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Thread: Dan Kindey Rowboat

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Oct 2004
    Location
    ashland WI
    Posts
    43

    Post

    Hello all,
    Since I've got wet varnish in the shop right now, I thought I'd take a moment to see if i can figure out how to post some pictures here. THis is a boat I restored earlier in the winter. She is a Kidney rowboat, built by Dan Kidney in Depere, WI early in the 20th century. Nothing too crazy, I replaced the keel (the original was full of holes), new garboards, a new 3rd broad strake, new frames, and some paint an varnish. The oars needed a bit of help, and i made a rudder that can be steered by the passenger using some of walt simmons' small boat pintles & gudgeons. I really like the notion of using a bronze shaft to lock it all in place. the boat had been fiberglassed about 30 yrs ago and, although originally finished bright, i don't have the skills to make her look better bright than with a painted hull and interior (she was REALLY rough). I hope you approve. a before, during, and after shot
    Josh

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Oct 2004
    Location
    ashland WI
    Posts
    43

    Post

    It worked!

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Aug 2005
    Location
    SF Bay Area- Richmond
    Posts
    16,412

    Post

    Gaw-jus! Great work, lovely boat.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jun 2003
    Location
    SF Bay Area - Redwood City
    Posts
    2,391

    Post

    Very nice. Got some more pics of her finished? Other angels?

    I like the paint below the thwart riser with varnish above. Attractive and practical.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    May 2000
    Location
    Conway, MA
    Posts
    5,938

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    WHAT A STERN SHEET!! Whoever sits there deserves to steer.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jan 2002
    Location
    victoria, australia. (1 address now)
    Posts
    64,147

    Post

    Beautiful boat, great work!
    I've had my eye on a similar boat, a Corporation Skiff, built on the Thames in the late 1880's supposedly, for some time. It's in parlous state, totally dried out but safe. Unfortunately the owner is'nt interested in doing anything about it. Pity.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Oct 2004
    Location
    ashland WI
    Posts
    43

    Post

    thanks for all the kind words. I make it a point to let any compliments evaporate before i think about them too much and start to believe them. what you don't see are all the missteps and miscalculations and ponderment over why i got tunnel visioned and did something a certain way. Mostly i like this boat because of it's cool Wisconsin lineage. Even though Dan Kidney was a transplant from the buffalo area, I still really liked looking at his builder's plate. I'll try my hand at a few more photos. As far as the finish goes, I am a fan of the interior varnish/paint scheme. It usually satisfies the owner's desire to see "wood", as well as satisfying my more pragmatic approach in that paint will typically look good longer and will be easier to maintain than will brightwork. feel free to debate the merits of my logic.
    here are some super simple cooper oar tips i made. the oar tips were in rough, rough shape, and they had some crude metal tips clenched on. i know that these are frowned upon as doing more harm then good, but this boat probably won't see much hard use, and i thought that maybe rivets would be a better alternative than clench nails, in that there might be less chance of splits the oar ends. maybe, maybe not. it's amazing what some copper valley stock can cover up!


    one more

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Jan 2006
    Location
    Gualala, CA
    Posts
    19

    Post

    Beautiful!
    What type of paint did you choose to use, both inside and outside?
    Thanks for the pics
    RW

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Jul 2002
    Location
    Seattle, WA
    Posts
    9,367

    Post

    Nice job; nice boat!!!

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Apr 2002
    Location
    Berryville, VA
    Posts
    3,778

    Post

    Very nice. Where do you plan to use her?

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Oct 2004
    Location
    ashland WI
    Posts
    43

    Post

    As far as paint goes, Kirby's. I wonder sometimes about other paints, but there is just something about Kirby's. The boat belongs to a vacation home in the U.P. I did take take the lines off her should i ever want to build one, but, much like the cobbler's children with no shoes, I am a boatbuilder with no (floating) boat of my own. This is my next project, and it is my boat! unfortunately, or fortunately, my fiance and i just purchased a house here in Ashland, and we close next week. I had hoped to get this in shape for some spring paddling but...best laid plans.
    a 1932 Old Town Otca (a christmas gift from my fiance two years ago, the pics are in my old shop)

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Jun 1999
    Location
    Minneapolis
    Posts
    602

    Post

    Excellent KIDNEY boat! Have the owner bring her to the Thompson Antique & Classic Boat Rally at Marinette, WI (acoss the river from Menominee, UP, Michigan). Dates are 11-13 August 2006. It is not limited to Thompson boats.

    Andreas

  13. #13
    Join Date
    Oct 2004
    Location
    ashland WI
    Posts
    43

    Post

    Andreas,
    Thanks for noticing. I was really excited to get to work on her, although my efforts to get some more info on both the boat and the builder came up empty. I recall meeting some of dan Kidney's descendants a few years ago at the boat festival in Sturgeon Bay, but i did't get their contact info then, and i wasn't successful in trying to get it from the WI maritime museum. I have been keeping up with your posts for awhile, as i too am curious about local builders ( although i haven't followed up much on my curiousity). anyway, i found one original builder's catalog for Kidney boats, but it was a little pricey for my casual interest. What do you know about him or his boats?...you probably have a really long, well read answer for that, which i would still like to hear. Do you have any documentation or copies of documentation on him? I'd sure be curious to see what else he built.
    thanks,
    Josh
    -thanks for the thompson get together tip. I doubt the boat or the owners will make it, but i'd like to sneak over.

  14. #14
    Join Date
    Dec 2003
    Location
    on-the-cuyahoga
    Posts
    13,063

    Post

    Beautiful restoration. Just the thing for a jaunty row over to Madaleine Is.
    I've paddled off Washburn and Cornucopia. One of my favorite paddling venues.
    Charlie

  15. #15
    Join Date
    Jun 1999
    Location
    Minneapolis
    Posts
    602

    Post

    Hi Josh,

    Dan Kidney & Sons were located in DePere or was it West DePere, WI - a Green Bay, WI suburb! They started up prior to 1900. They made all sorts of boats from duck boats to 30 ft. launches. The Wisconsin Maritime Museum has a great early 20th century Kidney launch on display.

    Somewhere along the way they changed their name to Fox River Boats. I think they were making some boats for the military in WW II. They closed up for good after the war.

    George Verhagen was a foreman for them starting in 1938 and again after WW II. He went on to co-found Carver Boat Corporation in 1954.

    I had some correspondence with Robert Kidney a few years ago. He was researching the history of his granddad's company. I know he has since passed away.

    "Wooden Canoe" magazine had a three page article about Dan Kidney canoes in the Winter 1984 issue (no. 17) pages 3-6. It was written by Mike Beno. I do not have a copy of that article. Try to get a copy via their website: www.wcha.org

    Andreas

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