Kayak Ribs
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Rib intro

Ribs from milled lumber

Ribs from green wood, intro

Rib gathering in urban environments

Species suitable for green ribs

Making flat ribs from green wood

Making Ribs

While building a kayak is mostly a straightforward process, making ribs does require some finesse and practice. A first time ribbing job can often end up with over half of the ribs breaking. However, if you follow a number of rules, your success rate will improve. This section deals with two different approaches to rib making. One approach is to start with milled lumber purchased from a lumber supplier. The other is to start with green wood that you have collected yourself.

Admittedly, starting with lumber yard stock to make your ribs is less time consuming than collecting your own green wood to make ribs. But collecting your own wood is a rewarding experience in itself and well worth the extra time. Collecting your own rib stock is also a way to avoid using a table saw to cut up rib stock.

Rib types
Ribs types can be divided roughly into round ribs and flat ribs. Flat ribs have a rectangular cross section, round ribs have a round cross section. All rib types can be made from either milled lumber or green lumber, but round ribs are easier to make from green twigs. Neither green nor milled lumber offers any distinct advantage for the making of flat ribs.

All content copyright © 2005 Wolfgang Brinck. Personal non-commercial use permitted.