Some designs such as those from One Ocean Kayaks and Guillemot Kayaks utilize an internal spine which the moulds are then slid over rather than using a strong back or better still in conjunction with one . These kits are available for $125.00 CDN funds.
We have designed and offer a robust, straight and true spine kit which is available with the Courier Kit as well as for the Totem kit. Again we have utilized the hollow box beam concept for exceptional strength and rigidity with minimal pieces to glue up. Once glued up it is virtually indestructable. However we still advise that you work with a straight and true strong back and build some snug cradles trued up by a chalk line, fastened to the strong back to rest the spine in.
As shown they are professionally machined from kiln dried lumber to exacting tolerances to slid your molds over should you purchase them direct from either One Ocean Kayaks, or Chesapeake Light Craft, or decide to make them yourself. Dowels for alignment and biscuits for joining ends are included, as well as a complete set of on line instructions.
The real beauty of these components is that they are hollowed out to slide the 5/8″ plywood or MDF bow and stem mold inside rather than cutting them out and fitting them over giving a much more solid and straightening effect to the front and rear of the craft. A real pleasure to work with.
Once the short dowel alignment pieces are glued in place all pieces of Spine -Align will glue up straight and true almost as if the entire unit is one smooth extrusion. These precision milled pieces by will give you a job that would be difficult to match by working with a table saw or any other equipment that some people have in their own shop.
Milled from kiln dried Balsam -Fir, or Pine, “Spine-Align” for Totem kits are full length up to 18′ long and are shipped in 8 ft. lengths for courier kit lengths. Supplied with full instructions for an easy glue up, these components will assure a perfect job from start to finish. The entire unit itself looks sculptural almost whale like hanging from your shop ceiling after your kayak is complete, and a great conversational piece as well.
– straight and true.
And in the photo below, we can see the cradles with the strong back which we highly recommend to use with Spine-Align. Rather timely this photo was taken just recently in a wonderful little shop at Toquenatch Creek Kayaks owned and operated by Jurgen Koppen. What makes his shop even more awesome is the fact that it is off-grid with all his power being generated by solar as well as water via a stream running right by his shop. I have had the pleasure of knowing Jurgen by long distance for over ten years, and now our shops are only a ferry ride apart. In the foreground are strips provided by Totem Strips for him to try out on his next project. He seemed quite impressed by the colour and variety in species as well as size of strips.
So if you would like high quality components for your kayak but don’t really have the time to build and want a piece of art then look no further as Jurgen is a master at one of a kind kayaks. Your kayak will surely turn heads but be prepared to wait a little as Jurgen is booked well in advance and for good reason.
If you wish to see more of his artwork simply visit his site at Toquenatch Creek Kayaks.