Tahiti V1 report back...

A report on Tahitian V1’s
I recently took a three week trip Tahiti, during Hawaiki Nui, to learn about V1’s with the intent of importing some back to Hawaii. I followed OPT A, 2009/2010 Hawaiki Nui Champions, and was able to ask some of the top paddlers what their thoughts were of different builders and V1 shapes. I also visited several workshops and met with top V1 builders. Please understand that I do not proclaim to be an authority on V1’s or their builders. I am just passing on the information I gathered while in Tahiti for three weeks. If you have further questions please feel free to ask. If you have other input or experience to share, please do.

This is what I found…..
The general consensus is similar to what you hear people saying here in Hawaii…. “it’s not the canoe it’s the paddler” Apparently a lot of the V1 shapes are very similar due to the fact that builders ‘borrow’ each others designs and make lil improvements/modifications.
In the late 1980’s Noe was one of the first canoe builders to make a fiberglass V1, prior to that all V1’s were all constructed of wood. Soon other canoe builders followed but Noe remained one of the top V1 makers through the 1990’s. Noe’s first V1 was called the “Noe” then: “Noe Special 1” or “SP1” for short. “SP2”, “Fafa 2”, “Fai”, “Fai 1”, “Fai 2” followed over the years. In the late 90’s Noe began to lose market share when larger canoe manufactures like Vaa Factory began sponsoring top paddlers with free canoes. Noe had a small shop, he actually worked alone or had just himself and a helper. He wasn’t able to match the sponsorship of the Vaa Factory which was backed by wealthy investors. He called his friend and well respected business man Joe Bunton to ask for assistance in building a larger shop employing laborers so they could try and compete. After the shop was built and they began production, Noe realized he didn’t like working with so many other people. He preferred to work by himself. He ended up selling the company to Joe Bunton in late 2008. They made some minor changes to the hull of the “Fai2” to make the very popular “Fai 3” in Early 2009.

Now let me introduce Yvon. Yvon is the owner of Iato Vaa Tahiti. He manufacturers wooden iato’s (iako’s) for most canoe builders in Tahiti: Timi, Vaa Factory, Fai, ect ect. Yvon is also the only manufacturer of Surfski’s,OC1’s and Downwind SUP’s in Tahiti. Known for his attention to detail and craftsmanship, Yvon was contacted by Timi to help manufacture their V1’s since they had too many orders and couldn’t keep up. Yvon took the Timi mold and made some minor changes to the cockpit and deck of the V1, leaving the hull the same. With popularity of Yvon’s Timi, Yvon decided he would make his own V1 and so he solicited the help of George Cronsteadt with the design. This work brought the “Are” to the scene in 2009. With the hull borrowed from the “Fai” family and a new streamline, lower deck this V1 was well received. Some people preferred the popular “Fai3” hull but wanted a lower deck, which lead Yvon and Joe to build the “Fusion or Hybrid”. This V1 has the lower deck of the “Are” put together with the hull of the “Fai3”. It has created quite the buzz and had some good results. Paddlers George Cronsteadt, Yoann Cronsteadt and Bruno Tauhiro all fell in love with new “Fai 3” hull. Yoann had tried many models and couldn’t quite feel connected in the surf until he tried the “Fai 3”. As a matter of fact his first time beating his older brother George was his first time racing on the “Fai 3” hull. Bruno was sponsored on the “Fai 2” and left to try several other models, but when he came back to the “Fai 3” hull he won his first race, then continued on to win the Te Aito 2010 on the “Fusion/Hybrid”

Ok, remember how I mentioned that canoe builders like to ‘borrow’ shapes? Well since Noe was one of the first builders to make a fiberglass V1 it’s natural that most builders ‘borrowed’ from him. The “Timi” is borrowed from the Noe and the Vaa Factory’s current model has the Hull of the “Fai 2”.

