

Inflatable kayaks come a variety of constructions, starting with economical single skins that suffer from a lack of pressure and fragile nature.  Buy at this level and you could potentially believe a wet bum and lack of glide is reflective of all kayaks and be put off for life.  As a specialist store It shouldn’t be a surprise to hear that we don’t carry boats at this sub £100 level.  At the opposing end of the spectrum are super rigid heavy duty models that come as close to the performance of plastic boats as it is possible to come while retaining inflatable convenience. With premium boats a drop stitch base is common.  This simply means that the bladder is not a hollow balloon when inflated, instead the base and top are connected by thousands of strands.  The effect is to support the structure and increase the pressure figure.  However, drop stitch boats come at a serious budget, with the cream of the crop generally priced around the thousand pound mark.  We absolutely appreciate this might be a dream purchase but perhaps over budget for many, especially if this is your first taste of life on the water.  The beauty of the Z Pro Tango is to sit between these two end of the budget spectrum, offering both good performance and durability.  So how does it achieve this?  Here are the main reasons we love to recommend the Z Pro Tango.

CONSTRUCTION

The Tango uses an outer cover to contain three bladders, two sides and one floor.  The outer shell is constructed of 840 denier nylon, which is extremely durable and protects the internal bladders from abrasion.  As well as effectively eliminating the potential for damage from rocks, the main benefit of the twin skin system is that when inflated the bladders cannot simply balloon in dimensions.  Instead, being constrained results in an improved psi figure, up to 1.5psi.  The valves used are high quality and well established Boston versions.  This allows you to quickly inflate and deflate, with no need to squeeze the valve to let air out when packing the boat away. Should the worst happen and a bladder become damaged you can have confidence that these are readily available and at a sensible price.  This is in sharp contrast to certain other brands, where bladder costs make replacement uneconomical.  In a world where we are aggressively trying to reduce landfill the availability of spares is extremely important to our staff when selecting our range.

(boston valve fitting)

SEATING

Most inflatable kayaks have fixed seating positions.  Aside from ruling out the ability to tailor the positions based on paddlers of different heights, this is also nonsensical in that it precludes the potential to paddle a tandem boat solo.  With fixed seating, sitting in the front results in the boat being bow heavy and inefficient.  Conversely, sit in the back and the kayak will wheelie and be difficult to control.  The staff at Z Pro were obviously well aware of this issue and added comfortable padded seats with supportive backrests.  These are attached to the boat via r rings and mini karabiners, which are adjustable and allow you to place the seats in almost any position.  This means that both the Tango 200 (2 person) and Tango 300 (3 person) can be effectively paddled solo.  We actually find the 3 person variant to be the more popular by some margin, with many solo or tandem users enjoying the additional leg room and kit storage.  If you are ever between two sizes of inflatable kayak we would always encourage you to move up for this reason.  The pack size remains almost identical but the longer boat is faster and tracks in a straight line with less effort.

TRACKING

One of the main challenges for any inflatable kayak is straight line tracking.  Fundamentally, a lightweight kayak made from air will always sit high in the water and have little surface area under the surface to lock the boat in place.  This means more corrective strokes and a boat that is more prone to being blown in the wind.  However, Z Pro have countered this with the use of a V shaped hull, akin to the keel of a sailing boat.  It allows the Tango to hold a line nicely, especially when combined with the fixed plastic tracking strakes and optional skeg fin. Even paddlers new to the sport are now able to cover distance with ease.  Don’t worry about using the tracking fin in shallow water.  Its robust plastic construction is durable and they are readily available as a spare part should the worst happen.

(Included Tracking Fin)

VERSATILITY

When purchasing any kayak it is nice to have confidence that your new boat can be used in a wide range of circumstances.  The Tango is not dedicated to a particular discipline and instead aims to work well in all.  Whether you close to paddle inland or coastal, have confidence that the Tango will excel.  The aforementioned seating system means that your new boat can be used with a range of paddler numbers without compromising on the water performance.

CONCLUSION

Whether you’re an experienced paddler or absolute first timer the Z Pro Tango is a risk free purchase guaranteed to provide hours of fun with friends and family. The construction, shape and features have been carefully considered and the boat now offers what we believe to be the best balance of price and performance available today.  Since inception, customer feedback has resulted in small tweaks and the Tango is now the ultimate example of if it isn’t broken dont fix it.  We’ve considered many other options from popular brands but continue to feel this model allows us to recommend with confidence.

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WHAT’S INCLUDED?

Z Pro Tango 200

Users: 1 or 2 adults
Length: 335cm
Beam (width): 95cm
Weight: 15kg

1 x Inflatable Kayak

1 x Carry Case

2 x Padded Seat & Backrest

1 x Tracking Fin

1 x Repair Kit

Z Pro Tango 300

Users: Capacity 250kg 3 Persons
Length: 410cm / Beam (width): 95cm
Internal Width: 43cm
Weight: 18kg

1 x Inflatable Kayak

1 x Carry Case

3 x Padded Seat & Backrest

1 x Tracking Fin

1 x Repair Kit

 

We hope this information has been useful in your research.  Our staff are always on hand to help.  For bespoke advice please call on 01924 444888 or send a message here.