CLC Pax 20 Kayak

I am trying to find anyone who has built or owns a CLC Pax 20 Kayak. I am interested in learning how it handles, how easy it is to build, etc…

I have paddled one
and IMO they handle quite well. More stable than you would think. I was paddling in about a 2’+ steep chop (which actually helped a bit because I was able to pivot on top of the waves to turn, no rudder on the one I was in) I have built a CLC kit (Eastport Pram) so I can vouch for their product even though I have not built that particular boat. The bottom line is that I’d like to own one.

Pax 20 in Texas Water Safari
Doug Rhude paddled Pax 20 in several Texas Water Safaris I have pictures of kayak in my TWS 2003 report:

This year he paddled the Safari in a new boat based on Pax 20 (open cockpit, some modification to the hull lines). I don’t have his e-mail but you can contact him through one of Texas racing discussion forums where he is posting some times:

Pax 18
I’ve built a Pax 18 so I can’t comment on the performance of the 20 but the build was pretty straightforward.The only hard part was installing the front deck which has a lot of curvature but it did go down with some help and the boat is still fine after 4 years.


Patuxent 19.5
I built CLC Patuxent 19.5, a precursor of Pax 20, a few years ago. It was my first stitch-and-glue kayak. The entire process was really straightforward. The construction of Pax 20 is a little bit more complicated but I wouldn’t expect any major problems.


how do you find the pax 19.5 speed compared with your other boats? i ask because my regular ski paddling partner is thinking of building a pax 20, with the idea of using it in the watertribe ultramarathon, while i use the thunderbolt. we are also considering using skis, but are thinking that a closed boat with storage might be better, since we have to carry a fair amount of crap for the race.

your thoughts?


Put a post on CLC site
CLC has a discussion forum and I suggest you put your inquiry there.

CLC frequently brings a rack of boats out to the Chesapeake Paddlers weeknight paddles. You could also put a post on the CPA’s forums. There are some folks that paddle skis who may have tried out the Pax and be able to give you insight.

I paddled some of their boats a year ago and I think one was a Pax 19. The lines were very similar to my Azul Sultan, and it impressed me how much lighter the CLC was in comparison.

I don’t know CLC’s url. It should be easy to search out. CPA’s is

while we’re at it…

– Last Updated: Oct-18-05 8:08 PM EST –

......can anyone compare the Pax 20 to the Guillemot Mystery?

Love the lines on the Mystery but strip building is lots more time....

Take the time
Mystery is the real deal. Race boat from the ground up by a great designer.

I have heard things about PAX 20’s development I won’t repeat second hand, but suffice it to say it is not “all that” - and the different PAX differ in more than just number. I do love those long clean lines though, and it’s actually supposed to be one of their easier builds.

You can do better. Nick Schades s&g Night Heron is a good example of better.

  1. poor wave handling
  2. design doesn’t need a skeg,but it comes with one.
  3. doesn’t need a ‘kingplank’ for structural reasons but it comes with one.
  4. between the kingplank and skeg there’s about 4lbs of unnecessary weight. Racing kayaks have racing rudders.
  5. plumb ends can work in compound/developed surfaces not four panel hulls. Cutting off the ends of a long narrow “Greenland style” hull to make “plumb ends” leaves you with two vertical transom pieces in the bow/stern. Not too much of a problem in the stern (look at most rudderered boats) but in the bow it presents a flat plate in 1’ waves and a nice vertical ploom on flat water. It does catch leaves. Look at a QCC or Epic kayak,those are plumb ends on a compound hull shape. The difference is that there really isn’t increasiing volume above the waterline in the Pax bow,it’ll dig and broach easily.

    feel free to e-mail,I built the first prototype 6yrs ago.

Nick Schade’s Designs
I totally agree regarding Nick’s designs, and will add that if you build one of his boats he is readily available for assistance… and (his site) provides extraordinary support from MANY very talented builders. I have been reading the daily postings on that site for years and have learned an incredible amount about building sng, strip and hybrid kayaks.

