How to Trim Stem Pieces by John Lindman

I don't know about you but one thing that use to bug me was how to do the cut where the bottom of the stem piece meets the bottom of the canoe. You know where I'm talking about? At the bottom of the curve of the stem piece where the cut ends. How to you make that perfect every time. I would shudder when it came to doing that because I was afraid I would screw it up until one day like a divine bolt of light it came to me.

Here's how it's done:
1. You have the stem piece pegged in place
2. The bark has been trimmed on one side almost to the bottom
3. The bark has been trimmed on the other side with a little extra showing for adjustment
4. Take the canoe out of the building bed
3. Flip it over on saw horses
4. Line it up so that the stem is perpendicular - straight up and down. Re-peg it as necessary.
5. Make an incision right down the middle of the bark, directly over the center of the stem piece and about as far back as you want the curve to go - where the curve meets the bottom of the canoe.
6. From underneath, inside the canoe, push the stem piece so that it is snug up against the bottom.
7. Get it pegged in place. It should be perpendicular and in alignment from one end to the other.
8. Trim the bark on both sides of the incision, the one you made down the center of the bottom part of the stem piece.
9. You should be all set at that point.

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