Two design questions from the user's point of view

Topic one: adjustable foot peddles.

Would lead to improved performance.

Topic two:

Boats are too fragile.

What do you think ?

Submitted by eckhart diestel on Tue, 01/13/2009 - 2:06pm

Topic one:
Adjustable foot systems helps maintain the center of gravity. Each time the paddler move the seat back and forward the center of gravity changed. I think this is the reason why some paddlers are happy with the surfing skills of their canoe and others don't using the same canoe design. A canoe with more weight forward will perform better in the surf.

Topic two:
Surfski manufacturers offer the option for a fiberglass lay up. You can buy a fiberglass Mako from Fenn kayaks for $1,975 or a Epic for $1,895. Why canoe manufacturers only make expensive carbon and kevlar canoes? Prices under the $2,000 will bring more people to the outrigger sport.

#1 Tue, 01/13/2009 - 3:46pm

Topic one:
Is adjustable foot peddles even an option? If you move them back or forward you will have to deal with the slack or tension of the cable from the peddle to the rudder assembly. Maybe if the excess of the cable can be pulled pass the rudder thing and have a stop pin to hold the cable in place. I don't know.

Topic two:

#2 Tue, 01/13/2009 - 4:12pm

Fragile in what respect? I have my view and opinions on laminations and the "durability", but one needs to consider thse product end use. Are we building for racing, hauling on your car, carrying, or just posing? I'll weigh in on the economics later. Foot pedals, well lets discuss function, weight, form, many things to consider. I would like to elaborate but need more info.


#3 Tue, 01/13/2009 - 4:21pm

I could see how the center of balance would help in the adjustable foot peddles is a great Idea.

Huki has those price options from 2200 to 3600$ for OC1's
and I'm not sure of the particulars but they have a Hybrid OC1 that looks like a surf ski with a ama I 'm not sure if it has the adjustable foot peddles

#4 Tue, 01/13/2009 - 4:32pm

easiest solution to topic 2

require minumum weight on all OC-1s for racing purposes
People want carbon due to the believed increase in speed (lower weight) and don't want to place themselves at a possible disadvantage by having a heavier boat

If hull weight requirement was closer to the 30lb range, boats would come down in price, and builders could beef them up (if they did so require) without fear of being out pushed out of their target markets

Really a win win situation for the sport (even though there would be many current racers against it for personal reasons)

#5 Tue, 01/13/2009 - 4:34pm

1 - yes. (for all the reasons everyone mentioned)

2 - yes. (most of the super light boats don't seem to be made for the uses a lot of us are putting them to - big chop, surfing close to breaks - and many of them sacrifice "survivability" for lightweight - which again doesn't fit the blue water paddling we're doing more and more. Would be great to see options of "lightweight race boat" and "open ocean big water boat")

#6 Tue, 01/13/2009 - 5:02pm

I think I speak for every builder when I say that we don't build these canoes to be surfed at, or near to surf breaks. If that is what one intends to do, than they should let the builder know so that they can make appropriate changes to the lamination. We can build them more "flexible" and be able to take more impact but they will be heavier. I have no problem making them more durable and heavier, they will last longer and I like to see my canoes holding up years after construction. But the concensis over the last 5 years or so is for lighter, stiffer canoes. Carbon fibre provides both but can be brittle and therefor lead to more severe catastrophic failures. Yes we can add more carbon to make them stronger but they will be more costly. They will accept more load and strain but can still fail when pushed beyond their limits. If you look at the sea kayaks that are used in extremely rough and choppy conditions you'll find that they are considerably heavier than our canoes, and they are smaller in volume. If youwant a bullet proof canoe it will be twice the weight and perhaps twice the cost. Go research what good, durable sea kayak cost, ouch! And I'm not talking about a plastic fantastic kayak.

But what durability are we talking about? If it is damage from repeatedly carrying them incorrectly, than yes that could be beef up that area with a minimal amount of weight. If it is damage from straps or cradles, no problem, tell us exactly where they will be saddled, how they will be strapped, and we can strengthen that area.

