Project Feature: Cedar Kayak

Here at Channel Lumber we are committed to providing the best lumber products and services in our industry. Our customers often have a personal passion for wood working. We’re always interested and amazed by the variety of projects that our lumber is used for.

We interviewed Channel Lumber customer Morris H. about the kayak he built with Cedar purchased at Channel Lumber.


Full view of the finished vessel.

Q: The Cedar vessel pictured, is it considered a Kayak?

A: Yes. It was built from plans which named it after a fast swimming fish called a Wahoo.

Ribs in early phase construction.

Q: What was your inspiration to build it?

A: Kayaks can be purchased, but I like the challenge of building a one-of-a-kind kayak that  can be paddled in the rough waters of the San Francisco Bay.  I always receive compliments from fellow kayakers and beach walkers.  Sometimes I notice drivers on the road turning their head to admire the wooden boat on my car roof.

Unfinished hull.

Q: Is this the first boat you have built? Do you have a shop?

A: This is my fourth wooden boat.  Previous ones were built from plywood and lack the beautiful curves of the Wahoo.


Q: What other types of wood project have you undertaken?

A: I designed and built my house, but I am not a professional in this area.  I am currently building a wooden stand-up paddle board using wood from Channel Lumber.  I will send you pictures when I am finished.

Detail view of the hull.

Q: Why did you choose Cedar? Is this a common wood used to make vessels of this type?

A: Cedar is frequently used for kayaks because of its light weight, workability, availability and resistance to rot.  Its color and grain are beautiful.  Cedar kayak paddles do not require varnishing, although cedar kayaks are covered in clear fiberglass, epoxy and varnish to add strength, watertightness, and protection from the sun’s UV.

Detail view of the deck.

Q: What type of outing is this vessel best suited for?

A: The Wahoo has a narrow, long hull which is ideal for racing.  The paddler sits inside while a neoprene skirt keeps water out of the cockpit.  The kayak behaves well in rough water, but the paddler needs to have sufficient skills such as rolling back up in the event of a capsize.

Q: What is the most adventurous trip you have made with it?

A: Paddling in San Francsico Bay, when the wind blows over 20 mph and the waves are 4 ft, offers enough adventurous trips.  I have launched from Berkeley to Treasure Island and Ferry Pt in Richmond to Angel Island in these conditions.  A quiet day on the Bay might be in the Oakland Estuary or under the Richmond Bridge.

On the water.

Photo credits: Morris Ho.

For more information about our products and services please contact us.

Channel Lumber Goes Green with Energy Efficiency, PV Solar and Energy Storage!

In our ongoing effort to support Green Building, to lower costs for our customers and to do our part to help reduce the growing demands on the California electrical grid, Channel Lumber Company is pleased to announce that we are going extremely green! With our newly installed energy efficiency and solar generation platform consisting of power conditioning, energy monitoring, PV solar power, energy output forecasting and behind-the-meter energy storage, Channel Lumber is moving into a clean energy future, today.

Forecast Energy, a Richmond, Ca. based energy solutions provider, working closely with our management team has designed, developed and installed a leading-edge comprehensive energy platform for Channel Lumber. It provides a complete solution for our energy challenges today, plus is fully scalable to meet our future energy requirements.

The industry-leading technology solution provided by Forecast Energy will replace an estimated 90% of grid power with new efficiency and energy generation. Delivered via an integrated, on-premise energy platform solution. This platform achieves greater efficiency through power harvesting, advanced monitoring solutions, energy output forecasting, and new energy generation with clean PV solar power backed-up by cutting-edge energy storage. In addition, extensive monitoring throughout the facility will be utilized to track performance, provide alerts, deliver dynamic energy data to the AI-driven energy forecasting platform and assist our team with on-going maintenance requirements. It’s all combined in a fully integrated system that provides Channel Lumber with better, cleaner power and greater flexibility in energy management. All of which results in less grid-dependency, lower energy costs and improved power quality.

The project consists of:

  1. Forecast Energy Power Harvester technologies to reduce power consumption and improve power quality.
  2. Facility–wide energy monitoring with a custom-designed data architecture.
  3. 315 kW rooftop PV solar panel installation. Solar panels were provided by SolarWorld, USA
  4. 120kW/160kWh energy storage platform to capture, hold and deliver power during peak hours to further reduce demand charges and improve overall energy use and efficiency throughout the facility.
  5. Forecast Energy’s WAVE® forecasting technology to provide predictive energy use and output data to better manage energy generation, storage and delivery and support on-going energy management.
Solar panels are installed on the roof.

Solar panels are installed on the roof.

Another view of the panels.

Another view of the panels.

Battery housings. The batteries will store energy that can be supplied during peak hours or at night.

Battery housings. The batteries will store energy that can be supplied during peak hours or at night.

Channel Lumber Solar



Solar power inverters. These convert solar DC output to utility AC that feeds into our grid.

Solar power inverters. These convert solar DC output to utility AC that feeds into our grid.

With this exciting solution on-line and delivering clean energy throughout the Channel Lumber facility, we look forward to 2017 becoming our most energy efficient and green year to date. We want to thank our dedicated Channel Lumber team and our friends and neighbors at Forecast Energy for an on-time and on-budget delivery, providing the highest quality products and services that help move our business, our community and our great State of California forward.

For more information about our energy efficiency and solar initiatives, please contact us directly at 510-234-0233.