Messing About
May 24-25, and a little on June 1, 2013

Last week, we finished up the second Lazy Weekend canoe and played around a little . This week, we do more.

This is actually a 1/2 sized, scale model I'm making for display. 1/2 sized models are cool.

Since the third canoe was in still inside the Boathouse, I decided we'd try her as a rowing platform first. We are going with thole pines rather than oarlocks - mainly because they are cheaper and we have a bunch of wood.

First time in the water. Man, that is an orange canoe.

Bob was our test rower,and even Bud was having some fun. The oars were really rough. The math said they should be 78" long, but that was just too long. We cut 'em down to 66" and that worked better.

I'd spaced the tholes 4" apart, but that was too far. We taped a bit of 1x2 inside and that was better, but I should have taped it to the back thole, not the front one.

Now it was my turn. This is some serious science here, folks.

The real question was: Can we make paddles that work as oars - dual functioning tools, perhaps called "Oardles?"

The answer is no, not really. See how Curt is holding his oardle? That's not right.

That's a very pretty picture, and it does show a little of my frustration. Look at the trim at the bow: Just out of the water. PERFECT.

Next up was this little beauty: A Seal, designed by Chesapeake Marine Design and donated to the Boathouse by one of our friends, Gene F, from up in Portland. You might remember Gene and his wife from the Family Boat Build in 2011.

The Seal not only rows (very nicely,) it sails! Look at the water - not a breath of wind, yet still, she was moving.

I am not entirely sold on the idea of a 14' mast on a 11' boat, but it works.

Wonder of wonders - a real seal came up to check out what we were doing.

We ended the day with a visit from Patience and her mom, Connie, again. We tossed 'em into Aurora and let 'em go adventuring while we packed up the Seal and I brought her back to Salem.

I took her to the local scum pond (remarkably free of scum this time of year) for some standardized testing. She floats purty, and she rows wonderfully. I took her around the pond twice, then rigged her for sail - again: Look at the water, no wind. She did just fine - I was able to take her out and bring her back, amazing the natives and impressing even myself.

So impressive was I that this young man, Rudy, asked if he could take her out. I asked if he could sail, he said "No" so I asked "Do you like rowing?" he said " I don't know - I've never tried." "Cool. Here's the safety lesson: Wear this PFD. Here's your rowing lesson: Down and out, up and back. I'll push you out."

and in minutes, he is off and rowing. That's how it's done, people. Get everyone on the water.