Fire Star© is a smaller version of my very popular North Star design.

Fire Star is 17 feet long and 21 inches wide. Finished weight approximately. 32 lbs

It shares all the great features and speed of the North Star in a smaller size
for the intermediate to advanced paddler in the 120 to 220 pound weight range

The unique features of the baidarka are: The split or bifurcated bow. The lower half is a cutwater, parting the waves for a smooth flow of water over the hull. This lower vertical edge also improves tracking as it slices into waves keeping the bow from being deflected by winds.The upper half of the bow flares outward. Waves hitting this surface create lift and coupled with the great volume of the forward hull, lift the kayak over waves. The bow makes a smooth transition into a highly rocker keel accounting for 1/3 of the fore hull. This rocker coupled with the design of the bow make the baidarka style an incredibly great kayak for surfing waves.
The volume of the stern is carried backward and is truncated, then sweeps into a fixed rudder. The rudder makes tracking excellent. The swept sides of the rudder create a surface that is an asset in surfing. One of the hardest parts of surfing is catching the wave. The surfaces of the rudder get a push from braking waves to help you catch the wave.
As a kayaker paddles faster hulls with a fine or pointed stern will squat in the depression created by the stern waves. The high volume of the baidarka style stern, keeps it high in the water increasing speed . Also this truncated stern sends hull waves farther back as speed increases, forcing the waves to act as they would on a boat with a longer water line, increasing speed.

More detailed photos of Fire Star

The baidarka hull is"fish form"(the widest part of the hull is forward of center) said to be the most efficient design for speed. Fire Star has moderate primary stability and is best suited to an advanced paddler. The high volume of the hull produces incredibly high secondary stability. The features of the bow and stern combine with the shape of the hull, to produce very fast (easy to paddle) kayak, designed to handle rough seas with ease. The Fire Star has high volume making this an outstanding kayak with roomy cockpit and storage capacity for extended camping trips.

The difference between the Fire Star and the Shooting Star is that the Fire Star is a reduced scale North Star, so it has a fairly high volume, where the Shooting Star is not a reduced scale North Star but a different hull with lower volume and higher initial stability.

So if you are 150 to 220 pounds the Fire Star will give you leg room and storage for week- trips.

For current pricing for a finished Fire Star follow this link.

Contact Laughing Loon for details.

Building Plans are available. See the new Paddle Plans featuring an Aleut Paddle

Now available with a retractable skeg. The Fire Star tracks very well, as do all my baidarka designs. A skeg keeps the kayak running straight and smooth in the two toughest paddling conditions, a strong beam wind, and breaking following seas.
Check out this new video to get you
started stripping your Baidarka sea kayak faster

Building the Baidarka Bow and Stern

Rob shows you, step by step, how he builds his baidarka bow and stern parts. This applies all of the Star line of baidarkas.

See the new Paddle Plans featuring an Aleut Paddle

Fire Stars purchased from Laughing Loon

Below are photos of Brent Cogswell's Fire Star built by Rob Macks of Laughing Loon.

Brent is the one in the white hat.

" Hi Rob,

Once again , can't tell you how wonderful the Fire Star is. Paddles like a dream and is fantastically stable in rough water.

Thanks again for your skill.


Jane von Maltzahn in the Fire Star she bought from Laughing Loon
"Hi, Rob -- I've had a great year with Firestar.  I've been out about 50 times, mostly in the Chesapeake/Potomac waterbasin, but also spent two weeks at Islesboro in Maine this summer and paddled around the island there.  I've been on two three-day kayak camping trips and Firestar carried tons of gear, mine and other people's, as well.  I'm often the fastest boat on the water, despite my gender and age!"

"Sure, you can quote me on your web page, it's the finest kayak in the world. 
I couldn't be happier."

Jane vm

Photos provided by
"Chesapeake Kayak Adventures"

Built from Plans

Hello Rob.

"Well - this time, it has taken some time to finish the FS. But we also have built a cottage in the mountain areas in Telemark, and I have been extremely busy in my job, but today.....

My son Håkon got his FS today, and he's a bit proud.

And I - I have paddled the Georgian Bay, and built and paddled The Panache, North Star and Shooting Star as well. I'm really impressed, they are all unique. It's impossible to say that one is the favourite, they all are, both to build, and to paddle.

Thank you - You have given me a hobby which is very special - and my family and friends see I'm hooked even in the middle of the night.

Thank you very much once more."


All the best

Henrik Duus

"Hi Rob,
I purchased plans from you 6 years ago this August out at you shop in Greenfield. I had tested the Northstar and decided to buy the Firestar plans, only to get home and realize I need something in between. I had asked you if you would mind me enlarging the plans to a hybrid, half way between the two.

Anyway, here are a couple pictures of the final product. I finished in time for the 20th Annual Wooden Boat Show in Mystic last weekend and having the first launch this coming weekend. Can't wait to get it wet.

You may have already seen some pictures from the show, I met your brother-in-law there. The boat won Honorable Mention in the "I Built It Myself" exhibit and Outstanding Innovations in the Concourse d'Elegance judging, way beyond my wildest imagination. I have added a skeg, which I probably won't need, an electric bailing pump to use until I perfect my roll, recessed compass and a hydration system to the boat. I signed up for the show only so I had a deadline to finish the boat after all these years.

Thanks for designing a boat with such beautiful lines! I am looking forward to many years of paddling it. Feel free to use any of these pictures on your website and I would love to hear any comments you have about it."

Bill Curtis

Very nice work! I can see you had fun.

I'm amazed at how creative people are. I'm pleased my plans provide a "jumping off" point for endless variations.

All the best,

 See this -

"Hello my name is Santino Spada am an Italian your Fire Star l've always liked and iwas able to build it with some modifications I hopeyou like it.
Bay bay"

August 1, 2014

Hi Rob,

Like a proud father, I must share pictures of my latest child. I sent you some preliminary photos a few months ago. But now the boat is done, and what a beauty!

My son Matt from Seattle came over to Maine several times for a total of a month to help out during the last year. The plan was that we would build this one for him. So after putting the final varnish on the first part of July, my wife and I drove to a halfway point-- the Boundary Waters Canoe Area in northern Minnesota (1600 miles each way), where we car camped a few days... and I (almost) tearfully handed over the boat to him. But after a brief rest and some summer paddling, I'll contact you for some North Star plans for me to bury my grief over this loss into more boatbuilding. Now it's my turn!

I have attached a few pictures of the boat and the handoff.

I must tell you again how much I learned from your many innovations: thinner and beveled strips, heat bending, hot glue, laminates, etc. And I love the beauty of your boats. I have previously built 2 canoes using plans from another company. While those are very solid methods, your techniques have taken my hobby to a new level. Thanks for all of  that.  


Jack Williams
Scarborough, Maine

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