Although the V1 shapes might be similar, when it comes to the construction the V1’s there is a wide variance. When I asked Steeve and other paddlers about the quality and craftsmanship of V1’s this is what they told me:

VAA FACTORY has been having a lot of issues with quality of their V1’s due to the fact that they are a large factory and they have a high turnover of employees/laborers. There isn’t much quality control and about 1 of every 6 Canoes has issues ranging from delimitation, gel coat chipping, cracking, bubbling and the seams not staying together.

TIMI and his son in law James are both skilled canoe builders, but they haven’t been able to handle the volume of orders and with some of his new employee’s the quality has begun to slip. I visited the Timi shop outside Papetee over the weekend and found only Timi and his son in law working there, but could see that on a weekday there would be several more workers in the shop. They showed me how they play with the rocker of the V1 by hanging a bottle full of water from the tail or nose while it’s in the mold. Consequently this means there is no real standard for the Timi V1, no V1 comes out the same as another.

WILFRED AH MIN is one of the more respected canoe builders in Tahiti. He is a hands on builder/owner so the quality stays consistent. However he hasn’t updated his shape in several years, coupled with the fact that he doesn’t sponsor top paddlers has lead to a slip in his market share. Quality and craftsman ship most ranked him in the top 3.

YVON (Are, Fai3, Timi) was the most praised builder I asked about. His shop is at his house and he only has one employee. He built his name through his craftsmanship of Iato’s and grew to build Surfski’s, OC1’s, SUP’s and now V1’s. His attention to details is unparalleled and he is constantly innovating.

JOE BUNTON (Fai 3, Are)Trained by master canoe maker Noe, Joe and his single employee continue to make quality polyester V1’s at their shop outside Papetee. Joe is partners with Yvon and most of Joe’s carbon models are built by Yvon in Vairao where the weather is dryer and better suited for building carbon layups.

Vaa Characteristics:
FAI3- This updated Fai2 hull takes the V1 to a new level. Although it performs well in flat water, it sets itself apart from other V1’s in the surf. The elevated cockpit not only provides more leg room, it prevents more water from entering the cockpit.

ARE- Has a lower more streamline deck which means less volume. The sharper line of the ARE makes it more ideal for side wind, upwind paddling. Great for surfing long waves this shape is ideal for calm to medium conditions. Although the ARE is a good fit for most paddlers, it is ideal for smaller paddlers who don’t need the extra leg room and therefore don’t need the higher deck. I am 5’9 and 165. I fit the ARE comfortably. However if you are 6’ or larger you this V1 might be a lil uncomfortable for you.

Timi- I only paddled the Timi once while there, I switched off with another paddler during a flat water training session. The Timi carries a “V” almost all the way thru the hull, which means its great for going straight, but harder to correct when you’re off course. I heard in the surf it’s a good boat if you have a lot of experience surfing V1’s and can set yourself up properly. If not, it proves to be challenging as it locks onto a line and is hard to correct.

Ah Min- I didn’t get a chance to paddle this V1 while there, but he is still making the same model as the ones that came to Hawaii a few years back. So you can probably find one in Hawaii and try it or ask about it.

Vaa Factory- With the hull of the Fai2 it too performs well in the surf. I did not get a chance to try this V1 and didn’t much effort into finding out more about it after hearing about the quality issues from the OPT A paddlers.

***You use to be able to cut a V1 in half to send it as ‘Air Freight’ to Hawaii on Hawaiian Airlines. You can no longer do this as of Nov. 2010. So, that means the only option is to send a container. There are no shipping companies that ship from Tahiti to Hawaii so you can’t ship as “loose cargo” on a container that is already coming. All containers go to California first. There seems to be a high demand for Tahitian made V1’s in Hawaii and US so I am helping to organize a container of Tahitian V1’s to Hawaii. If you are interested in a V1 from Tahiti please feel free to contact me. I am working directly with Joe and Yvon to bring the “Fai3” “Are” and “FAI V3”. Delivered to Hawaii, Tahitian designed and built V1’s start at $2600 and go up based on lay up options, materials and paint.

