How to Build a Kevlar Canoe - II

ôSeats and finish coat"

Started making the seats today.  We used 7/8" x 3/4" cherry, in a 12"x12" arrangement for caning (more on that later) rather than the dowel method suggested by Jim Moran.  We made templates from cardboard to make sure we had the dimensions right, using the 2003 canoe as a starting point.  We wanted to move the bow seat back 6" to make for more legroom for a taller bowman.  The stern seat stayed the same.  They will be built using mortise and tenon construction.  The tenons are 1/2" long and 1/4" thick.  Tom is cleaning out the mortise (on the left) and assembling them on the right.

Here's the result (on the left).  We then glued them up using West Systems Fast hardener with 105 epoxy and clamped them.  A couple of hours later, I used a 1/8" roundover bit and sanded them in preparation for caning.


We then went after the finish coat.  Both canoes were sanded enough to rough up the fill coat and further smooth out the rough spots (I used 100 grit).  These pictures show pretty much what to expect.  This was followed by a thorough wipe down with a clean cloth.  Finish coat took about a pint per canoe.

We put the epoxy on with a roller (white foam from Home Depot). The picture on the left clearly shows the "bubbles" the foam brush will remove.  The picture on the right shows the result.


I closed up the garage to keep the bugs to a minimum.  Tomorrow, drilling the holes for the caning operation and shaping the thwarts/yoke.


My wife graciously (again!) caned the stern seat, and is working on the bow seat.  I pegged the stern seat holes and dabbed thickened epoxy on the back side pegs.   Tom is taking lessons here :).


I also started shaping the portage yoke and made the thwarts (simple, 10" 3/4" square with 3/8" roundover bit applied, and liberal Tung oil).

Tomorrow, install yokes, thwarts and seats (might be a challenge!).

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