Info on Serial # 102933


Curious about Wooden Canoes
I am looking for any information on the above serial #. My father had purchased this canoe quite a while ago. He seems to recall it being a Saskatchewan Voyageur. The length is 18ft. and it has 3 3/4" planking. any info would be helpful as I'm contemplating a winter restoration project. Thanks.
Your canoe could very well be an Old Town. OT serial number 102933 comes back on an 18 foot long, AA grade, OTCA with mahogany decks, thwarts, seats, a keel and a floor rack. The canoe was built between September 1929 and October 1930. The original exterior paint color was dark green. It shipped on June 12, 1931 to Ashley, PA. A scan of this build record can be found by following the link at the attached thumbnail image below.

This scan 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. I hope that you will join or renew your membership to the WCHA so that services like this can continue. See to learn more about the WCHA and to join.

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.

- Al


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Thanks for the quick response. My father will be tickled that this information was still available. I would like to restore this to as close to its original form as possible and will be a greenhorn at it so any help is greatly appreciated. Was all the trim for this canoe in mahogany? is the original red cedar planking still available (i see many places have white cedar, is theair a viable difference?) Additionally the canvas was removed years ago, the bow and stern planking had deteriorated quite a bit as well as the outer gunwales were damaged. Any advise is a helpful. Thanks again.:)
I saw your response on the forums and wanted to get back to you before I leave for a couple of weeks paddling in the Adirondacks. AA grade canoes were trimmed in mahogany; decks, thwarts, seats, gunwales etc. As far as cedar I've seen on the forums where members have used white cedar for planking but since you want to try to restore this as close as possible to original I'd stick with red. You can get planking from Old Town, look under the builders/restorers section. Several "professional" listed under that section also sell cedar.

As far as questions go right on the forum and ask away. This group is incredibly helpful in sharing their knowledge and experience. Check the archives as well; just use the search function and you'll be able to find many of your questions answered.

I'll attach the catalogue page for the 1929 OTCA, the specs and grade page from 1929 as well. It will give you exactly what OT specified back then.

Feel free to contact me again if you need help. I just won't be around for a couple weeks. Good luck , Al


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Restore Underway


Yesterday began the process of restoring this heirloom. Its been a few years due to too many things to do. I'll attach some pictures soon. Thus far I've removed the outer gunwales and remaining canvas. Someone had gone over the caned seats with mat'l sometime in its past which revealed some damage to the stern seat frame. Also some of the clips which secure the deck to the canoe had been replaced. Damage seems to be limited to the decks on both bow and stern. My fateher had tried to repair this damage some years ago but I will be removing and replacing this with the original white cedar planking. Thanks for the help, I'm sure I'll be in need of alot of advice from you and others here. Is there any varnish remover that you might recommend for the next step.

Thx, Brian
My dad and I are restoring our first canoe as well. We have just finished the stripping process. We found that the liquid strippers worked better than the gel ones as far as ease of cleanup. From what I have read on here, they all work relatively well, but you have to decide what you like as far as the toxicity, cleanup etc....

Whichever you use make sure things are well ventilated and Have Fun!

Take some photos we would love to see them.

OTCA restore underway

Thanks Adam. Just finished for the day. Took a bunch of pictures for the restoration album. I started with the keel as a test for the stripping mat'l. I'm using Zip Strip, which appears a little more on the toxic side, but am working outside with gloves, mask. Someone had painted over the original keel with two different colors. there is also a thin wear strip on this which will also need to be removed. What type of canoe are you and your father restoring?

We are working on a 1934 OT Yankee AA grade. Overall it doesn't have a lot of damaged wood, so for the most part it should be a good first attempt for us. We are getting ready to sand then varnish the hull and interior.
1929 OTCA Restoration


I've attached the pics as promised. Found more damage then I hoped for. I'll be moving this thread to the wood/canvas discussion board in hopes of getting input from all the experienced restoration folks out there. Please chime in if you can be of assistance as this will be this greenhorns first attempt.


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I will definitely let some of the more veteran restorers chime in, but it looks like you will get to try your hand at scarfing some rib tips and the stem. For your deck, you will have to choose whether to scarf new tips on...or replace.

I don't think it will be too bad, it looks like you have her opened up and ready to get to some restoring.

Good luck.

I will post some pics this weekend of the Yankee on my thread and add a link here for you.