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Placement of oarlocks on a freighter canoe

Discussion in 'Wood and Canvas' started by owlsroost, Jul 11, 2021.

  1. owlsroost

    owlsroost Fishing Guide

    I have a Nor-West 20 foot freighter. It has a 52" beam and weights 325 pounds (dry). As you can imagine it doesn't paddle very well, so I am considering installing oarlocks and equipping it with oars in case of engine failure. My question is the placement of the oarlocks on the gunwale? It has open gunwales and both are 1 3/8" oak, so I think they are substantial enough to equip with oarlocks. Is there a formula to determine their placement?

    Nor-West 20 Footer on Aziscfohos (1 of 1).jpg
     
  2. Dave Osborn

    Dave Osborn LIFE MEMBER

    From what I read, oarlocks should be approximately 13” from the edge of the rowing seat.
    An internet search about oarlock location and oar length will help you find the info you want.
     
  3. Todd Bradshaw

    Todd Bradshaw Sailmaker

    Yep, something in the 12"-13" range seems pretty normal. You might also want to consider some wooden oar lock pads attached on top of the gunwale with the oarlocks mounted to the pads. Not absolutely necessary, but they usually add a bit more strength and better clearance between the oars and gunwales. You can see them on this gorgeous Rangeley Lakes Boat from Stewart River Boatworks.

    stewart river Rangeley.JPG
     
    Rob Stevens likes this.

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