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estebanana

 

Posts: 7502
Joined: Oct. 16 2009
 

I might build a canoe 

Someone asked me to build them a canoe. They want to pay me. They own a shochu distillery. Should I take money? I need money, but I like shochu.

Have any of you made a canoe? I already make very expensive paddles, how much harder can it be?

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  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date May 11 2017 8:16:14
 
Escribano

Posts: 5890
Joined: Jul. 6 2003
From: England

RE: I might build a canoe (in reply to estebanana

quote:

Have any of you made a canoe? I already make very expensive paddles, how much harder can it be?


I think Anders is your man.

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  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date May 11 2017 9:08:50

Piwin

Posts: 2194
Joined: Feb. 9 2016
 

RE: I might build a canoe (in reply to estebanana

quote:

Should I take money? I need money, but I like shochu.


You really have to ask?
You negotiate a 10-year supply of shochu.
You don't actually deliver the canoe to the customer.
You use the canoe to do a few night runs and smuggle some of the shochu into neighboring towns, and that's where you'll get your money.
When the customer finally realizes he's been swindled, you load up either your family or your supply of shochu on the canoe and head for micronesia using your carefully-honed dead-reckoning skills.
Once you arrive:
either you had loaded your family onto the canoe, have no shochu, realize the terrible mistake you've made and die in sober despair.
or you had loaded the shochu, realize the terrible mistake you've made and live out the rest of your life as a lonely drunk on the beach.

Also, real men make dug-outs. None of that frame and plywood crap.
Oh and don't forget: it's supposed to float, so building a soundhole is a bad idea. I can't stress enough how important this is: do NOT build a soundhole into your canoe. I've seen it happen before with luthiers. The habit is just too strong. And they never make it to micronesia.



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  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date May 11 2017 10:36:22
 
estebanana

 

Posts: 7502
Joined: Oct. 16 2009
 

RE: I might build a canoe (in reply to estebanana

I'm strictly opposed to canoes with sound ports. I will attend to your post tomorrow.

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  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date May 11 2017 13:28:32
 
Ricardo

Posts: 11082
Joined: Dec. 14 2004
From: Washington DC

RE: I might build a canoe (in reply to estebanana

Whatever you do make sure to get the neck angle right for god's sake. Let me know if you make an Orange canoe...with media luna.

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  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date May 11 2017 13:42:43
 
hamia

 

Posts: 357
Joined: Jun. 25 2004
 

RE: I might build a canoe (in reply to estebanana

quote:

ORIGINAL: estebanana

Someone asked me to build them a canoe. They want to pay me. They own a shochu distillery. Should I take money? I need money, but I like shochu.

Have any of you made a canoe? I already make very expensive paddles, how much harder can it be?


You should write a book. Got all the right ingredients. People after you for one reason or another. Like a beer or two. A volcano in the distance. Just need a ditch and a dead dog ...
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date May 11 2017 17:49:37

Piwin

Posts: 2194
Joined: Feb. 9 2016
 

RE: I might build a canoe (in reply to hamia

quote:

You should write a book

Be warned estabananasplit, if you write a book and use my material about smuggling shochu and escaping under the cover of night with your canoe, I will unleash an army of lawyers in shiny suits and sue the living daylights out of you for copyright infringement.
Even your Santos Fernandez won't be able to save you.
But if you cut me in, then we're good, er-mah-no. I prefer to be paid in shochu.

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  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date May 11 2017 17:59:02
 
Erik van Goch

 

Posts: 1744
Joined: Jul. 17 2012
From: Netherlands

RE: I might build a canoe (in reply to estebanana

My granddad who was a carpenter build one for personal use. It was beautiful but extremely heavy. When he died it was left to us but we had no interest in it ourselves. Being the pre-internet ara we could not find anyone interested to own it (the local harbor showed no interest) so at the end we reluctantly had to kill it. I still own a (prewar?) wardrobe made by him (or my other granddad).

