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What's my Old Town?

Discussion in 'Serial Number Search' started by Capnbg, Jun 21, 2019.

  1. Capnbg

    Capnbg New Member

    My Old Town's serial number is XTC34295M80J. Can you give me any information about the model, etc? Thank-you, in advance.
  2. Benson Gray

    Benson Gray Canoe History Enthusiast Staff Member

    The Old Town canoe with hull identification number XTC34295M80J and serial number 234295 is a 16 foot long, ABS Chipewyan Penobscot model with aluminum inserts in the rails that weighed 83 pounds. It was built in May, 1980. The original exterior vinyl color was green. It shipped on July 7th, 1980 to Sinking Spring, Pennsylvania. The back side of the scan indicates that a 17 foot long original sheet was used. Scans showing both sides this build record can be found by following the links at the attached thumbnail images below.

    234295.jpg 234295-b.jpg

    These scans and several hundred thousand more were created with substantial grants from the Wooden Canoe Heritage Association (WCHA) and others. A description of the project to preserve these records is available at if you want more details. I hope that you will donate, join or renew your membership to the WCHA so that services like this can continue. See to learn more about the WCHA and to join.

    It is also possible that you could have another number or manufacturer if this description doesn't match. Feel free to reply here if you have any other questions.

  3. OP

    Capnbg New Member


    What you say makes sense. The canoe is 16' and matches my memory that it was a Penobscot. It does not have a decal or plate on it to indicate that that is what it is. I spoke with an Old Town rep this afternoon and was told that they did not make Penobscots or 16' tripping canoes in 1980, so that was kind of frustrating. Sinking Springs, PA also sounds right, because my college buddy and I purchased two used canoes from a Boy Scout troop that was local to Lancaster, PA. The troop would purchase a group of Old Town canoes, use them for a few years, sell them, and buy another lot of new ones. They may have received a discount from Old Town and were able to use the sales for a small fundraiser. Sinking Springs is about 20 minutes from Lancaster. We both purchased the same model canoe from them, but mine is green and his is red.

    I was calling Old Town because I need to replace my thwart and yoke. Not only could they not match my canoe with what they thought they made in 1980, they no longer produce thwarts and yokes of the same length that my canoe has. I've got to get longer ones and trim them to size. I'm sure it'll all work out.

    I will take a look at the links you provided and make a donation. I appreciate your quick response and it is neat to have the historical record of the canoe's manufacture, purchase, and shipping.

  4. Benson Gray

    Benson Gray Canoe History Enthusiast Staff Member

    The Penobscot was introduced in the 1981 catalog as shown below but it was not unusual for them to start making a new model in the pervious year. More information like this is available from in the scanned catalogs. One of the restorers listed at can probably make a thwart and a yoke in the size you want if you don't want to cut down longer ones. Good luck,


    Last edited: Jun 22, 2019
  5. MGC

    MGC Scrapmaker

    There are quite a few companies that make replacement parts (thwarts, seats etc.) for these boats. Nice replacement wood framed caned seats are an upgrade from the older rotomolded plastic.
    It is normal to cut to fit and it's also quite easy. You can eyeball the length by looking at the canoes lines. If the thwart is too long it will push the rails out and if it's too short you'll pull the rails can see that if you step back from the boat and look at it. Perfection to the thousandths of an inch is not required...
    It's better to cut a bit long and have the thwart close to the hull under the rail than cut it too do not want the screw holes to be too close to the end of the thwart...more wood is good and prevents pull throughs.
    The Penobscot was a really great canoe...Old Town really got it right with this one. If it's not already done, you might want to consider adding Kevlar bangplates to protect the stems from wear. They ain't makin these no more.
  6. OP

    Capnbg New Member


    Thanks for the thoughts on trimming thwarts. Good advice. I was thinking about getting a pair of the wood framed caned seats. I'm kind of a stock equipment guy, but may go for this change. My canoe does have the Kevlar bang plates. I got mine canoe about 35 years ago from a Boy Scout troop and they are rough on canoes, so they put the plates on when they purchased them.

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