Grumman Canoe? Need some help on this!

I am trying to pick up a cheap canoe to get for my first canoe and found a good deal on Craigslist on what the seller claims to be a Grumman 17’ Aluminum Canoe. The pictures look good and it doesn’t leak and isn’t dented. I asked him to send me the details from the capacity label and he said he could make out a model number which is “2378-M-5-17”.

I can’t locate this number anywhere online. I’m almost thinking that he’s trying to pull a fast one on me and I’m not really sure what to do… Has anyone heard of that model? The guy is the second owner and didn’t send me a pic of the label. Any help is appreciated! Thanks!

Contact Marathon Boat
They make Grumman canoes and should be able to provide you with relavent information or give you specific information to guide the current owner in providing what you need. People often know little to nothing about the boats they own and don’t worry about it so the owner may not be trying to trick you in any way.

See this website to find out what you can including contact info for them:

Happy hunting.

What more do you think you need to know?
“The pictures look good and it doesn’t leak and isn’t dented.”

Number on the I.D. plate not important

– Last Updated: Aug-21-13 9:12 PM EST –

I'd pay more attention to the condition of the boat than the model number, or perhaps serial number as the case may be. For ages now, I believe there have been two 17-foot models, not counting square-stern models (if there are any at this length). They are the "standard" model and the "shoe-keel" model which I think also goes by the name "shallow draft" since the shoe keel doesn't protrude as far as a normal keel. The shoe-keel model is heavier because it has more ribs, and that's because it was intended for whitewater use so they made it stronger.

If there's more to know than this, plaidpaddler will probably come around and explain.

Regarding the model number that doesn't match the catalog, one other thing I can think of is that since some people are REALLY ignorant about their boats, maybe it's not even a Grumman. When it comes to aluminum canoes, the "Grumman" name is sort of generic to some people. To some people, "Grumman" simply means "aluminum canoe".

Grumman Canoes
This may well be a valid Grumman Model. And finding out which one is a real history search. They have been making aluminum canoes longer than I have been alive and I date back to the 1940’s. My canoe literature only dates back to the early 1980’s. Lots of us learned to paddle in Grumman Canoes at Scout Camp that were older than us. With 3 corporate owners in its history Grumman has had different model designations over the years as materials changed. There have been four or more hull thicknesses, different keels, different ribs, different seats. The sure things are the metal plate affixed to the bow deck that says Grumman Boats, and the big G embossed into the floatation chamber. If it has either of these its a Grumman. Recurve ends are not a sure thing because they made the 17’Eagle which has angled stems and continuous flare. Even if the paint is worn away and the rating plate missing a photo of the decks, stems and ribs will ID it as a Grumman. Weight and construction will help tell if its a standard gauge, a heavyweight livery model, or a lightweight.

If the ribs are solid, the rivets tight, the keel is not hogged, and the hull is solid its worth having and could last into the next century.

If you really must know, talk to the folks in Marathon as suggested.


Thanks for the quick replies! I’m going to go check it out tomorrow or Friday and let you know. I hope it’s legit! Great forum!

17ft gruman
The older Grumman 17 ft canoes came a lot of different ways. I believe they had three different grade lake boats, light-medium-heavy aluminum with a normal style keel. They also had a whitewater model which was the heavy layup with two extra ribs and a much smaller smoth river keel. As aluminum canoes became less popular the different options were dropped from the line and it became one boat. No idea how to read the model number. The old 17 ft whitewater version make a great all around boat if you didn’t mind the weight.

They still make the “whitewater” version

– Last Updated: Aug-22-13 11:46 AM EST –

The 17-footer is still made in two versions, whitewater and standard. I seem to remember seeing a couple of variations in sheet-metal thickness being available not that long ago, but based on a quick look at their site (maybe too quick - I could have missed something) it appears that there's just one option for that now.

Al canoe
A Grumman canoe is one of the least risky boats you can buy used. If it has not been abused it will outlast you.

Al canoe
A Grumman canoe is one of the least risky boats you can buy used. If it has not been abused it will outlast you.