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Thread: Kayak Building Questions

  1. #36
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    Default Re: Kayak Building Questions

    Others have said this already but I want to add my 2c. Paddling a double is clumsy on the water, plus you spend the entire time correcting the course and reacting to shifts in balance. Your mid section is in constant tension trying to keep the boat flat because of the movement of your companion.
    I've paddled various doubles since 1972 as a dealer and have owned a couple myself, still owning one. I haven't found any of this to be true, but it certainly is important to know enough about your potential use to get the proper boat in the first place. Lumping all the various designs into the same category, or implying that they all behave the same is quite uninformed at best.

  2. #37
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    Im not sure why you need to keep the boat flat navydog.

    Sure doubles are a different experience and can be frustrating with a novice paddler but no more that having them struggle even more paddling alongside or trailing behind in a single.

    Paddling with a weaker paddler, a younger paddler or your wife in a double is sometimes the only way to get them on the water in the first place.

    Build two singles next!
    One can never have enough kayaks.

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  3. #38
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    Default Re: Kayak Building Questions

    There is a lot of sage advice being offered in the posts above which should be heeded. There is one piece of advice though that I take exception to, namely the shibboleth that tandems are an unpleasant paddling experience. A tandem enables individuals with differing technique and fitness levels to paddle together. I've taken out a fair amount of non-paddlers in my triple and I have to say that exposing them to new and sometimes adventurous experiences is personally very rewarding and has opened more than a few minds. Like or dislike of tandems speaks more about individual temperament than inherent design shortcomings.

    Let me presume to offer a few caveats on design based on my experience (though these may be moot because the OP has already purchased plans)

    The number one consideration is co-paddler comfort. You may be rarin' to go and chase horizons with no regard to physical privation but your partner may not be so keen, especially if the intended partner is still new to the game. If you expect them to paddle with you on regular basis you must take care that they are actually enjoying the activity. Intelligent design can go along way to accomplish this.

    If you are the more experienced paddler you will most likely be in the stern. The boat design should have enough buoyancy in the bow to ride over waves and not have waves crash on to the bowman. This is especially important if you will do ocean/big water paddling. A wet and cold newbie is not likely to want to repeat the experience. If at all possible, try to demo the intended boat in conditions you expect to paddle in.

    There should be enough space between the cockpits that paddle coordination is not required. Coordination is great for racing but two individuals out for a cruise might have drastically different abilities and goals. Each person can paddle at their own tempo and as much or as little as they like without grating on the other. Paddling is much more enjoyable when you're not banging paddles.

    A tandem should have a big rudder. Tandems are big and long and track well. Two strong, skilled paddlers may be able to turn a rudderless kayak into a high wind but coming about with a weak bow paddler in gale-like conditions is problematic and may not be possible without a rudder. This is a potentially dangerous scenario.

    The tandem should have a fair amount of initial stability if you intend to paddle with multiple partners. The small, unanticipated movements of one paddler should not have to be compensated by the other paddler.

    I hope this belated advice helps.
    Last edited by Dusty Yevsky; 04-12-2018 at 11:41 PM.

  4. #39
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    Very well put Dusty.

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  5. #40
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    Default Re: Kayak Building Questions

    Quote Originally Posted by Todd Bradshaw View Post
    I've paddled various doubles since 1972 as a dealer and have owned a couple myself, still owning one. I haven't found any of this to be true, but it certainly is important to know enough about your potential use to get the proper boat in the first place. Lumping all the various designs into the same category, or implying that they all behave the same is quite uninformed at best.
    Any tandem long enough to adequately support 2 adults is not capable of the nimbleness of a single. It's not even arguable. Shorter kayaks maintaining normal beams don't have sufficient buoyancy for 2 adults and don't move through the water well. As for your uninformed remark you don't have as much experience as I in boats.

  6. #41
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    Default Re: Kayak Building Questions

    You forgot to quote the part of my post where you made the dumb uninformed statements. I never said any double was or would be as nimble as a single kayak, but they certainly are not all tippy and many don't need to be to move very efficiently. The statement "you spend the entire time correcting the course and reacting to shifts in balance" is simply uninformed B.S. by someone without the benefit of enough time paddling them, or someone who chooses the wrong boat. Lumping the paddling/handling characteristics of all double kayaks into one hopper is just as ridiculous as trying to say all single kayaks, or all canoes behave the same.

    You have no idea how much experience I have in canoes, kayaks or boats I have no idea how much you have, but experience is often more a matter of what you learned than what you did, and with statements like that, your experience certainly isn't showing.

