What is this?


New Member
Might buy this canoe, I am new to wood and canvas. Anything you could tell me about history, or the shape it's in would be great. Does anyone know why there is a strip of wood in the middle? I don't see this in other canoes. Thanks


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Not familar with wood in bottom like that.....possibly added on during restoration or more likely home built that way????....maybe person added for increased "stability" or what thought might be more stable)????....or to take screws for keel?????

Any serial numbers????
Keelson ?

And I have an EM White woodsman with an original keelson.....very cool, as it is copper riveted through the outer keel. with oak bungs over the outside rivet heads. Hope to bring it to the Assembly. Dave D.
I second Tim's suggestion that it may be a canoe made from the plans put out by Popular Mechanics (or similar do-it-yourself plans) -- not only is there a keelson, but the ribs are not tapered, the ribs are sized and spaced as in the PM plans, and the stem profile is similar to the PM canoe. The two WCHA articles on building such canoes indicate that such plans can lead to canoes that are quite satisfactory. That the rib nailing pattern is a straight line rather than the more common offset pattern suggests an amateur builder rather than a pro.

Whatever it is, it has nice lines, and it looks pretty well made and well maintained. In the full-length view, it looks like there may be (hard to be sure from the photo) a crack in one outwale (not a fatal flaw) but it otherwise appears to be well maintained and in pretty good shape. With its keelson and closely-spaced ribs, it should be pretty sturdy, at the price of being perhaps a bit heavier than many others its size. Probably a pretty good general purpose canoe.
I have an old canoe in my "Boat House"...ok, storage shed, that is built much the same. See my post from a few years past.


It's dimensions and lines are closer to the W. English or Peterborough all wood strip/rib canoes than it is to your nice boat so I'm pretty sure it wouldn't be related.

I've never been able to identify my example so maybe it's a home built as well. One day soon I'll refinish it and see how it floats.

Good luck with your new treasure.
Some measurements from the PM plans that could help with ID:

16' LOA
33" beam
12" from the top of the gunwales to the bottom of the keelson
2" wide untapered ribs on 3" centres
4' 2" between thwart centres

I don't know for sure if all these measurements are of any use, if you need any other details off the plan just let me know.