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  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date May 11 2017 21:19:34
 
BarkellWH

Posts: 2829
Joined: Jul. 12 2009
From: Washington, DC

RE: I might build a canoe (in reply to estebanana

Build an ocean-going canoe, shanghai a Japanese crew with you as captain, put on your anthropologist's hat, and reverse engineer Thor Heyerdahl's 1947 Kon Tiki voyage in which he tried to prove Polynesia could have been originally settled by voyagers from South America. He was wrong, of course, as we know Polynesia, and indeed most of the Pacific, was settled by Malays out of Indonesia. Nevertheless, your mission will be to attempt to prove that Polynesia and the Pacific were settled by Voyagers out of Japan, most likely the Ainu. Take plenty of Shochu with you, and a cat-o'-nine-tails to keep the crew in line.

Bill

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  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date May 11 2017 21:31:58
 
Estevan

Posts: 1845
Joined: Dec. 20 2006
From: Torontolucía

RE: I might build a canoe (in reply to hamia

quote:

You should write a book. Got all the right ingredients. People after you for one reason or another. Like a beer or two. A volcano in the distance. Just need a ditch and a dead dog ...

He is no wrider. He is de espider!

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  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date May 12 2017 13:53:34
 
estebanana

 

Posts: 7502
Joined: Oct. 16 2009
 

RE: I might build a canoe (in reply to estebanana

If I write a book it will read like the gaijin version of Un Chien Andalu- but I've had day of driving in heavy rain and making ukulele, off to sleep.

I've seen things you people wouldn't believe.
Attack ships on fire off the shoulder of Orion.
I watched c-beams glitter in the dark near the Tannhäuser Gate.
All those moments will be lost in time, like tears in rain.
Time to sleep and wake up again.

What I need is a program that has voice activated typing, so I can work on guitars and dictate to a sexy computer scribe ...

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  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date May 12 2017 15:27:51
 
estebanana

 

Posts: 7502
Joined: Oct. 16 2009
 

RE: I might build a canoe (in reply to estebanana

Well anyway at least I slept well. Next Thursday I'm supposed to have a plan to build a boat for the shochu magnate. I'll see if I can find a copy of Kon Tiki in Japanese and pitch the Akune to Lima trip on a giant Hinoki raft.

Of course in prehistory there was no gyre of spiraling trash out in the mid Pacific so if he get hung up on floating refrigerators and plastic bags the science will be moot.

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  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date May 12 2017 22:35:35
 
Escribano

Posts: 5890
Joined: Jul. 6 2003
From: England

RE: I might build a canoe (in reply to estebanana

I said, Anders is your man. He's Danish. They know how to float.

http://www.foroflamenco.com/tm.asp?m=107155&appid=&p=&mpage=1&key=canoe&tmode=&smode=&s=#107155

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  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date May 12 2017 22:57:38
 
estebanana

 

Posts: 7502
Joined: Oct. 16 2009
 

RE: I might build a canoe (in reply to estebanana

Yeah this asking Anders had not happened yet as I've been seriously helping a Japanese person with a legal matter in the US. But my boat meeting is Thursday.

He wants me to build a boat kit for him, but he wants a seagoing kayak or canoe. The one he picked is a freshwater canoe not for open water. So I have to have come to Jesus talk with him and pick another boat.

Apparently I'm the best thing in town resembling a lawyer that can read US leagal documents. This should scare people, but they are so trusting.

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  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date May 16 2017 6:42:28
 
Ricardo

Posts: 11082
Joined: Dec. 14 2004
From: Washington DC

RE: I might build a canoe (in reply to estebanana

quote:

read US leagal documents. This should scare people, but they are so trusting.


Good thing you only have to read them cuz you sure can't spell them.

I liked Anders orange boat, you should get a blue print pattern and solera from him to work with...but you should really get it fine tuned with the help of blackshear toward the end of completion, before you French Polish

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  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date May 16 2017 16:49:08
 
estebanana

 

Posts: 7502
Joined: Oct. 16 2009
 

RE: I might build a canoe (in reply to estebanana

I have a small keayboard and faet feengers.

UGhhh,there you go again, the nattering naybob of condetivity.

