An introduction from another first-time canoe builder.
I am a Parks and Wildlife Ranger, in the Northern Territory of Australia. I live with my wife (last of the kids leaving home in a couple of weeks) in a remote National Park in the Gulf Country. The nearest town (for boat type supplies) is 500km -310 miles- away.
Like others before, I’ve been around the edges of this forum, looking in for awhile. The wealth of knowledge and information in the forum is fantastic. Also like some others before me, when the bug to build bit me, I started on the ‘net and found the DK Tourer free plans and this led to JEM.
I’d started collecting supplies for the ‘Tourer’ build already when I began checking out Matt’s canoe designs. Damn….that was the beginning of the end for the ‘Tourer’. I contacted Matt to ask about stretching some of his designs out to 18 feet ‘cause, as I wrote to Matt;“our rivers up here often have large ocean-going geckos (crocodiles) living in them and if my bum is going to be that close to the water, in something without a metal skin and an outboard motor, then I'd like that something to be of a substantial size, hence my fascination with 18 feet ”
(Also, I figured the 18’6 Sasquatch may be a bit of a big bite for a first build)
We sent ideas back and forth for a bit and went from DK Tourer to an Iroquois and on to a Merrimac, before Matt suggested providing plans for an 18’ Trapper. Well, that was the winner by far. In fact, my cup runneth over (I spent four years in Canada as a kid, so there’s a certain strong attraction to that design)
So Matt performed his magic and fitted the 18’ Trapper onto the four sheets of ply that I already had for the ‘Tourer’. The plans arrived, were read, read and re-read. Marking out happened and then the hacking and slashing started….(cough)… I mean the precision cutting and sanding began.
The marking out, and yes (like many other obviously muscle-bound paddlers on this forum), I too have a supply of bar-bell weights
AND, for those out there who have a "thing" about overly tidy workshops, please note this is not, I repeat, Not
...Ok, well, yes it is
at the moment - but it didn't start out that way...
...and so it begins.......
As anyone who’s used Matt’s plans knows, they are bloody marvellous. I got a real kick out of doing the diagonal measurements after a piece was finished and having it check out to the millimetre.
I hope my skills are good enough to do the rest of this craft to the level it deserves. I’ll post some progress photos, (when I figure out how to-following the photobucket link at the moment) and otherwise I’m just happy to be a part of this group of skilful, talented and in some cases, down right fanatical, boat-builders.
By the way, there’s Col’s “Aussie Trapper” and Rob’s “Another Aussie Trapper” so I couldn’t very well call this “Another, another Aussie Trapper”, was thinking of something from the Territory like Buffalo Trapper or Crocodile Trapper, but have settled for “The NT Trapper”
PS obviously got the photo thing sorted (Thanks Matt)