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Chesnut #5163

Discussion in 'Wood and Canvas' started by KAT, May 22, 2012.

  1. KAT

    KAT LOVES Wooden Canoes

    Got the new boat home today. It is going to require more work than the Huron did but I love challenges and it is a lovely little boat. It isn't really old but has the pre-1974 decal on it and does seem well enough put together. It does have the scarfed outwales which I understand were on the newer boats as with the 3" cant ribs.

    It was stored for about 10 years upside down under a deck, which likely explains how much rot there is at the stem tips. Inwales and deck tips are rotted off as well.
    It has alum stem bands and hordes of steel robertson screws in it. The seller told us he bought it from a fellow in Gillam Manitoba and planned to eventually fix it up. We will take care of that for him.

    What I like about this craft is the dimunitive size. It is barely 14 feet long, 30 1/2" wide outside the gunwales and measuring from the bottom of the thwart, 11" deep. The ribs are 1 1/2" wide and 1 1/2" apart. So it could be a..."Little, Peach, Playmate or Fox" based upon the dimensions, although it is skinnier than any of those models, based upon the info on the Dragonfly web site.

    Work has begun already, the canvas is being stripped off as well as the one remaining outwale and the keel.

    Chestnut.001.jpg Chestnut.002.jpg Chestnut.003.jpg Chestnut.004.jpg Chestnut.005.jpg Chestnut.006.jpg
  2. OP

    KAT LOVES Wooden Canoes

    Additional photo's...

    Chestnut.007.jpg Chestnut.008.jpg Chestnut.Decal.Pre1974.jpg
  3. Dan Miller

    Dan Miller cranky canoeist Staff Member

    I have yet to see a 14' Chestnut pleasure measure up to the specs in the catalog. They are narrower, and that's a good thing... in my opinion.

    You have a fun project and a great paddler when you are done.

  4. OP

    KAT LOVES Wooden Canoes

    Thanks Dan.

    This is supposed to be my room mates project but I figure I will get my hands dirty alot on it since I did the majority of the work on the Huron. There is some black mold growing under the canvas which will get killed off soon enough and since I have one more day off, I figure to start stripping varnish tomorrow. I will leave it up to her to track down some white cedar for the ribs and planking that needs to be replaced. 3 ribs for sure and planking where the one bad puncture is.

    Chestnut.009.jpg Chestnut.010.jpg Chestnut.011.jpg Chestnut.012.jpg
  5. Andre Cloutier

    Andre Cloutier Firestarter. Wicked Firestarter.

    Great boat, and you'll find much finer than the Huron both in construction and paddling. Here's a 15' Chum I'm finishing up, lots of nice colours available, there's enough red and green canoes!

    Attached Files:

  6. OP

    KAT LOVES Wooden Canoes

    Hi Andre

    Nice boat you have there, what is the colour? It almost looks black. Christine, my room mate, loves red so it will likely wind up as such.

    We get to experience replacing rib tips on this one as well as scarfing onto the inwales which are rotted as well. How do I go about finding out which woods were used? Inwales are likely spruce? Decks are? Ribs and planking eastern white cedar?

  7. robin

    robin LOVES Wooden Canoes

    Very Nice Find

    Looks like it will be a nice canoe when finished, I like those 1 1/2 inch ribs, nice detail. Looking forward to seeing your progress.
  8. Douglas Ingram

    Douglas Ingram Red River Canoe & Paddle

    Sounds almost exactly like the little Chestnut that I build. I had one in for repairs many years ago, 1996 I think. I really liked the look of it so I copied the lines and built a mold. The nearest that I could ID it at the time was as the FOX, so I still refer to it as the FOX.

    This is a great find. I makes a fantastic solo.

    Don't follow Andre's lead on paint, that canoe of his is waaaaay too shiny.
  9. Andre Cloutier

    Andre Cloutier Firestarter. Wicked Firestarter.

    See, everyone likes these! inwales stems decks and thwarts are likely ash, but inwales could be spruce. Strip it and it will be apparent, if not post some photos. Seats are likely maple or birch, you could use this for decks as changing up the woods wont affect value at all on a nice user like this. Convinced the owner of a boat i did to go with Burgundy, liked it so much i did my Chum in it. Besides, shiny canoes go faster... You can always flatten paint for a more vintage look too. Throw away the scarfed outwales, its easy to make new ones. The color chart does not show well, but theres lots of kool colours.
  10. OP

    KAT LOVES Wooden Canoes

    That is way too shiny, I learned that lesson already.

    Ash inwales it would seem. I cut one back a bit to get an idea of how far back the rot goes and it was too hard to be spruce. It looks like I will be able to scarf in new wood in front of the upward turn so I needn't try to replicate that.

