Interesting Business Venture

I am always wary of people who advertise canoes saying things like "This option is very light (45 pounds) and is indestructable..." It seems particularly ironic that their own maintenance page at says "Your hand-crafted canoe or kayak is a work of art to use and cherish . . . BUT it is not indestructible . . . it is especially vulnerable to abrasion, weathering, and the ultraviolet rays of sunlight."

Small boats are also notoriously expensive to ship so I suspect that the labor savings of building them in "Sangkhlaburi, Kanchanaburi, Thailand" will be more than off set by the costs of getting them delivered to North America. Their starting bid of $3500 for a strip built canoe seems a bit high when compared to several more local builders of similar craft.

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This guy/company surfaced a few years ago on this or another web site. Interesting that they/he is still trying to make a go of it.

"Std layup....90 lbs" - this is very heavy for a stripper, espeshilly a short one at (assumed) 16 ft.

And, "constrasting stripes" - this is usually viewed as mark of a beginner strip builder.

Though these canoes are not to my tastes in weight nor appearance; and I doubt that many will sell in this hemisphere for those reasons as well as the price. I do, however, applaud this guy for introducing a Western hemisphere design half way around the world, putting low income folks to work and using renewable resources such as bamboo. He may well succeed there, where they have few if any true examples to compare. Perhaps if he starts to grow he will see that less weight and gaudiness has a definite appeal. I think we should all wish another canoe builder success and give him credit for his attempt.
Just my two cents. :)
I think it's great that this fellow is trying something for his area. As far as selling them here, I don't think so. But he could also be using ebay like many do, as an advertising vehicle and not really expecting to sell too many boats that way.

I've seen many beautiful strippers for sale for much less cash on Craigs list, in local boat shops and in the papers, no bites. One shop owner told me that a couple locally made boats (a 16' canoe and a kayak) had been hanging in his store for over three years and not a single serious customer to be found.

As far as the "gaudiness" I wouldn't be surprised to see it stay. Living on the West Coast (Seattle, Wa. and Vancouver, BC) one gets used to the Asian esthetic and those look to my eye what they would be expected to look like :).

Looking over his website at the building process, it's an interesting form that he builds these things on. If I'm seeing and reading correctly, he has an inner set of stations and an outer set and the strips are slid between them??? seems to make sence for a production operation...I think?
What else could be exported for production and then imported for sale? Health Care, I used to think, no, that has to stay local but then I discovered a thriving overseas healthcare market for Americans where procedures can be done much cheaper and you get a "vacation" out of the savings.
How about food? Nope, I will eat the overseas fruits and vegetables all winter.

I'm against it. Hawaii may not be the best place to build wooden boats because other then Koa wood - hard to find anymore, very expensive and not east to get the lengths needed - there are no real good boat woods in Hawaii. I can get bamboo and other "exotics" around here, but why? I love working with the cedars and spruces and walnuts for contrast and they all grow in my yard.

By the way, while in Hawaii a few months ago, I visited a shop that specializes in stuff made of Koa. I stopped because they also were selling shorts and I searched through their selection thinking trim - decks, thwarts, etc but couldn't find a piece that was more unique then a nice piece of black walnut, so I passed but, am very interested in finding a nicely figured piece of Koa.