That's all nice. However a fair bit of it simply is not accurate.
- I have never heard anyone (including both Gougeon Brothers and WoodenBoat) label woodstrip/fiberglass construction "cold molding". It is not the same concept. Cold molding involves the lamination of layers of multiple wooden veneers (and/or plywood on big boats) at angles to the keel line and each other. It can be as simple as two layers of 1/8" cedar at 45 degrees to the keel on small boats (Gougeon 8' pram, for example) to boats over 100' long (Whitehawk). Some will have a layer of longitudinal wooden strips, but generally it's the inside layer and no effort is made to construct the I-beam-style layup of a strip canoe. Fiberglass or other composite cloths may be used on the outside, but are there primarily for abrasion protection and an increased water barrier. They are seldom if ever used on the inside as part of the layup. The only person I know of who recently produced cold molded canoes was Bob Lincoln (RKL Boatworks) back in the 1980s. They were built from opposed diagonal layers of 1/8" western red cedar. Since shaping the individual diagonal planks so that they fit together properly over an irregular curve is a pretty tedious process, and since the building mold needs sturdy lengthwise stringers that make it's construction much more complex than the "mold" of a stripper, cold-molded canoes and people building them are very rare these days. They're simply too much work for one-off construction.
- FYI The book "The Gougeon Brothers on Boat Construction" is still available, but now instead of costing $30, it is available absolutely free online as a PDF you can download. It is still the bible for wood epoxy boat construction and well worth reading. There are also some canoe-specific articles available to read in their "Epoxyworks" on-line magazine. Most of those pertaining to woodstrip canoes are authored for them by Ted Moores of Bear Mountain Canoe Co.
After all a wooden boat is designed to work in a seaway, by giving and following the water surface whereas a boat that is too stiff and unable to "give" to the surface of the water, can have undue stresses placed upon the hull.
In the case of strippers, this simply is not true. There is a definite limit of flexibility to strip canoe construction, and it is not as high as that of a solid composite construction. Push it past that point and the fiberglass and/or core will fracture. Since there is no cross-bracing other than the glass fibers crossing the strip joints, they tend to split lengthwise, usually on the inside from tension breaking the inside glass and then the core if it flexes enough. There is a thread on this very forum right at this moment that demonstrates what happens when the boat is underbuilt. The idea that strippers are designed to "work in a seaway" like an old lapstrake or carvel boat with calked seams will is pure hogwash.
Flexibility to absorb impact is a good thing on any canoe, but for strippers it has to be limited so that it doesn't break the boat, which it will certainly do with inadequate scantlings. Also, hulls with bottoms that bounce up and down in the water are very inefficient (thus the reason that high-end inflatables these days are almost all R.I.B.s (inflatable boats with stiff fiberglass or aluminum bottoms - Rigid Inflatable Boats). Bounce in a stripper bottom will eventually kill the canoe.
- Your quoted destruction test figures are nice, but the increase in panel stiffness would be a much more useful and meaningful figure to have for strip building - or figures that kept the core thicknesses the same and varied the fiberglass weights to see the changes in tensile strength yielded. You still seem to believe that the thickness increase for big boats is there to generate some sort of nebulous "strength". It's main role is to generate adequate hull stiffness on larger, wider hulls, and to keep the hull's flex out of the "danger zone" through both core thickness and skin thickness (layup tensile strength). This is how you create a strip boat that will motor through a big chop at fifteen or twenty knots with a big load without falling apart. Your theoretical lightweight boat would never be able to do that, just as your 18' White will never be able to do it. A freight canoe is a very different animal than your recreational canoe. You don't just pick one up and toss it on your shoulders, and unlike your canoe with three people, a dog, a cooler and some packs aboard, it will hold the contents of a small recreational vehicle.
The 20' traditional wooden freight canoe from Norwest Canoes, which is essentially the official "pickup truck" of northern Canada, weighs in at around 325 lbs. - so this freighter isn't doing bad at all for a freight canoe. By comparison, my 22' woodstrip fur trade canoe is about 145 lbs. with 1/4" thick side strips, 3/8" thick bottom strips and 10 oz. glass, doubled over the bottom inside and out. However, it is a paddling canoe. It was designed to hopefully survive a rock impact at four knots with six people and their gear aboard creating the momentum. It would never survive strapping a Honda 25 to the back end and pounding it through waves on a plane - just as your White would not. That sort of proposition simply requires more beef, and if it's going to be wood strip construction, more strip thickness or a massive increase in the lamination schedule (and weight) to achieve adequate rigidity, durability and safety.
It's good that you are enjoying building canoes, but in this case you are reaching far beyond your knowledge and experience with your comments and theories.