The Urban Oarsman & Son build a Canoe, part Thirteen. Stripping the West side….

Stripping the West side of the canoe was much harder than the East side.  After the first four, every strip had to be fitted, with a bevel on each end of the strip.

We are lucky that we can overlap the first few strips at the South end.

Strip one goes on…..

Strip two. We do not have to bevel the first four strips at the South end of the Canoe.

To increase the tension of the rubber-band clamps, We twin the rubber-bands where necessary.

North end of the Canoe needs a beveled end to fit.  You can see by the pencil marks in the left side of the picture that the strips are not aligning up….They are “sneaking” forward.  Between the station molds, we use a lighter strap to hold the strip down.  If we apply too much pressure between the molds, we will distort the canoe’s shape.

We will have to address this issue soon, or the strips will not line up on both sides.

The strips strapped and “clamped” up.

We try to get some “squeeze-out” of the glue between the strips.

Paul carefully whittles the strip to fit.  Note the 2nd strip “creep” indicated by the registration ticks.

When the strip is fitted, we glue it in

Applying glue.

We try to put only as much glue on as we need to get some “squeeze out”.

Strip three on.  We use three pairs of cleats on each station mold to keep the straps aligned to the  station molds.

We are only able to do one strip at a time….

We use “F” clamps to keep the strips from buckling.

….another day, another strip….

The first strip that is beveled at both ends.

When Paul is at work, I can glue-up three strips a day, morning, afternoon & evening.

Fitting the “cheater” strip to bring the strips into alignment.

A better view with strip six fitted:

“Cheater” strip brings the rest of the other strips into alignment.

We carry on:

Strip seven lines up. “Cheater” strip at left.

The “F” clamp keeps both sides of the canoe even.

As the strips get shorter, there is less “bend” in them (flatter canoe bottom).

We decide to try fitting two strips (8 & 9) at once.  We start to run into a problem.  From now on, the “F” clamps will only hold one strip at a time in alignment.

Strips 8 & 9.  With shorter strips, we have more rubber-band clamps per length of strip.

To keep the rubber-band clamps from damaging the “cove”, we use Ikea shelving pins in the cove.  This keeps the clamps from breaking the edges of the “cove”.

Tenth strip clamped & strapped.

Paul and I have to be very careful with the rubber-band clamps.  If they let go they give you a nasty rap on the hands.

Eleventh strip.  Strips are getting shorter.

The straps keep the strips from buckling. This is the last time we will use a strap at mold station #3.

We hold the strip on the canoe and mark where the strip crosses the centre line.  We measure the length of the matching strip bevel.  We mark the strip.  Then we cut.

Cutting the bevel for the strip at twelve down and seven to go.

We put a small wedge strip under the strap to hold the “clamping strip block” more tightly in place.

Wedge strip in action.

We aim to get glue squeeze out along the strip.

Strip twelve goes on.  Seven to go.

We have the routine down pat…Fit, glue, clamp, come back when dry.  Fit, glue, clamp…..

A couple of clamps keep the strips aligned.  Twisting the wedge strip (top) helps keep the strips even.

If the fit between the two sides of the canoe is not “perfect” we mix up a little glue and sawdust to use as a filler.  We also develop a better technique:

Using a hacksaw blade to fit the strips.

We run a saw blade down between the offsetting strips to even out the joint.

Fifteen down and four to go.

The next strip to be fitted is on the left.  With the shorter strips, we can use one long one for both sides.

Sixteen down and three to go.  The red glow is from a heat lamp.  My shop is unheated.

We are using “F” clamps to keep the two sides of the canoe even.

“F” Clamp keeps it even, South end.

North end:

“F” Clamp keeps it even, North end.  You can see where the rubber-band goes over the cove, it damages the edges of the cove.

Because of the cove on the strips, we decide to fit the last three strips at once.

Fitting three at once. Strips 17 & 18 are in. Notice that the straps are loose.

The big problem will be “clamping the strips together.  We cannot use the rubber-band clamps when the last strip is fitted, and if the last strip is too wide when we “wedge” the strips in, it will cause the canoe to separate along the keel line.

Using the 1″ belt sander to shape the last strip.

Fortunately there is not much “twist” in the strips as we are at the flat part of the bottom.

