Cape Falcon Kayak spring
Equinox, warmer rain, breaks of sun, chlorophyll floods the
landscape, there is light in the morning and the evening,
the farm comes to life, my whitewater trips are slowly replaced
by surf missions. The thrill of spring is here!
We just finished our first class of the year here at the shop and for
once we had nice weather, in April! We built four kayaks
including these two beautiful Greenland boats, some of the nicest
to ever come out of the shop.
Loren, a past student, returned to the shop to build a new
F1 for herself and her companion. Now 13, he has been
riding like this since he was a puppy.
I was recently given back the very first F1 ever built at my
shop. It's still in good shape and I feel so lucky to get
to paddle it again after all these years.
I finally took the time yesterday to build a real rack for all of the
derelict boats strewn around the shop.
Tom Moen of thomaspaddles.com
dropped off a rack of brand new blades for sale. This
perfect marriage of Red Cedar and Black Locust offers the
toughest, yet lightest wood paddle you can buy. The
shape is mine, but with a much nicer finish than I have ever
produced. Very nice sticks.
A new project that I'm proud to unveil is this fresh batch of
Adirondack Guide Boats. After 5 years of testing the
protoypes I took everything I learned and built a couple
more. One for myself and one for sale. Go and
check out the whole write up as well as photos here.
Ginger is the plant Diva here on the R-evolution Garden organic farm,
and my job is to build things and fix things. Our big addition
this spring is these two 48ft long ROLLING greenhouses. They
slide on 150ft long pipe tracks, allowing us to start things
early and then expose them to the elements so bugs and diseases don't
A few days ago Gin came running across the field, "Brian,
Brian, look what I found!" These elusive little frogs
always present but seldom seen. We both enjoyed a close up look
at the face behind the voice that sings to us at night.
With the sun now making regular appearances I watch with lust and glee
as all of my solar contraptions begin to work!!!! This is
the inlet outlet gauges of the solar bath house loop, giving me a
15 degree temperature rise at 2 gallons per minute. I can't
even tell you how happy this makes me. Projects for
this summer include a big solar oven and solar food dehydrator.
Many of you will remember this kitten from last years update. M
is now almost a cat!
I found a small clearing of these beautiful little flowers while on a
walk the other evening and luckily I had my iPhone 4s on me to catch
the shot. After years of DSLR addiction, things
have come full circle and I've been really enjoying using the 4s
as my primary camera. It has a great little lens but no
zoom, no exposure control, limited focus
control. I like it because it forces me to adapt and be
creative. You can get a great photo out of it if you know
how to work within it's limitations. It's a lot of
fun. Like most wide angle point and shoots, it loves
to get close.
Stranded on an island in the bay, this eroded piece of driftwood is one
of the natural wonders of my world. I've always said that
if I had a blind girlfriend I would take her here to impress
her! It's as tactilly wonderful as it is visually
On the paddling side of things, I'm still doing what I always
do, boating, boating, and more boating.
It's the most important thing one can do as a designer. I'm
pretty happy with the current quiver of Cape Falcon Kayaks, but
every year things get a little bit more refined, a little
better. The video project is still happening and we
are making slow project toward a release date of summer
solstice. I do a lot of things with my time so everything
takes longer than I expect, with summer approaching I can't
imagine that problem will get any better. Classes are
mostly full for the year, although we still have a few spaces
September, the nicest class of the year. Hey,
I'd be happy to take September off to go surfing, but it seems to
me like someone out there would want to come build a boat during the
best month of the year? Sheesh.
Anyways, that's all for now. Maybe I'll see ya at the
Back to Cape Falcon Kayak
I've been doing this for eight years and I have a reputation for
getting things right. In spite of my obsessive
perfectionism, even the best of us screw up once in a while
though. I was quite shocked when this gentleman had a hard time
fitting into his new Greenland kayak. He got
in, but I want things to go a little smoother for liability
reasons. "We can totally fix this.", I
said. At the end of the class with evening approaching I
hauled out all my tools and got to work. I carved down the
back of his coaming first, next I crawled inside with an ANGLE
grinder and reshaped the underside of the Masik, the spinning wheel
just millimeters from the skin the whole time. Then I reached as
far as I possibly could forward and cut out the offending ribs that
caught his heels. Using a razor sharp chisel at the full
extension of my arm I delicately cut out two pocket mortises and then
steam bent a new rib in place, fastening it in place with bronze
ring nails. He slid in much better when I was
done. Rebuilding a frame deep inside a finished boat isn't
something you get to do every day. It looks authentic and
mimics the rib repairs seen in just about every qajaq in a
I strive to never make mistakes, but when I do I WILL fix
the problem, whether that means a crazy repair, or even a
brand new boat.