Hello from Eugene Oregon

Woody Starr

Curious about Wooden Canoes
I've been meaning to join this community for some time and like others, I'm finally embarking upon the oddyssy of restoring my canoe, an Otca 16.

A little background on the boat: It was given to my grandmother on her 16th birthday. It is a 1927 AA model and was originally painted baby blue. It's model number is 99277.

The last time it was restored was by me and my grandfather in 1985, at a canoe shop in Conshohocken, PA. It was re-canvassed, painted and a new thwart installed. I opted to have it painted white. Soon after this, I moved to Oregon and brought the canoe with me.

36 years later I'm in the process of replacing the keel and re-caning the seats, since those areas need help the most. In water the boat leaks a little, I believe mostly due to deterioration in the putty underneath the keel.

I've sourced locally a 16' piece of white Oak and had it milled to 1" square. It has pretty straight grain and is clear. It was that or Fir (locally that means Douglas fir) and I wanted the hardest wood possible for the keel so I opted for the Oak. I've purchased the book, The Wood & Canvas Canoe, Stelmok &. Thurlow. I'm planning a work area and researching paints and putty (Pettit?) Theres a few places on the hull where the canvas is visible but not ripped. I'm pretty excited about this project!

Thanks for this great resource!

I'll try to post some pictures...
Thanks for the reply, Benson! You're right, that does look fancy! Somewhere along the line I also remember seeing a middle seat with backrest, I'd love to get plans for one of those to re-create one!

Here's some current photos.



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For instance,...


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Welcome Woody.

So you have joined the discussion forums; hopefully you’ll consider joining the WCHA as well. If you’re not already a member, you would probably enjoy receiving the journal and of course your membership helps support all of the good things that this organization does. You can join very easily here:


Also, if you’re not already aware, there is the very active WCHA Northwest Chapter that includes lots of enthusiastic wooden canoe folks in your area:


Congratulations on having a canoe with such a rich family history. AA-grade Otcas from that era are very nice indeed.

Looking forward to seeing more from you,
Thank you, Michael!

I just joined up at the two-year level. I am definitely also looking forward to learning more about this organization and hopefully some day meeting some of you and seeing other canoes.