Me paddling ARE at Serges Memorial Race in Tahiti83.2 KB

Submitted by mauitim on Sun, 01/16/2011 - 2:58pm

Geez. Thats the longest ad I ever read Tim. Let me help you summarize it.
"If you want to get a V- 1 then a Fai, Are, or any combination of these two words is the only kind you should get. Every one elses V-1 sucks. And dont forget that tim lara is the only person who can get one for you." Did I forget anything?

#1 Sun, 01/16/2011 - 3:21pm

"Did i forget anything?" No, thanks for summarizing that for me :)

However you did ADD IN a few things: 1) "everyone elses V1's suck" not the case by any means. Wilfreds craftsmanship was spoken highly of, the shape of the Vaa Factory and Timi are good shapes but I was told of production problems.
2) "Tim Lara is the only one you can get one from". Also not the case. Obviously anyone can get a hold of any shaper in Tahiti and purchase a container full. Sending a container is now the only option for a Tahitian designed and built V1. Sending that V1 thru me in a container with others, is optional :)

You might have also missed this lil line in the first paragraph: "Please understand that I do not proclaim to be an authority on V1’s or their builders. I am just passing on the information I gathered while in Tahiti for three weeks."

Being hosted by Joe and Yvon I obviously learned much more about their companies and history. The additional research I did and questions I asked about other companies I did so that I would be better informed as to the market in Tahiti and be able to answer such questions.

#2 Sun, 01/16/2011 - 3:55pm

Thanks for the info Tim! I appreciate your passion for v1 and adding to my understand of the current tahitian va'a characteristics and builders better. Maururu roa!

And as for paddleleakes: Go see a doctor and get a brain transplant or labotomized.....any E.R will take you! You are reading between the lines where no writting is to be found.... go back to the underside of your contentious rock.

#3 Sun, 01/16/2011 - 4:34pm

do they use the same boats also for flatwater?
which one is the best for sprint?

#4 Mon, 01/17/2011 - 9:26am

Aloha Cossi,
In Tahiti, much like Hawaii (for the most part), paddlers only have one model for all conditions. Sponsored paddlers get both a Double Carbon and a Standard Polyester V1 but both are same model. Most all of the races have "surf" due to the wake caused by the boats of the observers. The race I competed in was said to be a flat race, and it was for the first 10 minutes until all the boat wake started coming across.
If you are talking about sprints as in World Sprints, everyone uses the same model. Which ever the committee has chosen. I wasn't there during sprint season in Tahiti but, yes, i'm assuming they use the same model they use for distance.
If it were completely flat water and a straight sprint, I would say a V1 with more of pronounced "V" throughout the hull, like the Timi, would be your best bet.

#5 Mon, 01/17/2011 - 9:50am

What do you call "sprint" races ?
During the Heiva, in July, the so-called V1 sprint races are run on a 3500 metres loop. Very different game from the straight 500 metres at the World Sprint Championship.

#6 Mon, 01/17/2011 - 11:14am

Tim, thanks for the post, it's very informative. Before continuing on to Hawaii, is the container accessible while changing ships in California? If so, buyers in Cali may have an interest....as for Paddleleaks, you have your tin foil hat on backwards, turn it around it'll work better.

#7 Mon, 01/17/2011 - 12:00pm

Tim- first thanks for the info, any is helpful especially in history of v1.

Question- Is there a preference on weight of the boat? Do Tahtians like heavier boats in surf and lighter boats in flat or whatever they can get a hold of?

Or do u just want the lightest boat u can get. Is there a advantage or disadvantage of weight in v1?

Which boats are better at turning?

Are ama designs a big role too?

#8 Mon, 01/17/2011 - 12:10pm

If any of you guys are on Facebook, check out Fai Va'a. Joe has pictures of his Fai 3's and they are absolutely beautiful!

#9 Tue, 01/18/2011 - 7:45am

Iorana Tim et HIro and every one.

