Build a Bent-Plywood KayakStitch-and-tape construction can put you on the water in less than a fortnight
Synopsis: Chris Kulczycki explains a technique that will help you build a sleek, handsome kayak for less than a few hundred dollars in less than two weeks and with little more than a jigsaw, block plane, hand drill, and a pair of pliers. It’s made using compounded-plywood construction to form the hull halves. Wood screws, staples, and copper wire ties are all used to hold pieces in place while epoxied joints cure. He covers the materials needed, how to make the hull panels, how to join the hull, and fit the deck. He talks about the coaming, seat, and trim, and how he finishes his kayaks. A detailed project plan and a glossary complete the article.
Building a boat is something many woodworkers have thought about but often dismiss. It takes too much time, money and specialized skills to build a boat, right? Not necessarily. With the technique I describe, you’ll be able to build the sleek, handsome kayak shown above for less than $200, in less than two weeks and with little more than a jigsaw, block plane, hand drill and a pair of pliers.
In the early 1960s, a technique known variously as compounded plywood, stressed plywood, developed plywood, and, most descriptively, tortured plywood was developed for building multi-hull sailboats. Soon thereafter, an Englishman named Dennis Davis developed several kayaks using this method; all of today’s compounded-plywood kayak designs are based on Davis’ early work.
From Fine Woodworking #95
For the full article, download the PDF below: