The entire day I was occupied in finishing a Solomon Island war canoe, the famous “Tomako” used to go hunting for ‘heads”. But this model has been commissioned to serve as a gift to be offered to a famous author about Pacific history and culture. I am posting here a picture of the prow ornaments of the canoe but further details can be seen in my Hawaiiancanoes Flickr album. I have a special liking for the Solomon Islands canoes.
Indeed I find them to be some of the most gracious canoes ever built in the South Pacific. Ingeniously plank built, rather than carved, the prow and stern of those war canoes are exceptionally tall and beautifully decorated with shells and feathers, as well as with the famous nguzu-nguzu figure. Another type of canoe very similar to the Tomako, and plank built as well, is the Filipino banca (boat) from Lake Taal.
If their hull shape and impressive prow and stern looks very much alike the Tomaka, they differ however in that the Tomako has no beams and floats whereby the Filipino banca is invariably equipped with a set of 2 double outriggers, sometimes 3 for the larger bancas. And again, there is a further type of canoe whose hull shape and construction is remarkably similar to the two previous ones, and this is the Perahu katir from Java.
After spending most of the day on the Tomako model, I hurried to draw the lines for the 2 hulls of the voyaging canoe as viewed from top. Without that set of line drawings I would not be able to calculate the height of the beams nor have a proper idea regarding the shape and width of the beams.