Chapter 1 – The 60’s, 70’s & 80’s
Karel Tresnak Snr was originally from Czechoslovakia where he was a 2 time White Water World Champion and competed in the 1972 Munich Olympics. Karel and his team mates formed a company TGT and made their own canoes.
In the 80’s Karel immigrated with his family to Hawaii and started his company Karel’s Fibreglass and began specialising in custom work on powerboats and making ocean kayaks such as the CUDA, CUDA TANDEM, RODEO, SEA HORSE, and STEALTH.
Karel Snr formed Outrigger Connection and began to manufacture OC1 canoes in 1991. Since then Outrigger Connection designs have always been on the cutting edge in design and technology used in construction, and a lot of the ideas and innovations used in all OC1 design today were developed by Karel and Outrigger Connection. Karel was the first to construct lightweight canoes using aerospace technologies like vacuum bagging and advanced composites like Kevlar, S glass, graphite and epoxy resins. Other innovations include the first to use aluminium iakos, foot well drains, sliding seats, integrated foam seats in to the hull and a lot more.
In the coming weeks I’ll post more chapters outlining more of these innovations and developments in OC1 designs by Outrigger Connection starting in the 90’s with Outrigger Connection’s first OC1 the “OUTRIGGER 27” followed by the CUDA 21 and the first use of OC1’s in team selection in Hawaii.