Wooden Kayak Construction


microBootlegger Stern: Book-matched strip make symmetrical mirror-image pattern on the deckmicroBootlegger Stern: Book-matched strip make symmetrical mirror-image pattern on the deck

I build these boats out numerous narrow strips of wood carefully fitted together by hand. The wood is then contoured to a smooth, fair surface and covered with a layer of fiberglass saturated with epoxy resin. This composite construction provides a stiff, rugged shell that lets the beauty of carefully selected wood glow through. The epoxy provides a clear, waterproof protective shell over the wood that requires only minimum maintenance.

View a video of the construction process

Each boat is custom built to serve a specific design need. By careful selection of wood and other materials, the kayaks can be built as a super-light craft for easy transportation and gentle use or racing, or an extremely rugged vessel for extended trips in exposed conditions. Wood is a wonderful material which is comparable the best exotic high tech materials for strength and low weight. By strategic incorporation of modern materials these wooden kayaks and other small boats often improve on the strength and weight characteristics of the best commercial kayaks.

The beauty and elegance of these boats do not require a tradeoff in the quality of your on-the-water experience. You are getting a boat that glides through the water with a grace and smooth feel that you just don't experience in mass-produced boats. The beauty of the wood surrounding you just serves to enhance the sensory experience.

The Process of Building a Wooden Kayak