Strathroy, Ontario, Canada – July 12, 2022 – The Sansin Corporation, a global leader in environmentally friendly, high-performance wood protection, today announced that a canoe paddle, dubbed The Big Dipper and located in Killarney, Ontario, has been awarded a Guinness World Record for the largest oar/paddle. The paddle showcases Sansin’s wood and weathering treatments, including Boracol and WoodForce Intermix.
The paddle is on display at Killarney Mountain Lodge & Conference Centre, which is home to the largest log conference center in the world, Canada House Conference Center. Canada House is also protected with Sansin finishes.
The Big Dipper was designed and constructed by renowned canoeist Mike Ranta using Eastern white cedar wood, which is native to the area. The paddle is 110 feet, six inches long and 17 feet wide at its blade and weighs about six tons. It signifies the most prevalent means of transportation in the early days of the Georgian Bay village of Killarney.
“I’m in awe; it’s really hard to describe the size of this thing,” said Ranta, who was the first person to cross the North American continent solo by canoe in one season, a trek that earned him a Meritorious Service Medal from the Canadian government. “I’ve been wanting to build this paddle for about 15 years now, it was just a matter of finding the right people to partner with to make it come to life.” Ranta added that the paddle is also a tribute to Canada’s veterans, many of whom he’s met during his canoe adventures with his trusty canine companion, Spitz.
“The importance of the Canadian canoe paddle can’t be emphasized enough. It was the lever that propelled this country into worldwide trade and put us on the map,” noted Holden Rhodes, owner of Killarney Mountain Lodge. “Killarney was a key intersection between the North and the rest of the country. We are thrilled to have this symbol on the grounds of Canada House and thank all the partners who made it possible.”
Ranta included a stainless-steel time capsule within the Big Dipper that stores items representative of life during the time the paddle was constructed, including photos, letters and small carvings. It is locked inside the wood and won’t be opened for 200 years.
“The Big Dipper is a spectacular project that really highlights the history, beauty and durability of wood,” said Caroline March-Long, Director of Sales & Marketing at Sansin, which donated its products for the project. “We are proud to have helped make this big dream a reality by contributing to the protection of the paddle.”
The complete Sansin coating system includes the installation of Impel Boron Rods and a pre-treatment with Boracol 20-2 to help combat attacks from both fungus and wood boring insects. The Big Dipper was also finished with two coats of WoodForce Intermix in a translucent tan hue that will allow the wood to weather naturally while offering exceptional water repellency and protection from blackening, discoloration and wood rot.
To learn more about The Sansin Corporation, or how to become a Sansin preferred dealer, visit www.sansin.com.