Quiet Time - A Decked Canoe
Built by Kevin and Cindy  mudivers@yahoo.com 

During the summer of 2001 my sweetie and I decided to build our first stitch and glue boat (Cynthia) - a small, lightweight rowing pram for use in and around Florida's less accessible shallow water mangrove areas. Cynthia and our latest vessel "Quiet Time" (the double paddle, decked canoe), were both built using a boat construction method known as "stitch and tape" also known as "stitch and glue" construction. We learned of this type of boat building on the Internet. Just about any Internet search engine will come up with lots of web sites that explain this boat building method. There are also books on this method of boat construction. Stitch and tape/ stitch and glue construction = inexpensive, simple, fast, forgiving, and durable. An excellent way to build your first boat! We can't say enough good things about our experiences with this technique! 

Anyway back to the story. Our first home built boat "Cynthia", a little rowing pram turned out to be quite comfortable for one adult but not so for two. We needed a second boat. Actually we had so much fun building and rowing the first boat that we decided to try our hand at building a second. For our second boat we decided to build a "double paddle canoe". We wanted this vessel to be able to travel the same shallow/hidden waters that Cynthia was capable of. It was also important to have this new boat be easy and quick to get to the water. At 10 feet 4 inches long and 30 inches wide we have no need to tie this 35-pound decked canoe to a roof rack. It fits easily inside of our conversion van. Our decked canoe design is loosely based on a type of boat known as a Cajun Pirogue and more closely based on a design by Fritz Funk known as a "Wacky Lassie". We drew up our own version because we needed a specific length and maximum freeboard to accommodate our needs. We finished construction in just 10 leisurely days (lots of time spent waiting for resin and glue to cure). We covered the entire hull exterior with one layer of 7-ounce fiberglass cloth. 

The hull panels and decks were cut from two 4' by 8' sheets of 1/4 inch Luann plywood ($10 a sheet at Home Depot). We used 1/2" CDX plywood scrap for the two bulkheads and the center rib. The bow and stern stems were cut from 2"x 2" douglas fir. Two 3/4" x 3/4" inwales were cut from a 12' douglas fir 1" x 2". We purchased a $7.00 molded plastic boat seat from Wal-Mart. These inexpensive seats are very lightweight and very comfortable! The boat is painted with an oil-based paint. The decks have been stained with an oil-based stain and top coated with spar varnish. We've got less than $150. Invested in this boat.

Our little decked canoe paddles well for such a short boat. The bottom has only two inches of rocker built in. We figured that some would be beneficial but we still wanted to keep the bow and stern in the water to maximize displacement potential and keep the boat tracking well. It's been a strong little boat. Excellent for fishing and exploring the ponds, mangroves, and inshore saltwater flats of Southwest Florida.