Thursday, May 10, 2007

It Floats!!!!!!

With the kayak nearly complete and a beautiful day that seemed perfect, we decided to try the new kayak on the water. After supper on Tuesday we loaded up the kayak and took it the 700 m to the local suburban park, a conservative location for our test paddle. Rob & Lynette and the kids came out for the unofficial launching.

My wife & I were very happy with how it paddled. We expected that it might feel a bit 'tender' as it is a boat that's a bit narrower from the kayaks we have experience in (poly boats such as the CD Storm and CD Squall), but it didn't. In fact, it seemed very stable. The conditions, being glass calm on a small pond, were not exactly conducive to testing the limits of a craft designed for use on the ocean open with a load of gear, but it was a starting point to gain confidence in a craft I am intimately familiar with, yet have only been introduced to. My wife reported that the kayak seemed fast to her. It was easy enough to keep going in the right direction and certainly turned quickly. Also the custom fit Snap Dragon spray skirt seemed to fit very well (tight to get on, but not difficult). The seat needs some fine tuning but seemed pretty comfy and the addition of a backband will certainly help.

Of course, we took a couple of photos (click photos for larger versions).

The girls check it out for fit:
My wife takes the honours of the first paddle:
My turn:
A bit closer up:
Rob's turn:
Now the kids go for a spin:

I took a couple of videos too. Video was taken using a point & shoot digital camera so don't expect high resolution, plus I lost some resolution when uploading it to photobucket. Clicking on the thumbnails should take you to the video.

My wife and daughter:
My wife & older daughter:Rob:
There are still a few things left to do before I can call the kayak complete:
  1. Finish the seat
  2. Finish the backband
  3. Build the bulkhead footbrace
  4. Install deck bungees
  5. Polish the dust out of the varnish.