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  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date May 16 2017 23:59:44
 
Estevan

Posts: 1845
Joined: Dec. 20 2006
From: Torontolucía

RE: I might build a canoe (in reply to Ricardo

quote:

but you should really get it fine tuned with the help of blackshear toward the end of completion

The salt in the sea water will naturally take care of that, over time. And saves the fingertips.

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  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date May 17 2017 20:56:53
 
pundi64

Posts: 235
Joined: Jul. 29 2016
From: Thailand

RE: I might build a canoe (in reply to estebanana

Like this or a dug out type?



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  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date May 17 2017 21:47:24
 
timoteo

 

Posts: 218
Joined: Jun. 22 2012
From: Seattle, USA

RE: I might build a canoe (in reply to estebanana

quote:

Someone asked me to build them a canoe. They want to pay me. They own a shochu distillery. Should I take money? I need money, but I like shochu.

Have any of you made a canoe? I already make very expensive paddles, how much harder can it be?


If you haven't decided already, consider building a skin-on-frame kayak, canoe, or umiak. If not for your client, then just for fun - they're great for fishing ...

I think you will find the skin-on-frame construction has a lot of aspects that might appeal to you. It's a traditional construction method of indigenous arctic peoples. It's essentially a lightweight grid structure made from relatively thin pieces of wood (e.g. a 1"x2" would be the largest, for the gunwales, but the majority would be more like .25"x1") then covered by fabric (traditionally sealskin, but nowadays woven nylon sealed with something like polyurethane).

The resulting product is similar to a shoji screen or the wing of a Zero - the translucent fabric exposes the underlying wood frame and makes it quite beautiful. You can dye or paint the fabric (orange, if you like), so that there's a lot of opportunity for creative expression. The end result is an extremely lightweight (25lb!), very strong, and very repairable vessel. If you've ever tried to lift a 70lb plastic kayak or aluminum canoe onto the roof of a car by yourself, or tried to move one from the parking lot to the water hundreds of feet away, you know that the weight does have a major impact on where / how often you use the kayak, and in the end how much you enjoy using it.

The wood dimensions are similar to what you use for guitar building, so you will already have the tools you need - in fact it lends itself to being built with hand tools. You will need to do some bending, which you're already comfortable with. As for the type of wood ... Hinoki or Port Orford are IDEAL for the task - they are the best wood to use because of their strength, flexibility, amenability to bending, and especially rot resistance. The joints are mortised or pegged, and sewn. No glue or nails or screws.

As far as the economics of the deal, again it's similar to a guitar; a skin-on-frame involves several hundred dollars of materials (depending on how nice the wood is) plus several thousand dollars of labor. Say a final price about $3k. You could ask the customer to pay the material costs so there would be no expense out of pocket, then say 5 cases of the good stuff (which would cost him 1/2 of the retail price). He would get a beautiful boat for considerably less than a mass-produced one, and you would have enough shochu for a long time and potentially the start of a new side-business. Your only investment would be the learning time and the labor.

I have some plans I could send you, if you're interested. Similar to guitar plans, they're a great starting point to the get basic proportions correct, but no need to be constrained by them.
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date May 17 2017 22:16:11
 
estebanana

 

Posts: 7502
Joined: Oct. 16 2009
 

RE: I might build a canoe (in reply to estebanana

Timeteo,

I am familiar with the skin boat of Unalaska, a very beautiful thing. I read George Dyson's book Baidarka when it was first published. I've been a fan of the skin boat ever since.

I showed this website: http://boat-building-plans.com and the boats to the guy who asked me build a canoe for him and he balked on the skin boat. I don't know why, maybe when I told him how much I want to build it. Sometimes people think that craftspersons just work for the good health and good will of making an object.

I think he wants a strip built canoe, and that will cst three times as much for me to make...he's going go to research and meet me again next Thursday. But I've lost interest now, I'm not excited about the project after I spend a ot of time invested explaining it and then have the customer get cold feet. I've learned from guitar making not to chase too far or spent too much time explaining if they are just kicking tires.

