Friday, February 27, 2009
A direct connection between the ama and crossbeams is typically seen in Hawaii. It is especially suitable for heavy surf landings where a strut connection would more easily be damaged if the canoe was overturned.
Modern Hawaiian types usually have a small raised portion on the ama to lift the ends of the crossbeams higher above the water. Strips of rubber tire innertube used for lashing also reduce the chance of damage in the surf.
Top photo taken from "The Hawaiian Canoe" by Tommy Holmes. Drawing taken from "Canoes of Oceania" by Haddon and Hornell. Bottom photo is a fiberglass production model Ulua.
Saturday, February 21, 2009
In Tahiti we can see a fine example of a mixed connection. The stiff forward crossbeam uses a standard four strut connection while the slender and flexible aft crossbeam acts as a spring to allow the ama a limited range of motion in the pitch axis.
This is an even better example of a springy aft crossbeam from Bora Bora.
Thursday, February 12, 2009
One of the simplest ama connections used is the forked stick as is shown in the above photo by Tony Whincup, of canoes racing in Tarawa lagoon. This method is scalable up to very large canoes such as the 75 ft Taratai shown below.
Saturday, February 7, 2009
The image above shows a typical ama connection used in Madagascar, off the coast of East Africa.
According to "Canoes of Oceania", this ama connection from the Marquesas Islands, at the far opposite end of outrigger canoe territory, was actually inspired by a person from East Africa that settled in the Marquesas in the late 1800's. The U shaped cutout at the top is used to hold fishing spears.
I use a variation of this technique on several of my outrigger canoe designs, because is is quick and easy to disconnect and allows the ama to pitch without stressing the connection.
Monday, February 2, 2009
This canoe was built in Pukapuka in the Northern Cook Islands and was used for catching flying fish out in the lagoon at night. It is now kept at a museum in Rarotonga.
The view is from the stern which has a carved shape at the end. The bow is low with a wave piercing shape. These canoes were sailed in years past but this example no longer has its rig.
There are three crossbeams using straight connecting struts. A lashing between the crossbeam and the ama holds the struts firmly in holes drilled in the ama. The middle crossbeam has only two struts but the two other crossbeams have four struts.
This arrangement may look flimsy, but my own experience with straight stick connectives has shown that they are very seaworthy indeed.