Jim is a retired software/electrical engineer who enjoys the outdoors. He likes to challenge himself with creative projects at home.
Below is a table of material, cost, source and use. In the table I have included cedar for the lower hull. This is an estimate. I actually used left over planking from my last canoe project. I have also included some minor tools, like C-clamps, and jig saw blades, because I needed them. You may have all the tools you need:
- table saw
- router table - with 1/4" bead and cove bits
- random orbital sander
- hand saw
- phillips head screwdriver
- staple gun
- plane - box plane and sure form plane
- utility knife
- about 2 dozen C-Clamps - 1/2 a dozen spring clamps are handy also
So... the grand total FOR ME was $753.79 not including sales tax on some items.
Your project may cost more if you purchase tools or different materials.
Some of the ways to cut costs listed below I have done, some I have not:
- shop around for lowest cost epoxy and cloth- i found U.S. Composites to be the best price
- shop around for lowest cost cedar or use salvaged wood
- use salvaged wood for forms
- shop around for less expensive building material
- cut and mill your own strips
- make your own foot braces
- make your own bulkheads
- make your own seat
- loft your own plans instead of purchasing
Comment on costs:
The final cost may be higher than you expected. A well made cedar strip kayak may sell for $2000 - $4000 IF you found the right buyer. You can purchase used cedar strip boats for $800 - $2000 depending on condition, quality of build and other things. But you won't have the satisfaction you get from building the boat by hand yourself.
You could purchase a plastic kayak for a few hundred dollars. You could purchase a high end kevlar or fiberglass kayak for a few thousand dollars. But....the feeling of accomplishment you have when you finish, the compliments and questions you get when others see you paddling, and the satisfaction you feel when you take a paddling trip in a boat you made yourself is well worth the cost of material, in my opinion.
- Building a Cedar Strip Canoe: Estimating the Costs of Epoxy and Fiberglass
One of the major material costs of building a cedar strip canoe is epoxy and fiberglass cloth. There are a number of suppliers and epoxy costs vary a fair amount.
- Building a Cedar Strip Kayak: The Details: Interior Fiberglass
After a though round of planning, sanding, patching and more sanding on both the lower half and deck interior sides I was ready to apply the fiberglass.
- Building a Cedar Strip Kayak: The Details: Exterior Fiberglass and Planking the Deck
Once you have completed all of the sanding and caressing of wood in the lower part of the hull it is time to apply the fiberglass and epoxy
- Building a Cedar Strip Kayak: The Details: Stripping the Hull
This is the step in the build process where your kayak actually starts to look like something. This can be a source of motivation.
- Building a Cedar Strip Kayak: The Details: Stems and Sheer Clamp
The stems on a wood strip kayak are ¼ strips of wood which are steamed, shaped and glued together with thickened epoxy. The sheer clamp is what is used to attach the deck to the bottom of the hull.
- Building a Cedar Strip Kayak: The Details: Making and Setting Up the Forms
Making forms that determine the shape of the hull and deck, then setting them up on a build table for construction of a Cedar Strip Kayak.
- Building a Cedar Strip Kayak: The Details: Lofting the Plans
I decided to build another cedar strip kayak. I’ve kind of had an itch to build another boat. I previously built two cedar strip canoes and one cedar strip kayak. I want to take the less expensive route, so I will do some things to cut costs.
- Building a Cedar Strip Canoe: The Basics
A practical account of my experiences and a brief guide to building a cedar strip canoe. It includes links to stories of using the canoe for wilderness camping and fishing.