Oil Canning?


Curious about Wooden Canoes
Good afternoon all,

I am in the middle of repairing an old Huron I bought under the label "Great Canadian" sometime around 1979-1980. It's been rode hard so to speak, though it was never abused so it has held up well. I let it go to MN for a dozen years to become a loner canoe. I just got it back and it needs work.

I've had to scarf in repairs to both stems, adding a knee attaching the stem tops to new decks as well. I have five ribs ready to steam and go in then I am ready to reclench, revarnish, and recanvas.

Oil canning question, with no load in the canoe other than two paddlers, the bottom of the hull would oil can in moderate rapids. Is this normal for a W/C canoe? I'm not really sure if it should or not. I am contemplating adding a few half ribs just to stiffen up the bottom a bit. The wood is good, no rot, no splits other than the mentioned ribs.

While it may not be an Arkansas Traveler, it has priceless sentimental value and is actually a fine paddling boat.


Hurons are not the best built boats but they are sure sweet to paddle.I have paddled a few and have never noticed any oilcanning.Not sure about the newer boats ,the older ones have thick ribs and planking
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Yes I agree, not much to look at but nice to be in. The oilcannng is slight but noticable. I think it may be two things.

One, there are just enought tacks to hold the planking on and not one extra. Many planks have but a single tack into the rib. I plan to add many more when I reclench.

The second was the covering. The canoe came with a plastic coated canvas which was very soft and very loose. I am hoping that a real filled canvas will be tighter. The plastic (vinyl?) coated canvas stretched over time. By the time I removed it you could get an inch between the canvas and the wood just by "pushing" the length of the hull.