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Mystery Canoe

Discussion in 'Wood and Canvas' started by Jim Pendoley, Dec 12, 2020.

  1. Jim Pendoley

    Jim Pendoley Curious about Wooden Canoes

    Hoping folks can help me out identifying my latest project. I acquired this canoe for short money and I know it needs work. Never seen one like it-mostly I have had Old Towns. The canoe measures 14'11" from the tip of the bow deck to the tip of the stern deck. It is 32" wide at the centerline (inside face of inwale to inside face of inwale)and 13 1/2" deep at the centerline. The ribs are 2 3/16x 3/8" and there is a 1 3/8" space between ribs.. The rails are spruce. There is a number on the stem (011694). The hanger bolts for the single seat and the thwarts are round headed brass. There is one seat about 1/3 forward, a carrying yoke and a foward thwart. There are very small thwarts just behind the stern and forward decks. The decks are ash and are rounded on top. The finish is odd-looks like its just paint over canvas with no filler. The canvas is completely intact, though the finish is alligatored. about a half dozen ribs that need replacing, but no rot in the stems and planking is surprisingly intact except where the ribs cracked suggesting impact or somebody stepping into it when it was not floating. There are two boats in one of the pictures-the green one is an Octa.
    Would really appreciate others opinions-thinking its a Chestnut-but have no experieince with one sohoping the group can provide some clues.
    Jim
     

    Attached Files:

  2. Benson Gray

    Benson Gray Canoe History Enthusiast Staff Member

    My guess would be a Chestnut based on the six digit serial number with a leading zero. Can you provide a picture of the serial number?

    Benson
     
  3. OP
    OP
    Jim Pendoley

    Jim Pendoley Curious about Wooden Canoes

    Hi Benson, serial # attached. Just remeasured the correct depth-top of rail to outside face of canvas is 14" on the nose. Interesting there is little to no tumblehome and a bit of flare at bow and stern. Cant ribs are same width as the rest of the ribs. Inwales are tapered too. Two odd things: zero rot anywhere-even under the decks in the stems-solid. And it seems like the canvas was painted, but not filled first. The paint is massively peeling on the sides and ext to my OCTA it looks very round on the bottom and has a pretty shallow arch. I'm thinking a Kreuger perhaps?
     

    Attached Files:

  4. OP
    OP
    Jim Pendoley

    Jim Pendoley Curious about Wooden Canoes

    Now I'm thinking maybe a Chum?
     
  5. Benson Gray

    Benson Gray Canoe History Enthusiast Staff Member

    The serial number font does seem similar to the Chestnut style. There is a good summary of the various Chestnut catalog dimensions at https://woodencanoemuseum.org/index.php/builder-history/chestnut-canoe-company which may help. An unfilled canvas seems more likely to be from a smaller builder or a replacement. There are others here who know much more about Canadian canoes than I do so they may be able to offer a better opinion.

    Benson
     
  6. Andre Cloutier

    Andre Cloutier Firestarter. Wicked Firestarter.

    Doubt Chestnut built that, never seen one with tapered inner rails. decks and carry thwarts are too chunky as well. Benson is on to something with his suggestion of a smaller builder, and likely after Chestnut went out of business. More interior photos of details may help
     
  7. OP
    OP
    Jim Pendoley

    Jim Pendoley Curious about Wooden Canoes

    Andre, thanks for your opinion. I am beginning to suspect a one off as well, perhaps off a remnant chestnut mold. For one thing, the stems and decks are in such good shape I kind of doubt it could’ve been around since 1977. For only $300 looking forward to the restoration and seeing how well she paddles. Very deep hull when put next to my Octa and very round bottom, but not a ton of rocker for and aft. Should be an interesting experience on the first paddle.
    This restoration thing is kind of addicting.
    Jim
     
  8. Andre Cloutier

    Andre Cloutier Firestarter. Wicked Firestarter.

    flat sheer and goofy stem profile, along with the round hull and depth makes me think cedarwood or another builder. then again, it may have come off another form entirely rather than a fox or chum mold. enjoy it, its definitely a cedar canvas canoe, no doubt about it
     

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