Before jumping into building a strip kayak, I wanted to find out all I could about the process. To begin, I read the book Kayakcraft: Fine Woodstrip Kayak Construction by Ted Moores cover-to-cover and referred to it frequently during construction.
Sealing and priming a surface prior to applying the final finish affects how it ages, and how it ages has everything to do with the way the finish is anchored to the wood. Sealers and primers are often taken for granted; we simply read the can and follow directions. There are so many reasons for using a sealer and many methods for applying them. Let’s look at what we learned while sealing Sparks, the electric launch I built. Continue reading →
Designing and constructing a successful skeg for Sparks (our 30′ hybrid electric launch featured in Epoxyworks 32) took some head-scratching. But in the end, it was just another combination of wood and WEST SYSTEM® epoxy. Our skeg needed to be functional and age gracefully, yet be reasonably quick and easy to build and install. This project was an ideal opportunity to explore the limits as well as the advantages of combining wood with epoxy to engineer simple solutions to complex problems. Continue reading →
At the La Routa Maya canoe race in Belize, SA., we saw a natural progression from chopping canoes out of logs to fiberglassing strip-planked boats with WEST SYSTEM® Epoxy. Strip-planking may have been the first step after the dugout in the evolution of boatbuilding techniques; the way the quality of wood is going, it might be the last to survive. With our strip-planked hull faired and the outside stem attached, there are many techniques that could turn these strips into a boat. Continue reading →
Cover Photo: Ted Moores ties up the Hybrid Electric Launch SPARKS at the blue line at Kilmarnock Lock n the Rideau Canal.
After three years of painstaking work and many interruptions, Ted Moores of Bear Mountain Boats completed the Bear Mountain 30 Hybrid Electric Launch Sparks on June 22, 2010. The boat is unlike any he had built before.
Sparks is designed for low-speed cruising while using the least amount of fossil fuel possible. It normally runs on batteries charged by solar panels and shore power. When necessary, a diesel generator powers its electric motor and charges its batteries.Continue reading →
In this strip planking series, we will take a look at how we have used WEST SYSTEM® Epoxy to utilize less than ideal wood and look at ways of building boats with wood that will be low maintenance and age gracefully. Since working safely with epoxy has allowed me to have a long career using it, you will hear a lot about safety. Continue reading →
Ted Moores and his company, Bear Mountain Boats, build wood epoxy strip plank canoes, manufacture kits, and publish books on building strip plank canoes and kayaks. This method of construction provides a very light yet stiff structure and also enables the hull shape to have compound curves. Moores has 30 years of experience and his designs have logged many safe miles. He understands the forces boats are subjected to when paddled on the water and during transportation. Continue reading →
Above: At the Small Craft Builders Rendezvous, both wood/epoxy and traditionally built canoes and kayaks were on display.
In July 2008 I attended the Small Craft Builders’ Rendezvous in Peterborough, Ontario at the invitation of Ted Moores and Joan Barrett. Their company, Bear Mountain Boats, was one of the sponsors of the gathering which included modern wood and epoxy constructed boats as well as traditionally built wooden canoes. Those attending ranged from professional builders to serious amateurs. Continue reading →
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 →