I had an old packet of that wonder goo called Sugru, the best before date had passed by a coupla months ago and then some.. It was coloured black!
My new waterproof pocket camera, a Olympus Tough 860 was ok, but I had noticed that the gripping “handle” was abit on the small size. With wet fingers it wasnt very “shure” fitting..
So.. I decided, what the hell.., might as well try it..
Now I have a Sugru Customized camera.. As this is the third time during the past 3 months that I have used Sugru, I cannot say anything about how well it works on the long term.. thus far shows lotsa promise!
The extended “Sugru ramp” feels a bit better gripping the camera and thus far hasn’t hindered any of the other functions. So its an improvement!
Laying out the Sugru was simple. Easy Peasy! Some thin rubber gloves to keep the fingers clean, a coupla small “spatulas” (ice-cream sticks) and a lead pencil to help shape and mold the “sugru ramp”. After that wait 24 hours and presto!
For the upcoming finnish coastal paddle, Marko and myself took our new Beauforts for a ‘spin’, or more seriously a trial run. A couple night trip with basic camping loads to figure out how these kayaks work, how they should be loaded, how we perform, how new bits of kit work, what we forgot, what we won’t need and also.. just for the fun of it! 🙂
We logged some 100 km’s total trip. The weather was beautiful! Not so much wind, = very little sailing. The sun and warm more than made up for the lack of the wind.
Overall the kayaks worked VERY well ! Both were pleased. On smooth waters and a semi-full load paddling @ 6.5-7 km/h daily average speed was surprisingly easy for day trips of 36-38 km. We could have improved that average quite easily if we felt like it. But being the first trip of the season, we took it easyish.. Nothing fell off, nothing broke so all in all a VERY good trip!
A more complete or review of the kayak will follow after this summers trip!
Got a couple semi-decent pictures along the way. Trip took place in the Lake Saimaa system, mainly: Yövesi, Liittokivenselkä, Varissaarenselkä, Pajusaarenselkä and Hietasaarenselkä
A friend had taken up on Stand Up Paddling. After some time she asked if I could make her a wooden SUP paddle. I’d never made a wooden SUP paddle and was kinda bored or atleast looking for something different to tinker on , so I promised to try to make a paddle for her.
Making something out of bits of wood wasn’t a problem. The challenge in this case was the basic design, shape and dimensions. I had no clue. I’d tried SUPping awhile ago in Portugal, but I was having such a fun time at the time that I didnt really pay any attention to the details of the paddle. Thank ze gods for the internet!
After googling for about 45 minutes, I more or less had some basic shaky idea what I was going to attempt. Online, I found a basic template of a paddle blade shape (I’ve lost the link for the moment from where I found the template, sorry about that!) and some possible dimensions as well. Also I had a book (yeah, I know, such an ancient concept and with no wifi either!), about canoe paddles!! So I was all set to go.@
The idea was to make a bent shaft paddle. My plan was to make the shaft from laminated strips. Partly for visual effetct and partly to make it .. well stronger. I fashioned a glue press with a 10 degree bend. The materials for the shaft were 3 strips of nordic pine sapwood @5.6mm thick and approx 40mm wide. Length at this stage was unknown so I built the shaft about 2300mm long. The remaining 2 strips I decided to use Mahogany of same dimensions. Mahogany may not be the smartest choice , as it is on the heavyish side.. but boy does it look great!
To keep it all together, I decided to use single-component polyurethane glue made by Wurth. I’ve used it previously on a couple canoe and kayak paddles with good results. At the moment I dont trust it as much as 2-component epoxy, which I’ve used on several occasion previously, but I think it’ll do the job sufficiently. besides my finances were in the dumps.. polyurethane is soo much more cheaper than epoxy.
After some gluing, pressing, planing I had the shaft ready after which I glued the “cheek pieces” of the blade, ie. the parts that make up the majority of the paddle blade area. For my Prototype #1 which will probably end up being a wallhanger anyway I used some scrap pieces of walnut I had lying around.. yeah, I know. not smart choice = too heavy and probably not very durable in the longterm.. but I had a hankering to work on walnut and I was going for looks at this stage.
Prototype#2 is basicly the same as #1 but the blade cheeks are nordic pine-sapwood, and 100mm longer. Should be quite a bit ighter than the shorter walnut version.
The paddles still need to be sanded down to their final size and shape and varnished and then at some date tested! Follow up posts will follow….
I’ve never been too excited about live picture/video capturing. Have always considered myself a “still image” type of guy. Looks like that may change…
Marko had recently acquired a GoPro Hero4 Session camera and attached Ram Mount hardpoints where to install the camera on his kayak.
The GoPro Hero4 Session is a camera produces to my uneducated eye actually pretty decent net worthy video! Also it is pretty darn small!! In addition it has only TWO buttons to operate!! This is borderline limit for my feeble mind to comprehend. Sounds like something I may learn to use?
Also the Camera can be operated with a separately sold remote control, OR a smart phone app. So if the camera is further away from the operator, one can still start and stop the filming! This can be handy on a kayak!
I have the understanding that these GoPro Devices are reasonably robust and actually may operate successfully in marine conditions.. so this might be working formula!
The 1 inch ram mount B- size balls are reasonably low in profile, yet sturdy for intended use , particularly this small camera and has a large selection of adapters, gadgets etc available and whats best these were all available from Finland without complicated, unsure, expensive “order from abroad and pay taxes” spiel!
I acquired the necessary parts from local company nearby with excellent service and which pretty much covers the whole Ram Mount catalog of parts available: Yepnet. Whats best, the whole package was under 100€!! This hardly ever happens in Finland anymore!
Installation of the hardpoints was easy/hard. I used SS M4 Hardware + White SikaFlex 291i to attach the Ram Mount balls on the bow and stern. Evereything else was easy apart from holding back the nuts while tightening the screws. Here and additional pair of hands was necessary.
So.. now I have another toy to play around with.. and if all goes well I might actually have some videos to post at a later date.. Ofcourse before that I will have to try to learn the complex world of digtalvideo editing! 😉
My biggest anticipated paddle for summer 2016 is the Finnish Coastal paddle. That is to say, paddle the finnish coast in its entirety from the Finnish-Russo border, Virojoki to the Finnish- Swedish border, Tornio.
To give some idea of the planned trip I made a VERY ROUGH DRAFT plan of the trip. That is to say it gives a very basic idea of where I will be paddling with Marko. From experience I know that the routes will probably differ either somewhat or alot depending on the weather, mood and /or physical conditions encountered and experienced on the trip… so regard the map with a pinch of salt .. or two.