Old Town 17 ft


Curious about Wooden Canoes
Looking for build info on an Old Town canoe, serial number 22517 17. Thanks for your time and help,

- Jonah
Hello Jonah--

Old Town 22517 is an 18 foot AA grade Ideal model shipped in 1912--

I also checked 122517 (sometimes the initial "1" is hard to see) and it's a 15 foot roundbottom rowboat.

So, neither of these numbers fits your 17 foot canoe.

Check the serial number again-- look at both stems and compare. Sometimes a digital picture will make the numbers clearer. Posting pictures helps too-- we can give you feedback on what you have, and we enjoy knowing "what's out there".

Several of the old canoe companies used the same serial number format, so pictures help with identification. In the FAQs section of Forums you'll find instructions on how to upload pictures, if the process seems confusing.

Looking forward to knowing what you have!

I just remeasured (though my tape only runs to 16 feet), and it is 18 feet. I guess I assumed it would be 17 because of the last two digits of the serial number, but the number is really hard to read (attached a photo in case someone has better eyes than I do). From the photos, does it look like it might be the AA grade Ideal? (If so, what do those things mean exactly?)

I'm pretty sure it's an Old Town. It has the diamond-headed bolts on the thwarts and the seats, which made me think it's a 1920s model. It looks like it's been repaired before - there's some patching that needs to be replaced and the seats don't look original (they're rope). Also, there seems to be an after-market apparatus to attach a sail. I'm just trying to figure out what is original so I can get as close to that as possible as I slowly restore it.

This is my first time restoring a canoe - any advice welcome and if anyone is in the Cincinnati/Northern Kentucky area, I'd love to have someone who knows what they're doing take a look.


- Jonah
Thanks for your help!

Looks to me like your number is 32157 17 or maybe 82157 17. I don't have the data so I can't check it.

Looks like a 17 foot OTCA. The combing is a trait of some OTCAs.
well, that makes me doubt my 18' measurement completely. Kathy - anything on either 32157 or 82157 that lines up with the pictures I have posted?

and thanks Fitz!

It's probably 82157. Old Town #82157 was a 17-foot CS (or common sense) OTCA model with open spruce gunwales and 20" decks made of birch. It also had a keel and outside stems. The canoe was built in 1923-24 and shipped to Cincinnati, Ohio. It was originally dark green (I think, it's hard to read). I can't tell from the photos if yours has outside stems.

The serial number 32157 belong to a 19-foot guide special model that had half ribs, which your canoe does not seem to have.

I have attached the build record for 82157.



  • 82157.jpg
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That's it! Outside stems, keel, Cincinnati, it all adds up! Thanks, and I'll keep posting pics as I make progress.