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Evolution of a Canoe Sailor

oldsparkey

Well-Known Member
Aug 25, 2003
9,823
31
75
Central , Florida
www.southernpaddler.com
#1
John Depa and I go back a ways and we were always trying to figure out a way to sail a canoe , well we worked out a way to do it and then John even made it better. He sent me this on my AOL address and had several pictures which AOL will not let me copy .... but here is what he has to say about it.

John can be contacted at this address if he is not out someplace paddling , sailing , fishing or camping , which he is usually doing. caddepa@comcast.net

If you want to see the e-mail then give me your email address and I will forward it to you , it has the pictures of the progress John made with his boats.
The one he races has the #88 on the sail.

Chuck..
*************************************************************
EVOLUTION OF A CANOE SAILOR
by John Depa

Most canoe sailors have a long family heritage of involvement in the sport. In fact, it is whispered that a few of them were conceived while their parents were on “late night cruisesâ€Â
 

a Bald Cypress

Well-Known Member
May 7, 2007
577
0
75
Northwest Louisiana
#3
C S

@#$!!@$%#@#$&^%$@# you. I have just spent the last two hours reading about sailing canoes.

I can picture in my mind my 16ft er with a sail crossing the lake [or sitting in the lake filled with water]

The next project may have been found.

Masts and booms will take a while to build. [birds mouth type]

This may just be doable. The cost will certanly be less than another boat.

Think happy wife.

Much more reading to be done.
 

hoz

Well-Known Member
Jan 24, 2004
87
0
Indiana
#6
I got the bug too

Like the OP I have been canoe sailing for 5-6 years. Unlike him, my efforts have all been toward cruising and wilderness travel, not racing. I like gunkholing, exploring, and camping out of my canoe.

My first "rig" was a couple of beaver sticks lashed in a "V" to which I had attached my rain jacket. We were paddling Lake Missinaibi in Ontario for a descent of the upper Missinaibi River. Strictly for downwind use, I vowed to do better.

Research and development ensued and the next year I had a full fledged balanced lug sail which I carried on the lower Missinaibi to James Bay. Mast and booms were cut riverside after all the whitewater and long portages were completed. Rudimentary steering was by hanging my paddle over the side. We spent 12 days on the river and sailed the last 95 miles to Moose Factory.

More reading and I contacted JEM to develop a set of plans for a decked sailing canoe, The "Vinta" was built and outfitted. Again with balanced lug but this time with a rudder instead of paddle steering.

Two years ago we traveled the Pukaskwa Coast of Lake Superior. Over 100 miles of some of the wildest waters on the Great Lakes. I used the Vinta.

Here are some links:

http://www.duckworksmagazine.com/07/out ... /index.htm
Pukaskwa Coast

http://www.duckworksmagazine.com/05/art ... /index.cfm
Developing The Vinta

http://www.roguepaddler.com/tothebay.htm
Our Missinaibi Adventure



On the Lower Missinaibi, 95 miles to James Bay
 

oldsparkey

Well-Known Member
Aug 25, 2003
9,823
31
75
Central , Florida
www.southernpaddler.com
#8
Hoz

Ya going to take some ribbing about your outfit in the canoe , that could be a picture of me ..... Tan shirt (Usually a Cabelas Supplex and a floppy hat ).

Plus I had a green and also a white Mohawk canoes. :lol:

Undoughtely you are a person of outstanding tastes. :D

Chuck.
 

hoz

Well-Known Member
Jan 24, 2004
87
0
Indiana
#9
Yeah, well the tan clothes have become sort of "the uniform" for canoeing and other outdoor pursuits. I have read bright colors, especially blue, can draw mosquitoes.

I tried to buy a white Mohawk solo 14 last time but they had quit making them. Only red and green.
 

FlaMike

Well-Known Member
Jun 20, 2007
624
2
Spring Hill, FL
www.ptponds.com
#10
Made a similar post on Matt's web site, but it fits right into this thread, as well.

I'd been wondering about adding a rudder to Matt's Southwind 15-30, but since I wouldn't be needing it for paddling, and probably just using it for fishing where it would certainly be an asset, I'd pretty much decided against the extra trouble adding a rudder would be.