A lot of glue later, the last strip in!!!!

Lookin’ Good!!!

Letting the last strip dry.  The red stick holding the strips flat is taped up with tuck tape so the glue will not stick to it.

We use two sanders, Paul has the 5″ orbital, and I use the 1/3 sheet sander.  Dust masks mandatory.

We are using 80 grit sandpaper to start.

Paul has decided to sand the oak accent strip flush with the sides of the canoe.

We use the shop dust control to keep the dust down.  The shop will still need a through dusting after all the sanding.

Dust hose taped onto sander.  Still dusty.  80 grit.

We give the hull a rough sanding.  We fill all of the cracks between the strips with a mixture of glue and sawdust.  When we are done I wash the hull to remove the excess filler and raise the grain.

Rough sanding wet-down.  Canoe colour looks good.

After the hull dries and when Paul is at work, I continue with the 1/3 sheet sander. 120, 150 & 220 Grit sandpaper.

A few pictures of the sanded hull.  Where the picture looks blurry, that is wood dust I have not vacuumed up yet.

Paul’s Canoe, South-West side.

Paul’s Canoe North-West side.

Paul’s Canoe South-East side.

The next steps will be to laminate on the outer stems, a final shaping & sanding.  Then Epoxy & cloth.










Posted in Under the Keel.... | Leave a comment

The Urban Oarsman & Son build a Canoe, part Twelve.

A lot has happened since the last post.  I decided that rather than posting after every strip, I would post when we  trimmed off the planks extending over the centre line part.

We have to start trimming the ends so we can fit two strips at a time:

Trimming the ends of the strips to fit two at a time.

We are getting to the point of having to fit the strips or try a different technique.

A lot of squinting is required to force the strips into alignment.  Here, the strips look pretty even on the two sides.  We are still putting strips on both sides at the same time. Strip 19 going on.

This is the last time we will put a strip on each side of the canoe at the same time.

The strips begin to overlap each other, so we trim to fit.  The strip on the West side has been trimmed to allow the East side strip to fit.

The first of the East side strips goes on.  Paul and I have numbered the strips on both sides to “bookmatch” the sides of the canoe.

A few quick photos of the strips going on:

Strip 1 on.

While I wait for Paul to finish work, I decide to glue in the bow and stern strips.

We begin to fill in the strips to the shear line at the bow and stern.  Strip one is four feet long, strip two is three feet, then two feet and the last strips are 18” long so that they reach form 6 from the stem.  Strip 1 is on the canoe, strips 2, 3, & 4 are on top of the canoe ready for glueing.

There are four strips of equal length to be glued onto the canoe for each ¾” of the recurve.

Recurve strip 2.

These strips are relatively easy to fit…there is no twist in the hull here.

Recurve strips 3 & 4.

At this point, I have to undo the screws holding the forms together….I will be unable to reach them later.

Screws out of the forms.  The strips already on will hold the forms & stem pieces in place.

I continue to add strips.

Recurve strips 5&6.

At this point, I decide to glue the strips together and then glue a block of four to the canoe.

Four sets of four strips glueing up.

The block of four strips going on:

Block of four on North stem!

Glueing a block at a time is a lot quicker.

South end block of four.

I used clamps and strips to keep the strips even.  RECURVE FILLED!!!!

With that done, time for strip two, East side:

East side, strip 2.

I number the strips to keep track of them and insure that we can “Bookmatch” the West side of the canoe.

Strip 3 & 4.

Strips 5 & 6.

Strip 7.

Strip 8.

Strips 9 & 10.

Strip 11.

Strip 12.

Strips 13, 14, 15, 16 & 17.

Strips 18, 19 &20.

We have stripped the canoe over the keel line.  Time to let the glue dry thoroughly.

Sanding in the bow and stern curves.

In order to find the centre line of the keel, Paul, using a 5o grit sanding belt,  sands the stem pieces to shape so we can take a centre point from the bow and stern.

North Stem.

South stem.

We stretch a string between two centred finishing nails.

Finding the centre line.  We sight down the line to insure that it is straight, using s piece of tape where necessary.

We use a ruler to transfer the line to the canoe.

We align the string with the edge of the ruler, I then hold the string out of the way while Paul draws the line.

