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Are certain canoes faster than others?

 
 
Reply Sun 28 May, 2006 04:55 pm
Just curious.
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Type: Discussion • Score: 1 • Views: 2,484 • Replies: 22
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Acquiunk
 
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Reply Sun 28 May, 2006 05:02 pm
In my experience, and this has almost all be acquired at the movies, it is the good guys (usually intrepid frontier's men) attempting to get away from the bad guy's (usually surly and irate Indians) who have the fastest canoes
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dyslexia
 
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Reply Sun 28 May, 2006 05:05 pm
Birchbark canoes are the slowest because they all leak.
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Greyfan
 
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Reply Sun 28 May, 2006 05:31 pm
There may well be a difference in canoes. I suspect the greater variable is the canoe-er.
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rg123
 
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Reply Wed 7 Jun, 2006 01:01 pm
I think that, given the same amount of surface area on the water, a lighter canoe will let you go faster. Given the same weight, more surface area (as with a longer canoe) will keep the canoe more above the water and let you go faster (similar to longer vs. shorter snow skis). Within some weight range, even a heavier canoe that is longer will probably be faster because of this. A longer, heavier canoe will be more difficult to carry on land, though - especially a factor if you'll be doing trips by yourself.

Slicker materials probably reduce friction against the water and increase speed vs. less-slick materials (as with waxed vs. unwaxed skis, snowboards, etc.)

I have heard that the main reason for not going with a cheaper aluminum canoe vs. some other material is that aluminum ones tend to be noiser going across the water. I've only canoed in cheap aluminum ones, though, and had plenty of fun.
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roger
 
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Reply Wed 7 Jun, 2006 01:58 pm
The longer the length relative to the width, the faster it will go - ceteris paribus, of course. If the long, slim one is encrusted with barnicles, all bets are off.

This is designated as hull speed. When you get up to speed, paddling harder, or adding a motor will raise the bow, and create more wake, but no proportional increase in speed.
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farmerman
 
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Reply Wed 7 Jun, 2006 02:01 pm
Its true, a fleet of aluminum canoes couldnt sneak up on a cemetery.
If you are attempting to apply a water displacement hull theory to a canoe remember its about 1.26 times the square root of the wetted length, so a really long and narrow canoe will have a theoretical faster speed but you still must have the rowing power to achieve it.

A kevlar canoe, i8 footer ,keel bottom is really fast but highly unstable
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Bi-Polar Bear
 
  1  
Reply Wed 7 Jun, 2006 02:01 pm
The canoe paddled by Arnold Schwarzenegger will always be faster than the one paddled by Michale Dukakais.
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roger
 
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Reply Wed 7 Jun, 2006 02:01 pm
Oh, drag is opposed by hull resistance; gravity by bouyancy, so to a large extent, weight doesn't slow you down - except coming off the line, of course.

Look for a long hull with curved bottom, and not much rocker unless you are playing around with whitewater.
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roger
 
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Reply Wed 7 Jun, 2006 02:03 pm
Now, I wonder. . . . Did farmerman and I just say the same thing?
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realjohnboy
 
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Reply Wed 7 Jun, 2006 02:10 pm
From bitter experience I can tell you that it is not a good idea to try to transport cinder blocks in a canoe. Not a good idea at all.
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roger
 
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Reply Wed 7 Jun, 2006 02:35 pm
Ballast?
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McTag
 
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Reply Wed 7 Jun, 2006 03:27 pm
roger wrote:
Ballast?


Drat, and damn
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realjohnboy
 
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Reply Wed 7 Jun, 2006 06:23 pm
So what time is it, folks? It's Realjohnboy's Storytime! Settle down and wrap your blankey around you.
There is this lake, Lake Albemarle. It is a man-made lake maybe a half a mile long created by building an earthen dam at the lower end of a valley in the foothills of Virginia It is maybe only about 50 yards wide.
Some of the land on the far side of the lake was owned by the parents of a friend of mine. We were both perhaps 12 or 13 years old, as were our other friends. It was a long trek from their house down to the lake. The easier way to get there was from the road that was on the near side.
We would get dropped off by parents on the near side and we would borrow a canoe from this old guy and we would paddle across to camp on the far side.
Imagine that. Our parents had no problem with dropping us off, having us paddling around the lake and building a campfire when we were 13.
Anyway, we did this for a couple or three years, during which time we discovered that girls were nowhere near as yicky as we had thought they were a few years earlier.
And lo and behold, this place, a short canoe ride from the near side to the far side, was an absolute "babe-magnet."
But it did need some improvement. Racoons, possums, snakes, mosquitos. How about we build a platform a couple feet off the ground, with a plywood floor, measuring no more than about 8 feet by 8 feet and with posts on the corners that could support mosquito netting over the top and sides.
The design was flawless. One of my buddies is now an architect; another a building contractor. but the execution was not done well.
Cinder blocks in a canoe doesn't work. Trust me on that. -rjb-
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farmerman
 
