Question on this:White oak is a good choice for steam bending, although that's a pretty serious curve around the bow so if there's much grain runout then you might run into problems.
Rule of thumb is 15 minutes in the steambox for every 1/4" of thickness.
When building the steam box, try and insulate it a bit to keep the heat in. It's actually the heat that lets you bend - the steam is only a convenient way to transport that heat. I would angle the box up from the kettle, and leave an opening at the far end so you get good flow of hot steam along the length.
You want to get some bend into the wood ASAP after pulling it out of the box. Put a good bend in that bow portion with your hands as you carry it over to the boat, then fine tune it in place. Getting the major bend in immediately before it cools makes a big difference.
Oh, I'm sure you're right. I was just thinking of the curve on each side being sharper than your typical gunwale.I'm not positive, but I think it's actually two pieces of wood, joined at the bow with some kind of scarfing joint? I intend to check out the wooden boat forums linked in this thread to find out.
You would want the scarf joint(s) in the straightest area possible and would want the inwale and outwale scarfs in separate places rather than right across from each other. You might need, two scarf joints, to make the gunwales work with the lumber available and the size of steamer you're willing to build.Question on this:
I'm not positive, but I think it's actually two pieces of wood, joined at the bow with some kind of scarfing joint? I intend to check out the wooden boat forums linked in this thread to find out.
In any case, you're right about the need for speed. I intend to have a shit load of speed clamps at the ready and extra hands. I want it clamped to the hull in 15-30 seconds.
?You missed a great learning experience. Steaming white oak is a piece of cake.
I used 1/4" steam-bent laminations glued together with Weldwood plastic resin adhesive to make two 1"X4"X18" diameter half-circles for the end pieces of a sofa table I built. Still holding 40+ years later.
It took about ten minutes to make a steam box out of plywood offcuts and two more to hook up a kettle with a salvaged bonnet hair-dryer hose. Those hoses might be really hard to find these days.
I'm not sure what to recommend. The most rot resistant woods are in two caregories: the ones that are too hard to work, and the ones that are too brittle. Or, like teak, too damned expensive.Semi, what's good for rot resistance?
Clear fir.I'm not sure what to recommend. The most rot resistant woods are in two caregories: the ones that are too hard to work, and the ones that are too brittle. Or, like teak, too damned expensive.Semi, what's good for rot resistance?
I'll consult my sources. White oak won't rot if kept clean and dry.
Unfortunate, but wise.I folded like a house of cards and ordered the kit. By the time I buy all the PVC, fittings, fasteners, a million clamps and the lumber, I'll be into it for $200 or so. It's worth another $100 to get the wood properly shaped.
So, no steam box or browsing for wood at Exotic Lumber.
I bent white cedar ribs about 1/4" thick to a radius of about 8" for a canoe project. It worked out but, how shall we say, the yield was not 100%. Perhaps my steaming technique was off. Perhaps I was too slow. Who knows.