Necky Difference


A Balance of Art and Science

More than 30 years after the first Necky slipped from a quiet cove into the exposed unknown of the Pacific Northwest, our belief in streamlined, elegant, and purpose-built boats remains the core of our approach. Through design and testing on this wild edge of the continent, we’ve found that function creates the purest form and comfort and toughness go hand in hand.

It’s an approach to paddling and a philosophy of building boats that puts the sea at the center of the focus. Listening to what the ocean will allow is as important as bringing innovative ideas to it. Done right, a kayak becomes a partner with the water. It should inspire adventure, not limit it, and the last stroke of the day should leave you impatient for the first of the next. That’s the Necky difference, and that’s the Necky promise.

American Ingenuity Meets British Tradition

Spurred by a desire to improve upon traditional British kayak designs, Necky introduced our first kayak in the mid-1970s. The aim was to create a stable, roomy, comfortable vessel that the average paddler could take out on the ocean. We did so by adapting a high-volume whitewater design, adding more length and width and a larger cockpit.

It was the first of many competitive fiberglass kayaks we would make in the 1970s. By the 1980s we had added composite touring kayaks and also introduced the first polymer model. Less expensive than fiberglass designs, it also had the advantage of being virtually indestructible.

The 1990s saw a Necky-led revolution in whitewater kayaking, launched by our introduction of a flat planing hull with very hard chines, which allowed for maximum responsiveness in extreme environments.

Today, the innovations are still coming. Seats that provide maximum control without sacrificing comfort. Advanced materials that are significantly stronger, stiffer and lighter than anything else on the market. Necky continues to advance the art of kayaking.

Heart and Soul

We take our material choices seriously. The heart and soul of a Necky kayak is its bomb-proof, performance hull. Our advanced composite hulls set the high-end standard in the kayak industry, while the remarkably durable Necky polyethylene hulls are second to none in design and performance.

Composite
Working with experts in both the aerospace and yacht industries using aircraft-grade materials, Necky has produced laminates that yield kayaks significantly stronger, stiffer and lighter than anything else on the market. In our fiberglass and carbon lay ups, the advanced composite materials are layered with a core added between layers in specific areas to increase the overall stiffness. The result is a lighter yet stronger composite kayak that can endure more impact. Our composite lay-ups are specifically designed to take a beating in rock gardens, surf poundings, and expedition use.

Polymer
As a pioneer in the art of rotomolding sea kayaks, Necky has vast experience in drawing on the inherent qualities of polyethylene. We have worked hard to create polymers specifically designed for both recreational and hard core use. Our polymer touring kayaks are constructed from Superlinear® polyethylene, an excellent material for one fundamental reason: bomb-proof durability. The polymer material we use for our recreational kayaks optimizes stiffness, durability and impact resistance while keeping the overall weight of the kayak down. A recreational kayak does not need to weigh a lot to perform well in the water. Our polymer blends also have UV inhibitors mixed into the polyethylene. This addition will help maintain the life of the kayak despite repeated exposure to the sun.

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