Tuesday, November 19, 2013

Flat-Bottomed Kayaks of the Eastern Arctic

I am about to launch off on construction of a flat bottomed kayak of the Eastern Arctic type.  Since I know nothing about these kayaks, I don't know what to expect.  Supposedly they are reasonably fast in spite of their flat bottoms.  The big plus of these kayaks would be their stability.  We'll see.
Eugene Arima has an article on this boat type HERE from which the illustration above was excerpted. The U of Alaska Press also has a book out on the kayaks of the Eastern Arctic. 
I also just paid ten bucks to get a manual from David Zimmerly on this type of kayak.
Zimmerly also has a reprint of his article in Sea Kayaker Magazine available.
And Harvey Golden has created a replica of the type of boat.
More to come.


Pastry Chef said...

looking forward to the end product

Wolfgang Brinck said...

Pastry Chef, you will get to ride it

Anonymous said...

Wolfgang, I found the articles extremely interesting. As an older, unflexible beginner, I'm having trouble graduating to boats with lowe initial stability. This suggests that the tradeoff between initial stability of flat bottom to get secondary stability might not be necesary. What's your take on that? Is this all too good to be true?

Wolfgang Brinck said...

anonymous, I've done some reading of what Eugene Arima has written about the Eastern Arctic kayaks. Apparently, while they share some common characteristics they still varied a good deal in particulars like width and length.
I have no desire to build a 27 foot long kayak with a 28 inch beam that weighs over a hundred pounds. What I will be building will be under 18 feet and maybe 26 inches wide. I already have a very wide and very heavy baidarka.
As for initial and secondary stability, I have no opinions on that other than that the wider and flatter and heavier a boat is the more stable it becomes. How an actual boat behaves I cannot predict. However, this boat I am building won't take long and I will report on its behavior. I am sure it will be stable. What I don't know is how much work it will be to paddle. Big heavy boats are usually not fun to paddle. So the question is, how stable can you make a boat without taking the fun of paddling out of it?
My other question is how this kayak will behave in waves. Here in SF bay we have short fairly steep waves when the wind blows on summer afternoons. The rest of the time the water is pretty flat. SF bay is where I do most of my paddling so a boat that handles these conditions well would be an asset.