what boat design/ S&G kit

Good morning from upstate NY.

Im looking to build a boat as a winter project, family members and many of my friends are now kayaking I took my boat off lake george so a kayak will get me out on lake some too.

The primary use for this boat will be 95% work out , mental health/play and explore craft.

I cant ever see loading anything other than lunch, rain gear, and perhaps a little fishing thrown in. None of the people I’d paddle with tour or camp by kayak .

The primary water would be ,Lake George and Lake Champlain NY Both have much boat traffic and LG has the cruise boats, water gets real rough almost every afternoon.

The secondary water would be coastal paddling along new England IE: maine and the cape (often less rough than the two lakes I’m on)

I’m 5’10” and 245LB , top heavy linebacker build good wood working skills.

my confusion is whether to go multi chine or Hard chine for my application??, I understand the primary secondary stability thing but not sure what type Hull properties best fit my turf???.

I E mailed 4 kit providers and here is their suggestions and my thoughts (my thoughts not my knowlage )

ONE OCEAN :Vlacav advised the cirrus (only S&G kit he has)as it will handle my weight but its at the max end. ( nice looking boat, dont know if the volume is there?, Id rather have a little service factor Yes??)

SHEARWATER: Eric advised The merganser 17W or the Merganser 18. The 17w being a bit wider the 18 a bit tippier and faster (low cost kits, pleasant looking boat, both seem to have the proper paddler weght range, hard chine??)

CLC: John Emailed Me and was adament that the Chessie 17LT would be PERFECT for my situation “Fast and Fun” his words

(chessies are not the nicest looking boats , plain, performace parameters on the CLC website seem more station wagon like than fun)

Pygmy: got an Email this morning Pygmy highly reccommends the Borealis XL then as a second choice the coho high volume if I wanted a sportier /faster yet tippier boat.

the only multi chine boats in the running It looks like

(the borealis XL seems like a big boat even for me, esp since Ill never realy load it but at 245LB??, 25" wide is like my brothers 14’ plastic barge,

the coho looks nice but being a tad tippier than the Xl might not be the best platform for stopping and smelling the roses but would be nice while running in the rough stuff and would roll better??))

your thoughts and wisdom please as I want to get stitching soon.

ill also be asking for advice when I get building.

Have a great day ,many many thanks


Boat for the Big Guy.
I have a tall friend, over 200#, that built a Coho. He is not an advanced paddler and does very well with it. I have paddled it a few times and find it very well mannered, not at all tippy, and very neutral in the wind. It does not weather or lee cock to any extent. It’s way big for me, but a very comfortable and secure feeling boat. Ken…


– Last Updated: Oct-09-09 11:12 AM EST –

I'd think a standard Coho unless you need the foot room, or the Merganser 18. The standard Coho is a pretty big boat, and at 5'10" I wouldn't think stability would be a problem. I've demoed a few Chesapeakes and wasn't impressed.

The manufacturers will usually give you contact info for owners/builders in your area. Most builders are happy to show their work to interested paddlers.

Try asking on the kayak builder's forum: