Canadian Canoe Routes

Build Your Own Pack Canoe
Page 1 of 1

Author:  Battenkiller [ October 26th, 2007, 10:58 am ]
Post subject:  Build Your Own Pack Canoe

I was at the Wooden Boat Show in Mystic Seaport when I came across a beautiful little "Wee Lassie" type pack canoe in wood strip construction. It was named Nymph. Nick Shade (Guillemot Kayaks) was the designer/builder. He sells plans for all his boats so when I inquired (Lady Battenkiller was real hot on owning one) I was dismayed to find they weren't yet available. Now I know why.

Wooden Boat magazine has decided to publish an excellent two-part article on the construction of Nymph. Part I is in the latest issue (Nov/Dec 2007) and contains offsets, beautiful lines drawings, construction details and a 24-photo sequence of the entire hull building process.

The boat is like a short and narrow Wee Lassie with more rocker and shouldered tumblehome. He used 1/8" edge-glued basswood strips with walnut for the tumblehome section. The outside is covered in 4 oz. S-glass, the inside in Kevlar/graphite cloth (which looks unexpectedly handsome in real life) and it weighs a grand total of...15#!

It is not a boat designed for extended tripping by a large person, and he claims it is suited for those under 150# (adding 2" between stations would lengthen the boat to 12' and would allow for a 180# paddler) but it would be ideal for poking around in distant ponds or for weekend minimalist trips to remote areas. At 12' in length I suspect it would handle similar to a Placid Spitfire, maybe a tad faster but more tender and less capacity (Placid states the capacity of the Spitfire at 480# with 6" of freeboard) as it is a bit narrower and 1" shallower.

So go out and get the latest Wooden Boat mag and start yourself a little winter project. Nick's instructions in the article are crystal clear and it should be easy to draft nice, fair section templates since his table of offsets are for a 1" grid rather than the standard 2" (plus, they are computer generated). For those still intimidated by drawing out the section molds, Nick recently told me that he is coming out with full-sized templates that you just glue onto the plywood. I'd guess these should be available for about $90-100 when they are ready.

A little more incentive to build her? A canoe this short could be built just about anywhere and by using basswood and lighter cloth (using even less resin) it should be real cheap to build.

Here's a link to Nick's website and more info on Nymph: ... lo_canoe_0

Finally, I've shown these before, but here's a few pics I took of Nymph at Mystic:

Happy building! :D




Author:  Bryan Hansel [ October 28th, 2007, 11:18 am ]
Post subject: 

Thanks for posting this. There's no place in town that stocks this magazine, so next time I'm in a bigger city, I'm going to grab it.

I don't often get a chance to look at magazines when in Duluth, so it's nice to know when I should.

Author:  Komatiq [ October 28th, 2007, 11:42 am ]
Post subject: 

There's no place in town that stocks this magazine, so next time I'm in a bigger city, I'm going to grab it.

You could order direct Bryan, try here.....

Author:  Graybeard [ October 29th, 2007, 9:51 am ]
Post subject: 

I saw these pix the first time you posted them and don't recall why I didn't bookmark the Guillemot site--perhaps because only a finished boat was available at the time--but a copy of Woodenboat is now a must-have. I'm right at the point of cutting moulds for my own version of Wee Lassie and a comparison of lines dwgs for his adaptation and mine would be extremely enlightening.

Those who fear drawing moulds from offsets should know that many fairly simple CAD programs will draw splines. It's easy to use the offsets to draw the moulds in such a program, then have a commercial printing service print full size patterns. By downloading and installing the driver for the printer used by the printing service, it's a cake-walk to produce a file that the printer can simply drag and drop to the printer. I get full-size glue-to-the-plywood patterns for about $15 to $20. I don't suggest this simply to save the difference in price but by going this route the builder can incorporate details unique to his or her own building procedures.


Author:  maddogbob [ October 30th, 2007, 4:58 am ]
Post subject: 

Thanks BK,

That's one sweetie little boat. If I show my sweetie, I will probably have to make two ... and lose about 40 pounds!


Author:  Battenkiller [ October 30th, 2007, 1:08 pm ]
Post subject: 

maddogbob wrote:
Thanks BK,

That's one sweetie little boat. If I show my sweetie, I will probably have to make two ... and lose about 40 pounds!


Yeah, my sweetie fell for it instantly so I knew I was in for trouble. But at least it got me off the hook for the Placid Spitfire she was whining about. Now that I've got the offsets, she even wants to help me. That could be good or very bad, not sure yet. :lol:

You can use the same molds with a 12" spacing to get a 12' boat that should carry you fine. This summer I made a 12' 6" double paddle canoe at a class given by Geoff Burke in New Hampshire. I got to paddle the original boat we were copying and it handled me fine. I weigh 260#.

All wooden boat lovers should get a subscription to Wooden Boat magazine. Go to the website above and get started. If you call you can probably get some sort of promo deal and make them send the current issue out right away.

Author:  Rapt [ November 2nd, 2007, 9:52 am ]
Post subject: 

Thanks for the heads up. I'll try to pick a copy up at lunch today...

Not necessarily because I want to build one, but because I collect designs and the scantling info is worth at least as much as the cost of the magazine.

Page 1 of 1 All times are UTC - 5 hours
Powered by phpBB® Forum Software © phpBB Group