My son was tasked in carving a canoe like Lewis and Clark would of used during their exhibition up the Missouri River. We used a 4x3x12 piece of balsa wood. We cut the block in half to give us 2 blocks of 2x3x12. We shaped the sides of the canoe with a skill saw. Then we cut the bottom curve of the boat. We then dug out the inside of the canoe with a half inch chisel. It is very important to follow the grain of the wood. Balsa wood is very soft and light so when you are ready to sand make sure you have goggles and a respirator mask.