View topic - Help Wanted: ID my Kayaks

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PostPosted: September 8th, 2015, 7:23 pm 
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Joined: September 8th, 2015, 5:50 pm
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Hi there,

I recently bought two fibreglass kayaks from my wife's friend. I didn't pay too much for them, since they will be used mostly for lazy Sunday Saugeen River kayaking/floating.

I'm doing my research, because I love to know the heritage/history of what I buy, I am respectfully requesting those with more paddling experience to help me find out more about my purchase.

I took a few photos of the kayaks. They both look like they have been around the river for quite a while(probably older than I am). They have some patchwork on the bottom, and the green one looks like it has been painted from it's original red color.

What I've found so far:
The orange one looks like it has been used as a rental by Madawaska Kanu Center, since the logo on the kayak matches the logo on the webpage:
http://www.owl-mkc.ca/

I'm not sure what the other logo is on the orange kayak. All that is visible is "M...IN", and what looks like a wing emblem. I've tried Googling "Merlin", and "Marlin" which seems like the obvious choices, with no success. Anyone know what brand logo this is?

Using my digital sleuthing skills on the Femat sticker(and this link http://www.myccr.com/phpbbforum/viewtopic.php?f=20&t=24457&start=0), I found that the green kayak was handmade by Emil Maschek, from Shelbourne, Ontario, circa probably 1980s era. I'm not sure if it is the TR2 touring edition, or the whitewater version. I don't kayak much, but I am assuming that the footpedals installed in the picture attached are for stability when paddling.

From experience paddling these kayaks, they don't track very straight, since there is no keel. Based on that observation, I am assuming that they are whitewater kayaks?

Another question: Anyone know what the white bolts and grommets with the lettering "Tapalo" is on the opening in the green kayak? Is this for attaching the spray skirts?

Any other insights?

If I am using them in the river, would a strap on type keel keep them tracking straighter?

What kind of seats should I install for paddling comfort?

Thanks for your help!
Jeff


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PostPosted: September 8th, 2015, 8:12 pm 
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Location: Milton
The merlin is a discontinued model.
http://eddyline.com/kayaks/discontinued-kayak-models/

The orange boat is a a copy of the Prijon Treska, designed for the 1975 world Championships.
Great boat very fore-giving edges, very easy to roll and handled the big water quite well.
This is me in one in 77 on the Hogstrough, Oxtongue river.
https://www.facebook.com/photo.php?fbid ... =3&theater

And I can tell you a lot about the Femat.
Emil Maschek designed and built, first in what became Mississauge and then he moved to Shelburne, On.
He is the one that started me on my White water racing career, tremendous knowledge of reading the river.
Link to earlier myccr posting
http://www.myccr.com/phpbbforum/viewtop ... 57&start=0
Old story about Emil
https://news.google.com/newspapers?nid= ... 8273&hl=en
The boat itself is a mid 60's design. By today's standards it would be a good boat for a 3/4 day gear in boat trip. Which is what is what used mostly back in the day.
It tracks very well and has a very good speed and it handled the big waves well.
Also the large cockpit was sought after by those who did not like the enclosed tight decks.
They look in very good shape for their age.
All boats are glass with gel coat.
Jeff

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Choosing to save a river is more often an act of passion than of careful calculation. You make the choice because the river has touched your life in an intimate and irreversible way, because you are unwilling to accept its loss. — (David Bolling, Ho


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PostPosted: September 9th, 2015, 1:37 pm 
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Joined: June 28th, 2001, 7:00 pm
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Location: Freeland, Maryland USA
jedi jeffi wrote:
The merlin is a discontinued model.
http://eddyline.com/kayaks/discontinued-kayak-models
The orange boat is a a copy of the Prijon Treska, designed for the 1975 world Championships.
Great boat very fore-giving edges, very easy to roll and handled the big water quite well.
And I can tell you a lot about the Femat.
Emil Maschek designed and built, first in what became Mississauge and then he moved to Shelburne
Jeff


Dayum, that is the most impressively complete and thorough response I have ever seen to a “ID my old slalom or whitewater kayak” question.

