Wee Rob and the IGO


Jan 2016

Wee Rob and IGO

Suddenly we’re almost a month through 2016, and as far as the tiny issue of my boatbuilding progress goes, January has been a month of some significance! Wee Rob first of all ….. I gave up the struggle with marginal temperatures and she’s now parked up on the patio, neatly jacked up on feet of 4X2 so that the air can circulate. There she’ll remain until the Spring and a reasonably consistent thermometer reading in the mid teens.

She’s been replaced on the building frame by a steadily growing IGO which now has a basket of chines, keel and stems built around 3 temporary moulds, and held together with string – well with “artificial sinew” to be precise. It’s been an interesting exercise lashing joints together rather than gluing them. Very satisfying I would say – although there might be an element of novelty value in that. I’m at the moment wrestling with the gunwales which are proving challenging because of the relatively large bends they must make both around the moulds, but also upwards at bow and stern to make the design shape of the sheer line. So as we speak, they (the gunwales), having been soaking in water for 24 hours, are suspended across the patio with various weights hanging from them in what I hope are strategic places bringing them into something which approximates to the vertical curve they need. I shall leave them there for a further 24 hours and see where that gets us when I try to assemble them on the boat.

Questions ….. do I also need to try and prebend in the lateral curve or will the wood, still with an increased moisture level in its fibres be able to accommodate that? If not do I try splitting the 36mm stock down the middle and laminating it on the boat in some way? Would plan C be a change from Western Red Cedar to the more naturally bending Ash that I have skulking under the building frame ready to be made into ribs? Am I just being paranoid and will find that it all falls neatly into place tomorrow afternoon? Time will tell.

Along the way I’ve come across and signed up to the website “Song of the Paddle” which is basically a forum used by those interested in paddling and building open “Canadian” canoes. Lots of interesting stuff to be found there, where I’m also keeping a little blog!!!

Pictures:Wee Rob …..

and the IGO

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