The more I get the Duh!k on water, the more comfortable I become and the more we ‘fit’. That odd rib beside the point, things are getting better. I did a little edging today and while she seemed sluggish, I did find that if I leaned enough to get the gunwales in water, she would turn. And thats not quite roll zone. I have to have the gunwale and some of the deck and cockpit submerged before she hits the “lets duck daddy in the water” mood. Granted, thats flatwater only. You start tossing the surface around and things can get squirrelly fast. That was one aspect I wanted to learn today by going to the bigger lake. Power boats make wakes and thats the one thing I don’t get at the small lake I usually head to. Even with a 6″ swell abeam, she stays stable, though she feels goosey. I’d venture she could ride much bigger with no issues. Driving into the swells, I found that timing my dip and stroke to the bottoms worked great: reach the top and set up for the next stroke, hit bottom and pppuuullllll,,, repeat on next swell. She would hit that next swell, slice right into it and raise her nose like a breaching whale and I would set the next stroke up. Waves abeam were ok, so long as I was moving forward: goosey, but not hateful. Getting caught standing made her wallow like a pig and really taxed me on supporting strokes. I only let that happen the once. I wasn’t out long enough for a try with a following wave; maybe after I get the leak fixed and hull retrimmed… All in all though, I am not sure I need to make another kayak. The Duh!k is filling my ‘needs’ quite well, and the Carolina fills the gaps. The only real downside to the Carolina is weight: no load, she comes in at 63 pounds. Thats a beast when you’ve been paddling for several hours and you need to climb a hill to get to the take out. And those climbs are frequent enough around here.
If I do build another, and it is still quite possible, it will be as proposed already; wider in beam, slightly longer and flatter mid-hull. But I am thinking that I want to experiment on bulkheads and hatches in a Skin on Frame design. I have seen Tahe Marine Greenlands with hatches and am pretty certain they are SOF. Having separate chambers for gear would be nice, but the addition of a pair of float chambers in the event of a capsize is an even bigger incentive.