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serial number help

Discussion in 'Serial Number Search' started by Michael Ellington, Aug 6, 2021.

  1. Michael Ellington

    Michael Ellington Curious about Wooden Canoes

    good day
    i just bought an old town canoe used from an individual
    serial number is 206504
    i know it from the mid 70's and it's 17' long but i don't know anything else
    the seller tells me it's fiberglass but it's not. i am fairly sure of that.
    my guess is royalex but not 100%. it has the vinyl gunwells not wood
    the bottom is flat with a slight keel
    if it is royalex is it ok to leave tarped up outside upside down in a higher elevation setting
    or will it still cold crack even though the gunwells are vinyl and not wood
    thanks for the help
  2. Benson Gray

    Benson Gray Canoe History Enthusiast Staff Member

    Welcome and congratulations, the Old Town canoe with serial number 206504 is a 17 foot long Chipewyan Tripper model that weighed 74 pounds with aluminum inserts in the rails. It was built in February, 1975. The original exterior color was green. It shipped on March 28th, 1975 to Chicago, Illinois. The back side of the record indicates that there were some scuffs and bubbles on the inside of the bow end. The warranty card was returned on April 19th, 1975 from Chicago, Illinois. Scans showing both sides this build record can be found below.

    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 donate or join.

    It is also possible that you could have another number or manufacturer if this description doesn't match the canoe. You are correct that this canoe is not made from fiberglass. It is built from an acrylonitrile-butadiene-styrene (ABS) plastic. This is the generic name for Royalex which is Uniroyal's trade name. Old Town called their version Oltonar since it was slightly different from Royalex. Cold cracking is most common on ABS canoes with wooden gunwales. Yours is less likely to suffer from this but that really depends on a variety of factors including the size, speed, and frequency of the temperature swings. A tarp should help because extended exposure to direct sunlight will also cause issues over time. Feel free to reply here if you have any other questions. Good luck,



    Last edited: Aug 7, 2021
    Michael Ellington likes this.
  3. OP
    Michael Ellington

    Michael Ellington Curious about Wooden Canoes

    sweet thanks so much. your report is spot on especially with the bubbles. i did a a little research on the canoe before i bought and i thought it was tripper due to pictures that i found online. not a lot of information can be found on these older old town canoes. thanks again for your help. i live at almost 9,000 feet and we get average of 100" of snow every year so i will probably build a doghouse shed roof for the canoe or find room in the garage which is tough due to a small garage. once again thank you

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