Saturday, July 7, 2012

Reviewing the Miliip EK3 Kayak

 First Glance
The Miliip EK3 “definitely looks like a kayak”.  The plastic “is like no other kayak material I have seen.”  At 0.9 ounces, the kayak is light, and easy to carry over head, which is a good thing since “front and rear toggles appear to be merely painted on.” 

Fit and Outfitting
Relative to its size, the EK3 has a large cockpit opening.  Sold with a splash deck, it is perhaps best described as an “semi-enclosed sit on top”.  The cockpit is well recessed into the boat, lowering the center of balance and increasing stability.  The seat is molded plastic, and the base of the cockpit features a divided compartment.  TLG liked that arrangement, “my feet felt locked in place.” However, “My feet were about the maximum size which could be accommodated by the kayak.”

Storage is minimal.  There are no compartments.  Though there are multiple bungees, their usefulness is limited; “hey, these are just painted on too!”

Stability and Maneuverability
The EK3 has an extremely flat bottom with a small protrusion on it.  This allowed for rapid rotation on a flat surface – “you could easily play ‘Spin the EK3.’”  The Miliip EK3 is a Swede-form, hard chine kayak with minimal flare.   Initial stability was rated as “Very high” while secondary stability was “nearly nonexistent.”

As to performance on the water, “it really wants to weathercock and turns with the slightest wave.”

Speed and Surf
Speed was “minimal at best, and could be described as “limited to current and wind motion.”  As to surfing, “that was probably the best use of the boat, it made a stable landing upon the rocky shore.”

(Editors note:  Minimal speed must be blamed in part due to the limitations of the paddler(TLG) and paddle.  While TLG has an excellent grasp of the paddler’s box – his commitment to stiff armed paddling is commendable- unfortunately his torso rotation is minimal.  In addition, his paddle is short for the boat, so he needs a sliding stroke to reach the water.  And while his cheerful nature is evident, I feel it is poor form for TLG to show up to the kayak trial wearing a wind surfing shirt. Fortunately it is mostly covered by his stylish black PFD.)

Rolling and Rescue
The high back of the EK3 hits the paddler in the lower rib cage.  TLG was unable to roll successfully with the EK3.  The only rescue which worked consistently was the Hand of God.

The Bottom Line
        At 7 ¾” length and 1 ¾” width,  the EK3 is not for everyone, but the low cost (less than $7) and light weight may make it attractive for some.  Available in only one color (Lilliputian Sunset) it is at least a very visible shade.  Bungees and toggles are painted on, and of limited use.  While the EK3 may appear to be suited for lakes and quiet bays, perhaps its best use is for trips of the imagination.
   EK3 is available locally at Union River Books and Toy Company, Ellsworth, ME


  1. Ha, ha! You got me with this one! I was wondering what you were smoking? Or, if I was missing something. But, this sounds like a must have kayak. Thanks for convincing me. I'd like one too.
    That thing portages well. And the paddler has a mean stroke. Can you make him a Greenland paddle and see how he does in a tide race?

    Cheers from Canada!

    1. Definitely easy to add to any fleet! Mark's made him one GP but he styled it based on the Euro paddle, so it is a bit short as well. Hopefully he'll get another one made. TLG is already used to a sliding stroke so GP paddling is right up his alley!

  2. If you'd like to send the hull out we can run a computer analysis on it and provide effective waterline length, resistance figures and stability curves.
    Christopher Cunningham, editor
    Sea Kayaker magazine

    1. TLG is excited to be going on an adventure! He and the EK3 will be in the mail tomorrow. We have much higher resolution copies of the photos if you are interested. I believe you have Mark's email

  3. This comment has been removed by the author.

  4. Haha! Someone with obviously WAY too much time of their hands. THANK YOU!!

  5. This post has been surprisingly popular. Hope springs eternally and worldwide for a lightweight, inexpensive kayak that's fun to use.
    Thanks to those who’ve posted the review at,West of Ireland Sea Kayaking Association  and Le Kayak de Mer dans le Nouveau Monde mentions that there is a secondary site for acquiring model kayaks, Foamie George Kayak de Mer offers my favorite response to the post.
    Thanks to those who’ve tweeted this post, or added it to their facebook page.Especially thanks to Christopher Cunningham, editor
    Sea Kayaker Magazine for playing along and being such a good sport.Now if only I could get the manufacturer’s

  6. Please tell me where to get this kayak and cute paddle buddy - Lego?

    You are so creative!

    Cheers from Canada.

    1. Playmobil manufactures the Millip. I found it while souvenir shopping with an out of town guest in Ellsworth Maine, at the Union River Book and Toy store.

  7. My yellow Prijon for the river and the yellow playmobil for the bathroom ... :o)

  8. Thanks for reviewing this kayak! I have been thinking about buying it for a while, I didn’t feel like just ordering it from the internet, because kayaks... well you want to try before buy right? Unfortunately, none of the sellers let you take it out of the box to see how she sails... and lets face it, it’s not as if you’re just gonna buy another one if this kayak doesn’t suit you, these are well contemplated purchases!
    Allready uploaded the data to our coastguard app, you activate the app when you go out on a trip, so that they’ll know what to look for, and where to look when a roll doesn’t come round.
    The only real issue i foresee, is that I’m gonna be the one that has to haul all the gear in my boat, but fair enough... my paddlestroke has more power than Playmobil Pims ever will!
    Happy paddling, loved your review!