Solo Canoe - Minimalist Design

Discussion in 'Wooden Boat Building and Restoration' started by tmark, Nov 19, 2014.

  1. tmark
    Joined: Sep 2006
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    Location: Stratford

    tmark Junior Member

    Time to stop lurking and start sharing.
    I thought I'd introduce the lates here. She's 15', 30 lbs and easy on the eyes.

    Inspired by master builder Nick Schade’s Nymph, a light and easily handled pack canoe, I set about lofting his eponymous 12 foot solo boat. Laid out full size on the drafting table, what emerged seemed most terribly small and not quite what I’d thought she would be. Consequentially I set about drawing something longer and beamier and what I’d hoped would be just as pretty.
    She would be a solo day boat for use in sheltered bays, estuaries, and inland lakes. She should stretch out for 8 to 12 miles at a go, and be able to cross open water on those odd occasions called for.

    She would be easily carried on a single shoulder, leaving the second hand free for balance where bush and water access was particularly difficult. And as much as the kneeling aesthetic appeals, she would be used by those whose knees are long past prime and are firm in the conviction that sitting isn’t an option, but a necessity.

    [​IMG]
    http://i0.wp.com/ashesstillwaterboats.com/wp-content/uploads/2014/10/lines-plane-blue.png

    When done, she would settle onto her lines with a 160lb paddler with another 10lbs allowance for paddle, sandwiches and a thermos of hot soup (or whiskey as the day calls for).
    Here then is what I started with ….

    15’ LOA
    3” Draft
    210 lb Displacement
    2”/1” Rocker
    16”/12”/14” Height

    Those in the know will recognize those numbers as awfully familiar; the path to an asymmetrical solo has been travelled by giants. David Yost, Steve Killing and John Winters have all penned boats that, give or take, share similar dimensions and similar aesthetic. Regrettably, I’m no historian and unable to point to who first developed the concept, but collectively these designers have adopted a form embodied by a low profile, minimalist stylings and a distinctive midships tumblehome. This boat doesn’t claim to tread new ground, and where I’ve trod on existing designs (which I most certainly have), I give full credit …
    And as for that hard-shouldered chine; it will be a chore to strip but allows for the builder to use his aesthetic discretion. And she doesn’t need to built as such; the two I’ve built so far have a rounded tumblehome which I like just fine. In any event, like a lapstrake pulling boat she can be built with a contrasting boot-stripe which will show off her pretty lines.

    [​IMG]
    http://i1.wp.com/ashesstillwaterboa...oads/2014/10/Ashes-Shoot-1-Cloudy-Day-015.jpg

    [​IMG]
    http://i0.wp.com/ashesstillwaterboa...ds/2014/10/Shoot2-sized-facebook-2048-010.jpg

    Thinking like an optimist, acting like a miser, and leaving in only the necessary elements and eliminating everything else promised the possibility of a 30 lb boat. As it turns out boat Number 1 tipped the scale at 28.5 lbs and Number 2 at 29.5 lbs. Bang on the money.

    As for current projects, I'm working on a boat with similar displacement and length but more initial stability. I have it in my head that a canoe can also be a platform for standup paddling.

    In any event, plenty more pics and plenty more info at http://ashesstillwaterboats.com/
     

    Attached Files:

    1 person likes this.
  2. daiquiri
    Joined: May 2004
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    Location: Italy (Garda Lake) and Croatia (Istria)

    daiquiri Engineering and Design

    Very elegant little boat. :)
     
  3. messabout
    Joined: Jan 2006
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    Location: Lakeland Fl USA

    messabout Senior Member

    The boat is elegant indeed. The Ashes story from Tmark's link is has rich and gently philosophic language.
     
  4. tmark
    Joined: Sep 2006
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    Location: Stratford

    tmark Junior Member

    Thank you, very kind words indeed ...
    Just this evening I've posted the inspiration and drawings for a slightly more stable boat, one perfect for birdwatchers and photographers and even perhaps and intrepid fly-fisher (or heaven forbid, stand up paddler). The beginning of her journey is documented here ... https://www.facebook.com/ashesstillwaterboats

    And here are her lines ...

    [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Nov 27, 2014
  5. gonzo
    Joined: Aug 2002
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    Location: Milwaukee, WI

    gonzo Senior Member

    Nice lines. I am confused at the capacity and displacement being different.
     
  6. tmark
    Joined: Sep 2006
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    Location: Stratford

    tmark Junior Member

    At the stated displacement she sits on her designed waterline (3 inches) ... what I've called capacity is the weight at which she'll perform at her best; beyond those parameters I'd stretch or shrink the stations just a touch.

