Canoe History Enthusiast
I traded some messages with Roger Young recently about the elapsed build time indicated on some of the Old Town records. The “Half Built” date is when it was taken off the form and had the serial number stamped on the stems. It probably took at least a few days to get the ribs bent and planking installed but this is a good proxy for when the canoe was started. The shipping date is a hard stop for when the canoe was finished. They estimated about 40 man hours to build a typical wooden canoe so the rest of the time was drying. However some records show many years between these dates and others were done in less than a month. I’m always surprised at how little time elapsed between painting / varnishing and shipping in many cases. You can understand why finish problems were among the most frequent reasons for a canoe would be returned. Two extreme cases are shown at https://www.wcha.org/forums/index.php?attachments/44336/ with an elapsed 15 days for a 20 foot long canoe with sponsons and https://www.wcha.org/forums/index.php?attachments/2501/ that took over five years for a 12 foot long square stern.