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Another Chestnut(?)

A tip for removing rusted old steel screws is to place the tip of a soldering iron on the head and heat the screw up pretty good. The screw will come right out. Can’t tell you how many times I’ve used that trip in thirty years of boat work.
Jim
The canoe used slotted screws as it was built pre Robertson screws, I tried useing a dremel to improve the slot but they wouldn’t budge, your idea would have worked. Next time, if. I. remember.
Ps- the gunnels were shot so I didn’t mind my way, but yours would have been better.
Thanks
 
Robin,

When you replace the inwales, what's your method?

I'm going to be doing the same to my Chestnut Bobs/Ranger (I dunno which) and I anticipated soaking the new inwales for a couple of days full length in a trough made out of a 5" aluminum gutter with end caps, then pouring boiling water on them before clamping them full length under the existing inwales- both tight to the planking and tightly under the existing ones. I have about 12 ribs to replace as well as many rib tops to scarf in. I want to install the new inwales to the good rib tops prior to installing new ribs. My stems are open fully after repairing the stem tops, so with 16' long inwale blanks I can let the excess extend through and beyond the stems until they have set to the shape. It'll be a first for me, so who knows if this approach will work.

Incidentally, this is a pretty old canoe- the previous owner insisted it's a pre-fire model. It has very delicate inwales; only 9/16" wide at the top, 11/16" at the bottom, 1" tall, and bevelled 8 degrees against the planking.
 
Robin,

When you replace the inwales, what's your method?

I'm going to be doing the same to my Chestnut Bobs/Ranger (I dunno which) and I anticipated soaking the new inwales for a couple of days full length in a trough made out of a 5" aluminum gutter with end caps, then pouring boiling water on them before clamping them full length under the existing inwales- both tight to the planking and tightly under the existing ones. I have about 12 ribs to replace as well as many rib tops to scarf in. I want to install the new inwales to the good rib tops prior to installing new ribs. My stems are open fully after repairing the stem tops, so with 16' long inwale blanks I can let the excess extend through and beyond the stems until they have set to the shape. It'll be a first for me, so who knows if this approach will work.

Incidentally, this is a pretty old canoe- the previous owner insisted it's a pre-fire model. It has very delicate inwales; only 9/16" wide at the top, 11/16" at the bottom, 1" tall, and bevelled 8 degrees against the planking.

Robin,

When you replace the inwales, what's your method?
After I address the stem tips, rib tips, replace the 6 ribs and strip the varnish I’ll do the inwales, I think…I’m still working it out.

For the inwales, I will need to build a form to bend the ends of the inwales, one at a time after steaming them in a bag. I’ll carefully remove the old inwales and install new tapered at the ends inwales, starting at the center of the canoe.

Here’s pretty much how I install inwales. These didn’t need steam.
 
That's a great video of the restoration! Were your inwales square stock? I couldn't tell if they are bevelled on the planking side. In Mike Elliot's book he has a drawing of the Chestnut inwale, though the dimensions he shows are slightly larger than on my project.
 
The TotalStrip worked better than I expected. I ended up only using 3/4 of the gallon to get the old varnish off, well worth the price compared to what’s available over the counter today. It’s water soluble, no need to wear a mask inside and it’s thick, easy to get a good working coverage. 20230101_131142.jpg
 

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Nice looking decks! I'm curious to know, what species of spruce you use? I've been struggling with fabricating ash inwales for my Chestnut project and am now considering using ordinary spruce framing lumber (2x4, 2x6) to rip out the the inwale and outwale blanks. I can probably manage to find some reasonably clear material, and avoid knots if I'm careful. Then I'll use the ash for thwarts and seat frames.
 
Nice looking decks! I'm curious to know, what species of spruce you use? I've been struggling with fabricating ash inwales for my Chestnut project and am now considering using ordinary spruce framing lumber (2x4, 2x6) to rip out the the inwale and outwale blanks.
That 21' piece of spruce was given to me while I was up in "downeast" Maine at the Primitive Gathering. It is local, not sure what species to call it other than spruce.
Rolland Thurlow suggested I do what you mention for spruce before I was given this one. I have 2 canoes that I used 16' 1x3 lath spruce ripped down that I found at Lowes. Not clear, but I picked thru and found some decent stuff. Still looking for good stuff for those canoes.
 
That 21' piece of spruce was given to me while I was up in "downeast" Maine at the Primitive Gathering. It is local, not sure what species to call it other than spruce.
Rolland Thurlow suggested I do what you mention for spruce before I was given this one. I have 2 canoes that I used 16' 1x3 lath spruce ripped down that I found at Lowes. Not clear, but I picked thru and found some decent stuff. Still looking for good stuff for those canoes.
I was wondering… similar to Pat… would dimensional lumber be a good work around? And how much “extra” would do you add to insure the bend would be accommodated for the up turned areas on the bow and stern of your canoe? It’s 18’ correct? So 21 provides the extra material?

I was thinking of reusing my outwales and splicing the old keel lumber in since I won’t be replacing on the canoe. But if you have had luck with dimensional/ lath.. I may try that

Thank you Robin
 
I was wondering… similar to Pat… would dimensional lumber be a good work around? And how much “extra” would do you add to insure the bend would be accommodated for the up turned areas on the bow and stern of your canoe? It’s 18’ correct? So 21 provides the extra material?

I was thinking of reusing my outwales and splicing the old keel lumber in since I won’t be replacing on the canoe. But if you have had luck with dimensional/ lath.. I may try that

Thank you Robin
My canoe is 16’, with a generous upsweep of the shear line at the ends. I think an 18’ length would be enough but longer is easier to work with. A long splice is easy to hide if the lumber matches and you have a good sander. I will have to make a jig befoe I bend the steamed ends of gunnels/inwales, and they do have a few little knots which I hope to hide with thwart/seat bolts. I’ll let you know when I get going on it.
This chestnut is a “second grade” Ajax, so a knot here and there is keeping it historically correct…haha
 
I personally enjoy the knots… they have a complexity to them I enjoy… although I realize they can weaken an area. I like that it stays historically accurate too. Very exciting… enjoy the work and thank you for the response
Cheers
Drew
 
I removed the top layer of planking and then had to cut the inwales at both sides of every rib to gently remove the inwales without damaging the 100 year old rib tops. There were up to 4 finishing type steel nails thru each rib into the inwales, half of them deteriorated. The later model Chestnuts I have done had 2 ring nails. I believe that black covering on the rib tops is old shellac that accumulated when the canoe was previously stripped, it’s soft and comes off with the TotalStrip paint remover.09D76C20-193D-47F7-80DE-80DE648F5CE1.jpeg
 
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It needs about 8, I actually did them already but I'm going to try using tips from the six ribs I need to replace, they might be a better match and less work.
 
How many rib tips need replaced?

I actually did them already but I'm going to try using tips from the six ribs I need to replace

I'd be interested in knowing or seeing pictures of how rib tips are replaced. Are they just glued on? Aren't the tips under a shearing stress that could pull apart the glue, if glue is how it's done?
 
Thanks, Benson. I see from your linked thread that an angled scarf joint is used, but there's some disagreement as to how long the scarf should be and what kind of glue to use. There's also a suggestion that Git-Rot can be used instead of replacement wood in some circumstances.

I was hoping Robin could post some pictures or video of his process in this thread.
 
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