Aluminum outwales on aPenn Yan???


Wooden Canoe Maniac
You folks ever hear of Penn Yan offering aluminum outwales on their wood/canvas canoes? See pics...


The canoe's serial # begins with ONS which would make it a 16' Owasco from 1943-1947. The aluminum parts look to be original - they are well bent & conform to the canoe well. But why use them at all? I mean, if they steam bent the inwales, why not the outwales too? All the aluminum would do is trap dirt that could normally be flushed away with cleaning! And take a look at the last pic showing the top of the rib area: it shows that a 1/2" strip of cedar siding was added to fill in the area normally used by the outwales. This implies that the strip was added to one of their 'normal' w/c canoes - otherwise they would have just trimmed the sides right at the ribs & avoid the extra step of adding the 1/2" strip.

In any case I intend to refinish it with steam bent wooden outwales. I have to decide whether to remove the 1/2" cedar strip and make outwales with the normal 1/4" deep cove notch or leave the strip where it is and make the outwales cove notch 3/32" deep to accomodate the thickness of the canvas. Opinions?

Also - are these aluminum outwales rare? Are the worth anything? I'm considering putting them on eBay...
I am fairly certain that the aluminum outwales were added at some later time, quite possibly by the same person that patched up the rot in the ends of the canoe.
Penn Yan inwales taper in the deck area, and very commonly split between the screws securing them to the decks. I have had quit a few with brass and steel

braces attached to repair the broken inwales. This is the first time I've seen aluminum used. As Dan stated this canoe has been repaired before.

I'm with Dan. It looks like standard aluminum angle to me, added on during the rebuild. Which makes the outwale very rare indeed and worth it's weight in aluminum.

Just out of curiosity, how were they fastened? steel machine screws? rivets?
Thanks guys. I agree - they must have been added later. And fyi, they were held to the sides by (I believe) the same bronze screws that were originally used to hold the outwales. There are 2 tapped holes at the tips where the U bracket mounts to.