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Dreamboat Rebuild Rebuild

Wait, YARR isn’t done yet. I needed to put the yoke back in and hang YARR from the shop scale.

P6220031 by Mike McCrea, on Flickr

There is something levitation delightful about a canoe hanging perfectly balanced from a single strap. I snug up the cam strap, adjust as necessary and move the horses and foam blocks out from underneath.

I didn’t need much strap adjustment. Serendipitously the weight of the (aft of) center seat equalized the weight of the bow utility thwart, and the balance point is still at the old yoke location. Geeze, I’d hate to carry YARR twenty feet twice a year if it were a wee bit unbalanced.

Before I commenced the re-rebuild YARR was 84lbs. With the addition of the center seat, foot brace, additional thwart and bow utility thwart, many glass patches & epoxy, minicel and exercise foam, a lot of paint and a few gee gaws. . . . . 90lbs on the button, including the weight of the yoke.

Its look-alike cousin OOSOBO is the nicest looking canoe at Prettyboy

P3090001 by Mike McCrea, on Flickr

YARR will be the nicest looking canoe next spring at Liberty.

Cushy, well appointed tandem.

P6230034 by Mike McCrea, on Flickr

The wing nutted yoke will come out when it first gets chained up at the reservoir in March. Hopefully I remember to bring it when I return to fetch it in December. Always a little left to do, enamel paint pen “YARR YOKE” scrawled on the bottom.

Sweet solo; glad I drew the gunwales in a touch on the original rebuild.

P6230037 by Mike McCrea, on Flickr

Very distinctive paint scheme.

P6230039 by Mike McCrea, on Flickr

Distinctive yes, but, wait, I’ve seen that canoe somewhere else.

P1230007 by Mike McCrea, on Flickr

That was, as usual, too much fun, and only took a month’s worth of an hour or two a day. I really need to find another derelict canoe as a summer shop project. Not one that weighs 90 lbs.
“Nicely done! How wide is it at the solo seat?”

YARR is 30 ½” wide outwale edge to outwale edge at the front of the center seat.

The original 1980’s specs on the Mohawk Whitewater:

Length – 16’ 2”

Width at gunwales – 35”

Depth at center – 14”

Stem depth – 21 ½”

Weight – 76 to 78 lbs

MSRP (in 1987) - $750. With inflation that equals $1930 in 2022 money. Which wouldn’t be a bad price for a heavy duty Royalex tandem.

I did mark the bottom of yoke with an enamel paint pen so that it is easier to identify in the pile of old yokes.

P6260003 by Mike McCrea, on Flickr

Looking closer at the yoke the butt ends were custom shaped. They are angled slightly outward at the bottom, to accommodate the slant of the sheerline tumblehome resulting from drawing the canoe in at center.

P6260006 by Mike McCrea, on Flickr

But wait, there’s more. I had a few old hardware holes left open in the vinyl gunwales, right at the minicel knee bumpers, on each side from 3/16” machine screws and from ¼” hardware.

P6070051 by Mike McCrea, on Flickr

I can’t run short hardware through flange washers to plug those holes, the minicel is in the way, and there are already 20 flange washers atop the gunwales.

Filling the 3/16” hole was easy, short pin 3/16” pop rivet in each hole. The ¼” holes were trickier. I’ve epoxied ¼’ plastic plugs in place, works OK, not a lot of flange to epoxy down, but I had none left in the shop.

I did have some 3/16” flange rivets, with ¾” long pins and 5/8” wide flanges. I knew the mandrel head and rivet pins wouldn’t compress enough to hold them in place in ¼” holes, but it was easy enough to squeeze one in there for funsies.

No hold, but close, I had to pick it out with my fingernails, and lookee there, a flanged plug with a 5/8” head and a smushed neck a blond hair under ¼”.

P6280026 by Mike McCrea, on Flickr

A little G/flex in the holes and on the smushed flange rivets and into the holes they went, with the usual wax paper and sandbag weights.

Sweet; low profile, not as storage or roof rack bump-a-thump as flange washers.

P6270022 by Mike McCrea, on Flickr

That DIY ¼” hole plug trick is a keeper. I still learn a new thing or two with each rebuild.

I didn’t like the silver flange plugs on black gunwales. I usually paint pop rivet heads black*, but I had no decent black paint. I did have G/flex and black pigment, and only needed a pea sized amount.

P6280030 by Mike McCrea, on Flickr

*Remember the pop rivets every three inches in the gunwales? All freaking 130 of them? I had, even back in the day, hit each and every one with some vinegar to etch the aluminum, and then dabbed them with black enamel. Even before washing the hull they didn’t look too shabby 23 years later.

P5210028 by Mike McCrea, on Flickr

OCD, and the lack of other boatwork, kicking in I had a teeny bit of black pigmented G/flex leftover; waste not want not, I dabbed it on any rivet head with a bit of sliver showing through the old black paint.

P6280027 by Mike McCrea, on Flickr
A meticulous and functional Dr. Frankenstein miracle, as usual. The plethora of diamonds reminds me of . . .

. . . who was aesthetic.

OOSOBO and YARR, too, are aesthetic—perhaps the most aesthetic pair since Castor and Pollux or Eva and Zsa Zsa Gabor.

Do you leave the seat cushions and back bands on those honeys when you chain them up at the reservoirs?