Thank you, Tim for the great account of our wonderful sport in Tahiti, and thank you, Hiro for posting pour nous a Tahiti.

I want to confirm that your account is excellent, Tim. You have put a lot of our bagage out there and it is good.

Yes people do borrow mouls all the time. Sometimes with permission and sometimes they copy as best they can with out permission. I know that some of the people you mentioned would disagree with some of your history. This is one version of the story about borrowing and not the whole story.

Your ideas on va'a is very true as well. Many makers have had problems with quality, even fai, non? Some more than others.

Joe, I don't know him personally, but he is known to be a good business man. You are lucky to be working with him.

I know that you are trying very hard to represent fairly. Thank you. I think people understand that there are two sides to every story and don't take one side as the bible truth.

About boat weight, only the rich and sponsored buy carbon sous vide va'a. Maybe 1 carbon for every 8 or 10 or 12 polyester. Even some races are won on polyester, non? In strong wind it is the best. Too light is no good in heavy wind and wave. Most paddlers serious have 2 va'a or more. Or their family has, or they borrow.

Ama is important. I know people borrow other ama all the time. Most va'a can have different makers amas on them. People also change iato all the time.

I hear some good va'a in Hawaii now. We are happy.

Georges D.

#10 Tue, 01/18/2011 - 9:17am

@ Hank1, no the container won't clear customs until it reaches Hawaii. It just passes thru Cali. However we can ship from Hawaii to West Coast as loose cargo or joining in on a container which is already headed that way. Private message me if you are interested. Also if there is enough demand on the West Coast we can send a container there. 10-15 Va`a is needed to make it worth while.

@Ai, As mentioned before, I am not an authority on V1's and I only know the little bit of information I picked up while in Tahiti for 3 weeks. George did well to answer your questions, and I'll just add that the Te Aito 2010 was won on the standard Polyester lay up. Actually 1st and 2nd were both on polyesters. So yes, conditions do play a role in the choice of lay up. Sometimes lighter isn't always better.

@ Georges, Mahalo for the post. I appreciate any and all additional information on V1's from Tahiti, as do the rest of the people reading this thread. The report I gave is again just a small glimpse of the whole picture and considering the source of most information it is most likely a little bit skewed. Although some of the information did come from un-biased third party paddlers from the OPT A crew and other paddlers I met while out training on V1's.

@ Hiro, Sorry we never got a chance to connect while I was there. A lot going on for Hawaiki Nui. As always your input is greatly appreciated on here :)

#11 Tue, 01/18/2011 - 10:38am

Now that's an extensive and very informative report, which I enjoyed reading. Mahalo for educating us and keeping us up to date on V-1 developments.

#12 Wed, 01/19/2011 - 12:58am

For you West Coasters that are interested, there will be a V-1 coming out of Vancouver fairly soon from Pogue Sports.

#13 Wed, 01/19/2011 - 10:17am

Georges- thanks for your reply
I had always wonderd about conditions Tahitians paddle their v1 in. Would they cross the Kaiwi channel with the same cconditions we had this past Molokai Hoe 2010?

I've done almost every run here on oahu,hawaii some runs just ain't worth it and some downwinds you rally need to know what your doing. Would they go on any conditions what so ever? I never thought paddling v1 in big choppy waters would be alright but after getting some time in paddling v1 in those conditions is very possible and even more fun than oc1.

#14 Wed, 01/19/2011 - 12:17pm

salut ia,

Yes, big water is good. But we often move race courses to lagoon if its too windy. Super aito is usually between islands but if it's too windy we paddle in the lagoon.

We usually do not do only down wind. We do a triangle or a square or up and down to train more. Most races are at least 2 angles on the wind, or three.

That helps skill and endurance.

#15 Wed, 01/19/2011 - 12:16pm

Georges- agreed on the training, plus you can get very spoiled by only surfing.

I have so many questions I can't think of them all right now, but thanks for answering.

I want to get up there this year for super aito to race!