We are at a bit of a loss as how to trim the strips to the line, but, Paul decides to use the dremel tool with a cutting disk.

Cutting the line.

With a little skill and working slowly the end results are good.

Ready to strip the West side of the canoe.


To Recap, 49 rows of strips a side.  20 strips left to go on the West side of the canoe.

Next steps?  Strip out the West side.  I will post again then.


Posted in Under the Keel.... | Leave a comment

The Urban Oarsman & Son build a Canoe part Eleven.

Just a quick post here, putting on strip 18.

Removing the old tape, getting ready for the next strip.

We have already chosen the next two strips, they are sitting on top of the canoe.

Taking the straps off to put the two new strips under.

Paul then glues up the coves and we tighten up the straps, and begin taping the strips together.

The strips need to be trimmed near the ends….

As we get closer to the keel/stem piece, we have to trim the strips so that they can lie together along the stem-piece without interfering with each other.

Stem strapped down so that he strips touch the molds.

I really like using straps to hold the strips to the molds.  If I build another canoe, or any strip built boat, I will use straps at every mold station.

Paul’s Canoe Build, strip 18, looking from North to South.

We will (maybe) be able to put on one more pair of strips before we have to do one side at a time.

You always need one more clamp……South to North view.

Hopefully, strip 19 tomorrow,





Posted in Under the Keel.... | Leave a comment

The Urban Oarsman & Son build a Canoe part ten.

Another weekend and we have been plugging away, one strip at a time.  We had Thirteen  strips on and we have put on a strip every day or so and today we are putting on the Seventeenth.

Where we left off. .Thirteen strips on.  The Fourteen Strip is going on next.

We get ready to put o the Fourteenth Strip…

Tape at the North Stem.

Squeeze clamp slipping off……

We put on the Fourteenth Strip and the next day, with all the tape off, we get a good look at the shape of the Canoe!!

West side of the Canoe.

Paul’s Canoe, looking South.

Paul’s Canoe, looking North.

We are both pleased with how the canoe is taking shape, the curves look even from both ends.  The next day we put on the Fifteenth Strip and then the Sixteenth trip later that evening.

Clamps holding the stem-pieces on each end are now in the way .

We have to remove the clamps holding the stem-pieces to fit the Seventeenth Strip.

Painters tape to the rescue!  Let us get that strip on!

We apply glue to the cove and get the strips under the straps.  The squeeze clamps hold the strips temporary while we put the glue on.

Paul putting the glue into the “cove” on the strips.

We use squeeze clamps to hold the strip while we tighten the straps from the centre outwards.

We are still having a hard time getting the stem squeeze clamps to stay in place while the glue sets.

We start the strip at the stem-piece, clamp it temporarily, and then, from station #1, tighten the straps and push the new strip onto the one below it.  We then go to station #4 and tighten that strap down while holding the new strip to the old one. When all of the straps are tight, we begin taping, squeezing the new strip onto the old one  and use tape to hold the strip to the one below it until the glue sets.

Glue squeezed out, tape holding the new strip onto the old one.

We are using a lot of tape, but, I had a lot of left-over from painting the house.  Might as well use them, as the tape does go “bad” over time.

We are using a scrap piece of strip when taping so we do not crush the “cove” with the tape.

Again, Painters tape to the rescue:

Painters tape used to keep the stem squeeze clamp from slipping, the strips together and pull the strip to the mold stations.

Another view of the North stem squeeze clamp being held in place by tape:

Painters tape holding the squeeze clamp in place.

We use tape to hold the strips together while the glue sets.  The real drawback to this method is that you can only do one strip on each side of the canoe at a time.  Since Paul does not want to use staples or finishing nails to hold the strips to the station molds, this is the way we will have to do it…

Occasionally, the strip does not want to stay in the cove below it. We use a clamp to keep the strips aligned.

Seventeen Strip on the canoe, Fourteen Strips to go.  Maybe two more on each side and then we will have to plank up one side at a time.  Getting there slowly but surely.

West side view, Seventeenth Strip all taped up.

Paul’s Canoe, West side view.


Good Paddling to you….




Posted in Under the Keel.... | Leave a comment

The Urban Oarsman & Son build a Canoe part nine.

It has been slow but steady going…One strip at a time.

