by Otto Van De Steene
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blog

all the creations I’m proud about.

ONAK 2.0

Both empirical tests and a lot of customers feedback made me develop the ONAK 2.0:

The wooden seats, the much easier setup proces with a pulley system. I rethought it all to such a point I didn’t see a lot more room for development anymore.

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Seemingly the ONAK team is still adjusting the designs whilst going to production. I have no hand in these developments though.

Otto De Steene
successes & happy accidents behind ONAK canoes

Before we really started we already won the Bizidee award for best Businessplan of the year, and the Outdoor Industry Award for our concept. Both obviously allowed us to lead ONAK through an amazing Kickstarter campaign. But actually it more was the picking up of some more mainstream media that made ONAK getting really viral.

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Just after the campaign we had TIME magazine naming us “Big Idea”:

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I started to develop the ONAK canoe to make a better foldable canoe. But having discovered the ONAK material on our way we came to understand ONAK is much more. Some avid-canoeist started to buy ONAK canoes because they are simply faster in performance on the water than similar priced classic canoes.

We later won more awards, and even had a raving review in “Kajakmagazin” back in june 2018.

Only through more rigorous tests and research we came to understand that the in-house developed ONAK material is strength-to-weight about 30% stronger than the material used in traditional aluminum canoes.

Otto De Steene
ONAK canoes
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For those who didn’t follow the full ONAK foldable canoe its story, it might be best to check our original Kickstarter campaign-video as it couldn’t capture the essence behind ONAK in a simpler way:

With developing the ONAK canoe we found the solution to an age-old foldable canoe problem: stiffness & weight have a tremendous impact on a canoe’s padding characteristics, yet all previously developed foldable canoes are made from soft materials. With the ONAK canoe we could combine the best in stiff & light composite canoes with the foldable origami concept we so much needed for the sport to become more practical. Thanks to the composite srPP - honeycomb composite material and production techniques we developed, we were able to also bring down the price of such a high-performance canoe down to a level many consumers can afford.

Otto De Steene