  1  
Reply Wed 7 Jun, 2006 07:22 pm
Coupla years ago, for a "Susquehanna Sojourn" (On the way to the Bay), a bunch of us helped build and then paddled a repro of A susquehannock War Canoe. It was a huge dugout made from a large sycamore tree (mostly because large first growth pines had been removed about 150 years earlier). Sycamore is probabbly one of the worst and skankiest woods to work with so carving the canoe involved everything from industrial reciprocating gouges to burning it with thermite inserted into drill holes.
. The original crew of guys that came up with the idea must have been totally loaded when they began the project. I , as a board member of a watershed. actually drove all the way up past some noname town North of Harrisburg where the "beast" was stashed in a riverside boathouse. It took almost 9 months to blast, cut, gouge, and plane this sucker and it still weighed an easy ton. After it was done it still looked like a bi gass log that had been sort of shaped into a very rough approximation of a boat

The "Sojourn" day came up (wed already had some test runs and packed the boat with a glycol wax so It wouldnt split . The canoe held about 12 guys and we each hadda make our own paddles from a standard plan. We got the boat launched by dragging it off a boat trailer . It was so heavy that the rollers were compressing we should have used one of those skid loaders for zodiacs. The boat , when it got half its bulk in the water, was so big that its mass caused the trailer to just lift into the air like if one were to step on the tines of a rake and get poked in the head by the handle. Bam the boat ropped onto the boat ramp and looked more like a big river snag than a conveyance. Well we managed to get it floated (sycamore is not noted for its bouyancy, so this presented an initial problem and 2 guys hadda give up their seats until a later leg. We all 10 got in the boat and started paddling like crazy, the boat moved imperceptibly slow and , more to the point, was drifting sideways no matter how we paddled. It took us a long time to learn the tricks of sycamore dugout canoes but we were able to face approximately down river . A bunch of other canoers were all around us like blackbirds chasing an owl. They swam circles around our water-tank. We became, not so much a symbol of the sojourn, but a giant lumbering millstone that was holding up all progress. We thought of hiring some motor boaters to drag our big ass down to the portage . PORTAGE-We forgot about portages, this thing had all the protageability of a small aircraft carrier, and nobdy thought about this fact at all.
We soon learned why the Susquehannocks were always being defeated on the river. Thier boats were so damn heavy that nobody had strength to fight after they rowed a mile or more. Fortunately we had a current until we came to the first of our portage problems
. There are 3 big hydro dams on the Susquehanna and we couldnt portage this bigass hunk of lumber without a lot more help or more likely some sort of thing powered by diesel engines. Well, this whole thing was being filmed for posterity on the Pa Cable network and the local news so , like President Franklin Roosevelt was never shown being lifted into his chair at a speech site, all the news teams didnt show how we got a front end loader to drag this momma down the side gabion walls of the dams. It was really embarrasing, Theres this huge hunk of tree unceremoniously being chained and slowly dumped down a side wall till it landed nose up in the mud. Then wed take a long winch cable from the front end loader and using an old piece of lignum vitae bearings that they had originally used for the turbines wed just pull the canoe over into the water and then roll it over.

AT the last dam, Conowingo, PECO power heard about this debacle and had a bunch of guys who worked in the power house to all pitch in and help move the canoe over the dam pool, across US route 1 and over the side of the permeability wall and into the water for our final 12 mile jaunt to Havre de Grace.The water current below Conowingo was rougher but at least we didnt have to row this "Cement truck of a boat". We came around the bend of the Susquehanna flats and approached Havre de Grace sideways, we never really fully mastered the fundamentals of "steering" or even "landing where we aimed". Land we did though and there were crowds of 10;s of people, there to greet us, most of them were wives and kids of the Sojourners who were, no doubt ceratin that theyd never ever see their loved ones again when we entered the river some 40 miles upstream.

When we landed I think we seriously discussed burning the dam thing to the water line like they did to all the Civil War wooden ships. Instead we left it tied up at the town board walk at Havre de Grace hoping that someone would try to steal it. Eventually, after the Coast Guard finally lost patience with this navigational hazard moored close to a shipping channel. So, a bunch of guys with a big Jardan and a come-along drove down from the town of Enola and dragged the thing onto the big wrecker and hauled it back to some museum in the middle Susquehanna. I guess, like WWII vets were drawn back to Normandy's beaches , I may want to go see the boat before I die, just not yet..


If anybody ever asks you to help build a dugout war canoe for some bleedin festival or historical celebration, have them tied up and gagged before this insane idea infects any others.

Oh yeh,As far as the top speed of this juggernaut, let us say that we could have used a calendar rather than a watch to measure elapsed time
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realjohnboy
 
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Reply Wed 7 Jun, 2006 08:55 pm
Nice story, farmerman.
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farmerman
 
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Reply Thu 8 Jun, 2006 06:31 am
Its all true and I still have the froe that I used to help gouge out the inside. When we wound up really making headway we used to drill these big holes with Forstner drills and then fill them with mixtures of powedered aluminum and Iron oxide. This would burn out a larger hole that could be easily hogged out using a small chainsaw or an angle grinder with a cutting wheel. Thanks for making me remember that one.
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dadpad
 
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Reply Thu 8 Jun, 2006 06:35 am
Kayaks are faster than any canoe.
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farmerman
 
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Reply Thu 8 Jun, 2006 08:03 pm
They make hydrofoil racing sculls and canoes that can get up on a plane and really move.
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roger
 
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Reply Thu 8 Jun, 2006 08:26 pm
How hard do you have to paddle to get on plane?
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