Canoe plans

Bill Mackey

LOVES Wooden Canoes
A few years ago I built the Chestnut Prospector in Ted Moores book "Canoecraft". I have enough strips to build another one, but would like to find plans for a 15" canoe good for heeling. I would like to find something with a little tumblehome and good handling. I know I am opening a can of worms when I ask for your favorite canoe in this class, but who has the best set of plans for such a canoe. I will seriously consider any suggestions.
Dan, I put them away somewhere safe, and now I can't find them where I thought that they would be! They are probably somewhere else.

The Minetta would be my suggestion, as well. An alternate would be a 14' Fox built to 15'. Those plans I know where they are.

Still, all is not lost on the Minetta front, I just made a commitment to buy an original from which I can work. It was brought here to the shop from a defunct Scouts group. It had been living in a church basement for years before that, and is in excellent shape.

This will be the first canoe that I ever, actually, buy. I'm kind of excited! This will make my third Peterborough. I'm starting to think that I have a collection that now includes an Otonabee, a Dart, and now a Minetta.
an Otonabee, a Dart, and now a Minetta.
Edit/Delete Message

A Dart, eh, there's a drive-by gloat if I ever saw one... tell us more!

For enlarging the Fox, I'd suggest maybe running it through a copier enlarger, so you get closer to the 32" beam as well as gaining some length. Probably historically accurate too, as it appears that may be how they designed the various lengths of pleasure models anyway...
A drive by gloat? Only if you have a clue as to what I'm talking about! and I know that you do, Dan.

I have it hanging up in storage right now, when I can get it down for photos, I;ll be sure to post some. It's in the same condition as when it arrived, pretty rough but do-able.
Wow the Minetta

Doug I have been looking at the plans for the Bob's Special, but the Minetta would be a an even better choice. I am planning on building it as a strip canoe, will the measurements you make allow me to set up the form? Are you going to make the plans available? I assume it will take a while, any idea when you will be doing the measurements. I don't know if you can tell by this note but the whole idea excites me.

Douglas & Dan,
may I humbly ask what the dart is?:confused: Looked thru the few catalogs I've got but the boats are of course numbered, assuming its a Pete..
The DART, as presented in the catalog.

The stem isn't quite so pointy on the real boat, and mine does need a fair bit of TLC. When I do get to work on it, I will be documenting it for posterity.

By the way, if anybody has any info on the material for the deck and construction details for the locker, I'd appreciate it. Mine has remnants of a thin plywood and I can't tell if its original or replacement.

Dan, didn't I give you a tracing of the drawings that I had? I'll continue looking for them.

The Fox built to 15' would be nice, but the Minetta is just that little bit wider, too. I won't be able to do anything on the Minetta drawings until at least the fall.


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The whole canoe, these Torpedo Deck Cruisers, are very similar to the Dean Sunnyside Cruiser. Either the Peterborough version or they actually took over the Dean canoe models. I don't know that part of the history. The hull shape, the stem profile, the large bow deck, the smaller stern deck, its all very like the Sunnyside Cruiser.

I saw an Ace cartopped years ago and I was sure that it was a Sunnyside Cruiser until I saw the Peterborough decal.

As an aside, I built a Sunnyside Cruiser stripper version years ago in my search for a great solo canoe, in the style as originally set up at the beginning of this thread. While a nice canoe in many ways, it its not THAT kind of solo canoe.

The Minetta and the Fox are those kind of canoes. Worth looking for, and worth the wait.
Success! I have found the original drawing in with other drawings in the shop.

Here are the notes:

-stem drawn to outside.
-stations drawn to inside of ribs.
-sheer drawn to top of gunnel.
-Max beam 32 1/8", 7 3/4" below to of sheer
-depth, 12" mid, 21" stem

Station 3 is missing. I have no idea why. It was like 10 years ago...

Peterborough ribs are typically 5/16", planking 1/8".

The photo should give an idea of what it looks like. The photo came to me from Louis Michaud, who received it from Dan Miller, who took the photo of the tracing of the drawing that he got from me.


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Are these the Minetta drawings

If these are the Minetta drawings what would I have to do to get a set. This sounds like the canoe I would love to build. My wife is going to have surgery and I will be close to home for about 2 months, which I am looking at as an excellent time to build a new canoe.
Not intending to avoid the question, but I have a photo of the canoe from which these lines have been taken. Thought you all would like to see it. At the time of the photo, it was only in filler and the trim was not installed. It was being taken for a test paddle.


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The plans

Doug what are the chances of obtaining a copy of the drawings. I'm sure it would involve some costs and I would be willing to cover them.I really want to build this canoe.

The drawings that I have are un-faired and not prepared for use by builders.

I have intentions of lofting them up and making a final version, but that will have to wait till late summer at the earliest. I am busy trying to finish off a pile of work prior to taking my family on vacation. We have saved up for years and are spending some weeks in Europe!

Louis Michaud, who frequents this forum, has the photo of the drawings as seen in the earlier post, he has told me that he is working on drawing up plans from that. You could try and get in touch with Louis.

I'm sorry if this isn't early enough for your building needs, but its all that I can offer. It really is a very nice canoe. As I wrote in an earlier post, I do have drawings for the Fox ready, it is pretty much the same shape, just a little smaller at 14' long and 30" beam. The Fox is also an excellent canoe, but I don't know if it lines up with what you are looking for.
Thanks for the reply.

It looks like I will be building the Bob's Special this time, but after 33 canoes there will probably be a next time and I would like to build that canoe. Enjoy your trip to Europe, its a great experience. Be sure and let me know when the plans become available.
Great thred.I really don't think Peterborough used Deans lines but copying was rampant in those days.
I did up a Minnetta for a gentleman out of Bala a few years ago and added a sail rig.Never thought about building one but always interested in plans.
Bobs Special is not a bad compromise under the situation.
I have a few Peterbourough Catalogs to reference.I will try to remember tomorrow.Seem to recall a price list and such.
Get the lines off that Dart.


This is all very subjective and personal, but if you are used to the response of a Prospector, you might not be all that impressed with a Bob's (insert the wrath of the gods and lightning bolts here). I have a Bob's, that I recently finished and haven't had a chance to paddle that much. I also trip with a Prospector. I am also no Freestyle paddler.

The Bob's has nice tumblehome, but my impression is that it is beamy. So if you are looking for a responsive, heeled solo canoe, the other examples mentioned above may suit you better. It would be great if you could try a Bob's out before you invest time and money building one. It is a very subtle feeling, but when I get in it, I think "beamy". If that tells you anything. I still like the lines, but just throwing this out there performance wise.


Great input

Consensus seems to be to look at the Dart and the Fox. Who has the plans and are they available. Who is paddling one of each and what is their report on handling? All input is appreciated.