Wood and Canvas Kayak Building

Author(s): George Putz

Nautical - Boatbuilding

The design of the kayak comes from the Eskimos of Southwestern Greenland, with dimension-sawn wood substituted for a frame of carved driftwood and bones, and canvas substituted for animal skins. The building techniques are simple but elegant, incorporating modern adhesives to reduce the number of screw fastenings and the degree of precision required, while still creating a strong, light boat. Ordinary shop tools and locally available woods will suffice. The two kayaks shown under construction in this books many photos and drawings--a 17-footer and an 18-footer--were built from the same lines and offsets (included in the book). Putz shows how to scale the boat up or down to any size using a pocket calculator. He also shows how to cover the boat with fibreglass rather than canvas if desired.


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"Give Wood and Canvas Kayak Building a read. First by the fireplace and then page by page in the shop." Canoe "Few writers are as candid or encouraging." Sea Kayaker

George Putz lives in Boothbay Harbor and Vinalhaven, Maine, where, among other activities, he writes and builds kayaks. Coeditor of the Mariner's Catalogs and editor of The Island Journal, he is also the author of The Spirit of Massachusetts and other books about ships and boatbuilding. Putz has built 15 kayaks of this design over the years.

1. Introduction 2. Space, Tools, and Materials 3. The Parts of a Kayak / Getting Out the Form 4. Uprights, Stems and Knees, Stringers and Chines 5. Floor, Gunwales, Trestlework, and Deck Beams 6. Bottom Canvas, Cockpit Carlins, Deck Stringers, Deck Canvas, and Painting 7. Finish Woodwork, Varnishing, Paddles and Oars 8. Launching and Using Your Kayak / Diseases, Mishaps, and Repairs 9. Final Remarks Appendix A: "Building Plans of Walrus, Eskimo Kayak," reprinted from The Rudder, June, 1923 Appendix B: Manufacturers and Suppliers of Materials Index

General Fields

  • : 9780071559393
  • : mcgraw
  • : mcgraw
  • : July 1990
  • : 234mm X 188mm X 10mm
  • : United States
  • : books

Special Fields

  • : George Putz
  • : Paperback
  • : 623.8
  • : 196
  • : illustrations