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Woodworking 101...tools, skill...

Post in 'DIY and General non-hearth advice' started by Jay H, Apr 15, 2008.

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  1. Jay H

    Jay H New Member

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    As a sea kayaker, I'm thinking of making my own Greenland Paddle:

    [​IMG]

    Being somewhat a beginner and still learning a roll, I found it way more easier to scull with one than a euro blade paddle, but more importantly, it's a lot cheaper to make one with the tools and skill than it would be to buy a commercially made paddle which can be anywhere from $150-$300 (and of course even more). Considering all you need at a minimum is a 2x4 of appropriate length ~80"ish of a good water resistant wood. Cedar is popular or specifically Western Red Cedar, mahogany, etc. etc. and a good quality.

    That isn't too expensive, however, tools in woodworking would be something I would also need, and some of course, knowledge and skill in using them.


    The below is a nice PDF file of making one:

    http://www.qajaqusa.org/QK/makegreen2.pdf

    Tools needed mentioned in the above:

    hand saw
    a knife
    a drawknife (I have an idea what this is)
    a plane (Sheesh, now I have to make a Cessna??? Just kidding! :))
    a spoke shave (no idea what this is)
    Surform-type perforated metal tools (what?)
    sandpaper (ooooh, I have some!)
    0000 grade steel wool (can get some)

    Now, how much are we talking about for me to get the above tools, namely, the specialty tools like the drawknife, plane, spoke shave, metal tools?

    Would I have to go to a specialty woodworking store? Anybody know of a good one in northern NJ? I think I know of a lumbar place that has western red cedar but tools would be a new domain for me.

    Jay

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  2. backpack09

    backpack09 Minister of Fire

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    The last time I was hunting for good wooodworking tools I bought them off of Amazon. It can be difficult to find some of those tools locally.
  3. loneeagle15

    loneeagle15 New Member

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    check rockler.com depends on quality of the tool planes and spokeshaves 5 bucks to 500 leigh valley just google woodworking tools
  4. GVA

    GVA Minister of Fire

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    A board that long and wide at the ends will probably be better if laminated together out of several pieces of wood hope this helps
  5. Jay H

    Jay H New Member

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    Thanks guys, GVA, that's exactly how the more expensive Greenland paddles are, a 5-7-9 part laminate, using a harder (and heavier wood) for the core and then lighter laminates for the outsides and then a real durable hardwood for the tips. Traditionally the Greenland folks would use ivory or whale bone for the ends for use in smashing through ice, but I don't think most of us will ever need that functionality so most paddlers just stick to wood. Plus, ivory would probably be illegal now. But for my first paddle, I'm keeping it as simple as possible, so a solid piece of WRC is probably what I'm going to use.

    Jay
  6. EatenByLimestone

    EatenByLimestone Minister of Fire

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  7. EatenByLimestone

    EatenByLimestone Minister of Fire

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    Have you had any luck finding tools?

    Matt
  8. Jay H

    Jay H New Member

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    Hi Matt, Actually, I've been busy cutting wood, cut, split, and stacks about a cord the past two days, but it's just too hot in the afternoon to do that and wear protection so I'll wait to do more til it cools.

    I found a commercial greenland paddle making that offers classes for $125 and they provide the cedar 2x4s and some tools, so all I may need to buy is a small planer, so I think I might do that, since it seems that the cost of tools is pretty much going to wipe out any savings I do myself and with the class, I'll will be able to learn from a pro....

    I'll check out those websites that you've mentioned though when I have time.. thanks!

    Jay
  9. EatenByLimestone

    EatenByLimestone Minister of Fire

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    The class sounds ideal. Please post some pics of the paddle making process!

    I hope to find some wood and start cutting and splitting next weekend.

    Matt
  10. Jay H

    Jay H New Member

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    OK, The class, if I take it doesn't look to be until mid june/july so it might be awhile. of course I might just get impatient enough to try some out on my own but I don't know.

    The picture doesn't show all the 3D aspects as the loom (or part of the paddle you actually hold) is typically ovalized such that the oval is flat where as the blade is (of course) perpendicular to the ovalized loom so we're talking some 3D curve to it, which I assume is the idea of the spoke shave as it allows you to carve a curve well, at least better than a block planer.

    Jay
  11. EatenByLimestone

    EatenByLimestone Minister of Fire

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    While a block plane will allow you to shape a curve better than a bench plane, it's not the tool I'd use since the flat sole will still work to flatten the piece. A spokeshave would work, but I see it as a tool to clean up the cut. You will not be able to hog out the shape quickly or easily. I'd reach for a rasp. A rasp will take the wood down to shape very quickly. Then you can use a shave or sandpaper to clean it up. You will not have to watch the grain with a rasp either.

    Matt
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