Skin on Frame
nothing at all. – Helen Keller
SKIN ON FRAME
Skin on frame boats have been around for at least 4,000 years, likely longer. It’s a construction method perfected by Arctic Indigenous peoples who created amazing kayak designs with very limited resources. The modern skin on frame boat is a re-imagining of an ancient construction method using modern materials and designs.
What are they covered with?
All of our boats are covered with ballistic nylon. It’s available in several thicknesses and is puncture resistant. The nylon is heat shrunk to the frame, and sealed with a quality urethane. This gives the boats a durable semi-transparent finish that the paddler can see the water through. Marine epoxy is used to make skid plates on high wear spots if required.
What wood do you use?
Douglas Fir, Red Cedar, Birch, and Ash are combined to make the frame. Each species has particular properties that changes both the shape, weight and durability the boat. Wood selection is part of the customization process.
Why are the boats lashed together?
Nothing protects better against splitting as lashing with waxed nylon (artificial sinew). The lashed joint has a shear strength of more than double what a screw can withstand.
How tough are they?
We’ve done some pretty comprehensive destructive testing, dragging though blow down, up a gravel path with a kid in it, we’ve thrown them off a truck and dropped them on beaver dams. The combination of a durable frame and ballistic nylon make these boats super tough. These boats are something you can depend on in the backcountry.
Why ultra light boats?
These boats are typically 10% – 20% lighter than similar sized Kevlar or carbon boats. It’s all about access, a 25lb canoe gets you way further off the beaten path than a heavier boat. A 35 lb. tandem can be loaded safely by someone who has a bad back, old bones or is recovering from an injury.