Sunday 24 May 2015

Latest Freighter update

Here's where it stated:

80 lbs of shit fiberglass  - well, 90 pounds of fiberglass, but looking a whole lot better. Really need that 2-3hp outboard soon!

First coat of 2 part Epifanes gloss black. Directly onto scuffed gelcoat, no primer necessary 

Nice contrast with interior

Cant wait to take the blue tape off...

Stern skids. Transom plates go back on next. 

Hang the seats, varnish the rails and go motoring...

TONS of space for kids and gear..

Saturday 23 May 2015

'Nother Chestnut,late 50s

Fate throws another boat our way, this came from a gentleman who offered this for sale if it got a good home, and it sure will. Best guess is late 1950's, as side decals didnt find their way onto Chestnut products until some time around 1957 its believed. 

This boat was retrieved from Lac Megantic, PQ, my fathers home town. I liked it before i knew that, but this will get restored and kept. 

Originally green, then red, finally blue. 

Build quality was beginning to decline, but at least they got the angle the same on both sides!

Wonderful shape, seems to be an early Pal that replaced the Aster/Moonlight model

Really miss the Champlain we did up in dove grey, and with very similar dimensions the Chestnut has the added bonus of caned seats, heart decks and 2.25" ribs.

Wont take much , although chemical stripping and refinishing are big jobs themselves. Little to no woodwork though, this boats was well used judging by the canvas but not abused. 

Larger ribs

As is typical, canvas rotted along the gunwale, and a small strip of fiberglass was applied to extend its life, and the deep gunwales made to cover. 

Nice upturned ends, brass bang strips still in place and intact

Side decals, placing it late 50s and up. Nice and crooked, right from the factory

Traditional cane pattern

Seats need to be reglued and caned

Heart decks

Rather than a shoe keel, this one has a more traditional early style keel

No lumps or bumps from smashed ribs and planking

Bang strips intact and in great shape

Ah drywall screws, the scourge of all restoration work

1956 catalog showing slant decals, courtesy of Benson Gray and WCHA

1959 catalog showing logo with chestnut, similar to traditional deck decal but englarged. Courtesy of Benson Gray and WCHA

Monday 18 May 2015

Freighter canoe update

Link to here:

Some progress, after interior paint. Rails are done, thwarts in. next is hang seats, and hull and deck paint. It will get kevlar skid plates, and an engine and its on the water.

Good bye blue!

Looking better, outside is next

Few more coats of varnish for the ash

Damn baby blue is ugly.

1st of 3 coats. Epifanes produces a nice, hard enamel finish.

Time for kevlar skid plates

All 3 keels plus stem and stern

Hard beach landings and floating over rocks and shoals arent kind to unprotected gel coat

Broad stern cover

bombproof stem

Black pigment in the skids will blend them in with the black hull paint

Much tougher!

Filling in the felt as it starves while epoxy is drawn down

One more coat of black and the yellow disappears

Almost all cured. 

Final coat goes on after tape removed to fill felt and seal edges

Curing outside


Stern cover

Paint job next, hang seats and  go fishing

A Thomson original oil painting

New to the collection is an original work by Fraser Thomson, younger brother of Tom. Several siblings of Toms took up painting, with his brother George being at one time the oldest practicing artist in Canada at age 97. George, Fraser and Margaret along with spouses took regular trips to sketch and paint. 
Angie Littlefield has been most gracious providing information about the extended family and their talents, her website here:
Rather than lift the info, have a look at her site. 
From an email exchange ``Fraser (1886-1968) married the Legate heiress, Ina of Owen Sound. The Legate store is still there. Fraser was a 'haberdasher' in Montreal for a while but he painted with his siblings George and Margaret almost every year in the Owen Sound environs--up to George's death in 1965. My guess is that he might have been an accomplished canoeist. I know George and Margaret kept to the land.``
Below, two shots of the Thomson siblings and family taken from The West Wind site,

Fraser front row, in white. 

Fraser third from left front row, next to his father. 

What looks to be a nice fall scene, one would assume Algonquin Park or a similar surrounding. 

Well, the paper is ripped after all so lets see what lies beneath. 

What is now known as Milford Bay on Lake Muskoka,then called Milford Cove. 
Its not clear at this point if the `15 refers to the year or something else, perhaps one in a series of paintings on the trip, or who knows what. Its intriguing to think this was the year that Tom passed, however Angie provided the following thought: ``George didn't return to live in Owen Sound until after Tom's death. The painting excursions of the siblings started later--post 1926. The Legate family had money and Fraser and Ina probably visited them on a regular basis. I also see in the book that I'm sending that Fraser painted Milford Cove while staying at Miss Glass' rooming house post 1940. Is the date clear as '17 or could that one be some other number? ``

More research will need to be done, but for now its a nice link to the family and  life of one of Canada`s most talented and best known artists.