Half Ribs With Stringer/Rib Rail

Scot T

LOVES Wooden Canoes
I was studing some photos from the late 19th/early 20th century on the wall of a local pub. They are a photographic record our Gorge waterway full of canoes, rowboat and various other wonderful watercraft during the heyday of boating and boatbuilding in the area. And I must linger over these photos on the wall every time I go for a pint.

One particularly fine canoe example caught my eye, not to mention the pretty ladies with parasols sitting in this canoe. I have no idea who the maker might have been but it looks to be a fine example of the so called "courting canoe" that was popular at the time.

The bottom of the canoe (just visible) has half ribs attached to a stringer or rail. From the limited bit of research I've done I uncovered a couple different methods for doing this. I think the method Martin Ferwerda uses from his Thompson Bros. form (very pretty boats BTW) seems the easiest.

I'm just wondering how they are attached. Mr. Ferwerda mentions in his site that they are attached to the half ribs but are they also attached to the full ribs? And does anyone know which builders besides the Thompson Bros., have used this very comely (IMHO) addition?
Of the top of my head, Thompson and Shell Lake were the only builders to put a stringer atop the tips of the half ribs. In the case of the Thompsons, the forms had channels milled into them to receive the stringers. The half ribs were fastened to the stringer with two copper clinch nails. An additional copper clinch nail is driven through the planking, full rib and through the stringer. Pretty, yes, but a functional time saver too - no need to shape the tips of the half ribs or spend much time lining up the ribs into a fair curve along the bottom.

Interestingly, the Hiawatha (Thompson model with stringers) and Indian (without stringers) were built on the same form, but the presence of the half ribs really alters the hull shape, flattening out the bottom. The Thompsons with half ribs also have a tendency to hog.
I have been using 7/8 inch canoe tacks to hold the stringers in, rather than the copper clinched nails, it seems to work just fine. I do attach the full ribs to the stringers, this does a nice job of holding the full ribs in place on the form when fairing the ribs, no need to use temporary wood strips to keep the ribs in place. I always recommend storing these canoes upside down with the supports towards the middle of the canoe, in the belief this will reduce the chance of hogging, only time will tell I guess.