View Full Version : Wee Lassie - 16 years ago - pics
07-13-2007, 10:49 AM
Found some old pictures the other day, and thought I'd post them....
Background: I got married 17 years ago and got kids in the package. I thought it would be a good idea, as a step-dad, to find some fun 'bonding' things to do, both so that the kids had fun and so that I could get them used to 'doing things' which did not involve video games, etc.
Near our house is a little "lake" (really big pond, if you're picky) where the neighborhood kids would play, so I decided that Mike (the youngest, 9 years old at the time) needed a canoe of his own. So I got the plans for a Wee Lassie, shortened it down to 10'6", and Mike and I build it. The deal was that if he helped with every single step, then the canoe would be his and he could do anything he wanted with it (paint it funny colors, put stickers on it, etc.) But... if he skipped even one step, then it would be mine, and he'd have to ask permission to use it.
The pics which follow are not the greatest, but they're what I've got. This was a great project, lots of fun, and Mike's become the kind of person who loves the outdoors and who doesn't hesitate to get his hands dirty.
He didn't, by the way, skip any steps. The canoe is still in the garage and it's still his, though he is too big to use it now.
07-13-2007, 11:03 AM
OK - the pics.
We cut and planed our own planks from spruce and mahogany. Almost done planking up:
Popping it from the molds - 2 shots:
Mike hoisting over his head - happy day!
07-13-2007, 11:04 AM
After glassing - checking to make sure it's dry:
07-13-2007, 11:08 AM
Sadly, no pics of the final stages (trim, etc), but some of the desired endpoint:
Mike on the lake:
Lots of fun - highly recommended as something to do with a kid. Good times.
07-13-2007, 05:57 PM
Good on you! (and Mike). A good result for both of you.
07-13-2007, 07:39 PM
Mike is now 25, has just graduated Law School, entering a course for International Law this year. He's confident, comfortable with himself, has back-packed 120 miles in the mountains of New Mexico, sailed a schooner in the Bahama's, driven a canoe 130 miles down the Allagash waterway in Maine, opens the hood of his own car to fix things, does his own laundry, handles his own money and has good taste in girlfriends.
I count all of this as victory. And (maybe selfishly) I think it all started with the canoe (thought Mom may, indeed, have something to do with it....)
Moral of the story - build boats with your kids, for your kids.
07-14-2007, 06:53 PM
Bless Mac McCarthy for his book and this boat. I read the other day that he is now living in an assisted living facility, with his room filled to the brim with model-making materials and models he is working on. A wonderful guy.
07-14-2007, 07:05 PM
Thanks for sorting out the old photos and posting. It is good to see a project that was done a while ago is still valued.
I wish many of the old boats that I have worked on recently had past owners that respected the maker, the project and the boat.
A good post and very interesting.
07-17-2007, 08:05 AM
A very pretty boat too. I like the accent strips, simple and elegant. What woods did you use.
07-17-2007, 09:28 AM
I like the accent strips, simple and elegant. What woods did you use.
Thanks. Entirely spruce and mahogany. Got several very clean 12' x 12" x 4/4 - planed down to 3/4", then cut into 1/4" strips. (I have about a dozen strips of each left over - can't bear to throw them out, someday I'll find something to do with them.) Glass inside and out, of course.
Kept it simple and snuck in some 'learn to be safe' features - fixed spruce thwart which was comfortable to lean against as long as you were wearing a life vest. No seat in the bottom, but you were comfortable as long as you carried a flotation cushion to sit on.
There are some obvious flaws in it, and you don't even have to search for them - as much as you suggest care, sometimes a 9 year old just can't achieve perfection in cuts, etc. I forced myself to not care very much - his boat, after all, and the process was much more important than the product. And, frankly, I'm not perfect either.;)
07-17-2007, 10:51 AM
OK - the pics.
We cut and planed out own planks from spruce and mahogany. Almost done planking up:
Thanks for answering (next time I'll read all the text). I scanned down to the eye candy and missed your description. I know your son was proud as punch when he wet her.
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