finding original chestnut paint colour

Mark Reuten

Wood Butcher
I've got a 1960's 17' Prospector on the bench right now. Customer wants it painted in the original sage green. I pulled some original canvas tacks out of it that had green paint still on but it looks too turqoise. I have no old canvas samples to compare to a swatch card. Does anybody know of a manufactured paint brand/colour that matches the Chestnut sage green?
How Green is Sage?


FWIW: here is a photo of a 1970's vintage green prospector. If it helps great.

You might try Kirby's. He has several shades of green, including a gray-green I was considering using on this Prospector.


  • Prospector.jpg
    78.6 KB · Views: 1,119
I looked into this question a few years ago, back before the old server failed. I believe Chestnut may have used more than one green-gray color. My two Prospectors (1965) were definitely more gray than green and didn't look much like Fitz's picture at all. My 1960s Chestnut catalogs show them as almost pure gray. Anyway, someone suggested taking a representative sample of the old Chestnut paint to Kirby's and asking them to make up a batch. I suppose you might do the same thing with a professional paint shop in your area.
Hi Mark,
I few years ago I color matched a piece from a older canoe to a color swatch from Cloverdale paint. I recently moved my office and I will try to find the color chip. Once I find it I could mail you the chip and you could have it mixed. If you give me a couple of days I will try yo find it for you.
I think the colour from Cloverdale may be called Rolling Rock,seems if I remember its close.Better check first,they make nice marine enamels
For what they're worth here's a couple of images from the 1976 catalogue.

You can find other images of canoes this colour here, primarily in the 1964 offering..........

As Robert mentioned, this was discussed prior to the "Crash of 2004" with some good information offered up. I'm sure that what was figured out back then will evetually surface...........

Good Luck!


  • 1976 Cruiser~ Kruger.jpg
    1976 Cruiser~ Kruger.jpg
    73.1 KB · Views: 1,019
  • 1976 Guides Special ~ Boone.jpg
    1976 Guides Special ~ Boone.jpg
    83.6 KB · Views: 1,034
Now that's the green I'm looking for. Although the first posted image looks like the green I found on the nail heads. I'll have to defer to the customer on this. Larry, if that paint chip turns up, do send it and I'll get it back to you.
Thanks all.
I'll post a manufacturer/ colour name /number once I nail it.
There's a good niche market for a paint company. Interlux already makes a "chris craft red" stain.
Interesting The image on the right shows carrying thwarts.Ive never seen a Chestnut from the factory with them before.
Has anyone else?
Sorry not on topic about the paint Mark
Hi Mark,
Still looking for the chip,,, the color I have is the Chestnut greyish one not the green sage like on in the pics that jack posted.

I have seen about 3 different Chestnut models through the shop that had the hand thwarts in them, not sure which model it was though.
For what its worth, Kirby's will not ship into Canada.

However, their grey-green can be made with the following:

CIL Marine Enamel medium tint base 337280
BLK 1P23
YOX 1P35
White 0P2+

Your paint store will know what to do with the numbers.

While I found it to be accurate, I felt that it was rather cool, so I added some green to warm it up abit. You can see from the photo that it came out rather close.


  • Andy's Boreal 3b.jpg
    Andy's Boreal 3b.jpg
    53.7 KB · Views: 874
We have restored quite a number of Chestnuts (and others) over the years. The man who does this for me has paint mixed locally for this.
You can see the colour on this link - Yes it's a Peterborough but that the green we use.
Nice stuff Beth.
Okay everybody. I think we can put this thread to rest now. Thanks all, for your help on this one. Much appreciated.