Sectional stitch and glue kayak

A read a pretty good article about this in Feb Sea Kayaker magazine. I have been interested in building a kayak for years, but don’t have the room to store it. Has anyone here attempted building a sectional? Could these kayaks be paddled in rough contitions or would that create to much stress on the bulkheads?

great question.

– Last Updated: Feb-16-09 6:25 AM EST –

I would very much like to read the comments to this one too.
I can't remember with whom I had this conversation but I believe it is a process where two bulkheads are epoxied side by side and then you just cut down the middle and you then have two watertight compartments. (or three)to assemble you just bolt it all together.
Certainly would increase the weight substantially.
I thought hard about doing this so I could have a hardshell wooden boat in Brazil without having to build it there but I am not convinced it has that many advantages.
I can just imagine that first cut into the deck. Did I measure this right? and then the Oh oh...


Twin bulkheads for and aft of the cockpit should do it. Maybe taper the “outer” copies of each slightly to match the curve of the hull.

But yea… cutting into the hull the first time would be a little nerve-racking. You’d have the stitch holes to guide you but still…


JEM Watercraft

Stitch & glue sectional dinghy

The VOLKSKAYAK Standard can be built as a sectional - I’ve seen several of them. Essentially, the builder just doubles up each of the two bulkheads with a sheet of cardboard between them, then finishes the hull and deck and cuts the boat between the doubled bulkhead locations - the faces are then faired up, and holes drilled thru the bulkheads to take the bolts that join it all together.

There’s a bit more info at

Drop me an ‘e’ if you are interested in doing a VKK, and I’ll see what info I can dig out for you.

thanks for the replies
I will be doing more research on sectionals, and want to make sure this type of modified kit will be able to take the occasional surf landing or boat wake without tearing out a bulkhead.

Sectional S & G
What a great idea! I have been thinking of building a S&G Night Heron for a while now, but so far I have been able to resist the temptation. This might just push me over the edge. I’ll be watching for more follow ups as this subject progresses. Ken…

I haven’t done it
but a lot of people have done it and a few glass kayak manufacturers off the option.

Research the methods of attachment since you don’t want it to be an experiment every time you go out paddling.

I would want the attachment points to have plenty of reinforcement so there’s no compression of the wood bulkheads at the bolts (drill,fill,drill). I’ve seen different numbers of bolts but I’d go from the standpoint that if one was loose it wouldn’t compromise the joint.

Some of the attachment points
would be under the water line. I would be a little worried about leakage.

I think the commercial 3-piece kayaks use rubber gaskets under solid washers on the bolts. If you used filled epoxy to line the holes and made sure you had a smooth, square seating surface, I’d think it would seal well.

If you had way too much time you could sleeve the holes, ream them, and cut o-ring grooves in the bolts.

Get hold of tsunamichuck
He has a sectional Nordkapp

Sectional stitch and glue kayak
A recent issue of Wooden Boat had an article on this I believe.