Wood Duck speed . . .

-- Last Updated: Sep-18-08 2:13 AM EST --

I noticed the latest issue of Pnet PADDLE NEWS has a review of the Wood Duck (http://www.paddling.net/Reviews/showReviews.html?prod=2282). Their site has a video of the boat and the speed, for a rec boat, seems remarkable. (See http://www.clcboats.com/shop/boats/stitchandgluekayaks/woodducks/CLC-WOODDUCK-12.html for the WD12 and http://www.clcboats.com/shop/boats/stitchandgluekayaks/woodducks/CLC-WOODDUCK-10.html for the WD 10ft.)

Even the 10 foot Wood Duck appears exceptionally fast for a short 30" beam rec boat. Is the apparent speed an artifact of the camera? Has anybody seen or paddled one of these to confirm this speed? I know it was designed by Eric Schade and I wonder how he was able to design such speed capability in this type of boat.

Looks like the sides (sponsons) are
just skimming light on the water, so it behaves somewhat like a narrower boat.

But, it’s not clear to me . . .
How can the design of the sponsons make a wider boat perform more like a longer boat? It seems this would be a breakthrough in kayak design - especially where rec boats are concerned. It looks like speeds comparable to some of the touring boats, with extra maneuverability and stability to boot.

They are very fast.
Depending on the angle and distance you may have to lead them 2 to 3 feet. Very tasty on the grill


That’s right. On the water , they are
only good for 2-3 mph, but flying is a different story.

wetted surface area
If it’s floating high, it’ll have less wetted surface area and resistance will be lower. That’s one of several speed factors.

Also, if it’s a clean design under the water with minimal twists on the hull panels, that will help.

is it a breakthrough? No. Try paddling a pirogue within a designed payload range on flat water and the skim along nicely. My Laker kayak is like that… seems to glide forever on flat water even though it’s only 13’ foot long.

Very likely…
Just for grins, I paddled one of my 10.5 footers, with a skeg, with a group of friends in 18-19 foot sea yaks. I was able to keep up just fine.* Just because a boat is short and fat, doesn’t mean it’s slow. The paddler has a lot to do with it. I suspect the Wood Duck should scoot right along.

*except with my friend in his surf-ski. His one stroke equaled 4 of mine. :wink:

At this pace …
… he just had to stop after 30 seconds or so it seems. The paddler appears rather strong, holding a long large-bladed paddle far away from the blades and giving it all he’s got. Look at his head going down and forward b/w strokes. Notice how the boat pretty much stops when he stops paddling at the end with a single back-paddle stroke (no glide)?

I guess the boat can reach some speed with a strong paddler but for only short periods of time and it seems extremely taxing to the paddler. Not what the boat’s built for…

it’s a rec boat
it’s not fast, I paddled the 10’ a little over a year ago in RI.,I think that was the one or the 12’ one. It was the first one they offered. Either way it’s a rec. boat and is an attractive design. It’s more efficient than some rec. boats and less than others but it’s not in the same league as a Manitou 13 or 14. It’s a fine stable platform and worth making. To my taste it slewed around a bit like the Merganser17W slews around as the pivot point is somewhat indistinct. One of the nice things about Erics designs is that he doesn’t make the kayaks bigger than they need to be.

yeah, the fellow paddling the WD 10 is putting out some effort as you can see the hole in the water (wake) behind him