I am looking at purchasing a 1960 Sears fiberglass 17’ canoe with trailer, oars, life jacket, trolling motor for $350. Trailer is 2002. Boats looks to be in good condition. Sound like a good deal? Or should I stay away from a 1960 Sears canoe? Any help is appreciated.
Not really sure
how safe 47 year old fiberglass is. I would probably keep looking.
I'm fairly sure the Sears boats were layed up with "mat chopper" glass (the inside probably looks like the interior of an old school porta-potty). Unfortunately this glass resin combo is noted for getting brittle in its old age, especially if the hull has been stored in the sun.
If you are getting this boat for lake/calm water usage, than it would be an adequate boat, but this would not be a good boat to take rock bashing down the Western PA shallow creeks. Old brittle chopper boats are often just one solid hit away from no longer floating.
It still sounds like an OK deal because the trailer alone is worth at least $350.
Thanks for the response. The inside actually looks very clean. I have only seen a picture so far. I am going to look at it today. Probably would be used mostly on lake and river.
What topher means
is the “chopper gun” method is short strands of glass sprayed into a mold, rather than the preferred “hand lay-up” method which yields a smooth interior. If the glass strands go in all different directions with some raised edges, that’s the “chopper gun” method.
We found one in the trash
with 3 breaks in it. We took it home and my father in law fiberglassed it over for me- now its so heavy, but it works. We use it on mostly slow rivers. It was free…so it was a deal.
sorry I am no help for you, just thought I’d share because its the same boat.
Lets see, it’s an old 17’ fiberglass that is heavy enough to need a trailer in order to be transported.
Back away slowly and leave!
I bought my first canoe (a 16’ Royalex Blue Hole) for $100. You can find lot’s of used royalex and aluminum canoes for between $200 and $300 if you look around (less if you get lucky like me).
Do yourself a favor and pass it up. Even if it is an OK deal there will be others.
I bought one of those Sears canoes
in 1977 or 78. Still got it. It’s heavy and has a molded in keel. It is of the chop gun layup. It sits out by the pond now. I don’t think it cost anywhere near 350.00 new. It’s not worth much now, but I still use it on the pond.
Trailer and trolling motor
those could be worth $350. The canoe isn’t.
If the trolling motor and trailer work, I’d go ahead and buy it. The canoe certainly isn’t worth anywhwere close to $350. Might be worth $50.
Anyway, once you own it you can decide what to do with the canoe. It may be just fine and will serve you well. Or, you may want to sell it for $25 or $50. Or, you may want to give it away.
BTW - the first canoe that I owned all by myself was a Sears chopper gun fiberglass. I owned it for several years before I “upgraded”. For years I had no idea that I owned an “inferior” canoe. I had a lot of fun in it and made a lot of memories.