test paddles

Posted by Howard on Jan 29, 2006

i would suggest the best way to choose it to take a test paddle, or at least sit in an example, of the boats that you are interested in.

if you are in NJ, a drive down to CLC's annapolis site can guarantee some boat time in their offering of boats. the other kit manufacturers can provide you with local builders names that are usually pretty friendly about letting you take one for a spin or just to see one in person and sit in the cockpit.

everybody's a bit different. and seeing one and trying it on is the way to go to ensure you get something that you will like.

if you insist on a rudder, you will need a boat with a more or less vertical stern which eliminates a lot of the inuit styled boats. fwiw, you seemed to suggest that your rudder is needed for helping to go straight, not to turn. this can also be accomplished with a skeg which can be fitted to many of the inuit style boats...opening your selection to boats like the shearwater, arctic hawk, night heron, etc.

in terms of kits, i think the other big question is being realistic and honest with yourself about your committment to building and expectations of how nice a final fit and finish you need to be capable of producing for you to be happy with what you have done.

Stitch and glue boats are definitely easier and less time consuming than strip built boats. But if you have the committment and the time, I have seen people start with some pretty advanced projects and do fantastic jobs. the key is that you finish the project and are happy with what you accomplished.

As i suggested, talking to some owners and seeing their results can really help you size up the effort and skill involved.

My personal pick of really pretty, easy 1st time stitch and glue builds, takes a rudder, light, fast and pretty roomy: CLC17LT, CLC WR18, and the Pygmy Coho.

Last thing, knowing your weight and what your typical journey/mission will be in the kayak, in addition to the measures you provided would be helpful in making some recommendations.

good luck,


In Response to: So many kits ... by Will I Am on Jan 29, 2006


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