Scaled-down Sonnet

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Scaled-down Sonnet

Post by daisy »

Hi- I'm new to the forum, so I wanted to apologize if this question has been answered anywhere else. This is the question:

I really want to build a Yost Sonnet. I'd love to have a boat that I could take on the subway with me that actually feels like a real kayak. The problem is that I think that the boat is probably too deep and definitely too wide for me. I'm 5'4" and 100 lbs. Since the rocker of the boat is created by the paddler's weight, it would also be extremely flat-hulled with me in it. I was thinking about how to scale it down, and I hoped that some more experienced builders could comment on the feasibility of these modifications:

- Use home-made smaller diameter sponsons and reduce the beam and depth of the boat (aiming for about 14' - 15' length and about 18" width)
- Induce rocker through a pre-bent keel
- Use 3 tiny-diameter sponsons instead of 2 larger ones

Also, if any other small women or kids have tried either a Sonnet 14 or 16, how did they think it fit?


Re: Scaled-down Sonnet

Post by ThomasZ »

I'm not sure what Tom would say but here is my opinion about your questions:

If you want performance, go for a narrower version of the Sonnet 16/4.
My Sonnet is extremly stable at 21" but 18" would probably be a little bit too narrow.
You would still get a rocket at 19".

Use two pairs of Folbot sponsons because they reliable.
As they also fit well to the Sonnet 16 design I would not go shorter.
If you use three pairs of self-made sponsons you will have a lot of additional work.
The kayak would most likely have more freeboard.
It would be stiffer because you would need two pairs of chine tubes.

Do not try to pre-bend the keelson, it will bend enough in the water.
Maybe you could use less than 3/4" diameter for the keelson but I'm not sure about that.
Build 3/4" and if you think its too stiff you still can make a thinner keelson.

For the chine tubes 5/8" would be OK I think.
But I would add 3/4" reinforcement tubes (maybe 5" in length) at the locations of the cross braces.

You will have a lot of fun with your Sonnet! Don't think too much like I did. Just start building!

Best wishes

My girlfriend is about 135 lbs and she likes my Sonnet, as well. I'm 180 lbs and with gear it should not be smaller.

My Sonnet building details

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