11 strips on…  I am using a piece of aluminum angle  iron to increase friction for the bow clamp.

To make putting the clamps on easier, I glue the angle iron to the squeeze clamps for the stems.

Aluminum angle iron glued onto the squeeze clamps.

I was at “Wooden Boat Alley”, the Vancouver Wooden Boat Society booth at the Vancouver International Boat Show.  Did not get any strips on from Wednesday through Monday.

Because we are at the turn of the hull, the strips have a lot of twist in them.  Where necessary, we use bungees to hold the strips together, as well as tape and hot-melt glueing them to the forms.


We are having an increasingly hard time getting the strips to bend to the forms.  We hatch another plan…Using ratchet straps to hold the strips to the forms.  I buy four ratchet straps and adapt the forms to hold the straps in position.

Glueing the guide blocks for the ratchet straps on forms.

I glue six guide blocks onto four of the forms, one at the bottom on each side and on at the keel line.  We want the straps to pull the strips tightly to the form, and the guide blocks keep the strap along the form.

I let the guide blocks dry overnight. I do not glue on the keel blocks.

We use bungee cords to hold the strips together.

Bungees to the rescue!

Paul and I add another strip, this time using the ratchet straps and the guide blocks.

A “Pusher” block helps hold the strip in place.

I find some old slat-blind brackets that we can use to hold the strips in place.

Screw-in bracket to hold strip in position.

We push the strip down onto the strip below it and then screw in the brackets to hold them.  We also tape all the strips together.

We also use the “J” hooks to hold the strips together.

View North to South of the Canoe:

North-South view of the canoe. Look’n good!!!  The straps are pulling the strips onto the forms.

South-North View:

South-North View. The shape looks good!  The ratchet straps are very tight.

The ratchet straps are very tight; they bring the strips to the correct angle, following the shape of the forms.  The height from the floor to the top of the strips is within ⅛” on each side.  Very even, all things considered.

Ratchet strap in action.

Ratchet strap, bungee and tape in action.

We have 18 strips a side left, at this rate done by Pancake Tuesday!!!!


Good paddling to you,










Posted in Under the Keel.... | Leave a comment

The Urban Oarsman & Son build a Canoe part eight.

Another rainy day in North Vancouver.  Paul is home so we decide to put on a couple of strips.

Applying glue to the “cove”.

Since the last post, I put on two strips without Paul…Do not want the project to “stall”

Seating the strips.

The way we put a strip on is to apply the glue, place the strip in place, clamp one end and then use a piece of strip to “seat” the incoming strip to the strip already there.  The job is much easier with two!

Using painter’s tape to “clamp” the strips together

We then put a piece of painter’s tape on to hold the two strips together.  The glue does not need high pressure or heat to set.

“seating” the strips.

At some points, the “bead” does not fit into the “cove” perfectly, the bead or the cove being slightly off-centre.  To keep the strips aligned together we use a spring clamp to hold the two strips in alignment.

Spring clamp holding two strips in alignment.

Once you get two strips on, its gets harder to clamp them in place….

Holding the first strip in alignment.

When we are satisfied, we hot-melt glue the strips to the forms.  The hot-melt glue will hold well enough and long enough for us to get all of the strips on.

Hot-melt glue holding the strips to the form.

Where the canoe has a reverse curve in, I use a clamp to hold the strips to the form.

Clamp used at reverse curve at station #2.

The more strips we put on, the easier it is to hot-melt glue or clamp the strips to the form.  The “cove” of the previous strip helps to hold the “bead” of the next strip in place.

Home-made “J” clamps in use, holding the strips.

We use the “J” clamps to hold the strips in place while we install them.  The also help to bend the strips to the form.  We are careful not to let the “J” clamps snap back and hit our hands.

A piece of painter’s tape keeps the bottom part of the “J” clamps from falling off when the “J” clamp is adjusted or when putting a new strip on.

Station “O”.

The “J” clamp on the East side of the canoe is on a spring clamp being used to hold the bead and cove together and to help the strip conform to the curve of the form.

Close of of the “J” clamp in use.  Spring clamps keep the strips aligned, “J” clamp holds the strip to the form.

View from another angle.

We put on two strips this morning and hope to put on two more this afternoon.

