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Penn Yann seat question

Discussion in 'Tips and Tricks' started by canoonow, Jun 25, 2020.

  1. canoonow

    canoonow New Member

    I'm starting to rebuild the seats for my 1944 Penn Yan Rainbow. The seat frame is doweled, but I also found brass rods that ran through one of the two dowels for each joint. I'm wondering if these were factory installed, or if I'm looking at a modification/attempt to strengthen the seat?

    I'm planning on using the original seats (they are in pretty good shape), and need to decide if I should 'reinstall' the brass rods after I re-dowel/glue the seat back together.

    Any thoughts/perspectives?
  2. Dave Wermuth

    Dave Wermuth Who hid my paddle?

    I'd guess that it's a repair. I've never seen it before.
  3. Greg Nolan

    Greg Nolan enthusiast

    When restoring the seat frame, you are going to have to deal with the holes in some fashion. I presume you will be using new, snug-fitting dowels to hold the fram together, and so there should be no need for additional strengthenging. It seems to me that filling the holes ith the brass rod would be as good a way as any. You could cut the rod off short, even with the outside of the frame, sanding it to be fair with the frame surface -- no need to drill into the new dowel. Alternatively, you could plug the hoe with a bit of dowel the size of the hole. You could also drill the small hole to be the same size as the existing dowel hole, and run a full-size dowel all the way in from the outside. This would leave a more visually obvious repair, and could actually weaken the joint. Unless you replace the seat rail, the filling of the hole will be visible -- brass or end-grain wood. I think I'd go for the brass, but it's just a matter of taste.
  4. pklonowski

    pklonowski Unrepentant Canoeist

    If you want to fill the end of the hole with face grain, rather than end grain or brass, you can get a plug cutter for the size of the hole, then find a piece of the same species of wood, with a grain pattern as close to the seat's as you can find. It's not perfect, but it might be mire pleasing than the other options. Just a different way to approach it...
  5. Greg Nolan

    Greg Nolan enthusiast

    A face grain plug could be more atractive, but I'm guessing that it would mean enlarging the hole -- the smallest I'm aware of is 1/4" which I'm guessing is bigger than the brass rod in the picture. I would be leery of weaking the seat rail by enlarging the hole. A plug, small or large, will not substantially add to the strength of the rail; a small hole will weaken the rail less than a large hole, and I would prefer a small filed hole to a large filled hole.
  6. pklonowski

    pklonowski Unrepentant Canoeist

    I was guessing at the brass rod diameter from the picture... it looks smaller than the dowel holes, which are typically 3/8", so I guessed at 1/4" for the brass rod. It would be a fairly common diameter, though it certainly can be different. But that's a good point.

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