Wednesday, 8 August 2012

Building a Cedar Strip Kayak

Little quiet around here because I’ve been a very busy lad.

A friend, Hank, called me up recently. He built a cedar strip canoe about a dozen years ago, and knows of my interest in making one. “My son is the same size as you and I was thinking that I would like to make him a cedar strip kayak.  There’s no way I can do it by myself, because the one I’m looking at is 19 feet long. And I intend to do it up in the attic which is going to take some renovation before it can be used. So I could use some help with that. Now, I figure that if I go to the trouble, get the plans, the molds, rip and plane and router all that wood, I may as well build two. One for my son, and one for you. You pay for the materials for a kayak, and we build two of them together.”


His son is the same height as me, with about an additional 50 pounds, but with size 15 feet.
Kayaks to fit mutants like us are a bit unusual. Custom built is likely the only way to go.

Building a cedar strip canoe or
kayak has always been on my list of things I would love to do, but space has always been an issue. If an opportunity presents itself, someone who has the space, tools, some experience, and a desire to do it, I’m going to seize that opportunity. It wasn’t necessarily on the top of the list of projects I planned to tackle, but it is now. 

Besides the fact that this is a really cool opportunity for me to learn some new skills and get a useful and beautiful item out of it at the end, I also thought of it in terms of taking my nephew up there once in a while and let him witness portions of the build and learn some stuff. 

Oh and the kayak we’ve opted for after a whole lot of looking and comparing is a Bear Mountain True North XPD 19/3

And if you want some fun eye candy to look at, check these out.

I would like to incorporate some of those curvilinear designs into the deck of mine. Or something a bit oomphy to jazz it up and make it personal. Also thought of maybe doing some marquetry for in the deck hatches (or maybe just in a deck hatch - let’s not get too ambitious.) Compass rose maybe or a spiral. I’ll see.

I will try to do my best to chronicle the builds as they progress, but it’ll be tricky trying to juggle photographing and building.

I haven’t been this stoked about anything in a long time.

Go here to see the attic we’ll build it in and the renos we did to it to make it usable.

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