Paul does not want to “staple” the strips in place, aiming for a clear finish on the canoe.  No unsightly staple holes.  It seems as if we can only get two strips on at a time because it gets too hard to clamp them in place and keep the strips in alignment.

No more room for spring clamps at the stem.  (No staple holes either…)

That is nine strips so far…It looks as if we are half-way to the start of the keel line.

Getting closer every time,


Happy paddling to you,






Posted in Under the Keel.... | Leave a comment

The Urban Oarsman & Son build a Canoe part seven.

It is a Rainy day today, so Paul and I decide to put a few more strips on the canoe.

Where we ended last time:

Three dark strips and the accent strip on the West side of the canoe from last time.

We take off all of the clamps and the blue painter’s tape and the strips are glued to each other.  The blue tape worked!!   Time to cut off some of the excess strip(s).

Trimming the strips.

We trip the strips on both ends of the canoe.

There is a lot to think about putting on the first strip on the other side…much humming and hawing,  measuring and trying it out.  The bevel on the stemposts is not quite right and we mix some sawdust with the Tight Bond and glue on the first strip.

Glueing on the first strip onto the East side of the canoe.

After we put the first strip on, we begin to glue up the next two.

First strip hot-melt glued to the station form. Tight Bond II in the cove for the next strip.

We see that one of the station forms is a little shy of the natural bend of the strip.  We do not force the strip to the form.

Natural curve of the strip does not reach the form.

We glue up the three dark strips.

Three dark strips on, time for the oak accent strip.

We glue up the accent strip:

Do’n the glue’n.

Again, we are using blue painters tape to hold the strips together while the glue dries.

Spring clamps hold the strip to the stempost.

Strip On!

A bit of painter’s tape provides enough friction so the clamp does not slip.

Good thing that I have a lot of clamps.

End-on view.  Looking very symmetrical!

Strip on the West side of the canoe!

Looks even so far……..

Both ends of the West side of the canoe clamped.

Forth strip on the East side of the canoe.

We decide that Five strips are enough for today.  We will try to put on a couple of strips every night this week and may be done by next weekend.

Good paddling to you,  Well, I will still be rowing.





Posted in Under the Keel.... | Leave a comment

The Urban Oarsman & Son build a Canoe part six.

Today’s project…get a few strips on!

For Christmas I got a radiant heater from Lee Valley.

New radiant heater takes the chill out of the boathouse.  It swivels so it can heat any part of the boathouse that I am working in.  Works a lot better than the heat lamp!

First Paul finishes beveling the stemposts.

Beveling the stem.

Paul uses my 5″ random orbital sander to put the bevel onto the stempost.  Using 80 grit paper, it only takes twenty minutes to do.  He uses a strip to check the bevel as he goes.

Stempost bevel at the keel.

Checking the bevel.

While Paul bevels the stemposts, I cut up some aluminum “L” extrusions into 1″ wide “J” hooks:

1″ “J” hooks.

I drill a hole in the “J” hook to attach elastic or string to hold the strips in place where needed.

Making the “J” hooks.

Finished “J” hooks:

“J” hooks.

“J” hook in use:

“J” hook in use.

After beveling the stemposts, we check the strong back and mold stations for square and insure that they are “Level”.  Then we line the stations with tuck-tape so that the strips/epoxy will not permanently stick to them.

Tuck-taping and squaring-up the mold stations.

Getting there….

Tuck-taping the mold stations.

Almost done…

We run out of red tuck-tape and have to use ordinary packing tape for the last two station molds.

The ordinary packing tape does not work as well as the tuck-tape.  It does not stick to the mold stations as well as the tuck-tape.   Oh well…..

We put a bundle of numbered strips on each side of the strong-back…trying to keep both sides the same.

Next step is to put on the first strip.  This strip will be at the gunwale height at the centre station.  This will require much eye-balling and leveling…..

Determining where the first strip will go.

We temporarily clamp the strip at the stemposts.

Checking out the first strip.

We will have the first few strips dark, then the light oak accent strip, another dark strip and then go from dark strips to lighter in colour ones.  Again, trying to keep the same colour of strips on both sides of the canoe.

