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Thread: sorry its plastic, but

  1. #1
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    Default sorry its plastic, but

    I have a 5 m., 15 +ft Coleman canoe of unknown age but I'm guessing at least 25 years, maybe more.. Its a metre wide, has a transom type stern.

    I really don't like it. Aesthetically, practically, emotionally... I've tried fitting rowlocks and oars, single paddles, a kayak double paddle, a small trolling motor.
    Also it's too big to easily put on the roof of the car, so I trailer it behind on a light single axle motorcycle type trailer.

    Generally it's all too much agro and doesn't get used enough.

    So out with the ol' power saw and I'm going to cut it pretty much in half midships, put in a transom for each half, and make it so it can be bolted back together for when ever I do take to the rugged wilds of unexplored urban canals with dogs, crew, hunting gear and a beer cooler.

    Not worried about the engineering aspect of cutting in half, but I'll have a 2.5 metre pram dinghy with the old transom now the prow, and a new metre wide transom, and a 2.5 metre pointy fronted rowboat with a a new metre wide transom.....

    Is this madness, ? will it work from a flotation point of view.? will the smaller boat(s) take two people and light kit, maybe 160kgs max,

    Anybody ever done this before? I'm not slightly concerned about performance issues just that I can have a roof- toppable dinghy and another one kept at the raft for getting out to the moored runabout on still freshwater lakes and gentle river excursions.

    Thoughts please....
    'C'est la vie' say the old folks it goes to show you never can tell

  2. #2
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    Default Re: sorry its plastic, but

    zero idea on performance or specifics but i would probably prioritise one boat rather than splitting it in half exactly - one 3.5m and a loose end you put in the corner and never think about again might be a bit more useful.

  3. #3
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    Default Re: sorry its plastic, but

    Seems like a reasonable experiment to me. No idea if it will work (the resulting halves seem very narrow to function on their own) but it seems like you have nothing to lose and you might end up with a fleet of somewhat odd but possibly useful small boats. Sure, why not?
    - Chris

    Life is short. Go boating now!

  4. #4
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    Default Re: sorry its plastic, but

    As it is, it might have a capacity of 600 lbs. or so. There might be a label indicating capacity.
    Cut in half, you’ll end up with two pretty cranky boats of barely useful capacity and really touchy stability.
    If you cut ~3 feet off each end and glass in two transoms, you’ll have a boat of nearly the original displacement, significantly less weight and improved stability.

  5. #5
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    Default Re: sorry its plastic, but

    Hm, and actually if you took the cut-off-the-ends approach you would end up with something rather like a traditional English punt, although narrower and round bilge. Get yourself a long pole and go punting!
    - Chris

    Life is short. Go boating now!

  6. #6
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    Default Re: sorry its plastic, but

    Actually getting two boats is part of the equation, just adapting what I have, I might just as well sell it as is and buy two smaller craft, but that's not going to happen. as a Coleman slightly hogged, flat bottom, ok, no hard chines like a punt, but inherently unstable and tippy at 5 m, its not worth diddly, and as CT said , you have nothing to lose...and as it can't be made worse as two 2.5s....
    If I do do it as I thought , if it doesn't work I bolt and glue it back together.
    Thanks for the thoughts, meus amigos, keep it coming.
    'C'est la vie' say the old folks it goes to show you never can tell

  7. #7
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    Default Re: sorry its plastic, but

    Put a lid on it and make it into the cooler.
    That's what Colman did.

  8. #8
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    Default Re: sorry its plastic, but

    IMHO, bad idea all around, sorry. If you do it, wear a life jacket just to put it on the cartop..

  9. #9
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    Default Re: sorry its plastic, but

    I think the challenge will be getting a watertight seal around the transoms, and keeping the transom fasteners from tearing out of the plastic. That plastic does not have a lot of structural strength, hence the need for the internal aluminum keelson and struts from the keelson to the thwarts.