Do guys paddling v1 train on their own, go in groups or are they coached?

#16 Wed, 01/19/2011 - 12:26pm

I think opposite from Hawaii. We have teams of the best paddlers for V6 who train and race on V1's. Looks like in Hawaii you have best paddlers on oneman come together to race sixman.

#17 Thu, 01/20/2011 - 6:17am

@Sem: I was looking at the Pogue Sports website yesterday. The V1 there looks like it's gonna be sweet!
Do you have any more info regarding the canoe itself?

#18 Thu, 01/20/2011 - 6:33am

Nice that people are building in the US now.
I know Fai is sending to West Coast. I had a Are once. It was very nice.
Now I buy local made boat from a local builder. Cheaper and the difference is not much.
Check local builder before buying from far away. You can try the boat and support local people and profit don't go to shipping companies.

#19 Thu, 01/20/2011 - 8:00am

Kileki, sorry I have no other information about Pogue's V-1. Haven't seen one, but their shop is not too far so I may take a trip up someday. If that happens I'll report back.

#20 Thu, 01/20/2011 - 9:17am

if the picture on the pogue site is the model they are building then that's the same Teva Nui Tiger built for world sprints when they were in Cali and I believe Hilo as well.

#21 Thu, 01/20/2011 - 11:19am

Teiva Nui is a classic.

#22 Thu, 01/20/2011 - 11:48am

Georges: what do you think is the general opinion of Tahitian paddlers about this non rigger thing, like the teva nui with spring buttons, same as beach umbrellas, instead of rigging

#23 Thu, 01/20/2011 - 1:10pm

I don't know. Maybe easier to break in the surf? Good if you have to move your va'a a lot. I have a car, but many people live on the water. They can leave it rigged. I transport my va'a rigged on my car roof.
I would get one.

#24 Thu, 01/20/2011 - 1:34pm

kinda interested in getting a v-1, i paddle a pueo and would of course purchase my v-1 from kamanu if it is as good as those from tahiti. can anyone offer any info/comparisons on kamanu's and the va'a from tahiti?

#25 Thu, 01/20/2011 - 6:04pm

I'm wondering what the folks think of the Savage River V1 he calls the Surfrigger. It's fitted with a rudder. I have a friend who's paddled it in some ultra marathon events on a river. But, I was curious how you guys felt about it on the open water ... if anyone has paddled it in those conditions.


What's the word, gang?


#26 Thu, 01/20/2011 - 6:32pm


Hi Osprey
The Surfriggers are still popular in their home country NZ and ruled the roost until about 5 years ago when Hurricanes came along for marathons and other designs that track a straighter line (but are much harder to turn and handle on windy days) in springs.

That said the 'riggers are a good general purpose boat with or without a rudder. The go Ok in the flats and in chop/rough (take a spray skirt). It's a credit to Kris that the design has done so well for so long.

#27 Thu, 01/20/2011 - 8:51pm

Osprey: I was building the original surfrigger for Kris in the day when all the top paddlers rode them, and you gotta believe it that good paddlers make a canoe look good.
At the time I was sure that improvements were possible, but then design changes make a different beast.........so an improved surfrigger would not be a surfrigger anymore .... no?

Surfriggers were made by joining two hulls together........a Tahitian lagoon va'a tail end with the front end of a rowing skiff (or some other non va'a). The front end has so much volume that the hull takes off on the smallest chop and slams down annoyingly, and at times destructively. There is way too much windage in the decorative upswept bow and the cockpit is very much a tight fit for any but the smallest paddlers.
Length of a surfrigger is enough for straight line rudderless paddling (tracking) .........any shorter hull length and sprint performance suffers.
Other than the above, all that matters is how well the actual canoe is made...............surfriggers have been made ranging from really crap through to good work quality.

#28 Fri, 01/21/2011 - 11:59am

Thanks J & goodwaka:

Sorry I highjacked the thread, but it seemed to sort of fit the topic ... sort of.

