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Seattle Area: Need spruce for inwale replacement. Where to find?

Discussion in 'Wood and Canvas' started by BigWind, Dec 6, 2012.

  1. BigWind

    BigWind Canoeist #10064

    I purchased a 1942 Guide GS in good shape, however time will tell after I remove the varnish and two coats of paint to see what else may need attention. So far after my first inspection, one of the inwales is cracked in 5 places; someone was heavy-handed with the screwdriver. I've already been told to just replace the one and stain to match.

    I live 108 miles northeast of downtown Seattle just outside the North Cascades in the way out of way town of Marblemount. I travel frequently to Seattle and visit Anacortes and Bellingham to escape the isolation.

    If there is a reliable marine lumber yard in the area that can supply a 2x4x20' piece of spruce for my repairs, I'd appreciate a name, location, phone number or website if you have them; I'll take what I can get and traveling is no problem. The first place I was told to check out now manufactures musical instruments; missed it by that much.

    Appreciate any help,

    Jim Rice, AKA BigWind (my Y-Indian Guide name from long ago)
  2. Mark Adams

    Mark Adams all wood nut

  3. OP

    BigWind Canoeist #10064

    Thanks Mark,
    Edensaw and I both are about a couple hundred yards from SR 20 with just a 100 mile scenic drive between us; very doable. The fact that they do mill work is even more attractive (depending on cost). Just from their website, it looks like they'll have any wood I'll need.

    Now the next question, what type/quality of spruce am I looking for? So far all I know is to ask for no knots/clear spruce. I'm new at this so again any help is much appreciated.

  4. Dave Wermuth

    Dave Wermuth Who hid my paddle?

    I like Sitka. I had some left over aircraft cert stuff once. Liked it.
  5. OP

    BigWind Canoeist #10064

    Thanks for the suggestion Dave. I just looked back at some older emails and in fact Jerry Stelmok from Island Falls Canoe suggested same so that maybe the right type of spruce. I guess what I should have asked was, what kind of spruce was used on the OT canoes in 1942? I'm only replacing one out of the two inwales and the two gunwales are good to go, so I would think for restoration purposes I need to match the kind of wood if at all possible.

    Also, is there a reference somewhere that has the ins and outs of proper restoration? I've already purchased "The Wood & Canvas Canoe" and "The Art of the Canoe with Joe Seliga" but have been unable to find answers to my questions.

    Anybody out there with a reference?

    Thanks again Dave,

    Jim Rice
  6. Benson Gray

    Benson Gray Canoe History Enthusiast Staff Member

    The short answer is that Old Town used many different types of spruce over the years so it is not likely that anyone could easily identify the exact species used in your canoe. I don't have a copy of the factory inventory from 1942 but the lumber section of the 1936 one is attached below to illustrate this point. It appears to show "clear spruce" from "G.W. Co.", "Clear spruce R.E.", "So. Spruce", "Clear spruce - Southern", "Sirka Spruce" (which was probably a typographical error that was intended to be Sitka), "R. E. Spruce Durling", "Spruce", "Sitka Spruce - Bishop", "R. E. Spruce", "R. E. Spruce Stearns Lumber Company", "Clear & Spruce" (which may be another typographical error), etc. Any combination of these could have been used in your canoe. I would encourage you to use a good piece of spruce that you like and not worry too much about the matching the exact type precisely. Good luck with your restoration and feel free to post any other questions here,


    Attached Files:

    Last edited: Dec 8, 2012
  7. OP

    BigWind Canoeist #10064

    This is great Benson. You're helping me gain the knowledge I need before the dirty work begins.

    The prep. stage is very important; soon to gather...

    Jim Rice

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