Seen this for sale, but seller has no idea of make/model.
Wanting to check the specs to see it’s suitable (camping trips, open lake, two people - both beginners)
Any of you guys know?
Green Thing, or maybe Groovy?
Hey doss, just FYI that looks like a really cheap boat. Looks like plastic. I’ve never seen a boat with foam connecting the seats and center yoke to the floor…it is not good that the boat needs those braces to help it hold it’s shape. The shape of the boat is not really what you want to see either. It has a flat floor (good for stability when you get in…and good for fishing on a still pond) but then there’s a sharp “shoulder” which means the boat may feel twitchy if you lean it or even go through some waves.
Personally I think you should look for a used boat from a name brand as your first boat. If you buy the one in the pics you should not pay much…maybe $100 max.
Thanks TomL -
I am as green (not so groovy ) as this boat with my knowledge, but you’ve reinforced my instincts, especially regarding the foam bits!
$100 ! Alas, you couldn’t get a kids inflatable for that price here (UK!)
So, what would you reckon to a Coleman Ram-x17 for the same price?
Hmmm. I think we need more detail to figure out if a ramx17 is a good fit for your needs. There are a lot of reviews on this site that may help you get a feel for the boat. Overall it looks to be a bit heavy and a bit slow relative to more expensive boats. Are you confident that you and your partner can handle the weight? Will you be on fast rivers? If so its not the best choice. But for floating down relatively gentle rivers it will get you on the water…which is important! If you will be on lakes with big wind its also not the best choice.
It’s hard for me to assess whether it’s a good value since boats in the UK are more expensive and used canoes are more rare. Have you posted on songofthepaddle to see if anyone closer to you can help you find a boat?
One good thing about canoes is that if you find one for a fair price you can always sell it again if needed, I have sold canoes for more than I paid. So in this sense you probably can’t go too far wrong with a ramx17. If you can stretch to something like an Apache or Hou around 15 feet it would serve you well. Remember you’re not really spending money so much as saving it in the form of a canoe.
Song of the Paddle is a brilliant group - I was heading there when I got sidetracked here (no disrespect!) and thought to stop to ask anyway as so many of these boats seem to originate your side of the pond.
I realise the ramx17 is heavy, and maybe bigger than our needs (overnight explorations along Scottish lochs = calm waters, but always chance of winds) But options (within budget) are sparse.
BTW, I am a photographer and buy used lenses rather than hire them long term, so I get exactly what you mean about “banking” in the form of usable possessions.
Difference with lenses is I know their value! I think, maybe, I’m best studying the used canoe market a little longer.
Your help has been immense, and your time most appreciated.
The canoe in the photo is undoubtedly a single-layer polyethylene hull, as are Coleman and Pelican canoes. Polyethylene is a tough material but single-layer polyethylene is not a very good material for open boats. In order to make a solid polyethylene sheet stiff enough for a canoe hull, the material would have to be so thick that the weight would be absolutely prohibitive.
What appears to be foam blocks extending between the seats and thwart and the hull bottom are necessary to afford a modicum of support and stiffness to the hull bottom. The indentations on the hull bottom serve the same purpose. But even with those, in a canoe of this size, the hull will be rather floppy. I can’t imagine what it is like to sit on a web seat with a foam block underneath it. Perhaps the blocks are contoured.
Coleman and Pelican canoes typically used an aluminum tubular keelson running inside the hull bottom at center to give rigidity, in conjunction with aluminum tube risers extending up to the seat frames and thwart(s). Although heavy, the aluminum endoskeleton does result in a reasonable degree of rigidity, at the expense of considerable weight.
Single-layer polyethylene works very well for decked boats because the tubular structure affords a significant degree of inherent rigidity. The material also works for very short whitewater open boats, which often have extended decks and a large central foam pedestal supported by thwarts that add stability to the hull bottom.
Three-layer, rotomolded polyethyene is a much better construction method for open canoes of any size. Three-layer poly boats have a central foam core that adds thickness with less weight than solid construction does, and the added thickness allows for decent stiffness.
If your choices are limited to single-layer poly canoes, I would choose a Coleman over the boat pictured, but make sure that the aluminum keelson and risers are in good condition and not bent. And be aware of the weight penalty.
Great input from pblanc.
Hey doss, I hope you continue to post on this site. I’d be very curious to hear what the SOP folks say about whether a ramx17 would fit your needs. If you are relatively new to paddling then you should not be making big lake crossings on windy days in any boat until you develop some basic skills and some confidence. If you can stay near the shore and if you are both swimmers and reasonably fit then maybe the boat is fine for you. I can’t envision the type of water that you will be in, I think I’ll google your area. The sea monsters are a myth right?
I’m not a photographer but I like to take pictures with my phone when I’m out on the water. The shots below are on the St Joseph river several miles upstream of where it empties into Lake Michigan. If you at a photographer then you definitely need a canoe!
More fantastic advice. Thank you pblanc and, once again, TomL.