Small Boat Design

Discussions around designing small boats including kayaks and canoes.

Designing my first boat *LINK* *Pic*

I am a long time reader of this forum, first time poster. I have been reading this forum, as well as Qajak USA and CLC forums for over a year now. I learn very well through Osmosis, and I couldn't begin to describe how grateful I am for the information that has been past back and forth across these kayak forums. I have been silent for so long because I personally don't like to give advice on subjects where I tend to have no experience... Well, the time for experience has come, and now I wish to share.

I've only built one boat (sept 2008), but it was enough for me to fall in love with the art of boat building. I was told when taking the class (Shearwater 17 class taught by Eric Schade) that I would likely become addicted, and how true that has proved. The only dilemma i have had since building that great boat has been that while I enjoy all types of paddling, my heart is truly in paddling relatively technical whitewater. There is just something so intense about kayaking a tight class IV-V creek in early spring that is hard to explain. If you've been there, you understand.

I have recently decided to combine my love for boat building with my addiction to whitewater, and it has been quite a journey so far. I have been doing my homework for the past couple months, and must say that the crown jewel of my kayak library is the "Boat Builders Manual, fifth edition" from Charles Walbridge. I was told to acquire that book to understand the way folks built whitewater kayaks in the early days of whitewater, and it has been a great education. The greatest thing about that book were the thoughts it initiated when combined with all of the things I have learned in my informal forum education :)

So I am building a boat. But before I can build, I need a design. So I have designed a boat. I basically am approaching my design task paying close attention to dominant design of what are considered modern "Creekboats" and "River Runners". Planning Hulls have been all the rage in whitewater designs for the past two decades, and they have finally made their way into modern creekboat designs. While this has been welcomed by a great amount of enthusiasm from technical boaters, some folks like me haven't been huge fans of the hard edges on some of those designs. I could talk at length about different aspects of whitewater design, but I'll try to keep this post short...

So I have early screen captures of the design I intend I am working on. I will save any discussion about construction techniques for the Boat Building forum, but wanted to share images of my design here and see if anybody had any interest/concern/advice towards my design. I am using a pseudo Stitch-and-Glue construction, which I have thought for quite some time would lend itself very well to whitewater boat construction. So. We shall see. Any thoughts or comments are greatly appreciated~

~Johnathan