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Seeking help to recanvas a war canoe at the 2013 Assembly

Discussion in 'Annual Assembly' started by Benson Gray, Oct 30, 2012.

  1. Benson Gray

    Benson Gray Canoe History Enthusiast Staff Member

    Caleb Davis is looking for someone to help lead a project to sand, prepare, and canvas a war canoe at the 2013 Assembly (or some other location near Long Lake).

    The canoe is a 25 foot long Old Town war canoe with serial number 17816 as shown below. It was built in 1911 and shipped to Long Lake, New York where it has been ever since. Caleb found it hanging in the County Garage and no one knew much about it. It was last owned by the American Legion and has since been given it to the town recreation department to use for promoting canoeing in town. Long Lake has a long and distinguished history in both canoes and guide boats.

    Caleb has the canoe in his back yard now and feels that the condition is pretty good. He has taken off the rotting canvas and the hull is mostly sound. There are a couple of places where new planking is needed. The keel is good. The stems are shaky but repairable without new steaming etc. There are several ribs that have minor cracks but are keeping their shape. There is one rib that has a four inch piece missing.The interior is brittle varnish and exposed wood.

    His plan was to replace the needed planking, patch in the rib and reinforce the other ribs with a small epoxy patch. He would like to bring it to the next Assembly for sanding, preparation, and canvassing. He can do all the rest. The idea is to make this sea worthy (i.e. nicely refinished but not a restoration job to have a perfect 1911 boat from the factory). The goal is to have a boat to take people out and experience canoeing on Long Lake.

    His contact information is at if you want more details. Please contact him or me if you would like to help. Thanks,


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    Last edited: Oct 30, 2012
  2. ken.kelly

    ken.kelly LOVES Wooden Canoes

    This is a great idea. We should coordinate with the Construction program, but I'll help. Not everyday I get a chance to work on a 100 year old war canoe without first owning it or wondering where to store it...
    I think many hands make light work, so hope others join me volunteering for this good cause.
  3. OP
    Benson Gray

    Benson Gray Canoe History Enthusiast Staff Member

    This is great news Ken! This message has been sent out to the WCHA's chapter heads with Bud Gillis and Jim Altemus also offering to help so far. I will pass your contact information on to Caleb so he can work out the details with you. Thanks,

  4. kayamedic

    kayamedic Kim Gass

    My husband is idle during Thu and Fri and willing to help. I will email Caleb to find out if the project is still a go.
  5. Rob Stevens

    Rob Stevens Wooden Canoes are in the Blood

    The project is a go for #1 Construction Tent at Assembly. We hope to have it repaired, canvassed and (I think) filled by Saturday. All help welcome and appreciated.

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