What Shrike model did you choose?
I decided to go for a Shrike too with a keyhole cockpit. I wanted to create a boat with easy access due to being instructor in our club. I am required sometimes to exit and stand in the water beside the kayak, and a ocean cockpit does not fit this purpose.
What modifications, if any, did you make to the design described in the build manual?
I redesigned the skeg box and modified the skeg to use elastic band and string. I wanted to have a skeg that automatically retract if hitting the bottom as a safety precaution. I have changed to many skeg wires on club kayaks.
I also made hatches from wood to fit Reed hatch covers as wanted to try keep down weight opposed to molded plastic ones.
What is the weight of the finished kayak?
The finished weight is 28kg due to having both Black diolen and Glassfiber. I was going for the carbon look and added strength of Diolen, which however came at the cost of weight. Since it is not my play kayak but more day touring and instructor kayak, I am sure it will not be that bad.
How does the kayak perform on the water?
The Shrike has the distinct of a V shaped hull on the initial stability but settles stable once either surface of the hull is reached, and from here the hull needs to be forced to go further on edge. As soon paddling starts, it tracks very well and responds quickly to steering strokes. Also the feel from initial stability fades as soon the kayak is in movement and the secondary stability is great.