Nick came in 4th place in the Blackburn Challenge in this boat. Interestingly, one of his boats is in the Modern Museum of Art. He is a talented engineer by training…and an accomplished designer of successful performance kayaks.

I am building his hybrid Night Heron (sng hull/strip deck). Given the time, energy, sweat AND fun you will experience building, I highly recommend your considering a proven racing design by an accomplished designer who ‘walks the walk’…whose success comes from designing/building and personally supporting MANY in their building of boats.

BTW…I have NO formal relationship with Nick or his business other than having read the kayak building forum he has developed for an international community, read his book, am building his boat, and I met him one time when he readily offered to meet me at his home to demo his SNG and Strip Night Herons in a local pond. He is a great guy who has followed his passion and has done a fine job at supporting others in following their passion to build and paddle.

Just my .02 (or maybe a tad more)…


Go get 'em, Bob - er- SingAlong2
Nick sure seems to know his stuff regarding some incredible boat designs. I just can’t wait to try that hybrid Night Heron Bob is building.

C’mon Bob, finish that thing!!

fast kayaks
There are some other fast/racing kayaks in a strip construction:

Patuxent 19.5
Patuxent 19.5 is potentially the fastest in my paddling fleet, however, I prefer to paddle the Sisson Nucleus kayak with a high front deck and tiller bar setup - more comfortable and better for efficient paddling. Pax 20 is quite different design.

I believe that somebody was paddling a surfski in one of the recent WaterTribe Ultramarathons.

Custom Winters race kayak…
… meets the USCA “Sea Kayak” Spec. Has been successfully race by canunut winning and/or placing high in all results I’ve seen). It is significantly faster than a Q700 (which actually does not meet the spec!). Some images:

Nick’s Mystery is designed to meet the next spec up “Sea Kayak Touring Class”:

Though different sizes to meet different specs, I find the similarity of lines striking. This is of course due to the designs both being purpose driven and executed by top designers. Form follows function here, so of course they are similar.

not a precursor
the Patuxent 17, it and the Patuxent 19 are essentiall skinny Cape Charles kayaks. The Paxs aren’t derived from the Patuxents. I don’t know about the Patuxents besides the 17 I made, heinous in waves, the Paxs didn’t have a racer or experienced paddler anywhere near it’s design.

Nordic Arrow
Awewsome looking boats. I bouhgt plans for the nordic arrow last fall. Looking forward to building it.


Pax 20 build and performance
It took me about 3 months to finish, working an hour or so on it after work. It seemed like the first part of the build was most tedious. This involves glueing the hull planks together to form 20ft long pieces which make up the sides and bottom of the boat. Take your time to get this right. It could determine the whole outcome. The next tedious part is to wire these planks together (stitching) to form the hull. The rest of the build seems to go pretty fast.Just a lot of waiting for epoxy to dry and a lot of sanding.

During the build, I would spend a lot of time reading and re-reading the instructions. Have a firm grasp on your next mission and what lies after that. It might noy be a bad idea to read through the whole build several times so there aren’t any suprises. Good bedtime reading.

The boat is fast for a sea kayak. I’ve sprinted to 9mph, no current or wind. Racing or cruising speed can be 6.5 to 7. It takes nothing to go 6 mph in this. I installed a Sealine rudder with solid foot pegs and toe pedals. Turns o.k. for a 19’8" boat. Could use a larger rudder blade. I left the cockpit undecked and therefore have no thight braces. Even so, this boat is still stable and I assume it would be even more so with the braces.

I’d try one out ahead. I didn’t, but had a chance to get in one during the build. Found out that I was a little to big at 5’11" 190lb to have a comfy fit. This is the reason for the lack of a cockpit.

drop me an email if you get stumped.

…greyak says…

“have heard things about PAX 20’s development I won’t repeat second hand, but suffice it to say it is not “all that””

Come on now, spill the beans!!! Did they steal the design from a competitor? Problems with quality???

Help a brotha’ out…

See LeeG’s comments
Then read them again.