  7. #42
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    Default Re: Kayak Building Questions

    Quote Originally Posted by navydog View Post
    Any tandem long enough to adequately support 2 adults is not capable of the nimbleness of a single. It's not even arguable. Shorter kayaks maintaining normal beams don't have sufficient buoyancy for 2 adults and don't move through the water well.
    It's horses for courses. I've never had an issue with not be being able to paddle my triple where I want it to go. True, I would not take it into a rock garden, etc but that's not my goal when tandeming. Is it as nimble as my single sea kayak? No but my single handles like a submerged log compared with my squirt boat. Different boats for different purposes. Tandems move through water extremely well if speed is a consideration. With a competent paddler in the bow I can dust just about any single, short of a fit paddler in a racing kayak.

  8. #43
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    Default Re: Kayak Building Questions

    Quote Originally Posted by Todd Bradshaw View Post
    You forgot to quote the part of my post where you made the dumb uninformed statements. I never said any double was or would be as nimble as a single kayak, but they certainly are not all tippy and many don't need to be to move very efficiently. The statement "you spend the entire time correcting the course and reacting to shifts in balance" is simply uninformed B.S. by someone without the benefit of enough time paddling them, or someone who chooses the wrong boat. Lumping the paddling/handling characteristics of all double kayaks into one hopper is just as ridiculous as trying to say all single kayaks, or all canoes behave the same.

    You have no idea how much experience I have in canoes, kayaks or boats I have no idea how much you have, but experience is often more a matter of what you learned than what you did, and with statements like that, your experience certainly isn't showing.
    I guess you simply have comprehension issues. I never mentioned anything about tippy. My comments were regarding reacting to the movement of the other occupant. Virtually every small boat suffers from the same issue. Get over yourself.

  9. #44
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    Default Re: Kayak Building Questions

    Right back at you, unless you want to keep digging that hole. Your statement:

    plus you spend the entire time correcting the course and reacting to shifts in balance. Your mid section is in constant tension trying to keep the boat flat because of the movement of your companion.
    is very clearly wrong and uninformed and nothing you can say will change that. It just isn't true and never will be. While I'm "getting over myself" you might concentrate on learning something, so that you actually have a sound base for further statements.

  10. #45
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    Default Re: Kayak Building Questions

    misc.kayaking-057a.jpg

    My wife and her 80 year old mom in our Libra double. I can't tell for sure from this photo, but it doesn't really appear that their "mid sections are in constant tension, trying to keep the boat flat". On the other hand, with a couple of decent paddlers, this boat has had no trouble keeping up with my Current Designs "Extreme", my Mariner II, our Valley Avocet, my Hutchinson Gulfstream,or my wife's C.D. Solstice GTS or Hutchinson Slipstream. It won't turn as quickly, for sure, but we didn't buy it for slalom runs. My favorite for those has always been my old Lettmann Mk V.

    yax.jpg

  11. #46
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    Default Re: Kayak Building Questions

    Two ladies sitting static on a flat pond. Great proof of your theory.

  12. #47
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    Default Re: Kayak Building Questions

    Navydog,

    How about we see your boats?

  13. #48
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    Default Re: Kayak Building Questions

    I really didn't take pictures of every boat I sat in over the last 50 years. I doesn't matter, if someone thinks a boat with a beam under 30" is rock solid there's apearently not much I can say that fits their thinking.

    This is one of my boats, It has a 10' beam weighs 13000 lbs and it rocks when I get off from the side of the boat.
    Attached Images Attached Images
    Last edited by navydog; 04-15-2018 at 03:22 PM.

  14. #49
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    Default Re: Kayak Building Questions

    This is getting quite comical. I did a cruise a couple of years ago in Alaska where the crew pushes novice paddlers off a ramp at the stern of the ship a couple of times a day almost every day of the week in Necky tandems. The water is dangerously cold so having tourists capsizing their kayaks is not a risk to be taken. But no problem, the boats have so much stability that this just doesn't happen. Heck, they can even raise their paddles high without losing it.

    -Dave

  15. #50
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    Default Re: Kayak Building Questions

    We see the same thing every summer with outfitters leading organized trips through the Apostle Islands on Lake Superior. They are putting people in doubles who have never even been in a kayak before and setting off ten minutes later for a two mile open water crossing to an island. That always struck us as a bit too risky in that cold water, but from what you can see from watching them, stability isn't a problem. It's more a matter of beginner paddler coordination and figuring out how to steer the kayak.

