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Skin on Frame Kayak build

  • #1
    Registered Users Posts: 630 Nisio


    The short story is that I've broken up my river kayak; and looking around the internet came across skin on frame designs that look fairly interesting.

    I'm looking at building a disko bay sea kayak with a fuselage type construction (www.gentrycustomboats.com)

    )
    It looks like a handy build with plywood frames doing the heavy lifting (no steam bending of ribs); most of the specs online list materials that are more easily found in the US than here.

    This is a follow on post from some discussion in the wood craft forum where there are a few others looking to build similar.

    Timber options: looks for long (16 ft 6) lengths of clear vertical grain western red cedar. This isn't too handy to get here, some places can supply rough boards other places can machine but this increases the price a fair bit.
    Douglas fir is also supposed to be good but seems to be as expensive as the cedar. Yellow pine might be more reasonably found a a good price with the right lengths spec.
    In any case it seems hard to get 16 foot lengths so I'll have to learn how to scarf or butt lengths together.

    Marine ply: doesn't seem to be a shortage of places to get marine ply in Ireland.

    Kayak skin: either nylon or polyester. Nylon is tougher but can't be heat shrunk, loosens slightly when wet and is fussier about what you paint it with.
    Polyester can be heat shrunk which makes sewing it around the frame handier (iron out the wrinkles!) it isn't as tough as nylon, can be painted with more finishes.

    Neither can be found in Ireland. You can get both nylon and polyester in from the US but the postage is more than the fabric (George Dyson,

    , skinboats.com). In Europe theres a guy in Spain supplying nylon belone.net,

    do nylon in the UK, extremtextil.de have nylon and a polyester that might be too light.

    For me it looks like a choice of more expensive polyester from the US or cheaper nylon from extremtextil

    Assembly of the plywood forms and the gunnels/stringers/keel can be just lashing with heavy thread or lash and glue or glue and screw.

    The idea of lashing is attractive as there's no glue involved. Glue and screws seems to be the most secure method (west system have a cartridge based 2 part epoxy that's supposed to be good for this). To be decided...

    All of the above is all read from various internet builds/sites and should be take with a pinch of salt perhaps; if anyone has built something similar before I'd be happy to hear the what/hows/whys etc


    Oisin


Comments



  • Good man.
    As far as I'm aware, george dyson is skinboats.com
    You've gone a bit further down that road than I have, I was going to message George tomorrow and see what the shipping costs are.




  • Bogwoppit wrote:
    Good man. As far as I'm aware, george dyson is skinboats.com You've gone a bit further down that road than I have, I was going to message George tomorrow and see what the shipping costs are.


    I emailed him and he thought something like 60 dollars. He sent on his brochure which was great for info on fabric types etc. I wonder if it's much cheaper to send two sets of fabric in the one package?




  • Nisio wrote: »
    I emailed him and he thought something like 60 dollars. He sent on his brochure which was great for info on fabric types etc. I wonder if it's much cheaper to send two sets of fabric in the one package?

    Could well be, what was the price of the fabric?

    I'll figure out how much I need and we can put an order together.




  • Hi guy's and welcome aboard I look forward to seeing your builds :)

    I can't help much with the skins unless you want to use seal skins :eek:

    For the timber could you use Ash or iroko a bit heavier but stronger so you should be able to thin them out a bit. Doing a scarf joint and using epoxy to glue it will make a very strong join probably stronger than the wood itself also if you have any knots you can drill them out and fill the holes with thickened epoxy, I use west systems a lot and find the tins with the pumps very handy to work with.




    .




  • fergal.b wrote: »
    Hi guy's and welcome aboard I look forward to seeing your builds :)

    I can't help much with the skins unless you want to use seal skins :eek:

    For the timber could you use Ash or iroko a bit heavier but stronger so you should be able to thin them out a bit. Doing a scarf joint and using epoxy to glue it will make a very strong join probably stronger than the wood itself also if you have any knots you can drill them out and fill the holes with thickened epoxy, I use west systems a lot and find the tins with the pumps very handy to work with.




    .

    Thanks Fergal,
    The major concern with ash is the rot resistance (or lack of).
    The frame will probably be coats in epoxy but how much of a problem that will still be I don't know.

    Ash would certainly be great for the budget if it can be well protected.


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  • Bogwoppit wrote: »
    Thanks Fergal,
    The major concern with ash is the rot resistance (or lack of).
    The frame will probably be coats in epoxy but how much of a problem that will still be I don't know.

    Ash would certainly be great for the budget if it can be well protected.


    Once it is fully encapsulated 2-3 coats of epoxy it should not rot.



    .




  • fergal.b wrote: »
    Once it is fully encapsulated 2-3 coats of epoxy it should not rot.



    .

    Where do you get your epoxy resin from?




  • Bogwoppit wrote: »
    Where do you get your epoxy resin from?

    I get it in Marine parts direct as they are close to me but most marine shops will sell it.




    .




  • I found this in the UK this morning;

    https://www.profabrics.co.uk/products/outdoor-/uncoated-ballistic-nylon/0001868.html

    Looks perfect, how does the price compare to Dyson?




  • Hi there,
    I've built something similar a few years back. I'd be more inclined to go for the ballistic nylon as the polyester is very thin.
    Ash would be a fine choice, if a little heavier than WRC, I wouldn't worry about rot resistance too much. A boat like this will be most likely stored indoors and and won't be wet for prolonged periods. If you looked after the kayak you could use Spruce (white deal) or Norwegian Fir ( Red deal) both easily found and if you pick through a pack you could find some clear tight grained pieces. Even if you could only use half a stick you'd still be ahead in cost I would guess.
    Lashing is probably easiest as gluing all those intersections is time consuming, as each has to be clamped/screwed (not fond of this in end grain ply) and then cleaned up (major PITA) before applying cloth. It's also very easy to repair. And is nice and clean so you could do it in the living room.
    Hope this info helps. Also of all the boats I've built the SOF one gets the most use.


