How to Make Folding Kayaks

Written by kelly moore
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How to Make Folding Kayaks
Spend a relaxing day on the lake with your kayak. (kayak image by Franc Podgor...¡ek from

Kayaking can be a very entertaining way to spend the afternoon on a lake. But if you aren't close to the water, have very little storage space or can't afford to buy a kayak, you may not be able to enjoy this hobby. Building your own folding kayak is a good solution. You can save money and space, and easily transport the lightweight kayak in your vehicle.

Skill level:

Things you need

  • 4-by-8-foot sheets of corrugated plastic, 2
  • Tube of heavy duty construction adhesive
  • Para-cord
  • Waterproof tape

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  1. 1

    Lay your two pieces of corrugated plastic down on top of each other. Trace the shape of a three-foot wide kayak onto the corrugated plastic, using the entire length. This should give you two halves of your kayak, and enough left over for making spreaders.

  2. 2

    Decide which half you want to be the top and cut a hole where your body will go. Make sure it's big enough for you to fit comfortably.

  3. 3

    Glue the two pieces together around the outside edge with the heavy construction glue. If construction glue is not available, use hot glue.

  4. 4

    Sew along the outside edge with the para-cord.

  5. 5

    Use the waterproof tape to seal the seams of your kayak.

  6. 6

    Cut the leftover corrugated plastic into two 11-by-24-inch rectangles to make spreaders for your kayak. Push one spreader into the front end of the kayak and one into the back of the kayak. The spreaders will give the kayak its shape. You can make these out of plywood if you prefer them to be more rigid.

Tips and warnings

  • This kayak is meant for relatively calm waters close to shore. It is not durable enough for white water or ocean use.

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