Chapelle 208 is ready for the water. I installed rub strips yesterday afternoon, long pieces of oak which I glued onto the hull with Marine Goop and pegged into place. East Greenland Kayak hulls tended to be heavily armored against the ice. One specimen described in Eastern Arctic Kayaks even had a big tin plate over the forefoot.
Here is a picture of some of the deck toggles (sliders and beads) I carved last night. I am forever grateful to Woody Woodside for the caribou antler. It really gives it that authentic look, and is amazing stuff to work with -- so much stronger than wood and lighter than resin. It has a distinctive odor. It's like the smell of a dog, the oily smell of burnt hair, burnt flesh. It's reminds me of being in dog lab or a major orthopedic procedure -- smokey cauterized bone.
What is the secret to working with antler? The Dremel Tool, of course! Just a touch with that high speed bit and the surface vaporizes leaving a cloud of antler dust in your face. I highly recommend wearing a face shield, respirator, and ear plugs.
Here is a pic of the protective end knob on the stern. It is a single piece of antler with the cancellous (spongy) center hollowed out. The decorative grooves and pits are not traditional: They are what I could do with the Dremel Tool attachments. Maybe later I'll try carving some seals or whales like John Petersen, but right now I'm just trying to get the kayak ready for the West Coast Sea Kayak Symposium in Port Townsend this weekend. See you there!