    Two ladies sitting static on a flat pond. Great proof of your theory.
    If nothing else, it certainly disproves your theory that their midsections should be in constant tension due to the stability problems. (Actually, I think it's been several decades since my MIL's midsection was in much tension, but don't tell her I said that.) Why not just face the fact that the double you tried was not the right boat for you, or you weren't the right paddler for it. That certainly does not make a case that they all behave the same. Some of the really narrow and fast ones are definitely kind of twitchy and it takes some practice with your partner to get used to them, but they certainly aren't all that way - and from what I can tell for touring/tripping boats, the extra beam and initial stability of some modern doubles is certainly not terribly harmful to your average cruising speed. A good double will paddle an awful lot better than some of the posts in this thread would tend to indicate.

    if someone thinks a boat with a beam under 30" is rock solid there's apearently not much I can say that fits their thinking.
    Rock solid? Maybe, or maybe not, but it's more a matter of waterline beam and the shape of the bottom, and there is a lot of variation available. My 18' wood strip double had a 3" waterline beam of only 22.5", shallow arch, which is plenty stable for a single kayak, but initially kind of touchy for a double until the paddlers get used to working together. I don't remember what the waterline beam is on the orange Libra above, but it is substantially more - 31" overall beam and probably 27" or so at the waterline. My wife says it paddles like a "speeding couch". The longer hulls with more beam like our Libra seem to be the trend these days for a lot of the companies making double sea kayaks.

  16. #51
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    Default Re: Kayak Building Questions

    I think the problem is I took a shot at your sacred cow.

  17. #52
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    Default Re: Kayak Building Questions

    I'm not sure what my "sacred cow" is supposed to be, or that I even have one. I just have problems with folks posting BS based on inadequate experience or knowledge. If disseminating correct information is my sacred cow, then I'm all for it. If you just prefer to act like a jerk, that's your problem, and I doubt you're fooling anybody.

  18. #53
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    Default Re: Kayak Building Questions

    You are calling me all these names and I'm the jerk? Lol

  19. #54
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    Default Re: Kayak Building Questions

    Navydog,

    With a few exceptions this has been a civil forum, especially compared to Sailing Anarchy.
    Perhaps you would like to spend more time over there?

    What does all your insults have to do with "Building Kayaks"?

    If you didn't get it, I am calling you a jerk.

    Nothing you have posted has any information in it. Just knee-jerk opinions.

  20. #55
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    Default Re: Kayak Building Questions

    Those kayaks in Alaska look pretty beamy to me with plenty of bouyancy out wide. Same with the boat with the two ladies in it.
    The Guillemot is by contrast a very slim boat with quite round bilges. I think Nick Sade considers it intermediate level.

    Todd, do you think that affects anything?
    Its not clear what kind of kayaking is to be done in this kayak proposed.

    Having said that - when i built mine i didn't know what kind of kayaking i was going to do. I really just wanted to strip build a boat.
    Philip K. Dick 'Reality is that which, when you stop believing in it, doesn't go away'.

  21. #56
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    Default Re: Kayak Building Questions

    If in doubt, and if possible, it would be worth talking it over with the designer. Unless your main goal is above average speed, I'd be looking for a boat where you can both stop paddling, shoot some photos, eat lunch, reach around in the cockpit for something, or take your feet off the braces and straighten your legs out on the floor for a break without feeling like you are doing some sort of tedious balancing act. That's the basic difference between my old wood stripper and our orange Libra, and to us, it makes the Libra a much better choice. They probably won't quote waterline beam in the typical advertising specs, but you're likely going to be looking at something in the 30"-32" maximum beam range, which will have a waterline beam which is 5"-6" narrower or so. At some point, you can have too much beam and volume to reach over efficiently when paddling, but it would seem that for touring boats, maximum beam in the low 30" range is still OK.

    There is certainly a case to be made with both canoes and kayaks that it is wise to buy the one which will take some practice and developed paddling skill to get truly comfortable with - buying for future performance rewards, as it were. On the other hand, this can be taken too far. It is also absolutely possible to invest a bunch of money, time and sweat into building a fantastic boat and then being seriously disappointed with how it works for you. Been there, done that. So before I would build something, I'd like to have some discussion or communication with somebody who has actually used that model and can give me some feedback on how it performs.

