The Va'a Canoe

This Va'a type canoe was to have new class for adaptive athletes in the 2016 Olympic games but there were problems in agreeing on categories; hopefully this will we sorted out for 2020.  This version of the Openboat has been tested and found suitable as a training boat, either for recreational use or for selecting athletes for further training in Olympic Class boats - which are considerably more expensive.

In this model the width of the Plastazote sheet has been reduced by 240mm to give a lower profile on the water for ease of paddling.

The outrigger float (the alma) is made by laminating three strips of softwood 1500mm x 50mm x 12mm to provide the necessary curve the alma needs. Note also that it is higher at the front so that it will ride well in waves.  A piece of the spare 240mm strip of foam fastened to the wooden former using the same technique as for the side floats (see Part 2 video). Without the side float the Openboat does function as a kayak but is slightly unstable so more work needs to be done to change the profile of the cross section of the hull.

The links to the alma are 1750mm x 40mm x 40 mm softwood. The Olympic class boats use aluminium tube so an old windsurfing boom could be adapted to provide a smart alternative.

Currently, an improved version of this Va'a canoe is being tested at Wokingham Canoe Club (