Oval Outwales...Help!

Dave Osborn

Benson also decribes oval outwales in another post as "D" shaped.
I'm restoring a VL&A (old time department store in Chicago) Old Town Otca.
It has oval spruce outwales that have rotted the cantaliver on the rabbet where they attach to the rib tips in most places. (rib tips are fine..gotta love the cedar!)
I'm trying to figure out how to reproduce them. I'm drawing a blank!!
Has anybody had success in reproducing them with the tapered ends and all?

The only other thing I can think of is to plane off the rabbet and replace it with a new strip the whole length of the wale...that would probably look hideous.
Hey Dave,

First, I have no experience in doing this, but I have an idea as I was thinking about how to make D-wales for your Kennebec canoe. I think you have to start with a straight strip of wide outwale stock. Then using a table saw, cut tapers on each end. Finally, using a router with a roundover bit set up on a table you would pass the outwale over a few times on each side (top and bottom). You should be left with a tapered outwale that has a D shape that could then be bent and attached.

That's my $.02 and its free of charge.

Being in the process of replacing the outwales on this old Kennebec, here is the procedure that I used. ;
Mill the outwales to the proper thickness, rabbet, and width WITHOUT rounding the edges.
Soak the outwales for a week or so.
Bend on a form with a duct taped metal backer making CERTAIN that the bends are in the correct location. Clamp the outwales together so that they are bent in the correct plane and not off at 45 degrees.
After they have dried for a week or so, Taper the ends with a hand plane to the appropriate thickness , and using a router, round the outside edges to the appropriate radii.

If you didn't measure the locations of the bends correctly, do one end over . Gil