Saturday 31 December 2016

FInally! heat in the shop!

4 years in the making, we can build and not see our breath from the cold! Tools are warmer too...
33k BTU direct vent wall heater is enough as the shop is fully insulated; filler can cure, paint won't freeze and we can finish off the first replica.

Can't say enough about this company, job done in 4 hours and not a glitch.  Only company to actually come out and quote, and their price was literally half of the others i called. Neighbours likely thought our furnace had quit!

Nice unit barely protrudes into the workspace

Sealed combustion unit, from an American company. 

Template time, installation starting

All done, now for the gas plumbing. Old buried gas line to a pool heater from the meter cut costs further

Just need to wire a receptacle for the fan power, and its done. Extension is fine for now, and it throws the heat! Shop went from 40 to mid 60s in an hour and a half. 
Life is good!

Friday 30 December 2016

New (old) planer

Tired of the newer Rigid planer, too much aluminum and plastic, but mostly the replaceable blades that cant be sharpened and at $60 a set now we began looking for an older cast iron unit to take its place.  Been looking for one off and on for years, and got lucky this December. New blades, no motor, and looking for a quick rebuild, unit is in perfect shape with no broken casting. 

Unit as found, ready to be tilted into the trailer. Well over 300lbs even without the electric motor

Will need a new duct for chips and waste to connect to dust collection, and will have panels sheared for the base to close in, and to mount the switchbox on. New paint and bearings are in order after its been completed mechanically

Original folder from the factory in Drummondville, Quebec sometime late 50s or early 60s

Another 130 unit, complete. 2 speed infeed gearbox showing. 

New Wanigan in old Pine

Time to drag out the form and put one together for the Gr8 homeroom teacher. Good teachers just make you want to build...

Leftover big pine from what was used to plank the form. A really kool piece was kept for the lid

Old pine sides, white cedar ribs and western red cedar planking

Making the turn around the bottom

Planked and ready to lift from the form. 

Finished, sanded and ready for tung oil

That satisfying moment when the oil hits the sanded wood

Oiled inside and out, 3 coats rubbed and paste furniture wax rather than varnish

The apprentice oiling the lid next

Walnut, pine and WRC

Second coat of oil soaking in

Ready for furniture wax

The lid, complete with blue staining from Pine Wilt disease,
more here:

  • Pine wilt is a lethal disease caused by a native nematode (Bursaphelenchus xylophilus), vectored to trees by a wood borer insect–the pine sawyer beetle (Monochamus spp.).
  • Rapid change in needle color from green to gray-green to brown or light tan, beginning in late summer
  • Wood from recently affected trees is very dry, brittle and lacks any resin accumulation when cut. No evidence of exit holes, sawdust, or pitch tubes associated with bark beetles or wood borers in branches or the trunk
  • The wood is discolored by blue stain fungi
  • The blue stain fungusGrosmannia clavigera, is a species of sac fungus. It spreads to lodgepole pineponderosa pineDouglas-fir, and whitebark pine trees from the body and a special structure in the heads of mountain pine beetles. The blue stain fungus has evolved a relationship with mountain pine beetles that allow them to travel from tree to tree on a special structure in the beetle’s heads and stops the tree from producing resin to pitch out or kill the beetle, encouraging the pine beetle infestation
  • The blue stain fungus spores germinate and produce a thread like mass (mycelium) that colonizes the phloem and sapwood. Fungal spores are usually blown away by wind but blue-stain spores are "sticky." This process eventually blocks the nutrient-conducting columns of the tree draining the trees of their nutrients eventually causing the tree to starve to death.[4] The symptoms and signs of blue stain fungus are a blue-gray discoloration of sapwood in wedge shapes of recently killed trees

Wednesday 14 December 2016

Canvas for the Chestnut

Repairs are done, new canvas going on to be filled and painted in the spring, along with a new keel and final coats of varnish on the inside

Long a fan of the upside down method, tall sawhorses make it a more comfortable process

New roll of #12, enough for the next 4 boats

Stretching tight

The immovable object, fine while the weather is nice!

Nice and tight, fastened at the rails 

Almost done

Preservative, a necessary steop

Zinc concentration has been reduced due government regulation, from 8% to 2% but strong smell remains

Done and drying, waiting to be filled

Wednesday 12 October 2016

October shop stuff

18' White spruce thats been drying for more than a year, to be milled for gunwales for a new build. Cedar ribs and planking to be milled and prepped, build starts next week. Seats, decks and thwarts in maple started as well.

Inner gunwales installed, outers to have scuppers routed and attached. Mahogany seat, thwart and decks to be made and installed.

Shape pulled in and sweetened up, will finish up at 11' and 29-30" wide.

Moonlight getting varnished and ready for canvas. 

Tuesday 11 October 2016

Back at it, new computer on the way

Life gets busy. Packboat is finished and has been out a bunch. Colour change coming after the paddling season is done, and a lot of activity to catch up on. 

Test float, with a rare Nashwaak paddles double blade cherry 9' paddle

Thanksgiving weekend paddle

Far too little paddling this year!

Comfortable Swift canoes seat. 

Work on the Moonlight carried on, ready for canvas. Hardwood golf tees glued into old gunwale holes make solid plugs for new holes and screws

One wide piece of African mahogany
Really kool new project, a fiberglass replica of a Chestnut 11' featherweight found on Kijiji, advertised as a 7 foot canoe. A phone call and some more pictures later, we took a look and found this. 

  Cant make out who the builder was in Orillia, but with the single seat, and single thwart its set up just like the Chestnut. After what must have been many years outside, the wood was largely gone but the fiberglass hull was solid, and a nice layup with reinforcing where it is needed

Needing to be stripped, this was tasked out to the apprentice. 

Bare hull

Flotation and a different end treatment.

Small keel, and a rigid bottom

Ready to be fitted out

12' of ash for rails

to be continued..

Tuesday 31 May 2016

Pack canoe project

Pack canoes, small single seat canoes designed to be used with a double paddle, enjoyed immense popularity from the late 1800s through the early 1900s. Graceful, made of wood and offering a comfortable seating position and the use of a kayak style double paddle they were easy to carry, launch and retrieve and quick to paddle.  Many companies today are enoying a resurgence of what they are calling a Pack canoe, styled after a type referred to as a Wee Lassie. Handling more like a canoe but with the agility and speed more reminiscent of a kayak they offer a less restricted seating position. When this 11.5 foot cane presented itself for well under $200 we knew it was a candidate for modifying into one of these great canoes.

Under 12' doesnt take much room on top

Another retrieval with the van, looking good after 11 years and 320k kilometres

Swift Canoes version of the single seat double blade paddle boat.

Originally set up with 2 seats, its hard to imagine anything other than small kids paddling it. 

Sitting on the bottom in a comfortable padded seat with a back changes the dynamic entirely

Modifications will include removal of seats, broken thwart, decks and aluminum gunwales. Sheer will be cut to lower the sides through the centre to give clearance for the paddle, and to make it a prettier boat overall. Wood rails in either ash or cherry (havent decided yet) will be added, minimal wood decks, finely shaped thwarts on either end along with a new seat. Finally felt skid plates will be added to either end. All at modest cost, the most expensive piece will be the seat.

Pack canoe named for the original Wee Lassie

Swifts version that ours will be moified to resemble, including pulling in the rails to narrow the hull midships

A solo pack boat loaded for a camping trip.

Updates to follow.....