Help support the WCHA Forums by making a tax-deductible donation!

Question - Motor for Old Town 15' Square Stern

Discussion in 'Miscellaneous' started by Erik Rolle, Jun 18, 2019.

  1. Erik Rolle

    Erik Rolle Curious about Wooden Canoes

    Boat new to me, used once with finicky 5.4 hp Evinrude Zephyr (1947) I had to have Zephyr cause it was "cool". Neat motor, but constantly adjusting carburetor low and high speed adjustments, hard starting, doesn't idle well and no forward or reverse. I want more dependability...

    Found a 1953 10 hp Johnson rebuilt (not cheap but like new so...). I think Old Town said 6 hp max, saw a post by Mr. Benson that said Old Town revised hp to 7.5 in 50's (my boat is 1966). The 5.4 hp did okay, but seemed to be lugging a bit. Speed tolerable, but seemed we could have done with a more motor and progressed with more authority easy...

    Use is Lakes and big rivers in Southeast U.S. Always pushing 600lbs in boat (wife, me, two big dogs and stuff).

    Is the extra 10lbs of motor (over 7.5 hp) and additional hp too much? Anyone with experience that would share?

    Erik
     
  2. Gil Cramer

    Gil Cramer The wooden canoe Shop, Inc.

    For storage and trailering, any motor on the transom is too much. The boat has 3/16" cedar planking and 5/16" or 3/8" cedar ribs. The keel and keelson aren't strong enough to keep the bottom from developing a hook-especially with a 60lb, 10 hp Johnson motor. I would never recommend going over the rated horsepower.
     
    Erik Rolle likes this.
  3. Benson Gray

    Benson Gray Canoe History Enthusiast Staff Member

    Can you supply the serial number from your Old Town? The square stern model was last listed in the 1964 Old Town catalog in 12, 14, and 16 foot lengths. The text in the 1964 catalog said "Performs beautifully with 2 1/2 to 10 H.P." The general rule of thumb is to remove the motor when not in the water and never exceed the rated horsepower as Gil suggested. The strength of the transom's wood and fastenings may have declined in the past sixty years.

    Benson
     
    Erik Rolle likes this.
  4. Gil Cramer

    Gil Cramer The wooden canoe Shop, Inc.

    The 15' square stern canvas covered canoe had a 42" beam. the 16'canvas covered boat had a 48" beam. They were rated for up to a 7.5 hp and 10 hp motor respectively. Either could have been manufactured in 1966.
     
    Erik Rolle likes this.
  5. OP
    OP
    Erik Rolle

    Erik Rolle Curious about Wooden Canoes

  6. OP
    OP
    Erik Rolle

    Erik Rolle Curious about Wooden Canoes

    Ythank you all for your thoughts and comments. I would never trailer with the motor on. But I am interested on your thought of the over powering the boat. I am lucky that this boat were stored inside its entire life when not in the water. I bought from a single owner.
     
  7. OP
    OP
    Erik Rolle

    Erik Rolle Curious about Wooden Canoes

    I would love to know with my serial number what the maximum horsepower rating is (7.5 vs 10). But I do understand the advice regarding age of boat.

    Edit! I think I understand my boat is the 15 foot and therefore has the maximum horsepower rating of 7 1/2.

    Thank y’all very much! Not what I wanted to hear...
     
  8. Dave Osborn

    Dave Osborn LIFE MEMBER

    Erik,
    Apparently up to 10 hp was suggested in 1964. That boat would scream with a 10hp! It would be fun!
    I had a 1958 3 hp Johnson on mine. I wanted to put a similar modeled 5 hp on it, but never did.
    Anything over 5hp is hard to find with a self contained gas tank. I didn’t want to have to deal with an separate gas tank with a larger motor. Takes up space, is heavy, etc. thus the desire for 5hp.
     
  9. OP
    OP
    Erik Rolle

    Erik Rolle Curious about Wooden Canoes

    Dave that's in part why I bought the Zephyr motor (5.4 hp). But I will say the fuel leaks out of the cap when the motor is put on its side...potential downside to tank integral with motor if putting in wife's Subaru vs my truck! Smelly gas in car....

    But I think my max rating is 7.5 hp...dangit...I better listen even if I don't like it...wife will re-evaluate my wood boats if I turn my sponson canoe into a floating bathtub and send my $$ motor and transom to the bottom of the lake!

    But...maybe just not operate at full throttle...well maybe j just once....

    Benson didn't list the 15' for the 10 hp rating...
    :)
     
  10. Dave Osborn

    Dave Osborn LIFE MEMBER

    Here is what I read. Looks ok with a 10hp.

    The square stern model was last listed in the 1964 Old Town catalog in 12, 14, and 16 foot lengths. The text in the 1964 catalog said "Performs beautifully with 2 1/2 to 10 H.P."
     
    Erik Rolle likes this.
  11. OP
    OP
    Erik Rolle

    Erik Rolle Curious about Wooden Canoes

  12. OP
    OP
    Erik Rolle

    Erik Rolle Curious about Wooden Canoes

  13. OP
    OP
    Erik Rolle

    Erik Rolle Curious about Wooden Canoes

    You know Dave, I think you are right. I’ll wait a bit for Benson...Gil had a different interpretation. I was also hoping someone “”has done it” and had thoughts to add. I know there has to be a rebel that matched or exceeded the hp rating out there somewhere!
     
  14. OP
    OP
    Erik Rolle

    Erik Rolle Curious about Wooden Canoes

    The Zephyr
    IMG_8233.jpg
     
  15. OP
    OP
    Erik Rolle

    Erik Rolle Curious about Wooden Canoes

    B96BF73D-F475-4F91-A3F5-93B2A97E0790.jpeg This is what I am searching for advice on...
     
  16. Benson Gray

    Benson Gray Canoe History Enthusiast Staff Member

    It is confusing but the Old Town square stern model is different from their square end canoe model. The square end canoe model page from the 1966 catalog is attached below. It clearly mentions "Motors of 2 1/2 H.P. to 7 1/2 H.P." but does not specify which is best for the smaller 15 foot version. People have put larger motors on these but they do so at their own risk. More information about these models is available from http://www.wcha.org/store/complete-old-town-canoe-company-catalog-collection in the scanned catalogs. Let us know what you decide to do and how it works out. Thanks,

    Benson

    PAGE-07.JPG
     
    Erik Rolle likes this.
  17. OP
    OP
    Erik Rolle

    Erik Rolle Curious about Wooden Canoes

    Thanks Benson; that's about as good as an answer as I expected (not wanted, LOL). 7.5 hp it is, I'm old enough now to listen to wisdom (took 53 years). Similarly, the tires on my truck have gotten smaller with age... :)

    I'll wait for 7.5 hp motor. 10 h.p. would probably be fine, but not worth risk.

    Thanks all.
     
    Benson Gray likes this.
  18. OP
    OP
    Erik Rolle

    Erik Rolle Curious about Wooden Canoes

    Dang...who am I kidding? This is a nice motor...there might be a follow up if I get to the “hold my beer and watch this” point...
     

Share This Page