Builders' Forum Archives
everything is optional
Posted by LeeG on Dec 12, 2006
Which manual do you have? The older 35page one or the larger 150page one?
Deck glass was deemed optional in the first CLC sea kayak kits in order to make the kayak as light as possible with the option for "expedition use" using 4oz deck glass.
At that time anyone who actually used a Patuxent, Cape Charles or pre 2000 Chesapeake day paddling in any kind of rescue practice(no expeditions) discovered that the "option" of rescues required stronger aft decks. Thereafter, 2000, a few years into the Chesapeake and other models 4oz deck glass and hatch reinforcements became standard.
From my perspective as a sea kayak instructor if you are planning on using your kayak where rescues are possible then making deck glass optional is making long term cosmetics optional. In other words 5coats of varnish won't protect the wood like 5coasts of varnish on 4oz glass when struck by a paddle or dragged across another kayak in a t-rescue. It's all a trade-off.
Either way it's optional like anything is optional, the consequences are that the wood deck will be more vulnerable to dinging impacts that break the sealing coat and allow for waterstains, especially edge grain.
Deck strength is as much a function of what's under the deck and the configuration of the deck than whether it's got no deck glass, 4oz glass or 6oz glass.
My $.02 is that you will get significant durability and resistance to cosmetic waterstains with 4oz deck glass but that significant deck strength won't occur until you go to 6oz deck glass OR have 4oz. underdeck glass.
Here's a few other things that could be optional for saving weight before no deck glass.
4mm instead of 6mm bulkheads
glassed 4mm instead of unglassed 6mm coaming
remove deck beam after installation
don't install forward minideck beam
eliminate 3" 9oz tape and use cut 6oz cloth a few inches over the interior chines and into compartments with 2" strips of cut cloth to the ends.
extend sheerclamps to ends and cut down on size of end pours by 8oz
cut down sheerclamps to a triangular cross section and install deck using duct tape instead of ring nails.
In Response to: Re: deck glass by Derik s on Dec 11, 2006