    Started stripping it, ran out of stripper but I must say I much prefer working with the stuff outside. I plan to do all the chemical nasty stuff in the backyard or garage.
    Ribs needing repair or replacement is now 7. All 4 cant ribs have the tops rotted off and maybe another 10 rib tips need to be replaced. Alot of the sheer planking is rotted as well. It only had one outwale, the other had rotted right off. Overall it seems to be in decent shape, the majority of the hull planking is nice and bright, as if it were varnished originally.

    The fellow had a piece of canvas for it which we have, but he had used it to tarp something in his yard so it is stained and seems overly heavy.

    Anyone know if this boat is asymetrical or symetrical? It seems to have a different hull shape at each end. The existing bow seat location is close to the center so there was the thought of just building a new seat, hang it from those holes and turn it around to paddle. Not sure that would work with just looking at the hull shape.

    Need to track down a white cedar supplier who will ship to Winnipeg.

    Oh wait, I was only supposed to "assist" on this one.
  11. Douglas Ingram

    Douglas Ingram Red River Canoe & Paddle

    I've probably got enough WC for what you need.

    Shiny paint reveals all sins.
  12. Fitz

    Fitz Wooden Canoes are in the Blood

    Steve Lapey and I have noticed that a couple of 1960 vintage Chums are not exactly symmetrical. I thought someone had monkeyed with the sheer on the one I was working on, but it was identical to one Steve has, so I guess it was built in. If I recall correctly, the sterns are higher than the bows.

  13. Douglas Ingram

    Douglas Ingram Red River Canoe & Paddle

    Using the bow seat position for the solo seat would be OK if you are touring, but if you are doing any sort of Style of Freestyle paddling, then the trim of the canoe will be off enough so as to be annoying.

    If you have a small pressure washer, those work great for cleaning out the stripped from all of the nooks and crannies of the canoe. Do one end of the canoe at a time, let it dry, then do the other end. You can do the entire boat at one shot, but working one half at a time has its advantages.
  14. OP

    KAT LOVES Wooden Canoes

    This will likely turn out to be a touring boat and possibly mine if it is lighter than the Huron. I'm much weaker than Christine. The removable yoke I built for the Huron would likely work on this one too.

    The planking is nice and tight still, when stripping yesterday I knocked over the full can and nothing dripped through onto the grass. I should finish the stripping this weekend and like the idea of using a pressure washer to clean out the residual gunk and it may help to knock off some of the mold on the outside. On that thought... how do I go about getting into the ends, the brushes hardly fit, let alone my hands to remove and stripper I manage to get in there at all.

    I have noticed the stems "appear" to have a twist in them. Sighting down the length of them they turn to the side a little before going up towards the decks. I could be wrong and it just seems it due to the shadows in the ends, I will have a better look this weekend.

    This is going to be fun.

    Doug, check for a PM please and thank you.
  15. Andre Cloutier

    Andre Cloutier Firestarter. Wicked Firestarter.

    To get in the ends more easily, remove the decks and cut the handle off of whatever you are using to apply stripper - usually its a brush. It goes without saying to wear goggles, especially when pressure washing since it will kick back and spray at you occasionally. Dont recall from your other thread, but if you didnt you might find that a scrub with a plastic bristle scrub brush and tsp will loosen the remainder of the stripper and gunk so you dont have to pressure wash so aggressively - beware the power of the wand! I use a little electric one so it isnt overly powerful. Twist wont affect your paddling much with a light load of only one person, however you can splice as much new stem in as you need or want when the ends of the boat are open.
  16. Douglas Ingram

    Douglas Ingram Red River Canoe & Paddle

    What Andre said. Plus, the pressure washer will clean out an amazing amount of crap from those tight spaces. Start using it fairly far back till you get the feel of it, you don't want to use so much pressure that your rip apart the wood fibers. I have a very small electric unit that has just the right amount of pressure, its so anemic that its almost impossible to over do it.
  17. OP

    KAT LOVES Wooden Canoes

  18. OP

    KAT LOVES Wooden Canoes

    What would be the dimensions of the original inwales for a Fox? I'm pondering whether they were replaced. The seats appear to be original and the hardware all came off without struggle or anti-seize compound. The hardware is all carriage bolts with square nuts that appear galvanized.
  19. Jan Bloom

    Jan Bloom LOVES Wooden Canoes

    I believe that the ugly scarfed and screwed outwales are original. One piece replacements are certainly much nicer. You can base your dimensions on the current ones or make them a bit lighter for a better look on a small craft like yourrs.
  20. Douglas Ingram

    Douglas Ingram Red River Canoe & Paddle

    There is variation over time and material, so you have some latitude. The inwales look original and square nuts were pretty standard. There are some details of the really old Chestnuts that are very appealing. I have a very old pleasure model here that you really should take a look at when I get back from up north. Call my after June 18th.

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