What's the best single scull out there?

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Female, 120 lbs, novice rower of 2 years.

-- Deanna Shaw (deanna@mergercontracting.com), January 09, 2005


Hi, Deanna, By best, do you mean fastest for a 2K flat-water race, stable (but fast) for open water, most durable, most beautiful?

For flat-water racing, you would be hard-pressed to find a better shell than the Van Dusen Flyweight single, although some lightweight women really like the new Vespoli Matrix 24.

For open water, the Maas Flyweight would be fast and stable enough for a skilled sculler; on flat water, it would be very stable.

The Peinert X25 is less stable than the Maas Flyweight, more stable (and slower) than the Van Dusen or Vespoli, but it is very rugged, without weighing much more than the flat-water racers.

An expensive, prestigious, flat-water shell is the Empacher (probably the S13 for your weight), but that boat won't turn as well as a Van Dusen, and probably won't be as fast for you, either. Most Empacher's are yellow, if that makes a difference.

Carl Douglas builds gorgeous Kevlar-and-wood singles (you can even choose the species of exotic veneer), and they are said to row beautifully, while Owen, Graeme King and Staempfli still offer all- wood, traditionally-decked singles that are things of beauty.

-- John Swensen (jaswensen@comcast.net), January 10, 2005.

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