Now, along comes this sailing idea. . . :idea:

Looks to me like I've just found another reason on the "Yes" side of adding a rudder.! :D

Although many do quite well using the paddle as a rudder, it would be so much nicer I think to be able to tend sail with one hand, use the other for a drink or rod holder, and steer with foot pedals.

Now, I've been sailing since I was knee-high to a short sheep. I've sailed quite a few different boats, from 13 feet up to 40 feet. Done all the jobs on each, from galley slave to skipper, too. Did a lot of single-handed sailing, what with Capt. Joshua Slocum being my hero and all.

One thing that kind of got me away from sailing, (one of the things, anyway,) is that sailing and fly fishing don't go together all that well. But the fly fishing I'm doing these days often has me using the boat to get to where I'm fishing, then I'm out of the boat, wading to fish. And now I see where a simple rig can be brought down and stowed away very quickly and easily, sailing to a good spot and then striking the rig would be fishing from the boat pretty darned do-able.

Correct me if I'm wrong, but it looks like the rig I see detailed in that link to "Developing The Vinta," would almost be directly transferable to the Southwind 15-30, wouldn't it? A balanced lug would be my preferred choice, I like that much better than a lateen or marconi sail. (Almost as sexy as a gaff rig!)

One thing I'd do different would be to use a shorter leeboard. I think I'd get more use out of a somewhat shorter board, due to the shallow waters I usually find myself in (maybe "on" would be a better choice of words.)

I realize that a shorter leeboard might mean having to put one on each side, since a shorter single board might not get the job done when heeled to the side opposite of the board. But since I'd probably have to make a removable thwart to mount a leeboard anyway, it would be an easy thing to make one with a shorter (and slightly wider) leeboard on each end.

What do you think?

Mike S.
Spring Hill, FL
 

Kayak Jack

Well-Known Member
Aug 26, 2003
12,941
57
81
Okemos / East Lansing Michigan
#11
I think you're on to something, Mikey. I didn't know that you'd had your gaff rigged!

I'm not sure that in my part of the country, a sail is practical on an expedition along with others. Hoz and I have been back channeling and as he points out, if you're the only one in a group with a sail, you are out of synch with the others. But, I can go play and learn on a local lake here.

My sailing experience is limited to a couple days on a sunfish, and reading Cap'n Slocum. I particularly liked where he put tacks around on deck down around Terra del Fuego
 

hoz

Well-Known Member
Jan 24, 2004
87
0
Indiana
#12
A nice read is "A Speck on the Sea : Epic Voyages in the Most Improbable Vessels " by William Longyard. He details long sea crossings made in small craft. Of course, Slocum has a chapter.

I like 4 sided sails, and the balanced lug in particular. It just seems to work out best for a canoe, low aspect and all. I started with a sprit sail but really didn't like the way the sprit would bang over on a gybe.

One reason for building the Vinta was to have a dedicated sailing canoe with a rudder. I got tired of dragging the paddle and in high winds it is a lot to handle. A rudder makes it easier.

I use steer sticks (one on each side) instead of foot pedals. Just didn't want anything cluttering up the cockpit.

My current rudder can be pulled up and over onto the deck to get it completely out of the water. It's pretty big though, and looks ungainly up there. Actually on Lake Superior I learned it was better to leave the rudder down when paddling anyway. It helps to maintain direction.
 

FlaMike

Well-Known Member
Jun 20, 2007
624
2
Spring Hill, FL
www.ptponds.com
#13
There was a lot of discussion over on Matt's Forum about rudders. From that, there's enough info to retro-fit one onto most all of his designs, and it looks pretty easy to get all the parts from Duckworks.

The Southwind would be easier to paddle with foot braces installed, and it just so happens that Duckworks has a pair that is "convertible" to use as rudder pedals.

The rudder talked about in that discussion can be seen in one of Mick's threads on the JEMWatercraft Forum, and it's a "kick-up" type. Using that idea, along with the foot-brace/rudder pedals, and the gudgeons also available from Duckworks, this is looking just too easy to pass up! :D

As for being "out of sync" with the others, that's pretty much normal for me. Almost all of my boat trips are done solo. That doesn't look like it's going to change in the near future, either. But I'd be more likely to tell the others to "get with the program" and build a sailing rig than to strike mine, just to fit in. (Just part of the mystery that is me!) 8)

Mike S.
Spring Hill, FL