kayak couture part III - weigh in

ok...i am trying to push things along and i am now at the stage of the project where i am getting ready to attach the top to the bottom....

the skeg is installed, the coaming is all done, hatches set up....just some minor prep/sanding and the halves go together.

at the start of the project i said i was trying to be light with a target of 22 lbs.   ok...i have gained a bit of weight....but all components now weigh 22.8 lbs....so i will probably be three to four pounds proud of where i was hoping to be....but it is still, so far, a good effort.

frej 90 getting ready for seaminganyway...i know we have some folks out there who are also interested in building light....so i think this is a good demonstration.   i will say, it was way easy to pick up as pictured.....which is a real treat.



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RE: kayak couture part III - weigh in

   22.8 is a tremendous achievement. What will give you 3-4 pounds extra? Surely not the varnish.

It's a beautiful kayak, too! Well done.

RE: kayak couture part III - weigh in

���missing something. what clc kayak at 22-25 #?? and how??

RE: kayak couture part III - weigh in

an overview of the project is available at:



RE: kayak couture part III - weigh in

it's a beauty!

RE: kayak couture part III - weigh in

Hey Howard, hoping to complete my Mystery within the next month.  I see that you used soft padeyes.  Can you describe the installation process or point me somewhere that has it?  I searched here and on Nick's forum with no results.

Has she paddled it yet?    

RE: kayak couture part III - weigh in

I'm not Howard (and don't even play one on TV), but in case he's busy today here's how I did it on my WD12:

The deck rigging is held in place by a figure-8 shaped webbing loop. One loop slips through a slit in the deck to hold the rigging. The other loop stays below the deck and is held in place by a dowel slipped through the loop.

This allows the rigging to be removed as a unit without having to untie the knot, good for touching up the varnish when needed.



Have fun,


RE: kayak couture part III - weigh in

���Am away for the weekend but will send a picture and description tomorrow night when back. h

RE: kayak couture part III - weigh in


please see the following link:


this is the approach i use.  very easy once you make two or three of them.  

for step 4, (the mold)  i use hardwood.  i cut a slot with a chisel to accept the webbing and ensure consistency on each one i make....its a bit hard to see in the picture (double click it to enlarge it), but the webbing needs to fit into a slot so when you put the two pieces together, they fit tightly and there is no gap.

i developed the technique a bit different then what he describes from step 5 thru 6.  instead of a using a lighter/open flame, i just pat down/melt the webbing with a 150 watt cutting gun - this is like a soldering iron set up for cutting nylon rope.  much easier than using a lighter.

happy to answer any other questions....like a lot of what we do....i remember thinking about it extensively when i did my first one, but now it's all second nature.  in the portfolio of skills we develop, i would rate this one as one of the simpler to perfect.



RE: kayak couture part III - weigh in

Thanks Howard and Lazlo.  That sure is an elegant solution.  Not sure what I am going to do.  I usually use carbon eyestraps glued to the deck.  They are very light and easy but a PITA to varnish around.


RE: kayak couture part III - weigh in


my perspective, fwiw, is i think safety rigging, in general, should be secured through the hull.    i use the same carbon fibre eyestraps you show on the inside of my hulls for storage bungees (to keep things from moving around when stored inside the boat).   i have noticed in hot temperatures, that they have broken off. becuase they are epoxied on after the hull is cured, they only have a mechanical bond over a very small area and subject to a lot of pressure when you really need them.  so for me, on the outside rigging its either the softstrap or something bolted or threaded through the hull.

the other comment i would  make is any hard rigging like that that protrudes from the deck is a snagging or scraping hazard (like scraping the inside of your legs or the soft skin under your arm if you happen to go sideways against it)  softpadeyes or flush rigging approaches don't have that same risk.

i know these are rare events....but there is a reason most high end kayaks have flush rigging attached through the hull.



RE: kayak couture part III - weigh in

   Certianly those failure modes are possible, but I have not had either occur.  I suppose that the difference is that deck rigging on a race boat falls more into the convience category and is not heavily loaded.  Generally speaking, you can't do an assisted rescue because the boats are too unstable.  The primary focus is on staying in the boat, and executing a fast reboarding when you get knocked out.  There is a belief in the racing world that if you can't reboard in two tries, then you are in the wrong boat for the conditions.  I do a lot of practice reboarding, and in my opinion the snagging issue has more to do with the PFD than the deck rigging.  So many PFDs have front buckles and then paddlers load the front pockets with all kinds of stuff.  If you look at the PFDs worn by racers (like the Mocke), the front is low profile and there is little snag potential.  Cheers.  

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