  10. #10
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    Default Re: sorry its plastic, but

    I wouldnt canoe without a life jacket anyway.
    The mechanics of sealing hull to transom is easy
    the transom 25mm ply or planking, screwed with aluminium strips outside the hull, taped and poxied maybe inside and outside.
    I dont have internal aluminium keelson or struts from keelsom to thwarts, just a bunch of (not meant to be ) flexible tubes. Hideous.
    Maybe the vintage of the Coleman but its a piece of carp from the factory. Like a giant tupperware with an afterthought of internal framing in tubing. I binned the useless thwarts seats years ago.
    Its is as if someone sat down at the draughting table and designed it but never actually used one.
    Tomorrow its open hull surgery. Ill be the first to admit it was a mess if it is.
    Just an after thought, will usual grp or polyester resins and tape stick to the nasty almost greasy polywhatever- its- made of plastic?
    'C'est la vie' say the old folks it goes to show you never can tell

  11. #11
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    Default Re: sorry its plastic, but

    How do you plan to attach the transom(s)?

    Do you what type of plastic?
    I'd much rather lay in my bunk all freakin day lookin at Youtube videos .

  12. #12
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    Default Re: sorry its plastic, but

    Hi Jonboy
    We have a Colman Canadian type canoe. I don't think epoxy will stick to the plastic. You might need to use a PU mastic glue like Sika 11FC to seal it after mechanically fitting the transoms.
    A2

    Bit hot your way? Friends doon sarf had 45° the other day...

  13. #13
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    Default Re: sorry its plastic, but

    Quote Originally Posted by jonboy View Post
    So out with the ol' power saw and I'm going to cut it pretty much in half midships, put in a transom for each half, and make it so it can be bolted back together for when ever I do take to the rugged wilds of unexplored urban canals with dogs, crew, hunting gear and a beer cooler.
    That is the wrong order, fit the transoms first then cut.
    Pram dinghies usually have lots of rocker to keep the flat prow above the waterline. I am guessing the back half of your canoe will have little rocker so the flat prow will be submerged.
    Last edited by oldcodger; 08-03-2020 at 04:36 PM. Reason: spelling

  14. #14
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    Default Re: sorry its plastic, but

    Thanks for that and all attention too, Ill keep you posted.
    Hi A2 ça va?, ten days ago we had 42º but its a chilly 34 today .
    'C'est la vie' say the old folks it goes to show you never can tell

  15. #15
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    Default Re: sorry its plastic, but

    You want to use G-flex epoxy for plastic. Heat treat the plastic first, follow the directions.
    Fitting the two transoms first and then cutting sounds like a good idea too.
    If it doesn't work out make two bookshelves out of it.

  16. #16
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    Default Re: sorry its plastic, but

    Different horses, but I once needed to reduce a 12' dinghy to 10.5' to comply with dock rules. I cut off the pointy end and the transom and added two new transoms. It worked. If you already don't like the boat, why not experiment? Have fun, keep us posted.

  17. #17
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    Default Re: sorry its plastic, but

    Part two...
    sorry if fotos aren't in order but you will get the idea

    basically 1, the offending item.
    2, marked up and cut. I spent a while messing about trying to get an internal template for the new transoms. in the end just cut and stood the half hull on end and traced and cut the maquette or template.
    worked fine, maybe two hours of work, not including bugggerring about for ages trying to get the internal shape.
    now, its cut the template from the final transom material. ... might use 22mm t and g knot free pine , maybe half inch ply .....

    same time same channel.P8090138.jpgP8090140.jpgP8110142.jpg
    'C'est la vie' say the old folks it goes to show you never can tell

  18. #18
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    Default Re: sorry its plastic, but

    Ok, mistake admission time. the back half, fine, see no problems as a small boat.

    front half ...? oops, too small .... should have not cut in half , but maybe 30 cm nearer the blunt end. hmmmm . more to come.. apparently the Coleman plastic is the same as industrial fruit juice barrels, garbage containers...
    same profile for the transom but extend the hull with old barrels. ok ok it not a Riva fer 'eavens's sake.
    'C'est la vie' say the old folks it goes to show you never can tell

  19. #19
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    Default Re: sorry its plastic, but

    I would rip the outfit out of the bow end and use it to mould two GRP half canoes, join them together and have a half decent canoe. Then throw the Tupperware away.
    It really is quite difficult to build an ugly wooden boat.

