Bjorn Thomasson Frej 18'

JohnAbercrombie

Paddler
Joined
Dec 7, 2011
Messages
2,489
Location
Victoria, BC
After a quiet summer away from my shop, I finally got my newly built Frej in the water this week.
It's 18' LOA; I built a 16' version a few years ago and really like it. I was trying for a bit longer boat - not to be faster, which it isn't with my 'motor'- but to gain a bit more stowage space.

Strip built with glass/epoxy.
6oz glass cloth
Weight in the 50s (lbs)
Carbon seat and cockpit coaming.
RegLake-style skeel.
SeaLect Oval Performance hatches.
Nigel Foster -style spare paddle bag on aft deck.
Frej 18.JPG

Frej 18 skeel.JPG
 

mick_allen

Paddler & Moderator
Joined
May 15, 2005
Messages
3,200
John, that boat looks like a million bucks! great attention to detail, amazing craftsmanship - as usual.
 

JohnAbercrombie

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Dec 7, 2011
Messages
2,489
Location
Victoria, BC
Stunning! Did it paddle significantly differently from the 16' Frej?
Thanks.
It wasn't very breezy at all, but I got the impression that (as expected) the boat was a bit more sensitive to wind than the 16-footer. A bit more skeel down solved the problem.
With a load of gear and water, things should change a bit, perhaps.
 

JohnAbercrombie

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Joined
Dec 7, 2011
Messages
2,489
Location
Victoria, BC
Wow- great looking boat.

Is it only stretched lengthwise from the standard version, or are there changes to the beam and deck height as well?
Thanks, Erik.

Only the length - form spacing and stems- were changed; the cross-sections stayed the same as designed.
From what I've seen, all of Bjorn Thomasson's plans come with a table showing several different overall length versions.
The Frej plans give mold spacings to build boats from 481 cm (15'9") to 533 cm (17'6") LOA.
I checked with Bjorn and he said that increasing the length up to 18' would be OK.

The deck is quite low, so for anybody with a shoe size greater than 10 or 10.5 (US), raising the deck might be a good idea. I wear neoprene 'creek shoes' to paddle the Frej; my sneaker-like 'water shoes' are a very tight fit. My normal running shoe size is 9.5. I pad out the bulkhead when I can in my own boats; I like to move my feet around and prefer that to using footpegs, so perhaps larger shoes would fit, though not move easily.
 

JohnAbercrombie

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Joined
Dec 7, 2011
Messages
2,489
Location
Victoria, BC
Thanks for the comments - Bjorn really does draw good-looking boats.

Since I posted those details in 2017, I've paddled the Frej 18 quite a bit. I found that the 'skeel' (skeg just behind the cockpit) didn't give enough control in side winds and winds from aft.
So I moved the skeg to the 'regular' position aft of the rear hatch. It works well there and with 'fine tuning' the boat paddles in the direction I want.

Frej is a good boat IMO and very easy to roll but stable-feeling (for a relatively narrow and quick boat). I built a Njord (also by Bjorn Thomasson) last fall. It's a bit quicker, and narrower, but has less initial stability.
 
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