(Click on small images for a larger view - OI above is by Chris Hunt)
Builder: Dick Gamble of Essex, CT "The very enjoyable project began the end of November 2002 and the completed kayak was launched in early April 2003. I used 4 ounce glass inside and out, with triple layers on the bottom and on the underside of the flat aft deck. The hull forms were kept true to Jay's plans while the deck forms were modified to reduce the volume. The height of the deck at the leading and trailing edges of the cockpit were reduced by 1 inch. The resulting kayak is true to the outer Island reputation -- namely; it tracks very well, it doesn't weathercock, it is comfortable in rough water, with strong secondary, and plenty fast enough to make keeping up with the gang quite easy.
Builder: Don Price of Durham, CT "Fast boat, tracks great, made of red cedar that I milled myself. The Outer-Island is a fun boat to use, easy roller and great in rough water. Easy to roll. The boat was made in the same manner as my first boat using 7.5 oz cloth and West System epoxy. The plans were easy to use, and Jay Babina was also very helpful in the building process".
Builder: Pete Curry of Rockport, MA "I have just finished an Outer Island, with your plans and the materials supplied by Michael Vermouth at Newfound. I had a wonderful time building it - starting from a base of no woodworking skills or experience whatsoever - and just had the maiden voyage on Sunday. Paddles great, looks great and I'm looking forward to a lot of use and enjoyment".
Builder: Brooks Martyn of CT "This is a superb, low-volume, strip-built boat. Construction cost $1000, and took 7 months. Hull is of Western Red Cedar with white pine deck. Jay employs many of the simple techniques of the stitch-n-glue plywood boats. However, strip building requires more time, tools, and technique. My next 0I will have VCP hatches vs. the flush hatches that I installed. In my opinion, sea kayaks don't get any better than the 0I."
Builder: Ross Leidy of Cleveland, OH "During the 1999 and 2000 Newfound Woodworks Rendezvous, I had the opportunity to paddle Jay Babina's Outer Island kayak. I was a little intimidated by the small ocean-style cockpit, but the shape of the craft was just stunning - I had to give it a go. After that first paddle, I knew that I'd eventually have to build one. To me, it had a blend of some of the best characteristics of both the Panache and the Guillemot - strong tracking and shallow-arch hull like the Panache, and the low-volume, curvy Greenland kayak lines similar to the Guillemot". This was one great boat. http://www.blueheronkayaks.com
Builder: Oliver Bloch, Connecticut I built my Outer Island over the course of a year in my basement. It was my first woodworking project apart from a couple of cedar paddles and I appreciated the detailed instructions Jay provided with the plans. I ripped my own strips from cedar, ash, and sapele boards, then just let the wood reveal its wishes. The coaming, external stems, hatch knobs and toggles are all made up from laminates of ash and sapele to accent the deck pattern. The layup is heavy, consisting of four and six ounce glass, reinforced (by doubling up) in the football, along the keel, under the cockpit and on the rear deck. Still, with all that hardwood, glass and epoxy, the boat only weighs about what a production kayak would: 54 pounds.
I've enjoyed paddling it from Tybee Island in Georgia to the Atlantic coast of Nova Scotia. It rolls easily and surfs well, its secondary stability inspires a lot of confidence in rougher water, and it's plenty fast. Thanks for a great design, Jay, and for your generous help whenever I had a question while building it.
Builder: Tony Buechler, Jasper, Indiana "Kayak was launched on June 15 I really like the way it performs. I like the tracking of the kayak and feel it still turns nicely when leaned. I just recieved a spray skirt and look forward to rolling the Outer Island. The kayak is made of WRC, NWC and Basswood. I selected the Outer Island mainly from what I read on Nick Schade's bulletin board and also Ross Leidy's web site. I'm 100% satisfied. It was a great project. I'm looking forward to paddling the OI and improving my kayaking skills in the future. Thanks for a great design."
Builder: Richard Prager, Philidelphia, PA "The boat is so beautiful that I wanted to put my signiture on it so I learned to do an inlay. I'm fairly new to Sea Kayaking so I didn't know how to evaluate it's performance. All I can say is that it's quite amaizing. I took a two day course and did well in keeping up with everyone and in confused currents and tides, it just went up and down and stayed on course. It really took care of me. All I can tell you is I love this boat - thank you."
Builder: Ken Katz, Oakland, CA "After owning and building quite a few kayaks, the Outer Island is myfavorite. It is the best all around kayak that I have paddled. It is fast,forgiving and wonderful to look at. I have raced it many times using a native paddle and usually finish in the top 3 against many "racing" boats. Here on San Francisco Bay, we have lots of wind and waves and the OI seems to thrive. The fact that I have built 2 says it all. Thanks for a winner!"
Builder: Marc Morgan "The boat's performance was evrything you said it would be. She weighed in at just under 48lbs! The tracking and responsiveness was nothing short of "poetry on the water" All I can say is "Thank You" for designing a kayak that is a pure joy to paddle. I took out the Outer Island today for its first taste of water. It was like I'd been paddling the boat for years. Very fast, extremely forgiving and wow! what trackability!! It was kind of a nasty day and the wind was picking up, but I never felt like the boat was trying to weathercock. I'd pick a point on the distant shore and just start paddling without fighting to keep it straight."
Builder: Kim Woodman This was my first kayak build. Your instructions were as good as it gets. I am very pleased with the results and I can't go anywhere without people stopping me to ask questions. But although it looks phenomenal, the true beauty is more than skin deep. It's the performance that really shines. None of my paddling buddies can keep up to me, and in rough water it just seems to shrug off any challenge. I feel secure and empowered on the water. What a joy! To construct a work of art, and then have it take you places that most craft cannot venture, with such ease.
Thank you for sharing your inspirational design.
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