Re: 3 MM hull?

Posted by Howard on Feb 28, 2005

I have built a Chesapeake 14 that has 4mm mahogony for the bottom hull sections and 3mm sections for the sides and the deck.

The folks at Betsie Bay kayaks build 18 foot singles out of 3mm according to their web site and these come in quite light (mid 30 lbs).

There are skin on frame singles that routinely come in in the 20 lb category.

My 14 seems just fine for strength..but it does have a 4mm are some of my thoughts to consider:

the 3mm is flexible stuff...will you be able to get fair curves over the likely hull length of a tandem?

where in a 3mm hull and in your design do you need to ensure that the structure is appropriately strong to make the boat work....and what is your approach to ensuring this strength and what is the trade off between weight of 3mm and say 4mm vs other potential approaches that increase strength (like extra laminates)

at the end of the day, i am sure you can work with 3 mm but you may need to add extra glass or other types of reinforcements to ensure the craft is strong enough.

the hull of a kayak works as a complete system...all elements are you just have to ensure in your design that you have enough strength in the right areas for the conditions you expect to encounter. the idea being to build each section of the kayak only as strong/heavy as that section needs to be to do its job.

In Response to: 3 MM hull? by Kyle T on Feb 28, 2005