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Folding Boat by Oru Kayak

This project is so good, it forced me to resurrect this blog!  I will be watching this project keenly.  Key points for me:

1. It’s a kickstarter project, which I admire.

2. 25 lbs.  Impressively light

3. freaking clever folding design!

My main concern for it right now is the durability of the folding points.  I wonder if repeated beach landings might take a toll and create weak points.  I think for many recreational kayakers, including myself, we aren’t really going to be on the water so often that this would particularly shorten the useful life of the boat.  I also expect patching would be pretty easy.

This is also raises corrugated plastic in my mind as a potential DIY boat material.

Check out the excellent video.  It’s no wonder these guys hit their target in 5 hours!

Oru Kayak: the origami folding boat by Oru Kayak — Kickstarter.

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Ridiculously Good Looking Boats

Photo by Kathy Mansfield

Photo by Kathy Mansfield

Among many others, I have long admired Iain Oughtred’s boat designs.  I found photographer Kathy Mansfield has uploaded this stunning set of photos of a variety of Oughtred’s designs sailing in Scotland.  Recently, I’ve been thinking more about building one of Oughtred’s designs, especially once I found you can purchase kits.  I’m eager to find a boat that can be launched and loaded single handed from a beach(< 250 lbs?), and can hold four people with either two people rowing or enjoying a relaxed sail in Boston Harbor.  I don’t know if this is really possible, but it’s my current fantasy.  Sailing performance can be worse than rowing, but stability it very important, and the ability to handle big wakes and unexpected weather.  Oughtred’s beamier double enders like his Ness Yawl look wonderful.  There is a wide variety of choices in this range, both Oughtred designed and others.  Regardless, these photos are just delicious.

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CMD Redwing 18 – A Pretty Bird

  The Redwing 18 from Chesapeake Marine Design fits many of my ideals for a Harbor cruiser / adventure craft.  It can take electric power with the efficient shape of a launch.  You can beach it, and it has berths.  At 18 ft, it should sit inside most garages.  It has a small cabin. I love traditional picnic launches, but I think Boston requires some protection in order to enjoy spring and fall, the most quiet and thus best seasons for boating.   CMD claims it can be built for $5000 in materials, which brings it out of the far reaches of the price stratosphere, where most boats float. Pang. They have the one for sale whose construction was documented over 3 issues of wooden boat magazine. Redwing 18 – Boat Plans and Yacht Designs — Chesapeake Marine Design.


UPDATE: CMD also wrote up a nice summary of choices in electric boat hull shape choices.  Check out the PDF.

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