Ive wanted to learn to make snowshoes for some time but never got around to it. Now is the time I guess. Before I make actual sized and wearable shoes I will start by making half scale versions. Here is the process Im using as I learn about steam bending wood. Im using oak since Ash is hard to come by. I shape and thin the oak stick in the areas where the bends are otherwise it will break and I have broken many until I got a pattern that works.
The form I made.
The high tech steam creator (since one cant buy steam, premade)
The steam chamber is PVC
After a hour of steam It can be coaxed around the form.
and the nose bent
After a day or two its dry enough to hold the shape and crossbars are added and its sanded because the steam raises hell with the wood
Then I lace the heel and toe with deer skin and varnish everything.
Since the prototypes are half scale and cant be worn I will turn them into art pieces. The first batch will have deerskin leather enters with artwork.
Again, these are half scale.
Then I thought, since this is the 21st century I would make electric snowshoes so I bought a small light and cordset and fashioned up a lamp but I wanted a lamp that I could customize or change with the seasons. For the lampshade I printed oak and birch skin on legal sized paper on my printer. For the frame I steam bent small strips of oak.
Then I thought about adding a background that appears only when the light is on. (with oak)
Then I went kind of nuts because its easy to change the skins.
The sky is the limit for options in regards to silhouettes but then I had another thought on how to customize behind the bark only when the light is on.
Then I went kind of nuts.
Now Im thinking 2 snowshoes side by side to create a shelf or other ideas for how to use these half sized shoes.