Another big day in the woodshop on Friday. Part of the crew took some of the larger pieces of bark and the canoe ribs out to a local lake to be submerged over the weekend. Submerging the bark and cedar canoe ribs in water ensures that they retain their moisture and pliability making the materials easier to work with.
The rib pieces, now cut and sized, were neatly bundled to await their being bent. The longer ribs will be used for the middle ribs of the canoe; the shorter pieces will become the ribs at the prow and tail of the canoe.
Wayne and the remaining crew stayed at the woodshop and began trimming and beveling the sheathing. Thinner pieces of white cedar that were not suitable for use as ribs will be used for the sheathing that lines the bottom of the canoe between the ribs and the outer birchbark covering. Each piece of sheathing must be given a straight edge and then be beveled so that they lie flat against one and other.
Along with the sheathing work, Wayne began cutting laminations in the outwales and sanding the laminated outwales. The laminating and sanding of the outwales allows for increased pliability and flexibility (even when the red cedar is dry). This will allow the wood to be curved upwards on both ends of the canoe.
Check out the video below to see what cutting laminations and sanding the outwales will do for the pliability and flexibility of the wood:
We’re looking forward to seeing the birchbark being rolled out in the coming days! Stop by the woodshop in 7251 Humanities and watch some of the process (or help out).
Watch Nick Steeves’ fantastic detailed footage of events of the day!