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Which Kayak to build? Coaming sizes?


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  #1 SailorSteve

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Posted 06 January 2013 - 06:36 PM

Jeff, I received both of your books on Friday. Great weekend reading!!  I've build several plywood boats but your SOF designs and techniques really excite me.   I'm ready to build but need to narrow the choice down to one.   Because of my size and physical abilities, I had all but chosen Vardo. Seems roomy.  However, for my first boat, likely to be given to a smaller family member later, I was thinking about the shorter Curlew.  My kayaking will be in local lakes and rivers in Middle Tennessee, as well as protected coastal bays and tributaries.

 

Here's he deal.  I'm 5'8" and a thick 260 pounds.  OK I'm fat. :)   The knees and hips just aren't as flexible as they used to be, so bending like a pretzel to get into or out of a boat with a tight cockpit isn't fun.  Based on this, what's a good choice?   Are all of your coaming sizes the same (34")?   By the way, it wouldn't offend me if you said I was too fat and to build the StoneFly or Messabout 15 instead.  But I was really hoping for something that performed better than a recreational kayak.     Thanks for the reply.

 



  #2 Kudzu

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Posted 07 January 2013 - 06:21 AM

Your weight is not a problem in a Curlew. It will probably feel snug but a kayak is supposed to be snug. But when I say snug, I don't mean you are locked inside the boat either. But you don't have a lot or room to move around and you shouldn't have, kayak are small boats and you don't want to move around in it. VARDO is larger and you might find it more comfortable, hard to say. It was a little to large for my taste, that is part of the reason I sold mine. But if you have never spent much time in a kayak, it will probably feel small.

 

I use the same coaming size on everything except the High Volume Firefly.

 

There is a trick to getting in a kayak. You can sit on back deck right behind the coaming. You will have to extend it out to one side and lead that way to balance yourself. You sit down, bring in your legs and the slide into the seat. You do right the opposite to get out. The other way is to sit in the seat and the pull in your legs. This is more stable than the other method and there is enough space to do this but it is awkward for some people. Heck, either is awkward for a new paddler. It takes practice but it becomes second nature.


Jeff
Kudzu Craft SOF kayaks
www.kudzucraft.com

  #3 woodman

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Posted 07 January 2013 - 07:35 PM

I guess you could build the coaming ring first and try to get in and out of it...



  #4 Kudzu

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Posted 08 January 2013 - 05:30 AM

I guess you could build the coaming ring first and try to get in and out of it...

I tried that when I started designing my first boat and it really doesn't tell you much about getting in and out. It will tell you if your hips will fit. But without some frame work to support it doesn't tell you much. I ended up building a 6' section of a frame to do some fit tests on before I committed to my design.


Jeff
Kudzu Craft SOF kayaks
www.kudzucraft.com




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