Looks like an Old Town

Rob H.

Curious about Wooden Canoes
I'm interested in building records for a wood/canvas canoe with the number 68632 18 on the inner stem. I'm contemplating doing a restoration for someone, and would like to know what the canoe started out like.


The Old Town canoe with serial number 68632 is an 18 foot long, GS grade, Guide's Special model with Western red cedar planking, closed spruce gunwales, maple decks, maple trim, and a keel. It was built between December, 1921 and March, 1922. The original exterior paint color was dark green. It shipped on March 20th, 1922 to Oshkosh, Wisconsin. A scan of this build record can be found by following the link behind the attached thumbnail image below.

This scan was created with substantial grants from the Wooden Canoe Heritage Association (WCHA) and others. Additional information about the project to preserve these records is available at http://www.wcha.org/catalogs/old-town/records/ if you want more details. I hope that you will join or contribute to the WCHA so that services like this can continue. See http://www.wcha.org/wcha/ to learn more about the WCHA and http://www.wcha.org/join.html to join.

It is also possible that you could have another number or manufacturer if this description don't match your canoe. Feel free to reply here if you have any other questions. Good luck with your restoration,



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Thanks Benson for the rapid response!

The information you sent does match the canoe I'm looking at. The owner will be thrilled to know the details.

I will pass membership information on to him (I have been a member for several years). Since he has two wood/canvas canoes that need work, he may well be interested. Are magazine back-issues/samples available for prospective members?

Thanks again for your work.

Hi Rob,

I believe that the local WCHA chapters have old copies of the Journal available for new members. You can find your local chapter in the list at http://www.wcha.org/chapters/ or just contact Al Bratton. There are also electronic samples at http://www.wcha.org/wcj/ and http://www.wcha.org/wcha/ has a printable copy of the WCHA brochure.


Hi Dan,

"Oil in Japan" is a Japanese drier that was often used to accelerate the curing process for the oil based exterior paint. I did a quick web search and found articles at http://www.qajaqusa.org/cgi-bin/GreenlandTechniqueForum_config.pl/noframes/read/235 and http://www.opusframing.com/library/pdf/choosing_oil_paint_mediums.pdf that offer some more information.


Feel free to reply here if that doesn't answer your questions. Thanks,

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Hi Benson, Thanks for the research and quick reply. We use Japan Dryer in our filler so are somewhat familiar with it, but I don't know much about the finishing methods used by Old Town in the old days and wondered why, in this case, they specified on the build record 'oil in Japan'.