A stitch & glue rolling kayak.

I would like to build a stitch and glue kayak for Greenland rolling skills developement. Other than the Night Heron, I know of no other available plans, and it has a bit too much volume. Unfortunately, the Greenland design is not available in S&G, or it would do well. I have seen kayaks similar to what I want, so I know there are plans out there, somewhere. I don’t have anything against SOF, but would prefer building with bulkheads and small hatches to increase the kayaks usefullness as a day/play boat. At this point, I am considering a modified S&G Night Heron, built to similar dimensions to the strip built Greenland model, with an ocean cockpit. Any of you have any ideas?

Pt. Bennett kayak

The owner doesn’t seem to have difficulties rolling his boat.

S&G plans…
There are more kits only available than plans only.

The Cirrus is a boat that has always caught my eye…



A Greenland Stitch & Glue Idea
In 2007, I too had the same thoughts as you. I was not ready for building a SOF, but wanted to get a hard shelled boat that would allow me to perform all Greenland Style competition rolls. I looked at and tried the Betsie Bay DIRK at that time, It was not to my liking.

By chance, a friend of mine was just starting the Night Heron as a stripper and was getting rid of an unfinished Stitch & Glue kit that he determined was not his thing. I bought the kit and modified the design enough to gain a excellent paddling and competent rolling boat.

The dimensions are approximately (as I recall immediately) Length: 17’3", Beam: 19", Waterline Beam: < 18", Aft-Cockpit Sheer: 5 1/4", Fore-Cockpit Sheer: 7 1/4". It is a hard chined, mid-range v-bottom, mid-range gunnel-sheer. Cockpit dimensions are 15"x17".

Creating this from the original specs was not hard at all. essentially, I cut the gunnel down by 2 1/2"+, pinched the beam in by 2", and left the cockpit uncut from the basic ocean design. I built it from a kit, so nearly everything was supplied.

So you ask, what was the kit I started with? A CLC Arctic Hawk by Mark Rogers.

Unfortunately, I have deleted my old blog from the build process, but a few shots remain at:




Having finished it, I have many things that I would do different.

As another alternative, I recently tried the the Tahe Marine and found it to be an excellent roller. Although I thought it had too much room in it, paddlers not using it primarily for rolling would likely say otherwise. It’s one unfortunate bad feature is the fore rocker which creates a slow boat and a bad tracking boat when paddling backwards.

If you decide to try a Stitch & Glue, I would be delighted to talk with you more about the concept.

Modify a kit or use plans
I have a S&G hull with bulkheads and a soft top. It was modeled after a chopped Sequin, a kayak that was “chopped” down to make a lower volume kayak. You could build the hull of a kit (or use plans) and sit in it in the water and have someone mark the waterline. Then you could cut off the top portion of the hull to allow for the amount of freeboard you want. Add bulkheads and a soft top and you’ll have a really neat kayak. I love mine - El Chupacabras - the yellow and blue one in the photos. Just make sure you get a kit (or use plans) that is not too wide and has some flare in the topsides (easier to balance brace). Or, buy an already built wooden kayak and chop it. http://outdoors.webshots.com/album/170406308EXQMec

Wish I could have seen your blog!
I built a Rogers/CLC Arctic Hawk (one of the first, once they were offered as a kit, in fact). I did entertain the idea of modifying the kit as you did, thinking that I’d like a lower volume, more “sporty” version of the boat. Being my first building experience, I finally decided to just build it as it was. I learned a great deal during that process, and now I would have the confidence to modify plans in the future–if I feel the need. My full size AH is still a pleasure to paddle–and to roll–and for the longer paddling trips, it can hold quite a bit of gear as well, so I’m still very happy with it; even if a lower volume version would be more fun in many ways.

If you have any more information you’d like to share about the way you went about your modifications, I’d be happy to learn more!


Check out this string:
http://www.paddling.net/message/showThread.html?fid=advice&tid=1190645&PHPSESSID=497e4af1433f56345ab4af753603a580 for plenty of info on your question.

Ah, El Chupacabras!
Is that the qajaq I recently admired at Delmarva? If so, that’s what got me thinking about this whole S&G vs SOF thing. I like the combination. Sort of the best of both worlds. We need to talk. Like what hull plan to start with, how to do the cockpit combing, attach the soft deck, etc. Please drop me an email! I have been in on the constuction of one S&G and a few SOF’s, so I feel comfortable with either method. I had my Impex Outer Island at the Retreat, and would like something a bit more biased toward a rolling boat, but with just a bit more comfort and utility. Ken…

I built and paddled a S&G
Night Heron for a couple years and would not recommend it for greenland techniques. It was impossible to balance brace and had no secondary stability. I would highly recommend The Outer Island kayak for performing greenland techniques. When purchasing a kayak beware of the term greenland, it is used very loosely and means different things to different people. Make sure the kayak handles the way you want a kayak to handle.

Yes, El Chupacabras was at Delmarva
My husband also had a hard bottom (but his was cedar stripped) and soft top kayak at Delmarva. We’re both hooked on this build method for various reasons; ease of getting in, bulkheads and light weight. For a more detailed look at the build process of my husband’s kayak you can see a photo journal here: http://waldenqajaqsociety.info/gallery/index.php?cat=10009

I’ll send you a PM with more info.

Black Pearl
Some people have built Bjorn Thomasson’s Black Pearl as a S&G. The plans are custom sized to fit you.


There is mention of this way down at the bottom of the page under comments as well as a link to pics.

It’s a sweet boat no matter how you build it.



Love This Qajaq!
The Black Pearl is one of my favorite qajaqs. Wouldn’t mind trying to build one in S&G myself. LOL!


low volume S&G
Looking for plans for a low volume S&G. I mean low volume like a Betsie Bay (BBK.com), 18.5" -19" beam 19’ long. I have a BBK Valkyre, but its too small and I need a 19’er. Anyone know of such plans. Or would like to build a SoF that instead of ribs uses hollow stations and stringers.