Skin on Frame Kayak Building
There are several different ways of building a kayak, including one similar to the method used by the original kayaks builders. The Eskimos and others native to the arctic used skin on frame kayak building to create boats for hunting and fishing. Like all native peoples, they used materials that were readily available to build their boats. The materials they had in abundance were seal skins and whale bones, so that is what they built skin on frame kayaks. Whale bones were used to build a frame, over which seal skins were stretched and secured with seal ligaments.
Today, using seal skins and whale bones in skin on frame building is not a practical option. This method is still used today, and is sometimes called wood and canvas kayak building to more accurately reflect the materials used. Wood has taken the place of whale bones in forming a frame, over which canvas or nylon is stretched. This method of building kayaks is still popular because it creates a kayak that looks quite similar to those the Eskimos used. Skin on frame kayaks are also lightweight, durable, and need only a little care. Skin on frame building also uses materials that are easy to find and relatively inexpensive. There are even a few different plans for building a skin on frame kayak, so hobbyists have some choice in what their boat will look like. Whether because it is a more traditional boat or because of the advantages of skin on frame kayaks, this building method remains popular today.
Kayak Paddle Building
Wood is generally used in kayak paddle building because it is readily available.
Stitch and Glue Kayak Building
Stitch and glue kayaks can be painted to suit the builder’s taste.