A tale of two kayaks

by Laurie McGowan, with Alan Skinner



QUICK is a racing boat; CLEAN is meant for recreational paddling. According to the theory, they should vastly exceed the potential speed of conventional kayaks. Proof of concept awaits construction and sea trials.

An accepted theoretical hull speed of a typical K1 racing kayak is 5.5 knots, yet the world record of the type has averaged 11.65 knots for 33.38 seconds over 200m.

Alan Skinner’s theory suggests that a vessel, if properly submerged aft, will generate a speed-giving wave significantly longer than its LWL (it will “plane”). In the case of QUICK, this so-called DWL (“design waterline length”; not to be confused with a conventional datum waterline, which is also called DWL) is 1.6 x LWL.

Laurie McGowan is a Nova Scotia–based boat designer with a diverse on- and below-water work history. He specializes in energy-efficient commercial and pleasure boats. More of his work may be found at www.mcgowanmarinedesign.com.

Design Sketchbook appears in every issue of WoodenBoat. McGowan takes readers’ ideas of their ideal boats and designs a vessel to those specifications. Do you have a boat concept you’d like to see Laurie McGowan develop? If so, send it to Sketchbook, WoodenBoat Publications, P.O. Box 78, Brooklin, ME 04616, or email it to sketchbook@woodenboat.com. Your letter should be no longer than 500 words.

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