A lively freestyle canoe
Our Emiel’s Special is a lightweight solo canoe designed for the experienced paddler. Although a dedicated freestyle canoe it will also bring a lot of joy as a solo tripping canoe. It offers a unique blend of speed and responsiveness and feels equally at home on flat water and quiet small rivers.
The Emiel’s Special has moderate rocker and a gently curved bilge making it a responsive canoe that edges gracefully. To improve hydrodynamics we add graphite to the epoxy on the hull. This works as a lubricant and, combined with the wooden inside, gives the canoe an appealing and distinctive look.
The American Canoe Association defines Freestyle Canoeing as ‘the art and science’ of quietwater paddling. It emphasizes smooth, efficient flatwater paddling and precision boat control. Freestyle techniques can be applied to all canoeing situations, from goofing off on a local pond to whitewater.
Freestyle canoeing is all about making your canoe do what you decide under all conditions. This is done through a fixed set of movements strokes and skills. In presentations and competitions many freestyle canoeists paddle to music making it very artful.
Yet, the functional side of learning freestyle techniques can not be overestimated. It gives you mastery over your canoe that can be applied in all conditions.
Cedar and glass fabric-epoxy
Our Emiel’s Special freestyle canoe is built with western red cedar and details in ayous and laminated with glass fabric and epoxy with added graphite powder. The laminate ensures that the wood is sandwiched and never comes into contact with water. In addition, it provides extreme stiffness which makes the canoe very efficient to be paddled. The freestyle canoe is polished and buffed. The graphite in the epoxy is an excellent UV-blocker.
Solid ash for the outfitting
The gunwales, seat, decks and thwarts are made of ash and walnut. Ash and walnut are hard, very flexible and relatively light. Because the ash parts of the canoe suffer the most they are coated with double boiled linseed oil to keep them flexible and in good shape. The outwales are screwed to make replacement easy. All screws and bolts are stainless steel.
Our canoes are very strong and stiff. Normal wear will occur when used normally. We recommend checking the canoe regularly and retouch any scratches by repolishing and buffing. In the unlikely event the epoxy laminate gets damaged, it should be repaired within reasonable time to prevent water seeping into the wood. The gunwales should be oiled three to four times a year.
Build it yourself?
Build the Emiel’s Special freestyle canoe yourself? All our canoes can be built by yourself in our shop. This requires no special prior knowledge. Check out our workshop section.
Our canoes are made to order. It takes us about 100 hours to build one. Prepare for a delivery period of approximately five weeks. If you would like to test our canoes, please contact us by e-mail.