Want to buy a canoe need help!!

MongooseDownUnder

Richard Proenneke
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Hi guys I am looking into buying a canoe but am not really sure what to get. Ireally dislike the plastic rotomoulded canoes that groups use I find them very heavy damn ugly and difficult to use. I am thinking of something more traditional like a Wenonah Prospector or an Old Town Penebscot. I plan on using it for general recreation with the family, some light fishing with the possibilty of canoe camping in the future when kids are a bit older. I would like to try and find something secondhand if I can so anything to look out for when buying second hand would also be appreciated. What sort of paddles work well I do not like the aluminium ones they are cold and not very ergonomic so some suggestions on good paddles would also be helpful. I plan on using it on the local lake and the river.
 
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The old town guide canoes come up second hand sometimes on eBay. They are like the penebscot without the bulk heads, giving more versatility of storage and seating. Keep an eye out for some fibreglass second hand canoes also. Some of these are a good option also. Keep in mind the fact that you will probably need some sort of trolley to transport it as canoes light enough for a one man hoist will be expensive, prospector etc. think about the kind of water you will mostly be out on. Flat water lakes and valleys require different characteristics to river boats. Everything in a canoe is a trade off of speed, stability and manoeuvrability. Some research is recommended. All that said, it is a great way to spend time outdoors and go camping for multi day trips.
 

Browny

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After buying and fixing an old fibreglass jobbie some time back, my biggest recommendation would be to choose one with a decent "draught"?

The one I have is ok for a bit of fun, but the sides are no where deep enough to take much of a load without shipping a heap of water.
 

Lepmeister

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Hey mate,

I can't rave enough about the Wenonah prospector 15.

A few reasons I went for it... The shape looked bushcrafty to me, the herron may have been the better choice if looks were not part of my criteria given i don't do any white water stuff. The 15' was long enough for what I wanted and was a little less price and weight over the 16. I got it in Royalex as being able to put it on and off the car by myself was a key issue with my last boat.

Paddle wise... I have made a few which is an easy project if you have the right tools or I picked one up with the canoe also. I prefer the longer paddle shapes like the ottertail and Algonquin

Travis at http://www.paddleportagecanoes.com.au/Products.aspx is a top bloke and could be well worth contacting as I did to see what sort of canoe would suit you and the family in the future.
 

Lepmeister

Richard Proenneke
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After buying and fixing an old fibreglass jobbie some time back, my biggest recommendation would be to choose one with a decent "draught"?

The one I have is ok for a bit of fun, but the sides are no where deep enough to take much of a load without shipping a heap of water.
My first had the same issue... Two blokes and overnight lightweight hiking kit for us both was a 2 inch differane between the water level and the gunwales.
 
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MongooseDownUnder

Richard Proenneke
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Thanks for all your help however it looks like my canoe dreams might have been dashed by the lack of demand for canoes in the west. Anything that is pleasing to look at seems to no longer be available. I did price getting something from the eastern states but the shipping was horrendous.
 

Redtail

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Check out the free demo paddle days the local outdoor shops run. You'll see plenty soon with the run up to summer and Xmas.

Join one of the local canoe clubs for about $200 a year and you get access to any of their club canoes to try out, too. Bets thing is they store them. You just roll up and use them.
 

MongooseDownUnder

Richard Proenneke
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Yeah I saw that the other week lepmeister when I was still deciding wether to look at a canoe or a kayak.
I had thought about joining a club as well Redtail but considering I live less than 5 minutes drive from a large lake and about 20 minutes from the river I thought it might be more convenient to buy my own.
Has anyone had any experience with Mad River canoes as I may have found something that suits my requirements.
 

Lepmeister

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Havnt heard anything bad abaout them and I see plenty of them in the canoe vids I seem to find myself watching...

Whats it's specs?
 

MongooseDownUnder

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Just bought one it has timber yoke and seats with a symmetrical hull shape. The hull is also a shallow arch and slightly rockered 15' 6" long. Unfortunately the shop only had the cheap plastic paddles with aluminum shaft so I got a couple of them and may make some nice timber ones of my own.
 
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kiwibro

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If I have success with mine il have plans you can have. Surely can't be that hard to design a floating thingie.
 

MongooseDownUnder

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I just about fell off my chair laughing when I got home, was looking at paddles and found someone selling an Old Town Penobscot 164. I thought it may not be the best when I saw the picture in use and it had a camp chair positioned in the front. Possibly not well looked after.
 
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Lepmeister

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I just used pine for the ones I have made, they work well. Just needed to keep the blade and handle a little thicker than one my want due to the increased flex in using pine. The plan was to make one in pine to prove I could and then move onto a hardwood.. 6 pine paddles later ( couldn't decide what shape I liked ) and other jobs have got in the way.

[video=youtube_share;U9nB3FTiKUI]http://youtu.be/U9nB3FTiKUI[/video]
 
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