Here’s a video of our co-ed sprint heat from the canoe races at PSWC 2014, courtesy of captain Jake’s parents. This was the first heat we’ve won in years! Our team took advantage of DiSCovery II’s straight speed and their extensive preparation on their way to qualify for the small final. The coed race consists of two down-and-back laps for a total distance of 400 meters.
The main event of PSWC Day 2 is the Concrete Canoe Race Competition. All 16 schools with functional canoes compete in 5 events:
Men’s Endurance/Slalom (time-based)
Men’s Sprints (Heats, Small & Big Finals)
Co-ed Double-sprints (4-person)
Our canoe successfully made it through all of the races, and looked great in the process!
Early morning at the site of the canoe races. We arrived around 6:30am.
Unloading the canoe for the races.
Bringing the canoe to our spot on the beach.
Preparing to set the canoe down on its beach stands.
DiSCovery II waits to get into the water.
Our President and VP handle the canoe’s gunwale caps.
Canoe team, getting ready for the swamp test.
Carrying DiSCovery II into the water for the first time.
DiSCovery II floats!
We have to completely submerge our canoe, then prove that it floats back to the surface, to pass the swamp test.
Filling the canoe with water.
Our cheering squad watches from the beach, hoping our canoe floats.
Filling the canoe with water.
Time to push DiSCovery II completely underwater.
Release the canoe, and don’t touch it, while the judges watch.
DiSCovery II passes the swamp test!
Bailing the water back out of DiSCovery II.
Bringing DiSCovery II back onto the beach while we wait for the races to begin.
Attaching gunwale caps to the edges of the canoe, to protect them while paddling.
Loading the canoe for the Men’s Endurance race.
Sending DiSCovery II off for her first race.
Lining up for the men’s endurance race.
The rest of the team prepares to cheer our paddlers on from the beach.
Waiting for the men’s endurance race to begin.
Coming in from the men’s endurance race.
One race down, 4 to go!
Waiting for the other schools to race.
Watching our women’s endurance team head out.
Waiting for the women’s endurance team to line up.
Digging in for a turn. The endurance slalom races challenge teams with a series of tight turns around buoys.
Women’s endurance heading in.
Men’s sprints lining up.
Men’s sprints heading in after finishing 2nd in the heat.
Men’s sprints coming in after winning the small final (by only a second)!
Relaxing on the beach between races.
Small-final-winning men’s sprints team after their last race.
Women’s sprints team practicing.
Women’s sprints team heading out.
Cheering for the women’s sprints team.
Women’s sprints lining up.
Judges’ scoreboard after all the heats, with lane assignments for the finals.
Co-ed sprints team heads out.
Co-ed sprints team comes in after winning their heat!
2014 Concrete Canoe Paddling Team.
2014 Concrete Canoe Team.
2014 USC ASCE PSWC Team.
Time to bring the canoe back home.
We don’t really need this many people to help carry it, but everyone wants to help!
Carrying the canoe back from the beach.
Loading DiSCovery II back into the trailer.
Our canoe’s in the water and it’s floating well—too well. We actually had trouble submerging it for the swamp test (where we have to prove that it’ll float). Here’re some clips of SC Traveler in the water (as we bail the water from the swamp test).
The buoyancy is a result of our massive
Our canoe’s concrete mix is designed to be less dense than water, in order to ensure that it will float (although other factors also influence whether our canoe floats). This year’s mix is less dense than water, but only just. So as an added precaution, we add foam and air pockets (encased in concrete) to the canoe in the bulkheads (at the bow and stern). This way we have some added flotation factor just in case something goes wrong with our mix design!
The canoe wants bulkheads!
First batch of mix
Trimming bulkheads, and cleaning up
Patching the top edge of the canoe
Fitting, trimming, fitting, trimming…
We started running into a lot of balloons in our trimming…
Placing concrete patches
Cleaning out the stray foam pieces
Edges look good
One bulkhead done!
Erin: we’re going to need to take like six inches off the top. Nick: okay, I’ll just go for it. Both: uh, there go all of our air pockets…
We had a couple leftover balloons to put inside popped balloon pockets
Mixing another batch of concrete
We ended up stuffing the balloon pockets with the foam we chopped off
Patching done, ready for bulkheads!
Bulkhead patching almost done
I guess it could look worse…
We still had to place the third layer of concrete on the ends under the bulkhead
Wait, our bulkheads are both 6″ too long? … let’s chop them down more…
Packing in the bulkhead
Placing this goes way faster than the rest of the canoe
One down, one to go
One more mix!
bulkheads look good
And the humidifying setup is reconstructed. DONE.
Yeah, cardboard’s not sandable…
– Erin Khan, Canoe Captain