I personally prefer building heavier and more durable canoes. First of all they are easier to build, and secondly I have less concerns with customers. I don't subscribe to the notion that light is faster in this sport, especially when rough conditions can be the norm. I think the whole light weight canoe is too "mental".


#7 Tue, 01/13/2009 - 5:46pm

Tiger, i know it's not nice to ask, but apart from your own excellent OC1's, what other canoe do you "admire"?

Cheers Rambo

#8 Tue, 01/13/2009 - 5:54pm

The foot peddle topic:

let's say you weigh 100 kg ( 220 lbs ) and your weight is 0.1 m ( ~ 3 1/2 " ) behind the sweet spot, the torque will be

100 kg x 0.1 = 10 ( units are not correct, it's Newton-meters )

that is equal to

10 kg x 1 m = 10

in other words:

if you are 3 - 4 inches behind your sweet spot and weigh 220 lbs the effect is the same as if you hang a ~ 25 lbs weight at one yard behind the sweet spot of your canoe.

That's a lever with 3 - 4 gallons of water.

When you pick up speed, the bow of the canoe comes out of the water and this effect is even more.

( I hope the metric/imperial conversions are about right )

That is significant, isn't it ?

What do you think how many waves you miss because of that ?

Topic two: I'd love to have an extra fiberglass layer at the bow and in the straps area as well as under the rudder.
Just under the back edge of the rudder I would actually love to have a layer ( aluminum foil ??, plastic ) to disperse the pressure when the rudder hits the reef.

It never came to me that you could ask the builder to make these additions when you order - great suggestion.

#9 Wed, 01/14/2009 - 7:31am

Thank you for the the kind remark Rambo, but I certainly wouldn't say that my canoes are excellent. I have always admired Brent Bixler's canoes/kayaks, and in particular his craftsmanship. I don't think many people know how much he has influenced this sport. Albeit it has been very indirect, but he has had a lot to do with the canoes originating out of Hawaii. Plus key cool dude!

But I would have to say that the canoe that I most admired, from purely an visual stand point because I never paddled one, was Outrigger Connections Axis model. I really admired the lines on that canoe.


#10 Tue, 01/13/2009 - 6:13pm

Outrigger Connection has a new canoe - we saw it on the water yesterday - the 'Osprey'. It is lower volume.

Simply said: it is stunning, you will see.
jc9_0 - yes, chines.

I have never seen the Axis - does anybody have a picture to share ?

The new canoe on Tiger's website - Kahele - looks beautiful, too. Are there some more pictures available ? Any demos on Oahu ?

#11 Tue, 01/13/2009 - 7:30pm

most importantly, how big are her chines?

#12 Tue, 01/13/2009 - 7:25pm

Please tell us more about the osprey, any photos? has this been made to combat the Pueo's current market power?

#13 Tue, 01/13/2009 - 11:07pm

A new Outrigger Connection OC-1 Osprey? You've just peaked my interest. Can't wait to see and hear more about it.

#14 Tue, 01/13/2009 - 11:38pm

Ospery... just when I thought I was all finished with the decision making process!

Additional info please?

"I will strain my potential until it cries for mercy." Og Mandino

#15 Tue, 01/13/2009 - 11:54pm

Nice looking new design Tiger! You need to get a demo to the Big Island for all your loyal fans! I can give you my address whenever your ready.

#16 Wed, 01/14/2009 - 12:25am

I have seen the boat a few times. Jr is paddling it right now, best to call Outrigger Connection and ask about it. It is narrow, has a slidable/velcro seat. Not really a 'descendant' of previous boats according to Milan. The fore deck reminds you a little bit of the Zephyr, but not too much, has a little less volume. The aft deck is relatively low.
The foot well area is all new - just 12 inches wide. The seat area drains. Probably some more things that I don't know. Ama seemed slightly narower.

Tiger's boat: all I have seen is the picture on his website, it is a new boat, too, and it is available.

There will be another new OC 1 this year from a Hawaiian builder which is currently being finished. Computer designed, many new features, possibly two different amas ( one for flat, one for open ocean ) and - adjustable foot pedals. I don't know the Hawaiian builder who will sell it. This is supposed to be a surfing machine with the center of gravity moved way forward; while tweaking the design to get great flat water speed, too.

