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new project

Discussion in 'Traditional All-Wood Construction' started by samb, Sep 7, 2016.

  1. samb

    samb LOVES Wooden Canoes

    I've just pressed the buy it now button on this rib and batten boat on ebay uk.

    I've not seen it yet but it will keep me out of trouble for the next few months.

    Anyone any ideas of maker from the pictures?

    b.jpg c.jpg a.jpg

    I'd also appreciate any pointers to threads about repairing rib and batten boats.


  2. OP

    samb LOVES Wooden Canoes

    I collected the boat today. It measures 16' x 31 1/2 x 11 1/2.
    The thwart tags are Canadian Canoe Co limited, Peterborough - Ont.

    It is believed to have been imported to the uk in the 1930s. At least one plank needs replacing and about 6 ribs. My first job will be to strip it then I can really work out what I need to do.

    Any information about model name or number would be appreciated.


  3. OP

    samb LOVES Wooden Canoes

    At the risk of monopolising my own thread, I have more to tell.

    13 ribs need replacing and more or less a whole plank. It looks like the boat has been dropped on its side at some point.

    There are a couple of splits in other planks - they will get a batten across them. There have been at least 6 previous plank splits which have been repaired with rectangles of matching wood fitting the whole space between ribs and battens.
    Although it will be some time before I can start properly on this boat, I can start to plan and work out an order of work.
    My first job will be to strip all the old varnish so I can see the rest of the problems.

    At present, I can't see, but I imagine the ribs run under the keelson and planks are nailed through the ribs, keelson and then clenched? I don't want to remove anything from the boat unless I have to, (Far too many nails to have to replace and the possibility of doing more damage than I can fix) so how about this for an idea: I bend up new half length ribs and fit them in place close up next to the broken ones. The bottom two, and top planks would not be disturbed as much this way. The new plank would just be nailed to the new ribs so the nail pattern there would just be off set over that plank and with extra nails in the planks above and below to position the ribs properly. The battens would need shortening on above and below planks too. Any opinions on this? It will be an obvious repair job but I don't want a new boat.

    These wide board boats are obviously not too common. I think I've read every thread about them on the forum. It seems you have to be brave or mad to take one on!

    I couldn't resist getting some stripper out and trying on the deck! I might have taken on a massive job but I can't wait to get started.

  4. Murat V

    Murat V Enthusiastic about Wooden Canoes

    Hi Sam.

    Looks like quite the project boat. I've followed your Chestnut Playmate restoration over on SOTP with much interest (I have one too).

    Ken Brown's book, The Canadian Canoe Company and the Early Peterborough Canoe Factories (ISBN-10: 0978436849), might have some answers although there really is no listing of wide board models. The catalog he replicated in the book (in very small font) only lists the cedar canvas models that appears after merging with Peterborough & Chestnut in the 1920s.

    However, he does mention the founder of The Canadian Canoe Co (CCC) was a Mr. Arthur Tebb who worked with J.Z. Rogers, founder of the Ontario Canoe Company (OCC). The OCC had acquired John Stephenson's patent for the Wide Board basswood canoe and begun factory production. According to the author, Tebb would've been very familiar with construction of this labour intensive style of canoe. After fire destroyed the Ontario Canoe Co in 1892, Rogers become manager of the newly formed Peterborough Canoe Company (PCC) and Tebb went out on his own to found the CCC.

    The book shows examples of how Tebb basically "borrowed" all the designs and sketches from the Ontario Canoe Company for his 1st catalogue. It stands to reason that a 16' CCC boat was virtually the same as what was being built at the OCC and PCC. The standard 16 foot model was the #64

    Here's a pic obtained from the 1921 catalog from this thread on the wooden boat forums...


    If you can find it, another book from 2005, The Canoe: a Living Tradition by John Jennings (isbn 1-55407-080-5) might be useful too. The author commissioned a wide board and batten basswood canoe from the last living Peterborough area builder who would've been familiar with the construction method - Walter Walker. The photo sequence is pretty short but it might contain some more visual details for you.

    Good luck!
  5. OP

    samb LOVES Wooden Canoes

    Thanks for this. It is indeed a project boat!
    I'd seen the page before but not the thread on wooden boats forum. My ribs are not half round but flat but with copper nails so it looks like it wouldn't have been painted.
    I have 'The canoe: a living tradition' on order but can't get hold of 'The Canadian Canoe Company and the Early Peterborough Canoe Factories' in the uk or 'The invention of the board canoe' .

  6. alick burt

    alick burt LOVES Wooden Canoes

    Hi Sam
    I have just been looking for the Canadian Canoe Company by Ken Brown myself and found it is out of print. Did you manage to get a copy?
    I have contacted and they have promised to let me know when more are printed.(possibly next autumn).Or failing that they will let me know if they have a second hand copy.
    Alick still strippin...
  7. OP

    samb LOVES Wooden Canoes

    No - I couldn't find one . . . .but if you do . . . .
  8. alick burt

    alick burt LOVES Wooden Canoes

    Hopefully there will be some printed next Autumn fingers crossed :)
  9. Mark Adams

    Mark Adams all wood nut

    Alick, don't get your hopes up TOO far, but there is a good chance I have an extra copy. I'll need to root through a bunch of boxes, but....
  10. alick burt

    alick burt LOVES Wooden Canoes

    That's great fingers crossed :)

    I have at least two friends who will want to borrow it too.


  11. johnmetts

    johnmetts Enthusiastic about Wooden Canoes

    I'm thinking of using basswood for planking as I have a ready supply of it. I have heard that it rots quickly. Can anyone offer any advice, experience, ideas to prevent it from rotting or should I just use cedar?


  12. dtdcanoes

    dtdcanoes LOVES Wooden Canoes

    John.........really ? ..just use what the original builder used, and protect the history of the boat. Good luck on the redo.
  13. pklonowski

    pklonowski Unrepentant Canoeist

    Not only does basswood rot much more readily than cedar, but varnish, urethane, and many other finishes have a hard time sticking to it. If you get a tiny pinhole in the finish, water seeps in, and the rot begins, often resulting in flaking off the finish.

    In my shop, I see no shortage of basswood paddles come in for repair & refinishing. The paddles are typically not worth the cost of the repair, but apparently they some have sentimental value. Whatever.
  14. alick burt

    alick burt LOVES Wooden Canoes

    I agree with the others
    I have heard basswood is not very durable so if you are going to use it I would only do so on a new wood strip and epoxy boat where the wood will not come into contact with water.If it is an old boat and had cedar originally then that is what I would use.Remember different timbers have different rates of movement too so you may have problems where the old meets the new if they are different species.
  15. johnmetts

    johnmetts Enthusiastic about Wooden Canoes

    Thanks for advice, Canoenut. My first time at this so it should be a learning experience.

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