How Indians Build Canoes

Discussion in 'Boatbuilding' started by SamSam, Mar 13, 2015.

  1. SamSam
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    SamSam Senior Member

  2. DCockey
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    DCockey Senior Member

    An almost one-hour documentary on traditional birch bark canoe building:

    https://www.nfb.ca/film/cesars_bark_canoe

    César's Bark Canoe

    This documentary shows how a canoe is built the old way. César Newashish, a 67-year-old Attikamek of the Manawan Reserve north of Montreal, uses only birchbark, cedar splints, spruce roots and gum. Building a canoe solely from the materials that the forest provides may become a lost art, even among the Native peoples whose traditional craft it is. The film is without commentary but text frames appear on the screen in Cree, French and English.
     
  3. DCockey
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    DCockey Senior Member

    Thanks for the link to the video on YouTube. I haven't seen that one before.
     
  4. Jammer Six

    Jammer Six Previous Member

    These days, most of us hire a designer and a boat yard.
     
  5. Petros
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    Petros Senior Member

    I have seen this before, very interesting clip. His only tools are a big knife, a awl for punching holes, and a coffee can. Not counting the ax he used to fell the tree. Consider that when you look at the massive pile of tools most of us have in our garage and shops.
     
  6. rxcomposite
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    rxcomposite Senior Member

    I have seen this before posted in this forum. What amazes me is his complete mastery of the tools and precision handling. The ax goes where he wants it to go and the knife edge goes towards the body only up to a certain point. Talk about efficiency without any loss of limb.
     
  7. JosephT
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    JosephT Senior Member

    I really enjoy studying native/aboriginal boat designs from around the world. The Native Americans made canoes from Birch, Elm and other barks. The Birch barks were by far the best, but were gradually replaced by wooden strip canoes and later on aluminum & fiberglass canoes. Many tribes now use motor boats for fishing. Today things have changed for almost all of the tribes, but it's important to remember the original methods for the sake of history. Some historical organizations still make these boats and have various examples preserved in canoe museums.
     
  8. hoytedow
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    hoytedow Senior Member

    This video, http://www.boatdesign.net/forums/boat-design/cesar-et-son-canot-decorce-41241.html https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VRFCxxAKafc , which Guillermo introduced to me, was where I learned to make the laminated bow piece for the keel of my http://www.boatdesign.net/forums/wooden-boat-building-restoration/skiff-51466.html.
     

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  9. DCockey
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    DCockey Senior Member

    Same film, different titles.
     
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