Closed gunnel fasteners


Canoe Builder
I was wondering what type and length fasteners were used for the outwale and cap on early OT closed gunnel canoes, and any sources. I have a 1914 OT IF. and will go with silicon bronze ring nails if nothing else comes up. Thanks, Pete
The nails I pulled out of the rails on my HW model are 7/8 to 1&1/8in. long, see attached photo. I believe they're copper.


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What you want are 7/8" and 1-1/8"x #14 brass escutcheon pins, available from Jamestown Distributors. They do not have the best holding power so its important that they be fastened into solid wood, just in case you have any iffy spots in the inside rail! You may only need about 1/4 lb of each size of the nails but I thing they are only available by the lb but the price isn't too bad.

If anyone knows the history of the term "Escutcheon Pin", I would be glad to hear it.
Rollin --

"Escutcheon" is an old world for a shield, not much used any more, except in heraldry and furniture. The shield of a knight's coat of arms is an escutcheon.
And in furniture, an escutcheon is a small decorative or protective shield or plate, often seen around drawer or door locks and keyholes, or sometimes small corner protectors. Usually there is no practical way to fasten these down except with a something smaller than a screw or nail -- a pin does the job
nicely. So those who need something smaller than a nail of screw when building and repairing canoes benefit from the fact that decorative metal on furniture is often brass.

Thanks folks,
The outwale and cap were gone when I got the canoe so there was nothing to go on. I replaced the inwales so I will have good wood to nail into. Pete
Escutcheon Pins

On a Maine closed gunwale canoe I am working on, the escutcheon pins were placed such that the pins went between the back of the rib and the planking, not into the inwale. This allows use of a long escutcheon pin.