    Because she doesn't draw as much water, and consequently doesn't have as long a waterline, my son, who's 120 lbs needs to use a corrective stroke to keep her tracking straight. Heavier paddlers, especially those north of 225 will find they need to work just a tad harder to get her to pivot.

    A 175 pound paddler will be right in the sweet spot ...

    Also, I probably shouldn't have used the word capacity as it can mean something different I suppose ... perhaps I should have used the words "ideal paddler weights" ...

    Best, T
     
  7. tmark
    Joined: Sep 2006
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    Location: Stratford

    tmark Junior Member

    Becoming a Boat

    For me, the first satisfying thing is when two dimensions become three.
    Everything before is abstract; she might look fine on the page but for me, a drawing of one's own is replete with healthy doses of second guessing. I freely confess that I want this boat to be elegant, I want her to be easy to build, I want her to paddle like a dream, and my vanity wants her to turn heads. It's a mix that leads to a stew of insecurity.

    I wonder if others might feel the same?

    In any event event here she is in her becoming.
    This boat was designed first for a trio of customers in the Fraser Valley ...that story is here ... http://ashesstillwaterboats.com/the-greenhorn/ .

    [​IMG] [​IMG]

    If my Mennonite upbringing were to allow a prideful thought, I'd say she's passed her first test.

    [​IMG]
     
  8. rwatson
    Joined: Aug 2007
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    Location: Tasmania,Australia

    rwatson Senior Member

    I see the picture shows 'herringbone' style of keel line.

    I debated a long time about the best keel method, especially as glued joints lose 50% of their strength.

    I went for full length strips along the keel line, and most of the bottom, for that reason.

    http://greencanoe.weebly.com/the-hole-in-the-centre.html
     

    Attached Files:

  9. tmark
    Joined: Sep 2006
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    Location: Stratford

    tmark Junior Member

    Hmm ... you may well be correct. On the other hand, orthodoxy has it that the glue lines are somewhat irrelevant to the structural integrity of a cedar stripper and that the composite construction provides the entirety of its strength. I'd be curious if the theory has been the subject of side-by-side tests.

    As an aside, I know an individual who is smart in every other way but who skipped glassing a cedar strip entirely. Needless to say it became splinters within minutes of launch. Remarkably, he continues to claim that the glue he used was a poly-something-or-other and perfectly suited to the job at hand.
     
  10. tmark
    Joined: Sep 2006
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    Location: Stratford

    tmark Junior Member

    Holiday progress on the new hull ... she's coming together easily. I'm very pleased so far.

    [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG]
     
  11. rwatson
    Joined: Aug 2007
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    Location: Tasmania,Australia

    rwatson Senior Member

    Yes, no definitive tests that I know of.

    Mind you, when the canoe got blown 30 metres down a hill by a fierce gust of wind, nothing broke.

    Also , a few straight keel strips makes for less work building.

    PS you may want to put some plastic packing under those staples. Unless they stand a bit 'proud' of the timber, you can gouge the wood badly trying to get them out.

    I also found, if you are going for a clear finish, dont fill the holes until you have put the first sealer coat on the timber.
     
  12. SukiSolo
    Joined: Dec 2012
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    Location: Hampshire UK

    SukiSolo Senior Member

    Definitely seconded, though I tend to use scrap timber 'packing strip' - any old rubbish ripped to a couple of mm or so. You can start the lever out and use the backside of a chisel to extract the staple leaving only minimal pinholes.
    If you get really crafty, and use the sawdust from the original cedar in a filler you should be able to match the colour within reason which helps minimise the pinhole effect. Useful with a clear ie varnish finish.
     
  13. rwatson
    Joined: Aug 2007
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    Location: Tasmania,Australia

    rwatson Senior Member

    Good hints on colour matching.

    I use plastic like tubing or strapping because you cant glue the bits to the hull as can happen with timber


    Edit - oh, for the staples you have already put in, you may need to snip them in half carefully with some fine cutters, then, bend the cut ends upwards, where you can grab them with pliers and pull them out clear of the hull
     
    Last edited: Jan 7, 2015
  14. tmark
    Joined: Sep 2006
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    tmark Junior Member

    Never fear, for the most part the staples stand proud. And where more purchase is required, I've inserted strips of cardboard (see pics two or three posts down).

    As for filling the holes, I've found that they can be made to pretty much dissappear by dampening the strips around them then which causes the wood to swell and close. The bigger problem is if the occasional blow-thru on the underside.

    [​IMG]
     

  15. tmark
    Joined: Sep 2006
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    Location: Stratford

    tmark Junior Member

    The first of the hulls is off the form ... she came free with hardly a grunt.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
     
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