My own project boat is getting a new bow. It was just too wet, working only when quatering the waves. I also shorten the hull by 4 inches.

That means, I would like to buy 4 boats right now. :)

#17 Wed, 01/14/2009 - 7:20am

I agree with you that it makes a difference whether you are sitting in the "sweet spot" or .1m = 10cm to the rear of it. However, just as an "oh, by the way", your whole 220lbs will not be 10cm past the sweet spot, probably just a fraction of that (your model would apply more to a SUP, where the whole 220lbs would be 10cm behind the sweet spot). So it's probably not equivalent to a 10kg weigh hanging 1m behind the sweet spot, but something less; hard to take a guess how much but we could probably estimate it if we tried.
For your topic 2: yes, these boats are way too fragile for the how much they cost... just an observation as a beginner. (but I'm slow enough as it is: I'd rather risk my carbon boat than paddle my fiberglass one)

#18 Wed, 01/14/2009 - 7:57am

Yes! more whoring for all the boat whores out there!

If I had more money I'd be a total boat whore.

#19 Wed, 01/14/2009 - 8:08am

grovpb4 - yes. If you sit on a balance in the middle you will not create any torque.

If you move to one of the ends your weight will create torque, more the further you move out of the center.

The parts of your body that are on the other side of the center of rotation ( legs, arms ... ) would work to create an opposite, correcting torque.

Once your bow goes up, the center of gravity of your arms and legs will shift and in part add to the 'stern down' torque.

Once you're over the hump and surfing bow down, the torque would change and favor bow-down.

The idea is to get on the bump = bow down; and that is trim related. It takes more effort to get into the bow down position if the torque is working against it.

#20 Wed, 01/14/2009 - 8:22am

I always thought it was strange that OC1's were so once sized fits all. V1's are more or less made for the paddler. While there aren't "peddles" there is a foot rest that is created for the user's height.

As far as fiberglass... New Zealand Maker Maui Kanu does tons of fiberglass for the NZ market. Tahiti too is mostly fiberglass until you get elite and you have your race canoe and your home canoeSSSSSS.

John Martin makes fiberglass here in Hawaii. I spoke to him recently.
Maui Kanu / Maoli Wa'a make fiberglass V1's as well as carbon / double carbon. Timi Wa'a makes mostly fiberglass, has carbon and has one other choice. I don't know how to call it in English. I'm sure other makers do fiberglass too.

As far as not making them for surf:


#21 Wed, 01/14/2009 - 8:31am

Just some more thoughts on the center-of-mass question. The main difference between a SUP and an OC-1 (as far as center of mass goes) is that there is 1 point of contact for SUP whereas OC-1 there are two (your seat and your feet). Of course a lot more weight is distributed to your seat than your feet. If you are too tall to sit comfortably on the seat position that would put you in the sweet spot, then you sit behind the sweet spot, say 10cm. But since your feet don't move, if you sit 10cm behind the sweet spot seat position, your center of mass doesn't move 10cm, but something less.
Now I see why you want to move the footwell... if you move the footwell forward you can stay on the sweet spot of the boat.

#22 Wed, 01/14/2009 - 8:59am

The new canoe looks brilliant!!!
Any chance you're going to send one down to the Bay to demo? Does Billy have one yet?

#23 Wed, 01/14/2009 - 9:11am

Allmost every surfski has adjustable foot peddles now... don't see why OC makers can't do this.

My V1 is all fiberglass and it cost approx 1500 $. It's plenty strong, does not weight so much, and I don't think I'm such a good paddler that I would perform better with a carbon one... So I rather keep my money for something else ( a glass ski, a paddleboard, a SUP, etc...)

#24 Wed, 01/14/2009 - 9:46am

Just wanted to give a shout out to Tiger. Hows it Tiger. Miss you in Hawaii. Hope things going good in Cali.

BTW, loved your V1 that you put out at the World Sprints in Sac. That boat is sweet! I am not a real V1 fan, but after taking yours out for a spin, I kinda liked it.

Aloha Brah...come back home...


#25 Wed, 01/14/2009 - 10:21am

grovpb4 - do you have any thoughts about how much it matters ?