I've attached a photo of the Savage River boat that I think is made in Maryland, USA, by John Diller who has more than 30 years building experience building sit'n'switch racing canoes in North America. I was really curious how much Diller's boats have evolved from Kris Kjeldsen's original design. As you say, goodwaka, a small change here and there and it's not the same boat anymore ... maybe.

Thanks all for the great thread.


#29 Fri, 01/21/2011 - 3:57pm

please don't listen to Goodwaka. He doesn't even have his facts right when he attacks other peoples products.
I was actually leading the super aito for the first hour (when it was only one race) in big water, while paddling the Surfrigger, until i took the wrong course. The pic you attached is the same canoe and is still very slick.

Right on Tim, i appreciate your passion. Rudderless paddling is a great aspect of our sport, and a skill more people should learn.

Maui Kjeldsen

#30 Fri, 01/21/2011 - 4:25pm

Looking at the pic of the savage river boat I don't notice any difference, except for the loss of rigging.

Kris, or is he maybe alias Marcus P Rambutan .....later began to copy the system of pipes, sockets and spring buttons instead of rigging. But otherwise I suspect it is the same thing.

Putting the subject in perspective with this thread........V 1's from Tahiti have a different character.

#31 Fri, 01/21/2011 - 4:51pm

Maui: missed your message while I was busy with a reply to Osprey................nowhere is there any "attack" on a product. Just simply stating the facts, as we are both saying.............good paddlers make a canoes performance notable.
Things have moved on a bit though, and the surfrigger is just not as competetive as it used to be.........wonder how it would fare in todays Super Aito ??

#32 Fri, 01/21/2011 - 5:01pm


I've been able to paddle both in a Tahitian V1 and a Kamanu V1 and the differences are pretty apparent.

The Tahitian: Tracks very well and is very fast. The ama helps the boat maintain a very true line, thus allowing for a few more strokes per side.

Kamanu: My time has been limited in a Kamanu V1, but, I really liked the way it ran in the open ocean. It has a "skatier" feel on the water. What I mean by this, is that while the Kamanu still tracks really well in the water, it has the ability to be corrected very easily in direction. I feel that the Tahitian took more effort to move into a new direction.

Both are very fast, but I preferred the feel of the Kamanu myself.

I hope this helps!

#33 Sat, 01/22/2011 - 3:04pm

kileki, thanks for the info.was always leaning towards the kamanu va'a unless it was inferior to a tahitian va'a. would prefer to test ride different boats but kinda hard here in hawaii since don't know of anyone with a demo from tahiti. aloha again!

#34 Sat, 01/22/2011 - 6:36pm

Tiger's new va'a, the Teva I Tai is pretty sweet, quality built
on Big Island and should be mentioned here too. It's a dryer ride
for bigger conditions. Haven't done a Hawaiian big water run
in it as I live up in Vancouver most of the year, but I paddled it
for a while in Kona before I shipped it to BC and really liked it.
And yes, as far as I know, Ryan Pogue will be building the Teva Nui
Up in Vancouver this year too.

#35 Sat, 01/22/2011 - 7:50pm

How much was tiger's new boat? Canadian or USD is fine.

#36 Sat, 01/22/2011 - 8:10pm

@ kileki, what kind of Tahitian v1 did u paddle? As the models of v1s are quite as different as oc1's. Saying You paddled a "Tahitian v1 and it handled this way" is like trying to classify the way oc1s handle after trying one model. clearly a scorpius handles much different than a hurricane, as a Timi handles different than a Fai3 or Ah min. I have yet paddled the aukahi and look forward to it, but from what I have heard there are major differences between it and some Tahitian v1's. For instance the lack of "v" throughout the length of hull. This is what allows it to "spin or turn" easily and correct, but also why it doesn't track as well. Without taking a good look at the aukahi I don't know how much it differs as far as the hull is concerned. I'll try to check one out and leave some comparisons.
As for the tahitian v1's i looked into the Timi has a very pronounced "v" while the Are and Fai3 less thru the middle. I took measurements on how far the "v" goes but don't have with me right now. Also I took some pretty good pics of the hulls side by side. I'll get back with those later

#37 Sat, 01/22/2011 - 10:12pm

It was a Timi Va'a.

