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Deck Conundrum

Discussion in 'Strippers, Stitch-n-Glue, and Other Wood Composite' started by algale, Nov 3, 2015.

  1. algale

    algale Curious about Wooden Canoes

    The world's slowest canoe build continues and I need some advice.

    I'm building Gilpatrick's Wabnaki with solid inwales and outwales. The gunwales are .75 inches thick. The decks are about 1.10 thick. Thought originally I'd install the decks with their bottoms flush to the bottom of the gunwales and shape the top of the deck flush. to the gunwales with a bit of a crown in the middle

    But the gunwales slant inwards and their are some gnarly angles between the deck and the gunwales and I'm not sure how to dress the decks down to the gunwale and blend it all in.

    I could install the decks so the top is flush with the top of the gunwale. This looks more manageable BUT then it hangs down below the gunwale.

    Any suggestions?

    Attached Files:

  2. MackyM

    MackyM LOVES Wooden Canoes

    Power plane and belt sander?
  3. Dave Osborn

    Dave Osborn LIFE MEMBER

    Take it off the top, or take it off the bottom of the deck.... Like Macky says...power plane or heavy grit belt.
    I once made a deck for a strip-built canoe and did the rough work with a chain saw, then finished with an angle grinder, belt sander, and random orbital...
  4. Jim Dodd

    Jim Dodd LOVES Wooden Canoes

    I do mine like you have pictured. It takes some work with a belt sander to shape the decks, but it comes out OK. Mine are much smaller decks though. IMG_0788.jpg IMG_0787.jpg
    I like the raised, and beveled deck look.

  5. OP

    algale Curious about Wooden Canoes

    Thanks for the response, everyone. Jim, in your photos I can't tell whether there is a slant from the outer to the inner gunwale.
  6. Andre Cloutier

    Andre Cloutier Firestarter. Wicked Firestarter.

    If i understand you correctly, is it a matter of getting the deck to sit flush with the rails? if so, use a bevel gauge and set your table saw to the same angle and fit your deck flush along the sides, then if you want to crown the top set them high. Otherwise you wont have a nice fit and they wont be easy to fasten either, and if the canoe is lifted by them as so often happens they wont be as strong as they could be. I might have misunderstood you, but any time i replace decks it seems the inwales are slanted as you mention and the decks need to be beveled to fit flush along their length. seems lots of builds progress slowly, but steadily. good luck
  7. Jim Dodd

    Jim Dodd LOVES Wooden Canoes


    There is a slight angle, and my pics are not the best. My gunnels are also 3/4" high, and my decks start out at 5/4". Again I just gently used a belt sander.

    In looking at your pics again, I raise my inwhales at the ends, to help compensate. Are your inwhales glued in place ?
    It ends up being a fair amount of hand work.

    Good luck ! And remember, Rome wasn't built in a day.

  8. Rob Stevens

    Rob Stevens Wooden Canoes are in the Blood

    I use a block plane for slower, more precise fitting.
  9. OP

    algale Curious about Wooden Canoes

    Well, it is in. I decided to keep the bottom edge flush and shape a little swale and sort of dome on the deck Amazing what a little sanding will do. IMG_2657.jpg
  10. Jim Dodd

    Jim Dodd LOVES Wooden Canoes

    Looks good !

  11. Paul Scheuer

    Paul Scheuer LOVES Wooden Canoes

    Nice sculptured solution. I'm curious as to how the angled tops of the rails developed. Is it a result of the rails tops being 90 degrees to the mid-ship tumblehome, then carried with the same angle to the peaks ?
  12. OP

    algale Curious about Wooden Canoes

    I have no idea. The gunwales are square in profile. They are just screwed flush to the hull in in the middle and then worked toward the bow/stern always keeping them flush. Presumably the tumblehome is the cause.

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