  22. #57
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    Default Re: Kayak Building Questions

    Those Necky Lookshas have a 30" beam and are very stable. What I've seen is that most people are comfortable even in singles with a 24" beam if the bottom is fairly flat. Below that beam some but not all novice paddlers will feel nervous at first. But it's not that simple, of course. Longer boats have greater initial stability, but taller, heavier paddlers need longer and/or wider boats to get the same feel. But as Todd says, it's better to get a better performing boat and learn to use it rather than dumb it down to the point that you'll outgrow the boat very quickly.

    I have four flatwater boats. If I want to noodle around, take pictures, twist around this way and that with my binoculars, I'll take the Great Auk, a Nick Schade stripper. That's 24" in beam with a very shallow arc to the bottom. If I want to cover the miles quickly, I'll favor my SOF baidarka, with a 20.5" beam and a V-bottom. I've never rolled this boat accidentally, but If I put binocs to my eyes while sitting in it, it feels like it's going to go over. Somehow my body needs a visual on the horizon, with which all is well. A friend tried it once and he wouldn't leave the shoreline it made him so nervous. My Greenland SOF boat is skinnier still but has less V to the bottom, and feels about the same. I can easily outpace just about anyone in a conventional kayak in that boat.

    In between the extremes is my favorite all-around boat, at 22.5" beam with a flattish, arced bottom. This boat, an Impex Susquehanna, feels stable to me, but I bought it from a friend and very experienced paddler who sold it because despite using it quite a bit, he never came to feel comfortable in it. The difference: he is about 3" taller and maybe 50 pounds heavier than me. Bottom line, there's no substitute for getting in a lot of different boats and trying them out.

    Nick Schade in particular has a lot of good advice in all of these matters. It's worth taking the time to study everything on his website. His descriptions of his boats and their characteristics are not the overblown hype you get from some of the commercial manufacturers, where every boat somehow does every job brilliantly. To get the on-the-water feel, some dealers have demo days or if there's a kayak club nearby, join it and you'll find other members are more than happy to talk boats and let you try theirs out. If a single of a given shape and beam feels good, then the double will feel doubly good. (Stability increases in proportion with length -- but as a squared function with beam.)
    -Dave

  23. #58
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    Default Re: Kayak Building Questions

    That's interesting, I wouldn't have thought the length of the boat would affect stability. Can't quite get my head around why it would.
    Philip K. Dick 'Reality is that which, when you stop believing in it, doesn't go away'.

  24. #59
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    Default Re: Kayak Building Questions

    It has to do with how much hull volume you have to submerge to tilt the boat. Two kayaks with the same beam and bottom curvature will have substantially different amounts of initial stability if one is short and one is long. The longer boat will have more cubic inches of volume (buoyancy) to resist the tipping forces.

  25. #60
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    Default Re: Kayak Building Questions

    Of course - thanks for taking the time to explain.
    Philip K. Dick 'Reality is that which, when you stop believing in it, doesn't go away'.

  26. #61
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    Default Re: Kayak Building Questions

    Quote Originally Posted by Gib Etheridge View Post
    TheraBand instead of staples. The disadvantage is that you have to wait for the glue to cure before adding the next strip.

    Attachment 13692
    I use hot glue to hold strips to stations and stems and to hold strips in alignment between stations. Think of hot glue as a clamp no a permanent glue. I bond strip edges with Titebond glue. No waiting for glue to cure. As soon as hot glue hardens clamps can be removed and the next strip applied.

    See - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5cgr583N4-o

    When I have a long boat and short boards I scarf short boards into one long board and cut full length strips from this. A wide board is ripped down the center and the common ends are scarved into one long board.

    ll the best,
    Rob Macks
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    “Persistent people begin their success where others end in failures.” - Edward Eggleston
    Last edited by Mr. Loon; 04-19-2018 at 06:32 AM.

  27. #62
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    Default Re: Kayak Building Questions

    That would work well with FG boards producing VG strips, and the colors would match, meaning that each strip would usually be the same color for the full width.

    How do you remove all of that hot glue once it's time to pop the hull off of the forms?

  28. #63
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    Default Re: Kayak Building Questions

    Review of a 22" wide Aleutian Double or Unangun Uluxtax if u prefer http://robroy.dyndns.info/baidarka/2005/Oct/0029.html

    and you can see photos of one here

    http://traditionalkayaks.com/Kayakre...SNM160336.html
    If growth is good then how much is enough

  29. #64
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    Default Re: Kayak Building Questions

    Hot glue pops off when sheared off by the blow of a hammer or the edge of a scraper used like a hammer. See the video link above.

  30. #65
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    Default Re: Kayak Building Questions

    And use the hot glue recommended by Rob, cause, some of the Hobby Lobby junk falls off by itself, within a day.

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