Restoration vs "making useable"

Kathryn Klos

squirrel whisperer
Was gonna sit on my hands, but decided I have to open my mouth. The attached picture is an eBay listing... an Old Town (so they say) that is "restored". I think it's the sheet-metal stem band that cranked me to the point of having to vent in this forum... but I also have a problem with the decks. In a true restoration, they'd have to look like Old Town decks. Maybe it's only semantics... but it seems like false advertising to say this canoe is "restored".


  • ebay old town.JPG
    ebay old town.JPG
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I think the boat may actually be a White, and the decks might be original. The shape of the canoe and gunwales suggest White to me too, but yah, kind of a beater.

Glad I'm not the only one who wondered if this was actually an Old Town... the seller assures us that the person who "restored" the canoe "can & will confirm that it is an Old Town canoe", which is one reason I asked if they could find a serial number. But perhaps putting the new Old Town seats in it and painting it "the famous green color" makes it an Old Town...

So, this may be another take on what Benson states on this site under "how much is my canoe worth": "Name recognition can mean everything. I've seen run-of-the-mill Old Town canoes in the Midwest bring $2000, while a pristine Gerrish brings $500 because no one knows the name." Name recognition may work to the advantage of those seeking rare canoes--- but not so, if a seller works at turning it into an Old Town, thinking he can start an ebay auction at $1600.
So that did it go for?

I also was thinking White, and recently talked to someone who considered White's Old Towns because OT owned/sold them, they didn't recignize anything relative to what design it was.

E.M. White of Old Town, ME

The subject of this discussion is still up for auction on ebay, with no bids the last time I checked. I asked the seller about the serial number, and described where he might find that... and he apparently had some trouble finding the stem, so I sent the picture Benson posted in forums with the serial number location on an Old Town highlighted in blue.

More than once, I've seen a White canoe listed as an Old Town because there's a tag on the boat saying "E. M. White, Old Town Maine"... perhaps they think, "wow, it's an Old Town... and the first owner was some guy named White."