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Old 04-20-2008, 09:27 PM   #1
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aluminum canoe?

Obviously we love everything aluminum. How about an aluminum canoe? A friend has one she wants to sell, but neither of us knows what it's worth, or what to look for in an aluminum canoe. Can they be polished? Because going down the road towing a vintage AS with a shiny canoe on top of the van would be pretty cool. Any advice?
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Old 04-20-2008, 09:32 PM   #2
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Is it a Grumman? Those are American classics! As long as you stay on flat water (i.e. lakes) it should be fine. Yes, they will polish up fine. Do not, however, polish the inside, it will be more than reflective enough to start with.
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Old 04-20-2008, 09:35 PM   #3
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I used to have one. It was a great canoe, but was stolen many years ago. I did a lot of fly fishing from that boat. It was an old Grumman that was given to me by my uncle. I've no idea what they're worth nowadays though. I see them on Craigslist every now and then for $350 to $500, depending on their length.
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Old 04-20-2008, 09:38 PM   #4
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Originally Posted by cameront120
... I see them on Craigslist every now and then for $350 to $500, depending on their length.
That's about what I was thinking.

My neighbor and I carried his canoe a little over 1/4 mile to the nearby creek, then spent a solid hour getting the 2 miles downstream to the office.

Commute by boat. It had to be done
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Old 04-20-2008, 10:04 PM   #5
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A polished aluminum canoe on top of your van would be AWESOME! But don't just hop into one that has been lanquishing in the summer sun.
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Old 04-20-2008, 10:20 PM   #6
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But don't just hop into one that has been lanquishing in the summer sun.
It hurts. I know this from experience
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Old 04-20-2008, 11:04 PM   #7
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I see them on Craigslist every now and then for $350 to $500, depending on their length.
Ouch! I might have to stick with my rubber raft! Good news for her though. I'll have her check tomorrow and see what brand it is. She doesn't even know the length.
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Old 04-21-2008, 12:19 AM   #8
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ok, someone's gotta ask this 1, what's the canoe's length?
Have you enough uptop clearance?
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Old 04-21-2008, 05:18 AM   #9
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For many years, we had a Grumman 'Square Stern' canoe. It had the traditional 'V' front but the stern was squared off in order to accept a small motor. I used a 3hp electric motor which pushed the canoe through the water at quite a clip. It also proved really beneficial on one trip where I underestimated the distance to our destination. Had we not had the motor, we might still be trying to get off the river.
FWIW, the Square Stern had stabilizers that ran for a good portion of the length to provide, what else, stability.

I agree that it would be extremely cool to have a polished canoe on top of your tv, pulling an AS.

To answer your question, I think I remember ours being 15' and sporting goods and outdoor outfitters sell rubber bumpers that hold the gunwales off the roof and prevent damage. A small warning, you'll need to secure the front and real of the canoe with tie lines. It would be very ugly to have your canoe break loose and fly off into your pretty AS.
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Old 04-21-2008, 07:57 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Stefrobrts
Obviously we love everything aluminum. How about an aluminum canoe? A friend has one she wants to sell, but neither of us knows what it's worth, or what to look for in an aluminum canoe. Can they be polished? Because going down the road towing a vintage AS with a shiny canoe on top of the van would be pretty cool. Any advice?
Aluminum canoe would look awesome on top with out a doubt. My one experience with a fine Grumman aluminum canoe when compared to a Herters fiberglass canoe would dissuade me from wanting an aluminum canoe. The fiberglass was much faster in the water, and I think my wood canoes are faster in the water than fiberglass. I have not compared wood or fiberglass to the plastic but bet they are all superior to aluminum. Just a thought, for display yes for use no, unless you are going to use a trolling motor.
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Old 04-21-2008, 09:21 AM   #11
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My memories of floating down the Current River (Missouri) in aluminum canoes: Ouch! Hot as blazes under a summer sun and black streaks anywhere my body had rubbed on the canoe, knees, sides of legs, hands. Also, they weigh a ton if you're lifting one on top of your tv. I agree the ambiance is there with your aluminum trailer to match, but for keepers, I'd prefer a lightweight fiberglass that can take the rapids as well as the flats, that doesn't leave black streaks on me, and that is much easier to load. Wood is to die for! Just my thoughts, ~G
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Old 04-21-2008, 10:46 AM   #12
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Georgia, unfortunately it takes good money to get a rockhunting canoe to weight much less than aluminum. There are somewhat lighter durable alternatives but Royalex has been the heavy standard. Under our deck and almost unused sits a 72-pound 17' Grumman (they make Airstreams don't they? ). I've thought about polishing it as a lark but won't buy a cyclo just for this. It's an excellent flatwater canoe and I can turn the nose into a strong wind with just two paddlers and no expedition load aboard (it's easier to accomplish this when more heavily loaded). This canoe paddles a faster and straighter line on a lake than a friend's Old Town Discovery (due to the latter's bit of rocker). And they'll never deteriorate in the sun. I've seen them dinged up but rarely holed. The biggest trouble with rocks is that aluminum doesn't slide at all -- touch a rock on a river and the canoe instantly pivots on that point. That little 3/4" keel only makes it more hazardous in rapids.

Heavy really begins to count when you need to portage a canoe between lakes. My real canoe is an 18' 42-pound Wenonah kevlar -- the opposite of what you'd want around rocks. I don't consider fiberglass light nor do I think fiberglass or wood are good choices in lumpy whitewater.

A few years back some friends struggled to get $200 for an aluminum canoe. I see what Cameron is saying -- Minneapolis shows a number of listings asking around $500 for a 17' Grumman.
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Old 04-21-2008, 11:46 AM   #13
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She says it's a Smoker Craft brand, 17ft. I didn't realize they were so heavy. Silly me, I thought an aluminum canoe would be lighter than a fiberglass one!
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Old 04-21-2008, 11:54 AM   #14
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Bob, the Royalex type canoe is what I was referring to, good for what our Missourii lakes and rivers have to offer, unless you are taking on the St. Francis, which I cannot imagine anyone with a love of life doing! I dream of a kevlar if only because we could lift it now that we're older, but we won't put that kind of $$ into a sport anymore, and if I had a wood one, I'd put it on display, a work of art! ~G
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