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  1. #1
    stevezonie Guest


    Please explain the pro's and con's of Stitch and Glue vs. Cedar strip construction. It is clear that S & G is quicker and probably makes a lighter boat, but beyond that? Is one stronger, easier to repair. Does one allow you to build a better designed boat? What are the maintenende and care issues with a wood kayak? Although I have been a professional furniture maker, I have zero boat building experience.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Apr 2000
    Cedar Rapids, IA USA


    Stitch and glue is definitely quicker. I would estimate about half the time or less of cedar strip. My 2 cedar strip boats probably averaged about 400 hours each. The weight depends on the material. If the S&G is okoume plywood and the strip is cedar, they should be about equal weight. if you use fir plywood, S&G may be heavier. Weight is not a problem when paddling. Sea kayaks often paddle better with a few extra pounds of weight. Both should be equal in strength. Cedar strip with 6 oz fiberglass on each side has about the same strength as 1/4" plywood according to Gougens. Depending upon what is damaged, repairs will probably be the same. Assuming the hull is holed, the repair procedure would probably be to fit a wooden patch with fiberglass and epoxy on both sides for reinforcement. So the main difference is in the shape of the hull. You can get a more refined hull shape using strips. Most S&G kayaks have a box or semi-vee cross section. Strip designs often have a round bottom. The round bottom is feels a little tippy when the boat is standing still, but once it is underway, it becomes stable. THe box cross section will initially feel stable, but will become less stable when tipped on edge to turn or brace against waves. The round hull has less wetted surface area, so will be slightly faster all else being equal(faster in a kayak means a fraction of a knot). Also, strip kayaks tend to have higher peaked decks, which means less room along the sides for foot room. If you are a beginning kayaker I would recommend a stitch and glue boat because it will feel more stable and you will not appreciate the subtle differences in hull shape. If you are an experienced kayaker, decide what qualities you want in your boat and pick a design accordingly.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    May 2001
    Roberts Creek, BC



    I just completed a S&G CLC LT17, and have had it in the water a half dozen times. I'm really happy with the result. Like yourself, My background is furniture and cabinet making, and building a kayak was a refreshing change. It took me awhile though, as I am used to fussing over the details.

    Go ahead, build one.


  4. #4
    Join Date
    Aug 2003

    cedar strip

    I finished a 11 1/2 foot lightweight cedar strip canoe last year. You sit nearly on the bottom, for a low c/g, and paddle with a kayak paddle. It was a ton of work having zero previous experience. There is no denying that the process is rather long, but I wouldn't trade a day's worth of compliments at the waterfront for anything. That said, I am just now embarking on a S & G kayak for my wife. Basically I want to experience a new technique in boat building, and complete it much less time. In terms of asthetics many would argue strip is the better; I am undecided at this point, the pictures of my design (West River) look fantastic. Give me a few months and I'll have some definate answers for you. P.S> I gotta build a three person sea kayak - this is what I really need.


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