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Building Your Kevlar Canoe: A Foolproof Method and Three Foolproof Designs Paperback – May 1, 1995

4.1 out of 5 stars 16 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

Review

``Even though we didn't build a Kevlar canoe ourselves with the book, its easy-to-follow directions certainly make us want to.'' (Paddler)

From the Back Cover

As any canoe enthusiast knows, Kevlar is the perfect hull material for building strong, light (35 pounds for a 17-footer), fast, maintenance-free canoes. Far superior to fiberglass, Kevlar--literally bulletproof and virtually indestructible--has one drawback: It's expensive. A factory-built Kevlar canoe can easily sell for $2,000 or more.

Here's a low-tech method for building high-tech canoes from Kevlar. With this book, the most inexperienced home builder can turn out a handsome canoe for an investment of about $600 and a few weekends. The building method centers on the foam sheathing used in home insulation, drywall compound, a $5 hand plane, and a sharp pair of scissors. Boatbuilding doesn't come any easier than this.

Ingenious, simple, and inexpensive.

Here is all you need to know to build a light, strong, maintenance-free Kevlar canoe in your backyard or basement--without an elaborate tool collection or years of boatbuilding experience.

  • A Tripper for Extended Wilderness Journeys
  • A Stable Family Canoe
  • A Swift Solo Canoe
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 184 pages
  • Publisher: International Marine/Ragged Mountain Press; 1 edition (May 1, 1995)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0070430365
  • ISBN-13: 978-0070430365
  • Product Dimensions: 7.3 x 0.5 x 9.1 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 10.4 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 4.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (16 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #894,384 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback
I bought this book and used it to build an ultralight solo Kevlar canoe that I'm very happy with. It is not a complete, step-by-step guide; however -- you will have to use your ingenuity from time to time and read between the lines. I definitely recommend it if you want to build with Kevlar; indeed, it's the only book of its kind. But you should read it three times before you start building, and discuss its method with your resin/fabric supplier, who may give you valuable supplemental information. And, ideally, talk to someone who has already built a canoe using these methods. But the method which the author has developed is straightforward, and you don't need a fancy workspace to build your boat. I built mine outdoors, in the back yard, in a few weekends.
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Format: Paperback
I was in the market to purchase a kevlar canoe when I stumbled across this book. This book does such a good job of explaining how to build your own Kevlar canoe, that I gave up the search for a new one and decided to build my own. This book lets the reader know that with some very simple techniques, almost anyone can build a Kevlar canoe. I am currently in the middle of my project and I have been very happy with the level of detail provided in this book.
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Format: Paperback
I bought this book and used it to build an ultralight solo Kevlar canoe that I'm very happy with. The construction process was fun, and it's certainly more satisfying to make your own Kevlar boat than to pay $2000 for a new one. An added benefit of building your own is that you'll have complete confidence -- and the necessary materials -- when you need to repair it. This book is not an absolutely complete, step-by-step guide; however. You will have to use your ingenuity from time to time and read between the lines. I definitely recommend it if you want to build with Kevlar; indeed, it's the only book of its kind. But you should read it three times before you start building, and discuss its method with your resin/fabric supplier, who may give you valuable supplemental information. And, ideally, talk to someone who has already built a canoe using these methods. And search the web for discounted second-quality Kevlar fabric, which is perfectly good for boat building!
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Format: Paperback
I followed this book and built my canoe. It was more a therapy project for me so it took longer than an average person, but it is doable as a summer project. No special skills required and just basic tool knowledge. Read the book carefully and understand what you are going to do before you do it and you'll do great. As the other reviews have mentioned, there are some gray areas, but with a little thought, you can work this out with no problem. One question I had, I wrote to the publisher and they forwarded my letter to the author who responded back to me--all in a timely manner. Had the canoe out for the maiden voyage a few weeks back and everything went great! Very rewarding to build it yourself.
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Format: Paperback
This is an interesting book. I liked reading about how to make a male mold. It definitely is for builders who want a light boat and are not really concerned with looks. I am not sure that the costs are as low as the author writes though so shop around carefully for Kevlar because this is very expensive material. Check to make sure that you are not sacrificing a few pounds for hundred of dollars more in materials. Glued lapstrake plywood building and cedar strip can be very light, beautiful looking boats too at fairly low costs if you build yourself. Make sure you check out all options.

After reading the book, I realized this method of building would be too expensive for me (due to Kevlar costs).
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I built a canoe. It is beautiful and paddles well. People that but things are suckers. I learned how to do some things better through trial and error, but I wouldn't have a finished canoe without this book. Also the myrabo guy posted his experience online, that was equally as helpful.
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Format: Paperback
The guide has some very excellent information on creating a plug and molding a canoe. We found it to be a very good resource when making a copy of one of our designs.

The use of common materials to create a high quality canoe is insightful, inexpensive and the directions are easy to follow. Concepts are explained well, with plenty of pictures and should make the process easy to replicate.

Overall this book is very well done and a valuable guide for anyone wanting to build their own boat.
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Format: Paperback
This book was an excellent guide to building a composite canoe (or anything like it). I read it and got started with no previous experience. It answered every question that came up and I didn't run into anything I didn't expect. I would suggest this book to anyone who wants a guide to doing this sort of composite work.
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