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  • Bogwoppit wrote:
    Looks perfect, how does the price compare to Dyson?


    For nylon everything from Europe is cheaper I think. If I remember the extremtextil site is cheaper than the UK site but it's out of stock til mid October




  • Nisio wrote: »
    For nylon everything from Europe is cheaper I think. If I remember the extremtextil site is cheaper than the UK site but it's out of stock til mid October

    The extremtextil stuff is heavier, perhaps too heavy maybe?




  • From stuff I've read 8 to 12 Oz seems to be the range used, the nylon on that site is 10 Oz I think.




  • From stuff I've read 8 to 12 Oz seems to be the range used, the nylon on that site is 10 Oz I think.

    I think because it's the ballistic grade the 8oz stuff from the uk would be plenty, it depends on the cost too though.
    I'll have to find out the shipping cost and factor that in too.
    Just had a quick look there, the extremtextil stuff is quite a bit cheaper and its a wider sheet. Plus it comes in white.




  • Actually got round to doing something on this today, went to a couple of spots local to try source some wood.

    The best I could find for WRC was Morgan's in Clondalkin, they have 20ft boards in 6"x1" for €48+VAT per cubic foot.

    That works out at about €48 for a length incl. VAT

    I reckon I'll get away with one length for my keel, chines and gunnels.

    I want to try get the frame knocked up over Christmas and then I'll start thinking about the skinning.

    The boards are rough and they don't have a cutting service there so I'll look to borrow or rent a table saw to rip them down (€40/day, a bit pricey but I don't fancy trying it with the circular saw or the jigsaw.




  • I haven't done much more since my last post, I've picked up some marine ply from a friend that I should be able to cut my internal frames from.

    Cut out a frame with regular ply on a scroll saw to see how it went, just as well I used a photocopy of the pattern and not the original! More practice needed

    I'm still leaning towards going with the polyester from George Dyson because it can be heat shrunk (easier to sew?) and takes more types of paint finish

    That info about Morgan for the cedar is great, being able to get 20 ft lengths would be much handier than scarfing two lengths

    I wonder how much a joiner would charge to cut the boards to size?




  • I don't know how much it would cost but it would probably be cheaper to rent a table saw and do it yourself.

    I think the Dyson material may be the way to go alright, I think I'll worry about that later though.




  • I've been doing some work on my Paddleboard frame over the past few weeks.
    Just waiting for the skin to arrive so I can finish it.




  • Looking good.




  • Junior cert woodwork finally put to good use.


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  • Good stuff!

    For various reasons I've scaled back from making a kayak to making a kayak paddle for now😕

    How did you get on with the timber in the end, did you get the cedar and rip it with a table saw?




  • Nisio wrote: »
    Good stuff!

    For various reasons I've scaled back from making a kayak to making a kayak paddle for now😕

    How did you get on with the timber in the end, did you get the cedar and rip it with a table saw?

    Yeah, it's pretty easy wood to work, the saw had no issues going through a 3 inch board.
    It's not the cheapest wood to buy but you can see why it's used, very light and strong.




  • Did you end up making the boat ?

    I'm going to make a skin on frame boat this Summer hopefully get it in the water by end of summer




  • SCOL wrote:
    Did you end up making the boat ?

    I didn't make a skin on frame boat in the end. I started a plywood stitch and glue kayak that I've been tipping away when time allows. Google "cnc kayaks shrike" the plans are free to download




  • Nisio wrote: »
    I didn't make a skin on frame boat in the end. I started a plywood stitch and glue kayak that I've been tipping away when time allows. Google "cnc kayaks shrike" the plans are free to download

    Did you get the plans printed off in the UK as per the website or can you get them done over here ?




  • SCOL wrote:
    Did you get the plans printed off in the UK as per the website or can you get them done over here ?


    Hackets in Dublin were able to print them, cost about 40 euro I think. I'd say most big print places could do it




  • Just saw your query and it triggered great memories of building a few 2 seater PBK20 canvas on framee canoes and enjoying the waves on Inchydoney Beach and esploring the coastal area East to Kinsale Head and West to the Galley Head and beyond. And yes we did discuss a possible trip from Crookhaven to the Fastnet Lighthouse but thankfully sanity prevailed as there were no backup boats available at that time. I even rigged a PBK 20 with Leeboards, mainsail and jib. learned to sail on it and had lots of fun around Clonakilty Bay.
    The frame was built with Baltic Birch Plywood and Larch stringers with Mahogany used for Coaming and Rubbing strip on gunwales and other fittings. The paddles were also made of laminated larch and split using telescopic brass tubing to enable them to be taken apart for storage. That canoe still exists in the rafers of a loft on my brothers farm. Yes you could poke your finger through the canvas at this stage but the frame is still intact, the larch stringers and Mahogany bits are still as good as Ithe day it was built but the plywood frames have totally delaminated at this stage. The frame and all wooden fittings were put together with Cascamite glue and brass or copper nails. Black Bostik was used to glue and seal the joints in the canvas which was then given a few clear coats of some waterproofing agent??
    I have a set of unused full size plans still in original envlope which was posted to me in Brazil in 1971. if anyone is interested in more info about the build or in the plan set Make me a reasonable offer. That is my canoeing story from West Cork from late fifties to early sixties, as you can deduce I am no chicken but still going strong boating and participating in water activities I guess it runs in the blood.


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