Cool stuff!


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PostPosted: September 9th, 2015, 1:56 pm 
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Location: Rattlesnake Pond ME
Hmmm and Mike I always thought of you as Dr. Derelict.

You've been dethroned at least for now! :rofl:


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PostPosted: September 9th, 2015, 2:39 pm 
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I did a lot of paddling with Emil, he taught me well.
I was just a young jedi apprentice then.... :roll:
Jeff

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Choosing to save a river is more often an act of passion than of careful calculation. You make the choice because the river has touched your life in an intimate and irreversible way, because you are unwilling to accept its loss. — (David Bolling, Ho


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PostPosted: September 9th, 2015, 2:43 pm 
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littleredcanoe wrote:
Hmmm and Mike I always thought of you as Dr. Derelict.

You've been dethroned at least for now! :rofl:


Dethroned hell. I gave up my derelict canoe throne to DougD years ago, and I eagerly abdicate any position of authority when it comes to old glass slalom kayaks.

I have had a couple similar derelict kayaks, and worked on a couple more, including a C1 conversion.

None had comfortable seating. My wide-load barely fit in some of the cockpits. And I couldn’t keep the damn things going straight in the flat. Once I spun a helpless 180 some of them would go backwards well enough though.

I do find the whole convoluted slalom boat history and evolution fascinating. Somewhere in there is a tale of some competitors stealing a new, ass-kicking Czech or East German design and surreptitiously taking a mid-night mold from it.

Good plan. Better plan if they had marked bow and stern and put the deck on facing the right way.

That story may be apocryphal, although I have heard/read it from several sources. I do know someone who rebuilt an asymmetrical canoe backwards, so I tend to believe.


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PostPosted: September 9th, 2015, 5:16 pm 
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Mike McCrea said:

Quote:
I do find the whole convoluted slalom boat history and evolution fascinating. Somewhere in there is a tale of some competitors stealing a new, ass-kicking Czech or East German design and surreptitiously taking a mid-night mold from it.


World Championships 1977 Spittal Austria.
:thumbup:

I was there, but it was no secret, once the "new" boat showed up. :)
Speculation amongst us Down river guys was the deck was done on purpose so the "design" was "different"

Oh back to the thread the "Madawaska" name was the type of Print that MKC used back in the day. So it is a very good chance that boat was part of their instruction fleet.

Jeff

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Choosing to save a river is more often an act of passion than of careful calculation. You make the choice because the river has touched your life in an intimate and irreversible way, because you are unwilling to accept its loss. — (David Bolling, Ho


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PostPosted: September 9th, 2015, 5:33 pm 
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Jedijeff...Thanks so much for the detailed reply. Good to know that my theory on the Eddyline once being a Madawaska Kanu Center rental boat is on point.

Interesting facts on kayak design espionage...had no idea that was going on back in the 70s. Sounds like you are one of the more experienced paddlers...

I did find that article on Emil Maschek in my search on Femat boats. Fascinating how he beat Bobby Kennedy in a whitewater competition.

Sounds like they are whitewater/slalom kayaks.

Mike, I do definitely find that these kayaks are hard to keep straight on flat water.

They are in relatively good shape for their age. The seller of the kayaks took really good care of them.


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PostPosted: September 9th, 2015, 8:25 pm 
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One of the keys (besides time in the boat) is forward stroke technique.
They need to be paddled more like down river boat.
Hands fairly high punching between shoulder and eyes and not crossing over the centre line of the boat when you do punch.
Hope you enjoy them.
Jeff

Edit : I only say the tech. thing because on my paddles out and about the old coach and athlete wants to kick in and help.... but I bite my tongue and continue on.
It is a skill that I see lacking out there in a lot of paddlers, even some clinics I have happened across.

