3- Setting up the Mold -- 11/27/00 - 12/1/00

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Strongback 11/27--Strongback: Anyone building a Bear Mt boat will recognize this strongback design from the new edition of "Canoecraft" by Ted Moores. It's a great design. The station molds will be placed at 12" spacing and the canoe will be built on it. My one modification was that it really bugs me to have anything this big that doesn't come apart for storage. (except a canoe, of course) So I built mine to come apart at the center, and added two more legs for more support.
11/29--Finally, I'm able to start positioning the mold sections. I've assembled and positioned the two end pieces... which pointed out I had a 1/16" twist on the strongback that I took out with paper shims under the top deck. Once fixed, I can start placing the rest of the sections. One note: I found that it really helps to have pretty fine string for the upper centerline. The stuff I'm using is too thick, and doesn't allow the accuracy I want. I think I'll use monofiliment instead a start on the mold
stations in place 11/30--You can finally see the shape of the boat!
It turns out I didn't need to replace my thick string with monofiliment. I just made sure that one side of the string lined up with the centerline and always worked to that side. Next time though, I'll probably get something thinner.
Attaching the stations went pretty quickly once I had reliable centerlines top & bottom. All I need to do now is glue up the stem pieces and I can start stripping the hull.

12/1--The clamped part you see on each end are the inner stems. The strips attach there on the bow & stern. I should have glued them up before attaching the sections to the mold, but I'm doing it this way because…well, I got impatient to see the shape of the boat. I'm gluing the cedar inner stems now so I can start planking. I had bent red oak for the outer stems, but after some research I learned that oak and epoxy may not do well together.
I need to make new stems in ash. I don't have the stock yet, so I'll have to make some new temporary forms to bend them later, since the forms I used for the cedar inner stems will be inside the canoe.

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