Sunday 29 April 2018


Grand Laker is done and ready for fishing and touring about. And of course more hours on the tiller for someone...

New rails going on the  Minetta

Old rails and rib tops to be cut off, boat is lowered to  11" from 13"

Proper shape and height finally

Starting to come around to a solo conversion.

Temp rain delay ...

Flying along - double paddle solo taking shape

This build is for my daughter, who is an absolute joy to paddle with and always makes me smile. So why not bring her along during the build and get her involved. No time like the present to give her some skills and experience.

Lowering the sheer, and giving it nicer lines than it got when first assembled. Lower in the middle, ends are kept higher for looks as well as seaworthiness.

First side trimmed with the cut off wheel.

Trimmed, nicer sweep and ready for rails

Left to its own, shape has relaxed.  To be narrowed when its railed


Ends trimmed off for gunwales to be fit at end, and glass thinned out for rails

New owner looking on

Thwarts and carry handles finished to thickness waiting for shaping

White boat trimmed in cherry started out exact same model, even yellow

New boat will be narrower and slightly lower midships, and trimmed in ash and purpleheart

Working on a  15' Peterborough Minetta that needed new rails and shape. From the factory it was 13' deep and only 31" wide, when it was intended to be 11" and 32" wide. New rails lowered boat and put back the proper shape.

This boat will be set up for solo work as well. Overall not bad shape, no smashed ribs and mostly planking repairs to be done before chemical stripping.

Lots of purple and ash chips 

Purpleheart and ash. Always turns a brownish colour right after milling, shortly returns to a vibrant purple as above. 

Back how it started out

Pride of ownership will be present when paddling this one.

Next up is seal and install ash rails, shape and install decks and thwarts. Lots of varnish then hull paint. Seat should arrive shortly, then paddling!

 Great memories of an evening paddle.

Purple hull trimmed in ash will make for a nice personalized boat.

Of course you build a boat for a girl that rides in the teacup with you!

Tuesday 24 April 2018

Another solo canoe!

Like deja vu all over again. Same boat pops up, we jump on it! 

11' long, perfect for a pack boat with a single seat and a double bladed 

Even yellow like the first one

Same seats, thwart and decks

Even has the same kinked aluminum gunwales from too wide a thwart!

This one traveled with movers at one time it seems

Way too wide for just 11', after the rails come off the hull relaxes, then when it gets new wood rails it will narrow to 28 or 29"

Coming apart

Lots of rivets to drill out

Deck off, lots of dirt ! But no rot like wood boats

Gunwale kink from extra width introduced with thwart

First rail coming off. As with all glass and composite hulls, the sides are floppy until the rails stiffen up the structure. 

Bare hull. Ugly flat sheer, to be cut down to lower the middle and just overall look better

Another solo seat is on order

Hull is bare, next is cut down the sheer to give it some shape like the red one. The first one is up top, after it colour change to white.

Just a great compact single.

Hull will be pulled in considerably

Next up: white ash rails, purpleheart decks and thwarts, paint and go padding

Sunday 15 April 2018

Home stretch - seat, footbraces and paint

Close to paddling, boat is almost ready for the water and 2018 trips. Seat has arrived, wood is shaped and footbraces purchased

Everything is in place and ready to be assembled

Decks dry fit, to be taken apart, epoxy sealed and reassembled. Holes left in either end to allow water to drain after use when boat is turned over

Fit and ready to be completed

Lift handles to keep from lifting boat by decks and to provide a better grip
 Center thwarts serve only to hold boat to shape. Slight gaps in rails due to uneven thickness of fiberglass - this is no showpiece so we wont stress over them

Lots of room for tripping gear

More room in the bows even after paddler is in place

 Tons of room

Grey Owl Scirocco paddle, just needs light refinishing. 240cm to get over the rails for comfortable paddling

Nicely made paddles, with blades laminated from basswood and butternut
 Shaft is ash, with a carbon fibre ferrule

Seat arrived 3 days ahead of schedule,  and was dropped on the porch. Luckily no 'porch pirates' took it, no signature required it was just left

Super comfortable, just needs to be fit and attachments bonded it

Foot braces to be fastened, more than comfortable they assist when pulling hard on the paddle to keep the paddler in the seat and the boat moving forward

Final paint next and we get it wet.  Once the ice storm is over, that is!