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Choosing to save a river is more often an act of passion than of careful calculation. You make the choice because the river has touched your life in an intimate and irreversible way, because you are unwilling to accept its loss. — (David Bolling, Ho


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PostPosted: September 13th, 2015, 11:39 am 
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Oh, yeah, there were other questions

tiltshift wrote:
Another question: Anyone know what the white bolts and grommets with the lettering "Tapalo" is on the opening in the green kayak? Is this for attaching the spray skirts?


Maybe some kind of apparatus for attaching thigh straps or customized pads. Jedi?

tiltshift wrote:
If I am using them in the river, would a strap on type keel keep them tracking straighter?


Well, even old 4 meter slalom boats can be paddled straight. Not by me, but they can. Making them track straight without a constantly active paddle was completely incomprehensible to me, which for me didn’t make for much of a lazy Sunday paddle anywhere.

I’m sure it is anathema to slalom paddlers the world over, but we installed a near full length keel on a couple of old 4M kayaks using a length of ½ round wood trim covered with fiberglass and epoxy. One became a kid’s kayak (through several different kids) and one became a lightweight friend’s weekend tripper with hatches and bulkheads.

tiltshift wrote:
What kind of seats should I install for paddling comfort?


The simplest solution is probably to get a couple of 16” squares of two or three inch thick minicel. Shape the bottom to conform to the floor curves of the kayak and carve a butt depression/pan on the top.

It is easy to rough shape minicel using a belt sander and 80 grit. Maybe too easy; best to do a little bit at a time and check the fit.

Once you have the minicel seat pans carved to shape put them unattached in the kayak, do some test paddling to see if the seat pan depression needs tweaking and to find the best location, mark that spot and adhere the minicel in place with contact cement.

Probably more anathema, but if the seats and boats proved satisfactory I’d probably add a back band.


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PostPosted: July 4th, 2018, 11:37 pm 
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Location: Maberly/Apsley/Hamilton, Ontario
A 3 year old thread but...
I just bought a Merlin Madawaska kayak today, and I hate to disagree with an expert like Jedi Jeffi, but I have to disagree with his comment that it is a discontinued Eddyline model! Mine has a "Merlin Made in Canada" label on it, I think the EddyLine boats were all made in the U.S., Numerous Google searches have all come up with nothing, was wondering if anyone had anymore info on Merlin boats? It seems to have been well made, the fibreglass work looks to be high quality.

After I bought mine today in Ottawa, I saw another listed in Scarborough for a fairly reasonable price on Kijiji!


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PostPosted: July 10th, 2018, 2:55 pm 
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If would disagree with myself, if I saw that page today. 8)

There used to be a pic similar to the merlin design (*)
Bracketed * because the deck is awfully close to the Prijon Treska design
I paddled one in the middle 70's
Great boat, very stable and manoeuvrable at the same time, tracks well

Facebook pic of me running the Hogs Trough on the Oxtongue in 75

https://www.facebook.com/photo.php?fbid ... =3&theater

I have a pic of me and my brother in them after running this and you can see the deck much clearer :)

Jeff

_________________
Choosing to save a river is more often an act of passion than of careful calculation. You make the choice because the river has touched your life in an intimate and irreversible way, because you are unwilling to accept its loss. — (David Bolling, Ho


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PostPosted: July 12th, 2018, 5:43 pm 
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Joined: May 16th, 2007, 11:06 am
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Location: Maberly/Apsley/Hamilton, Ontario
Thanks Jeff! HaHa!, not much deck showing in that photo!!
I'm loving the Madawaska, paddles like a dream, cockpit is tiny though, only 14" wide!!. I had to remove some thigh pads so I could fit in better, but it appears to be a well made and well designed kayak!!
Claudia at Madawaska Kanu Centre was nice enought to reply to an email I'd sent and she said that these kayaks were built in the late 70's, early 80's by Keith Cummings, but she didn't have any further information.
The Scarborough Kijiji one is sold, it was in exceptionally good condition, they were only asking $190 for it!!

https://www.flickr.com/photos/55508868@N00/42615647154/in/dateposted-public/


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