Decked Kruger Seawind style build

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I was wrong. The anemometer at the Livingston airport must have broken around midnight last night with an 89 mph gust. Wind gusts seem stronger now.
 
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Just stating the obvious here, but that is one jaw-dropping build. Congratulations Mark
 
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Sunny, with a high near 60. Southwest wind 44 to 55 mph, with gusts as high as 70 mph.

The warm temps in the winter always come at a price here. I don't know if I'll even attempt to put the canoe on the car.

Yeah, that would be a bit much.

I have beat the bejeepers out of our Monarch, dragging it ashore loaded in windy, wave swept boulder landings, screeching horribly across oyster bars and once even bridging it when a large wave put the bow and stern fully on land, with the center of the boat (with me in it) left unsupported. I was surprised that I could jump out of the cockpit with such speed.

But the worst damage I ever caused was putting in on the roof racks at the end of a trip in high winds. It had been an arduous paddle out in the wind, blowing 30, gusting 50. I was tired and not thinking and put the Monarch on the racks when a fierce gust lofted it like a kite before I could do anything.

Trying to catch a 17 foot decked canoe as it sails overhead is ineffectual at best. Bent the rudder arms and busted a chunk of gel coat out of the stern.

With a little time for distraught reflection I realized that if I moved the truck 50 feet, to the lee of a little shack, I could try again with more wind protection. Getting a 55 lb decked canoe on high roof racks without help is a challenge at the best of times.

Hoping your winds calm and temps stay warmish.
 
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I was finally able to get the canoe out on the water. We had temperatures in the mid-40's (F) this weekend and it wasn't too windy. There was too much shore ice here along the Yellowstone, so we drove west an hour to Three Forks, Montana where the Jefferson, Madison, and Gallatin Rivers come together to form the Missouri River. There's a state park there, Missouri Headwaters State Park, with a boat ramp and a nice gentle section of river that generally stays ice free if it hasn't been too cold. It's really a nice section of river to play around in during lulls in the winter weather.

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This canoe rides nicely on an old Subaru Outback wagon.

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No shore ice along this section, so no problem getting the boat in.

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All my concerns about this canoe being tippy were laid to rest right away. The shape of the hull is a bit deceiving though, it's much rounder than anything else I own, or have ever paddled as far as I know. Here I am with the seat at mid height, but even with it at maximum height it was fine. With full tripping weight the boat will be rock solid.

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I wasn't aware at the time that the rudder wasn't deploying fully. I don't know what the issue was. The pedals seemed to steer the canoe fine though. It's hard to tell whether this boat is faster than the Kruger, it should be with the rounder hull shape and the stiffer hull. The Kruger does have a little flex in it even with a dozen layers of Kevlar. The Sealect pedals will take a bit of getting used to. Luckily there is a lot of adjustment with those.

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I tried to paddle up one channel of the Gallatin River, and the canoe handled great. A rudder is great since you don't have to switch sides to keep your heading.

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I paddled downstream a ways and it took a while to get back up to the boat landing. The arms are definitely not in paddling shape.

Here's a video in case you need to see all this in motion.


Happy paddling, Mark
 
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Congratulations! She's a beauty. I don't have the patience for it, but I am glad some of the folks here do, so I get to see some really great self built canoes. Cheers!
 
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Looks great on the water, nimble and quick.

I may have missed it – did you get a final weight with seat, rudder & pedals?
 
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Mark, it looks great on and off the water. I remember my first water test too, its a great feeling to finally sit in the damn thing, on the water after toiling so many hours in the garage.

I haven't done more than about 25 miles over the course of about 7-8hrs or so in mine. Hoping to change that in the coming months. Anyway, this was out on our gulf coast and was pretty heavily loaded on that trip. We even hit a bad thunderstorm on our way back to the launch while still in open water and had to sprint about 3/4 mile in 25-30+ mph winds to a lee shoreline to hunker down.

I have zero experience with Krugers so I have nothing to reference in that regard, but this design paddled and handled very well to me, especially quartering into that squall line with me and about 80lbs of gear. It felt very safe seaworthy wise, lightening proof not so much. :)
 
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Trim looks good !

Now you have me wanting to get on the water !

looks great Mark ! That rudder looks like it's doing it's job!

Jim
 
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I don't know the weight yet Mike, but it's in the ballpark of the Kruger, so I'd say upper 50's as a guess. I plan to get this boat out on an extended trip, 3 or 4 weeks later in March, so ill get to test it out for real.

