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Posted By Dan Caouette

Sections: Catalog of Designs | Clearcoated – Strip | Painted – Strip | Stitch & Glue | Skin-On-Frames | Hybrids | For Kids | Price List

General Information

Specimen from East Hudson Bay
Specimen from East Hudson Bay

The kayak is a symbol of the cultural connection to both the surrounding land and water. Kayaks were traditionally made of a wooden frame stretched with sealskin or caribou hide depending on the region. Above the tree-line, the frame would have been built from scavenged wood and driftwood. The traditional skin-on-frame kayak is a sleek craft built primarily for hunting. The kayak was a vessel for hunting narwhale, seal, walrus, birds, caribou, fish, among other fauna. The hunter’s tools would have been attached to the deck of the kayak for ease of access.

The designs were specialized for the local conditions and needs of the hunters. Some areas had exposed coasts and other areas were relatively protected. Some groups had to transport their kayaks over a long distance to the water and other groups were right next to the water. The same is true today. Kayaks come in wide variety of designs from the specialized serious ocean play boat, the “Black Pearl”, to recreational designs destined for more sedate inland ponds and rivers, like the “Saco.”

Custom, hand-made, cedar strip and skin-on-frame kayaks for virtually any application. We can build virtually any kayak you can envision.  Here are the general build styles:

Catalog of Designs

We have designed a few kayaks ourselves but most come from respected designers. We now have a formal agreement with the Swedish designer Björn Thomasson (Sweden) to build all of his designs. He has been designing boats of all sizes since the mid-1970’s and has become one of the most respected names in the industry. He also designs kayaks for the commercial companies Seabird Designs (Norway) and Nordic Kayaks (Sweden). More information on all the designs we sell.

Clearcoated – Strip

Basic information on the features and construction of a bright, clear finished wooden kayak with basic or artistic stripping.

Painted – Strip

Basic information on the features and construction of a painted, wood-core fiberglass kayak.

Stitch & Glue

2013 "Areia" Black Pearl
Basic information on the features and construction of a plywood core “stitch & glue” wood-core fiberglass kayak. Clear coated or painted.

Skin-On-Frames (SOF)

Though we generally build wooden core fiberglass kayaks, we can even build you a high performance replica of an aboriginal skin-on-frame boat using modern materials.


Why not combine the best features of different build styles?  Want a painted white cedar hull and a SOF deck?  How about a plywood hull and deck stripped in African sapele?  We can do that and more.

For Kids

If your child is old enough to paddle their own boat and wish they had their own kayak, we can build kayaks for their size in any of the above building methods

Price List

These are starting prices for each style of construction and include items listed as “Standard.”  Different construction layups, options and custom work will change the prices.  All prices is USD.  Shipping extra.

Clearcoated (Strip)


Painted (Strip)


Stitch & Glue






Kids (Wood Strip)


Kids (Stitch & Glue)


Kids (SOF)


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High performance kayaks, canoes and other small boats. Crafted individually in the USA.