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Paddling My First Kayak

Paddling the Original Great Auk

During my vacation a few weeks ago I took some time to get my first kayak out of the basement storage at my parents place in Maine and took it for a paddle. It was interesting to see that some of the things I still do, appeared on my first efforts.

microBootlegger Sport

microBootlegger Sport

I created this new design for a customer looking for a fun kayak to use on a lake in Wisconsin. He wanted something suitable for some fitness paddling as well as relaxed touring. This boat was built from 1/8" thick book matched mahogany strips. I will be offering plans for the design when I have finished all the drawings

Meet at the Beach 2016

Jun 4 2016 10:00 am

Once again we will be gathering at Bluff Point. For more years than I care to remember wooden kayak enthusiasts have met at the beach at Bluff Point State Park in Groton, Connecticut. We will be gathering again this year. Come see what builders have made over the winter. Test paddle kayaks that you are interested in building. Talk to other people who like wooden kayaks.

The Process of Building a Wooden Kayak

Like any project, you can build a kayak quickly, or you can take pains with every step. While I am a big advocate of working quickly so you can get the kayak finished and start paddling, when I build custom boats for clients, I work with a bit more patience. This video shows some of the steps I took to make a bespoke kayak for a client. Many of the steps shown here are the hard way to do things. 

Fine Strip-Planked Boat Class at WoodenBoat School - Nymph Canoe and Night Heron Kayak

Sep 11 2016 6:00 pm
Sep 17 2016 12:00 pm

Build Nymph and Night Heron

Registration starts January 4th.

If you can't make this September class, take a look at the one in June.

Fine Strip-Planked Boat Class at WoodenBoat School - microBootlegger Kayak and Mystic River Tandem Canoe

Jun 12 2016 6:00 pm
Jun 18 2016 12:00 pm

Build microBootlegger and Mystic River Tandem

Registration starts January 4th.

If you can't make the June class, take a look at the one in September.

Smoothing the interior of a strip planked boat with a scraper and sandpaper

Smoothing the interior of a strip built boat is always a challenge. A random orbital sander usually doesn't fit the curved surface well and risks digging horseshoe shaped divots in the wood. What I find works well for me is a really sharp paint scraper shaped to match the surface, and hand sanding with very rough sandpaper.

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