Friday 29 December 2017

WD40, busted knuckles and progress

An hour makes a big difference, along with the air tools. No need for the torch yet!

All to be blasted and put back on, except the fenders that are galvanized

LED lights, and bunks to be reworked

Main frame to be knocked down next, all to head into the blaster

Almost apart, shackle bolts and leaf springs to come off the axles

Thursday 28 December 2017

Trailer build

Need a trailer for the 20' Grand Laker for next spring, the trailer we have is way overbuilt for a boat under 200 lbs, and heavier than it need be.  A lightly sprung boat trailer is in order, but altered and stretched to accommodate the length.

Nicely fit trailer above

Nice lightweight trailer, but too much hanging off the back to support a 90lb engine for the longer trips we'll be doing

Supported transom, nice unit

Lengthened to fit, maybe a bit overbuilt

EZ Loader model, this one galvanized and close to $1500 all in and still needing modification. We'll be a third of that all in.

Dragged this POS home with no spare and one light working. Apparently was in the mood for risk taking during a 2 hour drive. Thank you Kijiji ? lol
Made it okay, which is good since there was no real back up plan. 

Bolted together frame, will be totally dismantled, blasted clean and painted, and reassembled with new hardware. 

How do you bend the crappy welded on jack?

Likely the same mishap that bend the coupler. 1 7/8, will be changed to 2" when the new longer tongue is put on 

New LED lights will take care of this sweet wiring harness

Overall solid,  just not pretty.

Half way to making it home

Nice quality finned hubs

5 bolt hubs, 12" tires will fit great, or any combination of rim/tire with a 4 1/2" on center pattern. 

First is knocking it down...

Monday 25 December 2017

New Cruiser build - Christmas Eve Steambending

Spruce rails, necessary and authentic, either bend easily or completely fail if there is a knot or cross grain in the area of the bend. 

This one had a small knot, discovered after milling, figured a 50/50 chance of success, and came up short

The reason we mill 3 at a time

Steaming away while the temperature was at 0

On the way to 200, after ends soaked for a day 

Right around the forms after 10-15 minutes 

Not entirely dry, still flexible to get on the form 

Nice curve established

On the form ready the stems to be set, then ribs and planking. 

more to come.

Monday 18 December 2017

Equipment upgrades

A great deal came around and has allowed us to upgrade to a 2hp dust collector from the current 1hp unit, and to move from 110v to 220.

The biggest improvement is the 2hp 220v planer, up considerably from a bench top Ridgid that uses replaceable blades that are designed to not be able to be resharpened. Besides the cost and flimsier construction, it struggled with larger hardwoods and was at capacity. This is a vast improvement

A shaper is a great new addition for making pieces like gunwales. Looking forward to using this in the future.

Nice big old Walker Turner jointer, still tagged DND, Department of National Defence and obviously sold of as surplus. Likely move this on to a new owner as we've already rebuilt a Delta thats in use.


220v motors, always good to have and hard to find at good prices , even the offshore units. Tuck these away for the future

Sunday 17 December 2017

Prefire Cruiser replica, finishing touch

The shape is right, on to a second build after the first found a new owner.

A party being guided by Thomson
 Thomson loaded and heading out

 Decks fit before the crown is carved into them 


 Correct circular cut out, the guide models did not have the heart shaped deck the pleasure models originally had during the early period of construction

 Plain maple deck with slight crown

During 1917 when Tom Thomson died in Canoe Lake in Algonquin Park, Canadian currently was largely opposite of what we use today. Nickles and dimes were tiny, and pennies were still large. The small pennies we knew until recently removed from circulation, weren't introduced until 1926.
Measuring at 1" in diameter, a forstner bit makes a perfect countersunk hole to mount in the deck. 
A test in an old deck from a past restoration shows well, this will be a nice touch to any future boats we build. 

Classier than a decal!

Grand Laker canoe !

From and a post by Robin Lauer, a fan of Chestnut canoes, to whom we passed on a Chum a few years back:

Grand Lakers are to eastern Maine's Grand Lake Stream area what drift boats are to the great fishing rivers out west. They came about in the 1920's or so, Guides would get their big 20 foot traditional canoes towed up lakes via lumber steam barges with clients (Sports) and paddle back fishing for trout and salmon.

When outboard motors came about, they added a square back transom, but still kept the ability to paddle a Sport into quiet coves to fly cast for the fish. Today, the Grand Laker is the boat of choice for guides in the Grand Lake Stream area and the Sports are attracted to these craft as they where almost 100 years ago.

Still being built by a select few, and a bargain for the amount of work and materials that go into them, between the exchange and other projects acquiring one has been out of reach until recently.
 Dale Tobey, builder and restorers of Grand Lakers as well as guiding out of them, offered up a boat needing some repairs and restoration at a price too good to be true, and when he offered to deliver it closer to relatives to keep our drive down it was a done deal.

Dale guiding. The boats handle a 10 hp engine with ease. 

At work in his shop

Registered Maine Master Guide
Hunting and Fishing. Specializing in Bear and Bobcat hunts with hounds.
Dale Tobey
Grand Lake Stream, ME 04668

More shots of Grand Lakers in their element in Maine

Heading back to the garage until the new year when we can take a road trip
 Could have used a bigger trailer for  the  200lb boat

Waiting for pickup with rail stock tied in

New rails and a few ribs and refinishing and it will be ready this spring

At 19ft long and 4' wide, theres lots of room for kids, fishing and camping gear


Just what Northern Ontario lakes and rivers need

The lightest 4 stroke 9.8hp, after breaking in this past summer its a great match  for the hull. Quiet, light and great on fuel.
More to come once it arrives in the shop.