We have put the strips on cove side up, to put the glue in.  We are using Tight Bond II.  Since all the glue has to do is to hold the strips (hull) together during the sanding of the outside of the “hull on the mold” phase, we are not using a lot of glue.  We are more generous glueing the strips to the stemposts.

First and second strip on.

Paul hot-melt glues the strips to the tuck-tape on the mold stations.

Hot melt glue used to temporarily secure strips to mold station.

Notice that the ordinary packing tape is pulling away from the mold station.

Painters tape provides enough clamping pressure!

I have made three 4″ pieces of cedar strip to help glue the strips to each other…Using the short piece of a strip, I can apply enough pressure to press the two strips together,

Some squeezed-out glue.

squeezing out some glue without crushing the cove on the strip.  As I apply clamping pressure, Paul tapes the two strips together to hold them until the glue sets.

Third strip on with glue in “cove” ready for the accent strip.

As Paul and I put the oak accent strip, we wonder if the 1/16″ proud part will work…If not, we will just sand it flush with the other strips.

Oak accent strip on.

Well, that is it for today…Four strips on and two things learned…If we put the strips on almost even with the bow on the Port  side and almost even with the stern on the Starboard side, we can put strips on both sides of the canoe, one after another.  The part of the strip past the stempost will not interfere with the strip on the other side of the canoe.

The way we did the first four, we could only put strips on one side of the canoe as a time…

We need to buy a bag of big elastic bands for the “J” hooks.

Happy Paddling….





Posted in Under the Keel.... | Leave a comment

The Urban Oarsman & Son build a Canoe part five.

Well, it is after Christmas and Paul and I have gone to Windsor Plywood to buy an accent strip for the canoe.  They happen to have some 2¼ by 5/16” by 16′ long oak casing.  Paul finds a piece with a pleasing grain pattern.  Done deal.  When we get home we will rip the piece in half, ending up with two 1 1/16″ strips which when  routed will end up 1″ wide by 5/16″ thick by 16′ long.  The problem with using casing is that the top two edges are rounded over.  By ripping the strip in half, we get one square edge.  We will rout the “bead” into the half-rounded over edge and the cove into the “square” one.

We set up the Bead and Coving jig.

Putting the “Bead” onto the accent strip of oak.

It only takes a few minutes to run both strips through the router.

Because the accent strips are 1/16″ thicker than the other cedar strips, we mill the accent strips to stand 1/16″ proud on the outside of the canoe:

the “Bead”.

Putting the cove onto the strips.

We set the strips aside.  Paul wants to stain them darker to make them stand out against the lighter coloured cedar.

The two accent strips:

The two oak pieces with the rest of the strips.

A close-up of the “Bead and Cove” edge:

“Bead and Cove” close-up showing the 1/16″ proud.

If the “Proud” strip does not look right, we will sand the strip even with the rest of the strips.

That’s all for today…


Have a great paddling 2018!

Posted in Under the Keel.... | Leave a comment

The Urban Oarsman rows from Hollyburn Sailing Club to Sandy Cove

The Urban Oarsman goes on the December 16th, 2017 Hot Mulled Row to Sandy Cove with the Hollyburn Sailing Club and SKABC.

10am, Saturday, December 16th, 2017.  Winds are calm.  Cloudy and grey but no rain.  A good day to row.

Tides for the day:

Saturday, December 16th, 2017



















Not much of a change…Departure time is 10:00 and the next high at 3:19 is only 2.6ft higher.

Gwragedd Annwn on the beach and ready to go on the Hot Mulled Wine Row to Sandy Cove.

I have told our organizer, HSC’s new Kayak Captain, Maciej, that I will take the equipment necessary to make the hot mulled wine in Gwragedd Annwn.

Maciej’s bag at the stern of Gwragedd Annwn.  A little too big for his kayak.

With Gwragedd Annwn, there is always room for one more.

One SKABC kayak (black) and two HSC kayaks are on the beach and ramp and ready to go:

Our Kayak Captain.

A well-equipped Co-op Captain.

I row over and take some photos of the rest of the kayaks being brought down the beach:

SKABC kayak fleet for the paddle.

Because the kayaks are faster, I get a head start to Sandy Cove.  The oars are 18″ deep on the power stroke.  Almost a 30° 60° 90° triangle to the water. Somehow, I always seem to raise my right hand a little higher, probably from using oars a little too long .

