Ninja 7’6″ shares mostly all the features of the 6’8″ with some tweaks here and there to make a longer, faster wave rider that excels in more varied conditions than the shorter version and fits a bit wider paddler range.
While the width is the same, 24″, the stern is one inch longer and the bow has 9″ of extra length. Specifically in the bow, we added 4-5 more inches of flat hull surface and the remaining 4-5″ went into the tip of the bow. The hull shape and footprint is close to the same as the 6’8″. We took a bit of width out in the mid-bow area and tapered the shape to a point, giving the longer boat the same edge to edge ease that the shorter boat has. The rocker profile on the stern is the same as the shorter boat, though the bow, containing most of the additional length, rockers more gradually than the 6’8″. The extra speed the longer hull gives is evident mostly on the flat water, catching waves and when surfing in the bottom of a wave or in front of the foam pile. You’ll find yourself making it past sections that you normally don’t make and able to catch air off the lip on mushier, slower waves. The boat seems to jump off the lip by itself, which is a really nice feature, and it lands unbelievably smoothly. Taller and heavier paddlers will fit this boat as well as smaller folks. The weight range is roughly 130-210. Designer, Ray Cotton is 210 lbs, 6’3″ tall, size 12 feet and is totally happy in the boat if that gives you any idea. I am 150 lbs, 5’7″ with size 9 feet and I feel at home in the kayak too. Seems like a great weight and size range, of course that varies depending on skill level as well. The heavier paddler is going to be far more tippy and the small paddler will float higher.