David spent 30+ years working at the Naval Surface Warfare Center in Bethesda, Maryland as a naval architect. His experience in structures and design along with him being a whitewater paddler peaked his interest in kayak design. Working with Davey Hearn on a C1 design for the 1992 Olympics and then EJ on slalom designs using his self created “ParaMax” CAD program got him going in the industry. He partnered with EJ in 1996 to design the “X” boat for Wavesport and the rest is history. X, Y, Z, XXX, ForPlay, Score, Mutant, Ace, Transformer and more for Wavesport before he joined EJ for the launch of Jackson Kayak and the design of every Jackson Kayak whitewater boat.
- The first kayak designer to bring CAD design to a kayak brand. Designing with Eric Jackson, David changed the industry proving that CAD was fast and effective and allowed for scaling of kayaks for multiple sizes.
- The “Drop Chine” was brought to the kayaking world by David Knight and refined over the years improving performance for freestyle and river running kayaks.
- Ergonomics- David proved that you Can be comfortable paddling a whitewater kayak! Not something you can see in the design, but have to feel, nobody has ever been able to duplicate his ability to put a wide variety of male and female bodies into only a few sizes of a kayak and make each of them comfortable.
- Boat Armor Outfitting- Creating an outfitting package that is adjustable without any tools, safer, more comfortable, and more durable than the industry had ever seen, all without any screws through the hull of the kayak was an amazing engineering feat. It has still never been duplicated.