Building an Adirondack Guideboat- Another launching

You may remember that another reproduction of the Queen Anne guideboat was completed and launched this spring.  Dave Bloom followed the plans in my book and did a marvelous job in crafting his version.

When Dave said that he was coming to the Adirondacks in July, I suggested that we get together.  At the time I thought that the meeting might not happen.  The reason being that the Adirondack Park is so immense.  At six million acres it is greater in size than Yellowstone, the Everglades, Glacier and Grand Canyon Nation Parks combined.  So, depending on just where in the Park Dave was staying, it might take many hours of driving to meet with him.

It turns out that I should’t have worried.  He had rented a camp on Lake Eaton, a lake adjacent to Long Lake.  So he was about 3 miles away as the crow flies.  We got together and here are a couple of photos of his boat.

Dave's guideboat at Lake Eaton.
Dave’s guideboat at Lake Eaton.

The boat is extremely well crafted.  Dave chose to equip his boat with a floor cradle like that used mainly by hotel guides in the late 1800’s.  They would often take the lady hotel guests out for a row.  The women of that era would dress in their finest when venturing out on the water, even to wearing spiked heels.   These would wreak havoc on the thin planking of a guideboat without the protection of the cradle.

Dave felt that his boat was quite stable.  His four year old grandson was entirely comfortable riding about in the stern seat.  Here is Dave beside his boat on Lake Eaton.

Dave with his newly completed guideboat at Lake Eaton.
Dave with his newly completed guideboat at Lake Eaton.

Here are some details of how he went about building his boat.

“I used northern white spruce for the the laminated ribs and stems and quarter sawn white pine for the planking.  I used cherry for the decks and seat frames and mahogany for the gunwales.

I used West System epoxy instead of resorcinol mainly because I was concerned about keeping the temperature warm enough in my shop (for resorcinol to cure properly), and because I had a fair amount of experience using epoxy.

The few changes I made were primarily with the gunwales and stems.  I shaped the gunwales similar to the Grant design with the addition of of a bead on the lower edge.  I like the look of it and I thought I might be able to bend it dry since it tapers near the stems.  However, I ended up steam bending them anyway.

I extended the stems up and rounded them so that the brass stem cap could flare out and wrap over the top…also similar to the Grant stem caps.  I kept the Chase deck design, however.  I think it looks great and since the deck design is sort of a signature of the designer, I didn’t want to change it.”

Great job, Dave!  I hope we can get together again next summer.

Next time, Return of the Wild.

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