Category Archives: Canoe & Kayak Construction

sailing canoe

Discovering the Sailing Canoe

By Meade Gougeon — GBI Founder

Epoxyworks 16

Cover Photo: A decked sailing canoe combines seaworthiness and comfort.

As a life long sailor, I have always had some mystical attraction to the canoe. As a young man, I read the exploits of my French Canadian ancestors who plied our beautiful Great Lakes for over two centuries in their birchbark canoes in pursuit of the fur trade. More recently, I followed the adventures of Verlen Kruger as he traveled by kayak from Alaska to South America. Continue reading

Modern Decked Sailing Canoe

Modern Decked Sailing Canoes

By Hugh Horton

Using epoxy with wood and modern high modulus fibers, the homebuilder can create light and strong evolutions of the sailing canoes designed by the Scot, John McGregor,in the 1860s. Modern decked sailing canoes are simple, efficient, solo craft which are equally proficient under sail or double-bladed paddle. Puffin and Serendipity, for example, are 15′ long with a 34″ beam. Their unrigged weight is 45 lb; fully rigged weight is under 70 lb, including Continue reading

Building Components with Kevlar Braid

By Hugh Horton

Braided Kevlar®, or composites with Kevlar and carbon braid, are used for joints and many components of my sailing canoes. These include the hull/deck joint, cockpit coaming and spray deck rims, the leeboard bracket and retaining pin, the attachment of the mast step to the hull, the gunter’s yard heel fitting, and the Continue reading

Evolving the Sailing Canoe Rig for Cruising

By Meade Gougeon — GBI Founder

The original sailing rigs on both Serendipity and Puffin are Hugh Horton’s sophisticated version of the old, but efficient sliding gunter rig (Figure 1). Hugh had put a lot of thought into sailing rigs for canoes and had chosen the gunter because it best fit several needs that he considered mandatory for a cruising canoe. Continue reading

Fiberglassing a Woodstrip Hull

By Ted Moores

The WEST SYSTEM User Manual describes the basics of fiberglass cloth application and coating for clear finishing over wood. This article is the ultimate guide to applying fiberglass over a woodstrip hull to achieve a perfect finish. Ted Moores is a master of the perfect finish, author of CanoeCraft and KayakCraft and co-owner of Bear Mountain Boats. Continue reading

Bear Mountain Boats

Bear Mountain Boat Shop, owned by partners Ted Moores and Joan Barrett, is well known for pioneering effective methods of woodstrip epoxy small boat construction and for sharing that expertise with amateur builders around the world. CanoeCraft and KayakCraft, written by Ted Moores, have encouraged thousands to build light weight wooden craft with professional results while using the most advanced materials available. Ted’s fascination with canoes and heritage craft began in 1972. Since that time, the company has built and restored numerous boats from mahogany runabouts to the fastest sprint racing canoes on the market. Continue reading

waters dancing kayak kits

Waters Dancing Kayak Kits

Easy-to-Build Kayaks

Waters Dancing started selling boat kits in the late 1950’s. The company is putting finishing touches on a new line of competitively priced kit kayaks from 14′ to 21′. Their Lightning 17′ has proven itself in the field, with many already built and paddled throughout North America. Don Moore has developed a unique method to join plywood and assemble boats. Continue reading

Strip Construction, an Overview

by Captain James R. Watson

Editor’s note: to learn more about building the strip plank mailbox, paddle or clipboard in the featured image (above), see Start off Simple.

Epoxyworks #10, Winter 1998

Cover Photo: Strip construction is detailed throughout Epoxyworks #10.

We feature strip construction in this edition of Epoxyworks because of the wide range of projects we have seen over the years and the many we support on a daily basis. In most peoples minds, the beautiful, well-built stripper canoe almost defines the technique. But, we’ve also seen strip mailboxes and ships, cars and cradles, airplanes and artwork. The versatility of strip construction is well matched to the versatility of WEST SYSTEM® epoxy. Continue reading

Types of Strip Plank Material

by Brian Knight—GBI Technical Advisor

Modern strip composite construction uses narrow strips of wood or foam to make a low density core material. These strips are easy for one person to handle and are readily assembled into complex shapes. However, this assembled structure does not have much strength until it is covered inside and out with a high density fiber reinforced skin—usually fiberglass cloth. The process of making and fitting the narrow strips together is more time consuming than bending a sheet of plywood, but the technique allows for more creativity in the design. Continue reading