#38 Sat, 01/22/2011 - 11:26pm

jc9_0. I got the Teva I Tai from Tiger as a demo model for $2500 last year
which was pretty cool given that the CDN $ and the USD $ are
about even these days. I'd email Tiger regarding prices and paddling a demo.
I found the Teva I Tai to be more steerable than the Teva Nui
and requires some anticipation to hold your course. I believe
The Teva Nui was designed as a straight ahead sprinter,
therefore has better tracking.

#39 Sun, 01/23/2011 - 1:50pm

goodwaka, I seem to remember you telling us you were done posting here. Can you please tell us what made you return, so that we can never do it again?
Your disdain for anything you don't personally turn a profit from (like the Surfrigger, or "spring buttons, same as beach umbrellas" iakos) is obvious and tiresome. Your failed attempt at garnering support from Georges, and your weaselly denial of bashing another builders canoe is a joke. And you think I'm Kris Kjeldsen? You simple-minded ignoramus. You're too much of an arse-licker for him to even bother acknowledging your self centered commentary.

Sincerely, Franklin W. Lychee

#40 Sun, 01/23/2011 - 6:28pm

Kileki, that would explain the major difference you found between kamanu's aukahi and "Tahitian v1", the Timi, as previously mentioned has a very pronounced "v" throughout most of the hull. Steeve (2010 super aito champ and opt a paddler) paddles a Timi. He mentioned that unless you have really good control in the surf you might have a hard time starting out on the Timi. However as u get better in the surf and anticipating the next move you appreciate the "v" as it helps hold u on your line. The Timi is obviously good in the flats as previously mentioned that "v" helps the va'a track nicely.
I do want to get my hands on an aukahi so I can compare to the v1's I checked out in Tahiti. Luke, hook me up ;)

#41 Sun, 01/23/2011 - 7:03pm

Please pardon my ignorance, but for me, I'd appreciate having a V-1 style canoe that came with a versatile hull that can be used successfully in all types of water. Sure there are trade offs, but having one all around proven hull that can be easily tuned by installing removable fixed fins or skegs seems desirable to me. Perhaps these fixed fins might be considered illegal? I don't know? However, I remember Archie Salaris (originator of the bubble deck) use to install them on his surfski (below the cockpit) when he raced the Molokai. He said the small fixed fin locked him on the wave. Installing a couple of fin/skeg boxes at the time the V-1 is made might be an option, if not illegal?

#42 Mon, 01/24/2011 - 11:19am

Loved the report Mauitim. Very interesting reading.

Still talking Va'a but kinda off topic tho.

To me 'Va'a' seems to be equated to rudderless. Are there any other 'rules/specs' around the world that have to be stuck to? Like the clip in systems over a lashed system? Foot pump over a mech pump. No Ventures? etc? I'm based in NZ and we have, "No rudder and 16kg" with Outrigger or course. But to me, being OC based I like the technology of ventures and clip ins and soft seat. So was wondering why these are not all incorporated into newer designs if reg's allow. So a longer hull with the V for tracking and run. But more a sit on top with a drainage system and quick and ease to assemble. Cos who wants to spend time rigging and bailing when it is about paddling.

To give some Up's to Goodwaka. He actually has a good system on his canoes. It is not a venturer, as that would make them a 'Ski with a training wheel'. But he has foot wells and then a channel in front of these which the water sloops into and drains out the side of the canoe. Somehow this helps him justify in his own mind that it is still 'traditional', I just think is is simple technology. and also the aluminum Kiato, but lashed.

Thoughts and rules to what keeps it a Va'a over a OC? Besides no rudder.

