I took a break from blogging back in 2010, but always wanted to add this to my blog. A friend of mine saw a a photo of a wood strip canoe on my desk one day and asked if I could make him one. It was a Bear Mountain Boats, Redbird 17. I agreed that I would, bought the plans, and got to work.
To make the stems, you bend, glue and clamp the wood strips around the end forms.
You need to build a strongback, which is the box looking support, and then cut out a series of forms which make the pattern for the boat shape. It looks like a giant mushroom farm. Keep in mind, that the boat is built upside down.
Since I have a table saw and router table, I was able to cut the wood strips from 17 foot, knot-free, boards I bought from a fencing company. Then, I milled the bead and cove into each strip. Getting the first strip just right was a little stressful.
I could staple the strips in place like I did on my Mill Creek 13 custom wood strip deck, but I liked the idea of having no staple holes when it’s done. Given all of the clamps, the process can be a little slow however, it gave me a little time to think about adding some detail.
Further along . . . .
Close to closing the hull . . . .
With the stripping complete and having sanded the hull, it’s about time for fiberglass and epoxy.
Many people don’t realize that boats like this are wrapped in fiberglass and epoxy, for strength. The fiberglass cloth is white, but when the epoxy is added it becomes transparent. Pretty cool stuff.
Adding the gunwales required some steam bending, scarf joints and lots and lots of clamps. I used all of my clamps, regardless of type, and borrowed even more.
Here we are prior to final finishing . . . .
And the following are the finished product. I began in February and ended in early July of 2010, though I did take vacation for two weeks along the way, plus my second son graduated high school that year and we were busy with that as well. I’m really happy with the result.
And, it got some use in August on the Labyrinth Canyon section of the Green River in Utah.
I just like making stuff.
Thanks for visiting my blog.