I've got the rigging in for flotation, the spray skirt and blue barrel tie downs. The glued together yoga block flotation is done. I varnished the deck, but still need to do the inside, and the outside of the hull. I made a cockpit cover but need to finish the spray skirt and shape the aluminum stays. I stole a back band off a sea kayak, so I still have to figure out the rigging for that. The good thing is that I'm done spending money on this boat, which really seemed to nickel and dime me towards the end.

Mark
 
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I don't know the weight yet Mike, but it's in the ballpark of the Kruger, so I'd say upper 50's as a guess. I plan to get this boat out on an extended trip, 3 or 4 weeks later in March, so ill get to test it out for real.

Mark, I will be interested in the weight, and I have no doubt it will shine as expedition designed on a long trip.


I've got the rigging in for flotation, the spray skirt and blue barrel tie downs. The glued together yoga block flotation is done. I varnished the deck, but still need to do the inside, and the outside of the hull. I made a cockpit cover but need to finish the spray skirt and shape the aluminum stays. I stole a back band off a sea kayak, so I still have to figure out the rigging for that. The good thing is that I'm done spending money on this boat, which really seemed to nickel and dime me towards the end.

I’d love to learn more about how you made the cockpit cover and spray skirt. Even the The “little” outfitting parts and pieces add up, and nickels and dimes become Hamiltons and Jacksons. A single Northwater double-D vinyl pad is $8. But that little stuff, D-rings and pad eyes, grommet straps and custom minicel combine to make a huge comfort and efficiency difference.

Any thoughts about a sail in your future? That is the finest way to travel in a ruddered boat.
 
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deerfly says:

Anyway, this was out on our gulf coast and was pretty heavily loaded on that trip. We even hit a bad thunderstorm on our way back to the launch while still in open water and had to sprint about 3/4 mile in 25-30+ mph winds to a lee shoreline to hunker down.

Deerfly, Didn't you do a write of that trip somewhere? I remember that but maybe I'm thinking of someone else.
 
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Mike, I just used an existing Kruger cover as a pattern and sewed it up. That description leaves out a lot of the fussing around I did, but essentially it's all trial and error. If I didn't have those to look at, I would have just laid out an old sheet or some plastic on the coaming and traced it out, adding some amount for seam allowance etc. I've made lots of outdoor gear over the years, so this was realatively easy. I haven't finished the spray skirt yet, but I'll make it like the Kruger design that has two #10 plastic tooth zippers in the front, radiating out towards the coaming. I'll post some pictures once I start putting that one together. Right now it just looks like another cockpit cover waiting to have a hole cut out of the middle.

For tie downs, I just epoxy and fiberglass loops of webbing to the inside of the hull. The ones I have on other boats have held up fine, but I can't say they've been put to very hard use.

My pad eyes are made from scrap wood. Here's what I did for the spray skirt ribs.

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I'm not sure about a sail yet. I had in mind one of those downwind types, but haven't really given it much thought.

Mark
 

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I got the canoe out again this week. Like before, I just paddled around a calm section of the river, this time just south of town on the Yellowstone River at the Point of Rocks fishing access. It was a little windy, which made it a bit difficult to get the boat on and off the vehicle, but it handled wonderfully once on the water. In fact, I don't think I really noticed the wind at all in this boat given its deck and low profile. I am really happy with the way this canoe rides and handles. As I said before, I was worried the round hull shape would cause it to be tippy, but that's not the case. It should be even more stable once I'm fully loaded with gear for 3 weeks, which is happening very soon.

Saw some eagles and an osprey, but the highlight was the 3 Bighorn Sheep rams that were right next to the water. Too bad I didn't bring a real camera.


I see that Jim Dodd already posted a comment on the video, and yes, I tend to favor my right side. I'm trying to force myself to paddle on the left though. I really need to drop the correction strokes, not needed with a rudder. This boat is great for upstream paddling, no correction strokes or changing sides.

Since the last video I now have the flotation and back rest installed. I stole the back rest from a plastic sea kayak. I also finished up the cover and spray cover. I'll post pictures of those soon, but I can't since I'm doing the varnish now.

Carrying it around, the boat seemed to be on the heavy side. Heavier than I had anticipated. I ended up borrowing a scale from a friend, so here is the final weight with everything: 61 lbs. You might ask: "What's the weight of your boat compared to a production Kruger Sea Wind?" I weighed the Sea Wind and it comes to almost exactly the same weight, 61.5 lbs. The Kruger has an integrated portage yoke, and this boat doesn't. There is a lot of room for lightening this boat, so I think if someone is not needing a hull quite as durable, shaving 8 lbs and bringing the weight to the low 50's is doable.

Mark
 
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