After I have left, the Kayak fleet assembles.

It is pretty flat and there is almost no wind.

Friendly seal.

A seal follows me out from the pier.  I often wonder if the fisher-folk ever catch anything that is not stolen by the seals.

14th Street Fishing pier.

The seal gives up on me and returns to the pier for easier pickings.

The Ken Shin.

A freighter enters the inner harbour.  Port Metro Vancouver established new boundaries for Marine Restricted Area 1 (MRA1) the area around First Narrows.

This is the Club’s new Sailing and Paddling limits map and policy:

The portion of English Bay South of the Club is part of the Port of Vancouver and is an active shipping channel.

All HSC members must observe the following limits:

Do not sail or paddle south of a line (1) from the North Tower of the Lions Gate Bridge and the Capilano Light, or East of a line (2) True North of Ferguson Point.

Do not sail East of a line from the (3) Welcoming Figure Groyne due South.  Paddlers may go to the Capilano River (4).

Do not sail or paddle North of a line drawn West along the Prospect Point shore (5).

No non-motorized craft are allowed to cross under the Lions Gate Bridge.

Do not sail East of the storm sewer outfall into the area marked by the “keep out” buoys during the swimming season.

Stay well clear of the Ambleside Pier during light winds, strong tidal current and active fishing.

When crossing to the south of English Bay, allow ample sea room and cross West of John Lawson Pier.  Cross the shipping lane at right angles with extreme caution.  A freighter coming into the harbour takes twenty minutes or less to get to the bridge from off of Point Grey.  Be on the look-out for vessels leaving the inner harbor – You have no right of way over commercial shipping vessels.

Vancouver Harbour radio is VHS channel 12.


This row is a good time to try-out the new 15° offset oarlocks.  The idea is that during the “power stroke”, the oar is 90° to the oarlock horn.  This is supposed to keep the oar from creeping inwards on each stroke and keep the oarlock socket/oarlock from “creaking” or “thunking” during the stroke.

15°offset oarlocks.

Another view:

15°offset oarlocks, side view.

What I am finding is that the oarlocks still “creak” in the sockets and the oars bind in the oarlock during the recovery stroke.  The horns “pinch” the leather collars and the oars are hard to raise out of the water, level with the gunwales.  I have them well lubed with “Snowseal”, but, they are still binding.  Maybe the 15°offset oarlocks are not a viable idea for Gwragedd Annwn.  I still have the old sockets in place.

Kayaks on the horizon.

There are nine kayaks with me on this row (paddle for them).

The Kayaks pass outside of me.

The kayak fleet heads for Sandy Cove.

A couple of close-ups as they pass:

SKABC kayaker.

SKABC kayakers.

Two SKABC kayakers and a HSC kayaker with a freighter at anchorage 18 in the background.

And one of Gwragedd Annwn as they pass…

Gwragedd Annwn and the Urban Oarsman.

Chatting with a kayaker.

Chatting about the thin-blade paddle.

The fleet lands.

All ashore for the Hot Mulled Wine!

Maciej makes the mulled wine for the crew.

Pouring a cup for everyone who wants one…

Lone Oarsman among the paddlers.

The Mulled wine is quite a treat!

Interesting tree.

Socializing at the beach:

Socializing on the beach…

Loading up Gwragedd Annwn for the row home.

I know that it is hard to see, but I have turned on Gwragedd Annwn’s Christmas Lights for the upcoming Dundarave Forest of Miracles Bonfire row.

We leave just ahead of the Kayaks.

As usual, the Kayak fleet catches up to Gwragedd Annwn and passes us.

Passed by kayaks.

Passed by Kayaks again.

Passed by Kayaks Again Again!!!

Kayaker Mike posted a video set to music of the paddle Click the picture to see!

The Kayakers make the birds take flight…

Coots scoot.


A friend joins the row:

Nothing like a Commodore’s Mug of Mulled Wine with a friend.

For the rest of the row, I stay close to shore.  There is a North-East wind, and I stay in the wind-shadow of the shore as best I can.  I end up putting on my windbreaker.  The pogies keep my hands warm.


A great day spent with great paddlers.

Good rowing to you,






Posted in Under the Keel.... | Leave a comment