#26 Wed, 01/14/2009 - 11:34am

Ok, this is what I've got (using a lot of simplifying assumptions). Assuming the boat is 7m long, 15'' wide, and assuming it is 15'' deep (i.e. 15 inches of the boat are underwater under the seat area when a 100kg person is sitting on it).
A 100kg paddler sitting 10cm behind the sweet spot would exert roughly 98Nm of torque with respect to the sweet spot of the boat.
As a result, the back of the boat would sink until the volume of water displaced by the back end of the boat exerts a opposing torque large enough to cancel out the paddler's torque ("Archimedes' principle"). Using some extremely crude approximations... I get that the front part of the boat would rise by about 2cm (and the back part of the boat would sink by 2cm).
To test this you could probably just take a boat to a pool and sit at different spots and see how the front of the boat tips up as you move past the sweet spot. Maybe put a laser pointer pointing forward on the front of the boat and see how the spot moves as you sit forward and backward in the boat.
I don't know enough about paddling to know whether 2cm is a big deal or not... I'm sure the boat is made or tested without being tipped up by 2cm... but I'm not sure how much difference that would make.

#27 Wed, 01/14/2009 - 12:58pm

Thank you - I gathered some more knowledge from an experienced designer:

the longer the boat, the less this matters

the taller you are/heavier you are, the more this may happen

in the flat it matters less than in the surf

it is design dependent, but all designs will have a spot where this will
definitely make a difference

3 inches/10 cm behind the sweet spot is bad in any case and can lose you up to 1 km/h average speed - this is a measured number from an existing design.

not being in the sweet spot is worst for taking off in the waves

a trim change of 2 cm/~ 1 inch bow up is definitely significant.

Overall nothing really new or surprising. What surprises is that the builders don't react to it.
I have a boat that I really like, but I cannot surf it. And I know that it is due to the fact that I am sitting too far behind.
Changing to a different boat, my surfing ability improves dramatically. And even in that boat I am still behind the sweet spot.

Would you enter a long distance cycling event with a racing bike with the saddle too high or too low ? No. Why are the canoes not made to fit ? There may be a good answer, but so far I have mostly gotten the response that it does not matter.

grovpb4 - the boats sit about 5" deep in the water under the seat. Length is rather 6 m/20 feet, width 30 cm/13 inches at waterline.

#28 Wed, 01/14/2009 - 1:59pm

The right design will easily outweigh a couple extra pounds, be it paddler pounds, extra gear pounds, or canoe hull pounds.

#29 Wed, 01/14/2009 - 6:11pm

This is a very interesting discussion. However, for the benefit of lesser experienced OC-1 paddlers, can we expand on the "sweet spot"? Is this spot designed into the canoe, or does the sweet spot change with a paddler's dimensions? How would a new paddler go about finding or determining the sweet spot of a given canoe? Is the sweet spot dependent on how the canoe will be used - is there a sweet spot when a canoe is in the flats, and does that sweet spot change on the same canoe if paddling in the surf? How would you describe the sweet spot to an inexperienced OC-1 paddler (or someone that may just not have figured it out)?

#30 Wed, 01/14/2009 - 6:16pm

For me sweet spot would be the position I need to be in on a surfboard to get the wave. Should be similar for a canoe.

Bill what do you think about weight distribution, trim changes, adjustable foot pedals in OC 1 ?

#31 Wed, 01/14/2009 - 7:50pm

Quoted from "Interspecies Conflict: Animal vs. Animal" by Fady D. Isho:

"Unless on the ground it is unlikely that an osprey can do much to attack an owl. It wouldn't be defensless, however, the owl can quickly crush the skull, or pierce the brain of the osprey."

I think that pretty much sums it up. Of course, I'm sure some smart-ass is going to try to tell me that "it's the motor, not the bird" that matters. Yeah, right - tell it to the osprey. Oh wait you can't, he's got a crushed skull and/or pierced brain.

#32 Wed, 01/14/2009 - 10:06pm

Goto welcome back, we were missing you witty repartee

#33 Wed, 01/14/2009 - 10:24pm

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