ash gunwales

Any suggestions for sources of replacement ash gunwales for my Mad River Revelation. It has taken a beating on a few trips, lastly the Noire. My local boat shop has a two month backlog of work, and the price quoted seemd alot ($500 US) for screwing a couple of pieces of wood into the hull. I think I am up to the task.

Any dealer…
who sells canoes of any worth could get your gunwhales for you. Ask them to put them on their next boat order, if they come by trailer. No problem for them to get them and ship them with their next canoe shipment. Some companies may ship you some direct if they have a trailer going near you. Give Bell or We-no-nah a ring for starters? Or Mad River for that matter. $500 sounds a bit high. Do it yourself, eh?

It is not too difficult to find long lengths of clear ash in the NE. Western NY and PA are good areas to look for local sawmills who can rough cut a board for you. I’ve got a clear 20 footer in my garage right now that already gave up one set of inwales and outwales and probably has two more in it. It came from somewhere in western NY.


After you have bought the needed
clamps and have gone through the whole process, $500 may not seem so unreasonable.

Hey G2D
You have the wrong mind set on making your own gunwales. you do not need Clamps and such.( or at least I did not) You look at all of your acquaintances, and find the one who has all the

tools and maybe a barn too.

Be polite and not to much of a bother and give them a nice bottle of Brandy afterwards. Cost of my gunwales was under $50.00 bucks (US). Admitadly I scarfed together the wood to get the 16 foot lengths but most people are very helpful.


Jimmy roughed out his own
Months ago, my friend Jimmy was looking for ash for his gunwales. We checked in with a couple sources McCrae identified for us in southern Pa, but the place we found that would order long pieces of ash for us was World of Hardwoods, in Harmons, MD.

I posted here and offered to try to broker a milling run to turn out some gunwales. It would’ve worked out to about $90 a boat if I got the order up to five boats’ worth of gunwales.

Meanwhile, while I was getting quotes and figuring this out, Jimmy went up to Harmons, bought a piece of ash, ripped it down on a table saw, and ran a router over two edges to round it off. They were a bit beefier than the originals and are not perfectly shaped gunwales, but he has a canoe he can paddle. His out of pocket cost was roughly $35.

When I called Jimmy to let him know my great solution, he popped my balloon. “That’s nice, man, but I had a job up by Harmons, stopped in and…” He was already paddling. I think his solution may not be so artistic, but he’s paddling.

I lost interest in the project after that. I kept meaning to write back to a couple p-netters who had indicated interest in getting gunwales, and suddenly it’s a couple month’s later. Sorry guys.

~~Chip Walsh, Gambrills, MD