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The Flame, Cape Ann Expedition, built in the fall 2002

wooden kayak

art kayak

Deck Graphics Design

This kayak is the result of close team work between my client Dana in Florida, and myself kitty corner across the continent in British Columbia. Given the internet it is now easy to network on a project, no matter the physical distance: Once Dana decided on the type of hull, we got to the fun part in custom building: Exchanging ideas and sketches,we came up with some concept drawings for the deck graphics.

Dana, with the help of his Computer Assisted Design program, turned these into very slick working drawings.
We picked C-3 in the stack of options. Then, during the construction we slightly modified it again, to make the center flame appear more "flowy".

Documenting Process

Dana enjoyed having the process documented, so I sent dozens of digital images to Florida, to compile an album. We now have all the stages of the construction on record.
Here is a small sample of the progress pictures. There are over a hundred more in my files:

kayak construction

The hull has just been removed from the strongback, and needs to be sanded inside.
The mold is now ready for the deck construction.

deck accents

The deck is just about all stripped. I am inserting the definition stripes.

cockpit glu up

It requires the unmitigated force of my bucket o'clamps to hold the cockpit coaming's inner lining in place until the glue sets.

Some Details

The cockpit might be time consuming, but it literally becomes the center piece of the kayak.

kayak seat
The seat back rest can be folded forward, here revealing the cord and clasp which is used to adjust it's angle. The seat itself is held in place with 2"wide velcro strips, attached to the bottom of the hull.

About the solid bulkheads, dividing the kayak into three chambers: It is argued by some designers and builders, that the bulkheads should have some "give" to allow the hull to flex in case of impact. One of the reasons strippers are used for racing, is that they are stiff and do not flex. See my "why wood" page. I talked to a structural engineer, who assured me that the issue of "give" is mute in case of a strip built kayak. inner cockpit


Preparing for the long trek to Florida, Dana's kayak is awaiting to be wrapped in foam along with a "Seawards" shipment from Vancouver Island. The kayaks are about to travel on a special boat carrier to their destinations all along the US coast. boat transport

kayak arrival
Finally it arrived in Dana's town. Can you believe that after all those months of anticipation, Dana had commited himself NOT to launch the yak until Christmas. A true connoisseur of the finer pains in life, he waited........

Meanwhile, his kids saw no reason not to take it for a spin.
cedar kayak kids

Dana's comments:

"...I still marvel on your craftmanship and how tight the joints are.
Everyone that has seen it, is amazed!
I weighed the boat the other day with my bathroom scale. WOW! Although not that accurate it came in at 45 lbs.
We had an unwrapping party at the kayak shop. It was great! It was seen by 50 or so people and all could not believe the beauty and workmanship. I was so proud to show the album and you off.
It was inside the shop and on soft styrofoam blocks. Many people wanted to sit in it and have their picture taken. It was a wonderful night. I'm sure your ears were very warm!"

cedar strip kayak action performing roll

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