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Design & Illustration

Njord – Justin Boocock

Njord – Justin Boocock

En ny Njord from down under (Tasmanien)!

"Hi Bjorn,
Thought I'd send you a photo of the new boat and a few words to put on
your web site.

Launched the new boat after the winter build. This is my first wooden boat build so wanted to keep it pretty simple - butt joints and bog. I'm not a fan of perfection when it comes to a kayak that I plan to heavily use but did want it light and strong. I went for 5mm WRC with 1.5 layers glass inside and out. I omitted bulkheads and hatchs because i wasn't confident on making them water tight and hate maintenance. I added air bags for buoyancy, to be removed if required for gear stowage. I also went for a skeg just behind the cockpit for easy access. Turned out pretty good considering my lack of sanding – 16kg and stiff as. Even looks ok!

The paddle. I've only been out once so far but it was a great test paddle in 25 knots, cliffs and waves. I found the boat a bit stiff in the water to start with but got the hang of it pretty quickly. The boat is quick to accelerate and maintains a high speed with ease. The deck is pretty low but I presume that helps with the wind. Skeg works a breeze to keep tracking in cross winds. Plenty of stability.

I would consider going a bit shorter, say 530cm to help with manoeuvring but that would decrease speed. I would also like to locally raise the deck around knees but this would be hard with strips. So all in all I think it is a great all round boat that is a joy to paddle and looks good.

Thanks Björn. Time to get amongst it!

Njord – Justin Boocock


Way to go, Justin; just get out there and do it.

Would you mind sharing details of your skeg just aft the cockpit? It's a tantalizing concept if it works that well.

A 'skeel' (skeg-keel) seems to be an invention by Sterling Kayaks Reg Lake and have been used with success for some time. John Abercrombie described his version in his Frej building blog on Kayak Building Forum, using an idea from Reg Lake. The link goes to the first post of several on the skeel building process.

Would be interesting to see your interpretation, Justin.

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