#43 Mon, 01/24/2011 - 2:24pm

Aloha Koacanoe and Dodgiebro,
Hiro and Georges would probably be able to give better accounts of the Va'a Federations rules for Va`a. But from what I learned while over there, the Vaa Federation is slower to progress than OCRA. They had a really hard time transitioning from wooden vaa to fiberglass or carbon. And when the foot pumps first came out they were not allowed for the first couple years. Even now some builders have experimented with drain holes like a surfski or OC1 but the Federation has shut them down. As far as the snap in iato's, most people in Tahiti live on the ocean or keep their vaa right at waters edge (friends house, club, ect.) so rigging isn't a problem for them. Also, to be quite honest, it doesn't take that long to rig the iato's to the hull with the rubbers. Its pretty quick and it allows for you to have more adjustment for the conditions: make the ama lighter or more 'weighted' on the water by simply wrapping the rubber around the iato's inside or outside before rubbering around the attachment to haul. Same way we shim our six mans before rigging. They just leave the ama rigged to iato's the whole time for the most part... or until the rubbers wear out:)

#44 Mon, 01/24/2011 - 4:11pm

on topic in this thread..............it's about Tahitian V1's, and I think that they are awesome.
Reason why I asked Georges what Tahitians think of non riggers, is because I would simply like to know. Sure! I don't want spring buttons instead of the original thing, but if this is possibly the future Tahitian trend, then so be it.

From a boatbuilders point of veiw, integral/structural bulkheads are worth their extra weight compared to a polystyrene stringer, and this means working inside the canoe. Whatever the builder does to reduce the amount of water getting inside or being carried in the hull is up to them...........If I were to copy the Tahitians then the result would be a V1. But if I was to copy a surfski then it is something different, and like I said before " I am not going to talk about that anymore"
There never was any intention to talk about my cockpit design, so I don't mind dropping the subject.

#45 Mon, 01/24/2011 - 4:21pm

Mauitim writes - " The Vaa Federation is slower to progress than OCRA. They had a really hard time transitioning from wooden vaa to fibreglass or carbon".....................in that case it seems that Tahitian paddlers are still having a hard with "progress". They are generally still using wooden blades, and don't seem to be doing too bad as such.
Didn't I read somewhere in this thread that recent winners of Super Aito paddled fibreglass vaa ??...and that lighter is not necessarily faster unless it's all about downwind.
Vaa Federation rules are still producing the worlds best paddlers, whereas technological progression doesn't seem to be doing much for paddling skills anywhere else.

#46 Tue, 01/25/2011 - 5:48pm

Goodwaka: the comment was talking about progression of canoe design. Not paddles. So I'm having a hard time following your comment as it switches back to wooden paddles. Also the post was pretty clear in exactly what kind of progress I was speaking since I gave two very clear examples of foot pumps and drainage valves. Third to suggest that somehow the federations rules and skill level of Tahitians is somehow connect is a kinda baffling.

#47 Fri, 02/04/2011 - 2:55pm

Mauitim: when you stated that Tahitians have had a hard time transitioning from wood to other materials, the only implication is that advanced composite design leads to a lighter weight canoe…….same thing applies with paddles . Carbon/epoxy composite blades can be lighter than wood, but do not always help a paddler go faster.
As I pointed out; the weight advantage of the lightest weight canoe is only relevant in certain conditions, and even a wooden V1 will be competitive (depending on the paddler of course) at times and in comparison to a carbon V1 - when for example in conditions where the extra weight helps to keep momentum/carry while paddling into the wind.
Where rules dictate weight limits………and where rules are based on the possibility of meeting weight requirements with wooden construction materials (as in Tahiti with V6 at least, and until very recently with V1 as well) then paddler ability is more important than weight reduction.
Your mention of cockpit drainage pumps was in another posting altogether, so I did not connect that aspect of progress with the discussion….Sorry about that. My thoughts about cockpit drainage do not include the need for pipes , bladders and valves.

#48 Sat, 02/05/2011 - 12:25pm

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