Wednesday, April 23, 2008

Pt. Hope Kayak Revisited

Two days ago the wind was blowing straight out of the west and whipping up whitecaps. So I thought it was time to give the Pt. Hope boat another try. As you may remember, its flatwater performance was unremarkable. Because the boat is short it has no glide. Because the keel line sweeps up at the stern, it does not track well. And because the bow is fairly blunt, the boat pushes a fair amount of water.
But I suspected that all these apparent faults might turn out to be virtues under the proper conditions. And in wind and short chop they were. The boat seemed to be just the right length for short steep wind waves. It rose nicely to the waves. The full bow no doubt helped as did the upswept keel line at the stern. At no point did the bow punch into an oncoming wave. By the same token, lack of glide in chop was not an issue. I don't think any kayak would have much glide in such conditions. And tracking was not an issue either. The wind and the waves were pushing the boat around to such an extent that lack of tracking wasn't noticeable.
So all in all, the boat was well behaved in rough water. I suspect that these were the conditions that it was designed for.


AaronH said...

Wolfgang, did you build your Pt. Hope kayak from a published survey? Sounds like a fun alternative to the recovery and retrieval style kayaks.

Wolfgang said...

Yes,the survey was originally made by John Heath and Fred Koenig in 1958. It was published in Qajaq Journal, Volume 2, 2004. You can order it here:
you will need to scroll down the page some to get to it.
I suspect that this boat was designed as a retrieval kayak because it wouldn't make that good a cruising kayak. But it wouldn't take much to turn it into a decent cruising dayboat, maybe add a foot to its length and carry the depth of the keelson all the way back to the stern from the cockpit. This would essentially give you a Bering Strait hull form.
By the way, this boat is a much drier version of a retrieval kayak than the 10 footer popularized by Morris.

Wolfgang Brinck said...

the url for plans in the previous post got chopped. I omit the http:// so it will fit on one line:

AaronH said...

Thanks for the info!