Everybody wants to save the earth, nobody wants to help mom do the dishes.  --P.J. O'Rourke

Monday, April 13, 2009

Platt Monfort's Geodesic Airolite Boats

Platt Monfort, a chemical engineer, inventor and boat enthusiast developed the Geodesic 
Airolite skin on frame construction technique for buiding strong, lightweight small boats.
Intended to be built at home, hundreds of his canoes, prams and rowboats have been
contructed by novice builders all over the world.  The design consists of a lightweight
wood lattice (much like traditional kayaks) reinforced by diagonal strips of Kevlar and
covered with aerospace quality shrink-wrapped Dacron.  A 16 foot canoe when built 
with this technique weights approx 32 lbs. and can carry 400lbs.  To put this into some
context, very expensive Carbon Fiber or Kevlar canoes are slightly heavier and a fiberglass 
or poly canoe of similar size is roughly twice as heavy.  Although Monfort passed in 
2005, his designs are still for sale and still quite popular, check out the complete design
catalogue at the web site:  Geodesic Airolite Boats


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