Dunphy Canoe??

Jay Harvey

Curious about Wooden Canoes
I am trying to find out this canoe. From looking at some of the coneing sites I think this might be a Dunphy canoe. Can any one can help me solve my mystery ??????

I tried for 10 minutes to post the pictures I have - If any one can help, I can e-mail them to you directly.
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I might be able to help you. I have Dan and Benson's CD with some Dunphy catalogs in them. E-mail pictures to dolonaeo@aol.com. I can compare the photos and get back to you.
Paddle On!!
I have E-mailed the pictures to you. If you need more information, just let me know and I do my best to get it to you right away.
Dunphy Cruising Canoe

It appears to be a c.1920 Dunphy Cruising Canoe mod.1300 made in EauClaire, Wisconsin. I sent more in an e-mail.
Thanks for your help, It seems that the more information I get the more questions I have. How do I measure a canoe? What are metallic battens?, How and why were they used? (I think this canoe has them.) It has metal strips between the wood on the inside of the canoe.
How to measure a canoe: length overall - the total length from the outermost curvature of the stems; beam - maximum width (which is usually amidships and probably several inches below the gunwales; depth - from inside of planking at keel line to top of gunwales.

With metallic battens, it is probably not a Dunphy. To back up a little, wide board canoes are usually fitted with battens to cover the seams between the planks to make the hull waterproof. The earliest style of battens are sections of rib stock cut to fit the spaces between the ribs. A later style has a full length batten sitting in rabbets cut in each of the planks, the batten is under the ribs, when seen from inside the canoe. Some builders, like Walter Dean, used metallic battens instead of wood to straddle the seam. From reading the catalogs, it appears the Dunphy style battens were pine, thicker then the ribs and notched to fit over the ribs.

Given that yours has metallic battens, I would suggest looking at Walter Dean and maybe some other Canadian builders to find a positive identification.

Pictures here would help...

Here is first batch of pics...


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And here is 2nd batch of pics...


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And now I will say that your canoe is definately Canadian in origin, and not a Dunphy. I would guess it is probably a Walter Dean, given the metallic battens, but maybe Dick P. has some better ideas.

Metallic Batten seams were used by at least five Canadian canoe manufacturers;
Thomas Gordon Canoe Co, Lakefield Canoe Co, J.G. Brown, Peterborough Canoe Co and Walter Dean Canoes. As far as I know Walter Dean used only brass battens, Peterborough galvanized steel as well as copper battens, the other three used galvanized steel battens.

I don’t think it is a Thomas Gordon. To narrow down the possibles; are there any Model/serial numbers stamped into the inside stem or to the face of the thwart blocks?
How far apart are the ribs?
Are there any metal plates on the hull exterior backing up the screws holding the thwarts?
What are the canoes measurements?

Dick Persson
Headwater Wooden Boat Shop
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Anyone have any ideas, of what this canoe is?? I will try to list some measurements later. Thanks again everyone for your help
Well from the information I recieved from everyone, I will try to answer some of the questions people have asked.
1) It appears that the metal battens are brass.
2) The length is 16', width is 34" the deck is 24"
3) The ribs are spaced 2 1/2" apart. They are !/2" wide, made out of 1/2 round stock, tapered at the ends (you can see this in the photos that are posted)
4) Their are brass screw on the deck and on the kneeling boards on the bottom. The wide boards are nailed to the ribs with small tacks.
5) the ends of the canoe (deck?)look just like the picture of the "Indian Girl" canoe that I was sent.
6) Last but not the least, I found the serial # 6?0 (the middle # I cannot quite read.)All I can see is two lines, a long one under a short one. I found them on the deck. The finish has filled in the stamped numbers, so I don't think it will photograph well.

As Dan Miller suspected, this is very likely a canoe built by Walter Dean Canoes in Toronto, Ontario, Canada sometime before 1926.
You have a real gem of a canoe take good care of it.
Below is a scan from a Walter Dean catalog. :)

Dick Persson
Headwater Wooden Boat Shop


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metal vs wood battens?

jay that is a beauty- ihope she lasts for another 100 yrs. I hope I don't step on anyones toes here but I have a question. did anyone ever use wood inset battens instead of brass or galvinized. why or why not.lee.^.
Hardwood flushbattens were used to cover the longitudinal planking seams by many Canadian builders. It is believed the practise orginated with Thomas Gordon Canoe Co in Lakefield.Other builders using it at one time or other were Strickland & Co, Lakefield Canoe Co, J.G. Brown, Ontario Canoe Co, Peterborough Canoe Co and a few more.

Dick Persson
Headwater Canoe Co.
hardwood flushbattens

hi dick- thanx for the quick response there.was there a preference for durability or strength wood vs. metal(brass,steel,galvanized) battens. It would seem to me that using wood to wood probably would seal up the best when wet? also I was wondering whether or not the flushbatten was nailed to the planking between ribs? thanx.lee.^.... :confused:
My Sister told me the man who had the canoe dated his future wife with the canoe around 1918. He would paddler her out to islands and up and down the rivers. they got married around 1919.