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  20. #20
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    Default Re: sorry its plastic, but

    Good idea , and even thought about using it ages ago as mould for a strip build....
    Take a keel line and stem and stern post, and strip or fine clinker build around the Coleman hull. This method was traditional on Hastings clinker lute and elliptical stern fishing vessels, 'built inside out'
    even up to 50 years ago.
    Then turn it over and lay in the ribs and framing.
    But making two grp halves, joined, gives me a 5 metre canoe again, which wasn't the idea in the first place....
    see See 'Fishermen of Hastings' by Steve Peak, ISBN951070606. page 126.
    'C'est la vie' say the old folks it goes to show you never can tell

  21. #21
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    Default Re: sorry its plastic, but

    Quote Originally Posted by jonboy View Post
    Good idea , and even thought about using it ages ago as mould for a strip build....
    Take a keel line and stem and stern post, and strip or fine clinker build around the Coleman hull. This method was traditional on Hastings clinker lute and elliptical stern fishing vessels, 'built inside out'
    even up to 50 years ago.
    Then turn it over and lay in the ribs and framing.
    But making two grp halves, joined, gives me a 5 metre canoe again, which wasn't the idea in the first place....
    see See 'Fishermen of Hastings' by Steve Peak, ISBN951070606. page 126.
    I know Hastings boats. All clinker boats are built shell first and then timbered out, especially when timbered with steam bent ribs.
    What is your maximum target length?
    It really is quite difficult to build an ugly wooden boat.

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  22. #22
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    Default Re: sorry its plastic, but

    'All' ? I had thought it was an unusual construction method. Peak talks about it being a method descended from long boats and other Scandinavian. craft. I'm sure I have seen quite substantial, 40, maybe fifty foot trawlers , clinker built on previously constructed frame and rib structures. Rye, Newhaven, Dover and Deal, but maybe I was seeing re planking work, not new builds.
    Thanks for the input Nick. Interesting
    'C'est la vie' say the old folks it goes to show you never can tell

  23. #23
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    Default Re: sorry its plastic, but

    UPdate as promised-
    both go in the car, no trailer needed
    well they does actually work, didn't sink , still as tippy as allbuggery,
    need to fine tune the seating positions, fine for young un's, bit small for me especially the pointy one.
    and there's always some old grey git turns up to offer his opinions.
    at least im back on the water while the runabout gets sorted.P8240185.jpgP8240162.jpgP8240152.jpgP8240172.jpgP8240164.jpg
    'C'est la vie' say the old folks it goes to show you never can tell

  24. #24
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    Default Re: sorry its plastic, but

    Nicely done! Now the question is, can you clamp the two halves back together and make one boat again? And would that be at all useful?
    - Chris

    Life is short. Go boating now!

  25. #25
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    Default Re: sorry its plastic, but

    Yup.... the two transoms are totally flush, and even with two adults in, the water line is about 15 cms above the lowest keel point so no major issues of water entry if i just drilled and bolted the two halves together.
    but I' m playing with a slot-together system..... a horizontal channel, full width screwed into one , maybe 5cm above base line, and a flange that sits in the channel fixed to the other that butts against the channel and drops down 20 mm maybe less. then clamps or rebated strip or bolts through at the top of the transoms. the transoms are 22mm pine so there's room to let in the the strips a couple of mm so all is flush.
    Or a couple of magnets and a Gcramp or two ha ha.
    'C'est la vie' say the old folks it goes to show you never can tell

  26. #26
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    Default Re: sorry its plastic, but

    I like it!

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