Our Workshop

Our program is designed to be 2-4 hour sessions, 3 days a week, over 8-10 weeks.  A typical day starts with house rules, followed by a work session, then refreshments, snacks, and 30 minutes Q&A, another work session, and concludes with a shop cleanup. On the first day, we will discuss the program, review shop rules, assign materials and workspaces, and end with a barbeque.  The following days is where the real work begins!  Below is a summary of  key build activities for our kayaks:

WEEK 1 Prepare strong backs
Construction and dry fit of frames to keelson
Epoxy frames
Rip chine logs and sheer clamps
Cut stems
Fit stems to keelson
Cut and fit frames to receive chine logs and sheer clamps
WEEK 2 Prepare work area for epoxy
Epoxy stems, chine logs, and sheer clamps
Sand and plane assembled frames Cut and fit plywood for sides
Fit butt joints and epoxy
WEEK 3 Sand/fair butt joints if necessary
Fit and epoxy sides to frame
Cut and fit bottom to frame
Cut, fit, and epoxy butt joints
Fair chine logs to receive bottoms
Epoxy bottoms to frame
WEEK 4 Trim bottom
Sand and Fair kayak hull
Flip Kayaks!
Cut and fit deck member
Fare and sand frame, sheer clamp, and cross member
Cut plywood for decks
WEEK 5 Dry fit plywood deck
Epoxy interior kayak
Hull repairs and filling
Cut and fit runners
Stain Day
Fiberglass hulls
WEEK 6 Install runners
Install and epoxy decks
Prepare for sanding interior and exterior Make repairs and fill glass
Drill holes for handles and epoxy
WEEK 7 Sand repairs
Cut paddle blades
Construct paddles and fiberglass Complete paddles
Cut and fit rub rails
WEEK 8 Final sanding and preparation for paint painting Install rub rails
Finish work on kayaks
WEEK 9 Cut wood for seats Begin seat assembly Complete seat construction
WEEK 10 Paint or stain seats Finalize remaining tasks Preparation for Launch
LAUNCH DAY Lifejackets Required
Participants launch their kayaks
Program concludes

A few things to keep  in mind before joining our workshop:

  1. Our timeframe permits a relaxed pace in which all participants have ample time to complete their kayaks. Any participant that cannot complete the kayak in the given time will be permitted to complete construction in a future class.
  2. At all times project leaders and volunteers are reminded that kayak construction is secondary. The primary intention of this program is “Reintegration through Purpose, Dignity, and Respect”.
  3. During this project, it is our responsibility to provide an environment conducive to our mission.
  4. Know your strengths, know your limits, know your resources, and use them effectively.
  5. You are not professional counselors, you are a peer group that has gone through similar experiences. While bonding, sharing, and brotherhood are strongly encouraged, we do not have the ability to “treat” our participants. We do however have access to these resources and it is your responsibility to utilize them during the lifespan of the project.
  6. The project is designed to do the work for you, as participants construct their kayaks the occupational aspect of our program will take effect, don’t rush this process, let it occur naturally.
  7. Additional time is intentionally factored into the program for participants unable to conform to a standard schedule. These participants are not to be admonished for this, these are the individuals most likely to benefit from the program.
  8. As the participants open up and begin to communicate it is acceptable to ascertain their needs, if any. Again, match needs to our available resources.
  9. Remember, if they are in this program they have earned the right to be here. Whatever their current circumstances, they are Brothers, so never judge or assume.
  10. Most importantly, HAVE FUN!


If you are or know of a veteran in need, please take a moment and reach out to us. Fill out our Application below to be considered for our next program.