Canoe Cane Seat Repair

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About: Professionally I have been a summer camp counselor, a Draftsman/designer, salesperson, bicycle mechanic, laminate flooring machine mechanic, teacher, and designer of the OP Loftbed. Personally I am a human...

I found a great deal on a used canoe. The canoe was already ten years old, when I got it. After using it for a couple of years, the cane seat started showing it's age and developed a tear that slowly got bigger. I thought about just covering it with some strapping, but I like the look and feel of the original cane seat. I found a new seat frame and all. I then found that you could get the materials to repair the seat for about half the price of a new seat. In this Instructable I will show you how I replaced the old cane webbing to make my canoe seat like new again.

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Step 1: Tools and Supplies

I found a cane seat repair kit on Amazon: https://amzn.to/37LC6jP

I used a small slotted screwdriver, to get out the old spline, but If I do this repair again I will invest in a caning chisel https://amzn.to/2supVYG

I used some drywall sanding mesh to sand some of the rough surfaces of the seat frame.

The glue I used was Titebond III Ultimate Wood glue: https://amzn.to/2OUcHMp There are all types of glue you could use but in this application, it should be water proof.

I used an old workmate clamping table to hold the seat at a good height to work on. This is the modern equivalent: https://amzn.to/33zvMZk

To get the seat out of the canoe I needed a Phillips screwdriver and a 3 /8" wrench.

The shears are something I used as a fulcrum for prying with the screwdriver.

I created my on "hold down" wedges by using small pieces of spline. (see the mistakes step)

A soft face hammer to bang in the spline. https://amzn.to/2R5XavA

A utility knife to trim off the excess webbing. https://amzn.to/33vRrBN

A bucket of water to soak the cane webbing and spline.

And a sponge to clean up the extra glue.

Step 2: Hold Still

You could probably repair the seat while it is still in the canoe, but taking it out and clamping it would make it a lot easier.

Step 3: Out With the Old

I used a small slotted screwdriver, to get out the old spline, but If I do this repair again I will invest in a caning chisel https://amzn.to/2supVYG

I also used a pair of snips, or really just used the rubber handles of the snips as a fulcrum to pry the screwdriver against to rip out the old spline and cane webbing.

This was a very time consuming process. You need to get all the old spline and webbing out to make a nice clean surface for the new webbing and spline.

Step 4: In With the New

I trimmed the new cane webbing about an inch wider than the slot in the seat frame. I then put a liberal amount of the Titebond glue into the slot.

Step 5: Spline

The spline comes in different widths, so measure your old spline before ordering the new material. The spline is almost a wedge shape with a convex top. You want to hammer it into the grove of the frame to secure the webbing. I started in the middle of one side and worked my way around. Once I got back to where I started, I trimmed the spline to length before hammering it in beside the starting end of the spline. I used the soft face hammer an a small ball peen hammer to get it nice and flat into the grove.

Step 6: Learn From My Mistakes

I found that as I was hammering in the spline, it was causing the webbing to twist and buckle. I decided to trim some small pieces of the spline and use them to temporarily hold the webbing in place while I hammered in the large piece of spline. As I was hammering in the large piece of spline, I would remove the small pieces as I got to them. This worked to hold the webbing straight and resulted in a nice flat piece of webbing once it was all done.

Step 7: Trim Off the Excess

I used a utility knife to trim of the excess webbing. I held the knife at an angle and was careful to not cut the spline.

Step 8: Clean Up the Extra Glue

I used a sponge and water to wipe away any excess glue before it dried. The Titebond is a great waterproof glue and as a result, if you don't clean it while it is wet it is almost impossible to clean later. Let the glue dry for at least 24 hours before using your like new seat.

Step 9: Video

As usual, I made a video.

If you like this video, Please subscribe to my YouTube Channel.

Thank you.

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    Discussions

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    tytower

    6 days ago

    Looks great. Nice to know it can be done . Does the spline go in curved side down or up? Also PVS is not waterproof and will go rubbery and come away when wetted for a while . I would suggest a polyurethane glue or even varnish would be more suitable. Thanks