Another Old Town


Unrepentant Canoeist
Please post the build record for Old Town #71525-18. We had four pairs of eyes trying to peer through way too many coats of varnish to read the SN, but had some good sunlight helping. It's an AA-grade, maybe an IF model? It has what appears to be an original floor rack, and a mast step that appears to be much newer than the rest of the boat. Will post pictures tonight.

Old Town #71525 was an 18-foot AA grade OTCA built in 1922 and shipped to Pennsylvania. A subsequent record indicates it may have been in Oregon in 1983. It had open gunwales, 30-inch decks, a keel, and it looks like it also had a floor rack. All made of mahogany. The original color scheme looks impressive, blue with an orange stripe and other intricate detail, which you can read on the build record.

The scans are attached below-- click to get a larger image. These scans and several hundred thousand others 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.

It is also possible that you could have another number or manufacturer if this description doesn't match your canoe. Feel free to reply here if you have any other questions.



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Thank you, Norm!

Attached are pictures. Besides the mast step being new, the decks are obviously replacements, and note the plywood board under the deck -- same on both sides. Also, there are no stem bands, which makes me wonder -- lots of clues to suggest some repqir work was done... is it canvassed, or glassed? Hard to tell from pictures, but the lack of stem bands might suggest the latter? I'm speculating.

The sheer lines also don't look right for an Otca, but maybe they got lowered to avoid fixing a stem rot issue? Speculating again.

Any thoughts would be appreciated!


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That S/N looks to me to be 71585 wonder what that will reveal and I agree that sheer line is not that of a 1922 Otca. I have seen an OT build sheet where a "Low End " OTCA has been made by OT to fill a Customer's special request. This one has the lines of a Guide model.

Serial number 71585 belonged to a 16-foot OTCA.

The serial number might be clearer with a little light cleaning.

I'm pretty sure that digit is a 2... the bottom edge of it looks like a straight line, like a 2 (to my eye). We looked at it long & hard, and I think it'll take more than a light cleaning to reveal its true identity. The other stem looked much the same, but this was the only image that looke even halfway readable. But it's definitely an 18-footer.

This canoe weighs in at 125lbs, according to its current owner, and I believe him. I wonder if all that built up stuff on the inside, which I assumed was varnish, could actually be epoxy, as in an attempt to make the boat more water-impermeable? That would account for all the extra weight, and if the outside is glassed, then...

Speculating again. Or still...
I pulled the canvas off the old Morris that was given to us. It is a 15 footer. I weighed the canvas, filler and paint. Weighed in at 27.5 pounds. That should lighten the boat up considerably using the newer filler etc.
Looks like it has been glassed to me. The stem bands are gone. Is the keel still intact? Most home fiberglass jobs don't put the stem bands and keel back on.

A canvassed OTCA would have a reasonable weight.
Good thought, Fitz. There is a keel, but I didn't get a picture of it. I saw it only from a short distance, on top of the car as it drove in, but my initial impression was that it was a glass boat, because the keel looked pretty rounded along the edges. It could pass for a wooden keel, with glass over it. So I'm thinking it's been glassed.