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Plans, Caribou 495 - 120 EUR
Caribou 495 is a touring canoe for two persons with gear. Long enough to combine fine ends with large volume midships, it is easily paddled and safe and dry in rapids. A long canoe is also easier to pole over shallows and upstream. The rounded bottom and almost vertical sides combine strength and low weight and keep green water outside the canoe. Caribou 495 is modeled after a legendary American guide canoe from the twenties. A guide canoe was the working craft for transporting recreational hunters och fishermen out in the wilderness. More often than not the guide alone paddled and the daily distances could be awesome. To compete successfully for customers the guide needed a fast, roomy, easily propelled canoe in which he could safely tackle the rapids without upsetting the passenger.
With a glued strip hull, Caribou 495 is lighter, stronger can take a heavier load and needs no maintenance (apart from touching up scratches). The stems are slightly higher then they would have been 70 years ago, as the risk of meeting speedboats with huge wakes has increased. The hull form, on the other hand, is too good to be tampered with and since strips, as opposed to aluminum, plywood, veneer etc can be coaxed into any conceivable form, there is no need to compromise. Building your own canoe from a good set of plans is a good way to rediscover the superb qualities of the birch canoes of the 19th century.
||495 cm *
||Touring for 1-2 persons with gear.
* These dimensions can be adapted to suit personal needs or wishes.
** Depending on type of wood, equipment, care with epoxy usage, sanding etc. etc.
For Caribou 495 you will use approx 320 meters strips (20x5 mm) including a margin for a few mistakes, 16 meter fiberglass (160 gr/m2 on 100 cm width). Epoxy usage is hard to predict since it depends on how it is applied and the skills of the builder, but 8 kg is a reasonable guess. This is of course for a standard length canoe. If you change any dimension you have to recalculate.
The illustrated step-by-step building manual is in Swedish only, but it is available online in English: it covers all steps in detail and will guide first-time builders through the project.
Plans, Caribou 495 - 120 EUR
Caribou – background and history
From the end of the 20th century, canvas-sheated canoes were built in US NE and Canada SE, by among others E. M. White in Gilman Falls, Evan H. Gerrish in Bangor, B.N. Morris in Veazie – to be followed later by Old Town Canoe Company, Chestnut Canoe Company, Carleton Canoe et al. A canoe could be purchased for approx $25.
Caribou is inspired by a legendary guide canoe from the 20th – E.M. White 18'. A guide canoe was used by competent wilderness guides taking tourists out on lakes and rivers to fish and hunt. To compete successfully it took a fast and easily maneuvered canoe with a substantial load capacity that could bring the tourists safely through whitewater portions of the rivers.