stern overhang

Boats such as the Explorer, Tempest 170, Kajaksport and many others have stern overhang. Why not design these boats with a plumb stern to get greater waterline length for the given length overall? I believe that bow overhang improves handling in both head and following seas, so I presume there is some handling advantage to including that stern overhang. What is it?

Reason #1… Looks pretty.

Reason #2… Genetics
Study the ancestry of the kayaks.

From that you can also find many other uses for more rake to the bow.

Max LWL for top potential speed is one of MANY design considerations that need to be balanced depending on intended use. Makes sense for racing kayaks, and some sea kayaks - not all.

Real world, for the typical uses most of us put these craft to, it hardly matters. Refer back to reason #1.

reason 3
it’s a good place to hold on to the kayak for dry land handling, and a good place to put a toggle which is then protruding out from the hull.

bear in mind that racing design is great for racing, less so for the sea kayaker.

above waterline shape
sometimes you paddle backwards.

The point of many of these hull designs, especially the Explorer since I have the LV, is that they have a balance of waterline and rocker etc that is designed to give them a certain degree of manuverability within their tendency to track straight. The rise up in the stern is part of that design. Re the Explorer, it would tighten up the stern relative to the bow and, with an already loose bow that I usually trim a little heavy, that might not be a great idea.

AS someone said above, it also makes them easier to carry since you shouldn’t carry particularly glass boats by the toggle (you need to preserve that cord for possible rescue). A friend has a Chatham 18, and I find that fairly tricky to carry when wet because the stern just rakes up evenly with alomost no place to grab securely. And it is useful when paddling backwards to have that kind of edge to break over the waves.

dimensional water
Derek Hutchinson notes that the overhang increases the waterline in waves and chop (lumpy water.)

Also as noted paddling backwards is an aspect of sea kayaking. The stern overhang likely contributes to the character of the boat when paddling or launching backwards into waves etc…

Because they can
I suspect a lot of other boats don’t have a stern overhang because they are unable to. I don’t know all of the boats you referred to, but at least some (like the Tempest) have skeggs. Most of the boats I know of that have flush sterns have rudders, which are much easier to install with flat butts.

boat wake surfing
one of my favorite sports, i catch boat wake waves and ride them to shore. sometimes its easier/more efficient to stop and back out through waves than it is to try to spin around at the end of the ride. that’s when i really like my raking stern. my traditional greenland style boat goes backward almost as well as forward.

He should know
He brought kayaking to North America you know!

He invented the kayak!
didn’t he?

I saw him at a kayak symposium and he was giant, last time I thought he was kinda elf like. Weird juju.

Not a bad guy
Just self promoting, which you’d have to be to eek out a living in this arena. My friend used to work for him when he was a kid in England.

That sounds good, but has little to do…
… with the stern angle. If more plum angles were bad in the direction of motion - the kayaks that have more plumb bows would not.

FWIW - my QCC is very well behaved in reverse. So is My SOF. Has nothing to do with the angle of the stern. Has everything to do with cross section shapes and rocker aft of middle. It’s what’s below water that matters.

Agree 100% with Greyak

right on

– Last Updated: Oct-06-06 6:46 PM EST –

and the waterline is constant. ? 'what's below the waterline' when you're paddling backwards does the blunt aft swedeform vertical stern maybe act differently while plowing into waves going backward? i'm not trying to split hairs here, i am just enjoying the way my overhanging stern knifes and lifts as i back into waves, feeling balanced, like having a bow on both ends. can you dig it? ever back your sof into waves?

Mariner Coaster
may be the finest surfing sea kayak to date. Anyone wanna argue that? It has relatively blunt entry and exit. Volume and rocker mean more than pointy upturned ends…

A lot is said on this site about boat design, mostly from folk who have never designed a kayak, or couldn’t pass a simple test about hydrodynamics. In fact many resist science applied to what is an emotional thing for them. I would strongly encourage people to do some research. Guillemot, Winters, Mariner Kayaks home site, Kayak Academy, etc. have all sorts of outstanding information about design. Epic and QCC also offer a lot of excellent info on their sites. But, this can be uncomfortable for some.

People in this sport it seems adopt whatever dogma their instructors or club guru’s dish out. You can predict their future biases accordingly. They then pass this info on without ever challenging it, or exploring alternatives. That is limiting I think, and unfortunate. That’s why a Brit boat fanatic may never experience a boat like an Epic 18, and Vice versa. Funny isn’t it that the Rapier from Valley that set the English Channel record (with a great athlete driving it) had no upturned ends. In fact it’s far more like an Epic or QCC than any of the regular Brit boats!!!

you paddle your style
i’ll paddle mine. funny i used to be in your camp about vertical ends. thats okay too, i’m not knocking what you like. i’m kinda into greenland style at the moment

Not necessarily dogma
Affectional affinities are not necessarily dogmas.

I think we’ve seen even the most avid advocates for their favorite boats acknowledge that there are other choices.

Most of the paddlers of elfin boats to whom I’ve spoken have expressed the desire to try a Rapier. I’d love to try an Epic Endurance 18, Q700X and a Rapier.

BTW, I paddle some boats with pointy upturned ends.