My wife just bought me a used 17 foot Grumman canoe. The manufacturer’s plate in the stern says it is a model G-17, serial number 21,300. Can anyone tell me in what year it was made and how much it weighs ? Thanks in advance for responding.
Real Quick Answer
Go to their website. Search for "Grumman Canoes", and you will end up at the Marathon Boat Company (or something like that), which is their new name. Find the canoes that look like yours (ignore the painted trim though, and perhaps the exact type of seat construction). If it's a double-ender (pointed on both ends), it will probably be one of two models, the "standard" and the "whitewater". Note that the whitewater model has 7 ribs and shoe keel, while the standard has either 3 or 5 ribs, I can't remember which (I think 3), and that will help differentiate them if you can't figure out the keel difference immediately (but I think they explain the keel differences pretty well if you look around on the site). Anyway, the website will tell you the weight for either of those two models.
There MIGHT be a lightweight version of the 17-footer too, or perhaps there was in the past. "Plaidpaddler" knows all that stuff, and he may show up and give you the possibilities, but I have a hunch this is all the info you will need, except for the year of manufacture, which really doesn't matter (it has no effect on the current selling price unless it's nearly new, and perhaps not even then).
There's a website that de-codes boat serial numbers, but I don't know what it is. Someone probably will post info on that.
The present model numbers give an idea of the construction and weight. The common 17’ is the 1740c which is 17’long and made from 0.040" aluminum. Heavier 17’models are the 1750c and 1760c. The weights run from 65# to 75# to 85# for the three thickness hulls.
Your G-17 is older. Since it does not say Marathon Canoes, but Grummman, it predates the creation of Marathon boats. And since its a serial number and not an HIN number it predates the HIN number system. So its an older Grumman, from simpler times.
But to tell you its weight will be hard. I don’t remember what thickness hull the G designates. Best you just weigh the canoe. There were a lot of variations in hull construction by Grumman in its heyday. There were T keels, bulb keels, shoe keels. There were different gauge ribs and number of ribs. There were differences between livery models and Scout models. And in the mid 1980’s they went to a higher strength aluminum alloy which allow a weight reduction without a strength reduction.
The Grumman construction is the strongest of the aluminum canoes. It helped that they built fighter planes for the Navy. The vibration from radial piston aircraft engines and the shock of landing on an aircraft carrier really tests riveted aluminum construction and gave them an edge over the different ‘craft’ aluminum canoes (smokercraft, alumacraft, lowecraft, etc).
Its not the perfect paddling canoe, or the lightest, but it is the closest you can come to an eternal canoe.
Marathon versus Grumman
I just looked at their online catalog, and they still put the Grumman name on all their boats. They offer some really spiffy colors now too!
Marathon versus Grumman
Yes, the name on the canoe says Grumman, but I would venture to say that the name on the label plate says Marathon.
The aircraft-quality construction
was a point of pride with Grumman. Naval Aviators in WWII affectionately referred to the manufacturer as “The Grumman IronWorks” due to the plane’s durability and toughness.