There are a couple of skin boats in the Hearst Anthropology Museum in Berkeley. I've seen them, they are not on display, but in the abyssmally defunct object storage facility. I applied for a position at the museum twice in 6 years, but I have the feeling they were only going through the motions of an interview because in both instances the position was withdrawn after a few weeks after interviews were conducted. I never knew why they decided not to staff the position, but in the first set of interviews I got to the last round and had to go back twice for three hours.

The second day of interviews was an exhaustive tour of all the object storage facilities, which meant I probably had the job in the bag, but like I said they withdrew the job. The object storage is mainly underground, the museum sits on land on the UCB campus and there is a huge green lawn next to the museum, a quad, under that is a vast network of halls, rooms, offices and two levels of storage. You don't get to see it unless you get taken under. The office for the museums NAGPRA project is located there, and i was told I'd be a part of that. Native American Grave Protection and Repatriation Act- making and loading special containers for transporting native remains that were in the collection. Then they showed me a special door, and we went through and entered a space surrounded by a chain link fence full of what looked like library shelving units...full of shallow boxes of bones.

I can't say what else I saw online, out of respect. We did go into another section where the artifacts were stored. A huge series of rooms, arrayed with tables and standing self units. I was particularly interested in one area where a bunch of boat models were stacked and separated by plastic sheets. There was an Egyptian funerary boat model, covered with dust looked straight out of a rock tomb. A bunch of other stuff like models of the Titanic, various warships, half hull models, and hanging above our heads suspended in two places by rope loops attached to the beams were two Unalaska skin boats.

The boats were cradled by ropes and where the ropes bore the weight of the boats they sagged under their own weight. Whomever rigged the boats for that storage area did not even think to cut a narrow length of wood plank support the the boats lengthwise. I knew something about skin boats so I mentioned to the curator handling me through the tour that I knew exactly how to mitigate the storage condition of these objects, the hanging boats, and she replied that it will be sometime down the line before this room is addressed as it is low priority on the budget.

I don't know if anyone ever addressed that storage condition, but I think a lot of object went to pot and rot in the so called 'object storage facilities ' of that place. If they had hired me I would have done the correction on my own time if it was not in the budget.

The second time I interviewed 6 or 7 years later I had done more work in the field, gained more experience and was still thinking about the condition of the skin boats. The interview panel asked me if I would be comfortable cleaning plexiglass vitrines and sweeping the gallery floor with a dust mop before the doors open. I said of course, I just want a job, but I happen to know a great deal about the collection here already and I eager to help in anyway.

They told me that they felt I was very overqualified for the job and offered it to someone else. The second time the job had changed and become less about the collection and more about housekeeping and gallery support for the curators. But I suspect they were looking for someone who was not ambitious or hyper engaged or intelligent enough to do hard research, because I would have mastered the collection. My prior experience had been that curators like dumb subordinates who don't outshine them.


Now that I have vented my spleen on the subject of dimwit curators, yes I would love to see the skin boat plans you so generously offer to share.

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  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date May 18 2017 6:10:41
 
timoteo

 

Posts: 218
Joined: Jun. 22 2012
From: Seattle, USA

RE: I might build a canoe (in reply to estebanana

I should have guessed you would know about skinboats.

My first exposure to one was when I visited the National Museum of the American Indian in DC, shortly after it was first opened. Right there in the lobby was a reproduction of a Netsilingmeot kayak (it was still there a few years ago when I went back) - I had never seen such a thing and it immediately captured my imagination. I seemed to understand immediately everything about it - why it was made that way, what the advantages were, how it was made without metal tools. Up until then I had never thought of owning a kayak, but after spending a very long time examining it (to the annoyance of my family, who wanted to get out of the lobby and into the actual exhibits) I knew that I had to build one just like it.

