How to Make Canoe Seats

How to Make Canoe Seats
Every now and then, wood and cane canoe seats need to be replaced. Maybe the cane was cut or torn on an outing, or perhaps the seats finally succumbed to the elements. You can buy cane canoe seats from almost any canoe and kayak shop, but many people choose to make their own. The cost savings is insignificant really, but there is a pride in such an accomplishment. Moreover, do-it-yourself seats can be customized with different types of wood or patterns of caning to make an original creation which fits your personal style.


Difficulty: Moderate

Things You’ll Need:
  • Measuring tape Wood (1.5-inch x 1-inch works well) Circular or hand saw Finishing nails Wood glue Drill Cane
  • Measuring tape
  • Wood (1.5-inch x 1-inch works well)
  • Circular or hand saw
  • Finishing nails
  • Wood glue
  • Drill
  • Cane
Step 1
Mark the mounting points for the forward and rear seat braces on the gunwales of your canoe. If you are making replacement seats, the holes from mounting the original seats will of course serve as these marks.
Step 2
Measure the width of the canoe at both the forward and rearward mount points, and the distance between the points lengthwise.
Step 3
Cut two braces to the width measurements for each set of mount points.
Step 4
Cut two pieces of wood to the measurement of length between the mount points. These will be the cross braces of your seat.
Step 5
Join the cross braces to the width pieces using finishing nails and wood glue. Position these pieces so that the area left open in the middle of the four pieces is a perfect square.
Step 6
Drill holes for the cane around the square opening, 1/2 inch from the inside and 1 inch apart. Hole size will vary based upon the width of your chosen cane.
Step 7
Weave the cane into the seat. This will be the most time- consuming part of the seat construction. A great resource on seat caning is provided at the end of this article.

Tips & Warnings

For aesthetic purposes and to prevent abrasion, you may want to use a sander or sand paper to round off the edges of the wooden frame before attaching the cane.
Always wear proper safety equipment when working with power tools.

Article Written By Christopher Williams

Christopher Williams has spent over 11 years working in the information technology, health care and outdoor recreation fields. He has over seven years of technical and educational writing experience, and has brought strong skills and passion to the Demand Studios team in articles for eHow and Trails in 2009.

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