Tuesday, August 10, 2010

Canoe Finished

Got my new canoe done. Still need to name her but details details. The shot to the right was taken up at Consolation Lakes, about 3kms into the backcountry from Moraine Lake, close to Lake Louise. Stay tuned for a video showing the trip.

Final weight came out around 15lbs for the boat, a little more than I wanted but still about 30lbs lighter than your average rec boat. I ended up adding a couple extra ribs in the middle to make it a bit stronger, probably could have gotten away without them but now its pretty much bombproof.

By the time I get my drysuit, lifejacket, throwbag, paddle and bailer loaded up my pack ends up being around 30lbs total, including the boat, so its pretty easy to carry in for any reasonable distance.  

Some construction details:

To skin the hull you basically just drape the fabric over, clamp it to the gunwales and sew the fabric together at the ends. For this boat I sewed the skin on wet and a little slacker than normal, I was afraid of the tension distorting the light frame.

Detail of stems. The stitch is basically just a saddle stich with two needles for the first pass. The fabric is then trimmed close, and the ends are folded under with a double whip stitch.

To attach the skin to the gunwales I had to get creative. Normally one would staple the skin to the outer gunwale, then screw in a rub strip to cover up the staples. This method is fast, but I didn't like the look, or the extra weight.Instead I drilled holes along the inner gunwale. These were drilled at about a 45 degree angle so they came out at the bottom corner.

The skin is pulled taught over the gunwales (while wet) and sewn through the holes. The top edge gets cut and I run another row of stitches to lock it back. Unfortunately this method means that I have to sew the entire length 4 times. I think it looks cool though.

Whenever I got to a rib I just skipped over it. There is enough tension on either side to keep it taught.

Same deal with the thwarts.

I ended up coating it with that same goop from the skin boat school that I used on my other kayaks. Its a two part polyurethane and goes on pretty quickly and painlessly.  You can see how translucent it is, that blue stuff is the waterline.

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