I later located this book ( https://www.amazon.com/Building-Skin-Frame-Robert-Morris/dp/1551924447 ) which describes how that kayak was built, as well as some others, including the Dyson book, and also found a lot of websites such as http://www.arctickayaks.com/plans.htm where you can download plans drawn from historic kayaks, some dating back more than 200 years. And of course I've seen a few originals in museums and many replicas on the water. A lot of the people who build these boats currently are located around here, between Seattle and Vancouver, including both Morris and Dyson, although historically these types of boats were only built in the Arctic and were rarely seen in the Salish Sea. Around here the first peoples made beautiful dugouts which are also amazing, just totally impractical because of their weight. I have entertained the notion of building a boat with the form of one of those dugouts but the construction of a skinboat, but I can't figure out how to skin the concave surfaces. (Notice in the video on the boat-building-plans.com site, the boat he takes into the water around minute 7 has a slight concavity on the bow and stern, and as he's walking down the ramp to the dock you can see that the fabric doesn't conform to the frame - it forms a chord across the curved surface. You can get away with that for small concavities, but for very large ones like the dugouts have it doesn't work - it would be like cling wrap stretched over a shallow bowl, the skin would be flat, even though the bowl curves away beneath it.

Give me a few days and I'll scan the plans and pm them to you.
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date May 19 2017 5:45:50
 
Richard Jernigan

Posts: 2604
Joined: Jan. 20 2004
From: Austin, Texas USA

RE: I might build a canoe (in reply to timoteo

My only experience with a skin boat was at the village of Barrow on the northernmost point of Alaska.

At the beginning of the 1950s the USA was initiating a top-secret project nearby. My father flew up from Anchorage occasionally to see how things were going. Twice he took me along.

At first the main thing that interested me was one of the world's largest HO gauge model railroad layouts. My brother designed, built and flew model airplanes, I did HO gauge model railroad stuff. During the long dark winter the troops at Barrow had to stay indoors much of the time, or access other areas through tunnels. The model railroad was a big recreational asset.

On my first trip to Barrow, during high summer, I met the grandson of one of the Inupiat leaders. He was close to my age, 12 years. An Air Force officer told me the grandfather was the Chief of Barrow, but the grandson explained that the leadership was considerably more complex. One of his grandfather's roles was leading seal hunting parties on the ice during winter.

As we walked about the village the grandson showed me a skin kayak, with seats for two people. While hunting one man could maneuver the boat while another handled a harpoon. We were allowed to take a short cruise near shore, but failed to spot any beluga whales, as we had hoped.

About six months later, in the depth of Arctic winter I went to Barrow again with my father. I asked to see the grandson, and learned from him that on a recent seal hunting trip his grandfather had been stalked, killed and mostly eaten by a polar bear.

I expressed my sympathy. The grandson said that Nanuk, the ice bear, was the founder of his human family. His grandfather was getting old, and would not have been able to lead the hunting party many more times. It was an honor for him to have been taken by Nanuk, the greatest of the seal hunters.

RNJ
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date May 19 2017 22:12:34
 
estebanana

 

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Joined: Oct. 16 2009
 

RE: I might build a canoe (in reply to estebanana

Your young pal had real Bushido.

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  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date May 21 2017 9:46:10
 
bluespiderweb

Posts: 18
Joined: Mar. 24 2017
 

RE: I might build a canoe (in reply to timoteo

The talk of lightweight canoes reminds me of the author George Washington Sears, pen named Nessmuk, who wrote about camping and the outdoors in the 1800's for magazines in NY city. He wrote a couple of books, and in his Woodcraft book, he details his search for a lightly built canoe. In the neighborhood of 15-18 pounds, and his preferred clinker built (lapstrake) from cedar. He touches on other methods of building as well, and their limitations. It is not an all inclusive nor technical building manual, but he details his search for the perfect canoe, with some stories to go along with that. Besides all the other woodcraft and camping methods he used, and of course, hunting and fishing for living and traveling light in the woods and water.

The small book is quite an entertaining read, for a window to the past of how things were approached and thought of at the time. Here is the link to the book if anyone is interested.:

https://www.amazon.com/Woodcraft-Camping-George-Sears-Nessmuk/dp/0486211452/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1495349025&sr=1-1&keywords=Nessmuk

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  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date May 21 2017 15:44:21
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