ot tripper

anyone used a newer oldtown tripper. the one i have seems a little flimsy one the bottom. are all like this? it handle the slow rivers around here great i was just wondering about the oilcanning.

Even de old ones erl-canned…

– Last Updated: Jul-27-10 11:57 AM EST –

Ah' gots a 31 year old Tripper dat always erl-canned empty (even wit de "good" pre-90's Royalex) - nature o' de beast. Wide flat bottomed midsection... great boat though, still one o' de classic river expedition canoos. It'll handle some big water wit a big load, Pilgrim.

Fer running empty yer kin put a section of minicell runnin' vertical from de center thwart down ta de bottom ta minimize de erl-cannin'.


I put a substantial center foam pedestal
between the bottom and the center thwart. This not only cured the oil-canning, it made the center section a wonderful pivot for whitewater maneuvers, while not affecting the boat’s speed otherwise. (Isn’t a fast boat anyway.)

Thwart / Pedestal combo
I’m sure it stiffens the bottom of the boat. The negative of this is that the bottom won’t flex. That’s a “duh” statement, I guess, because you are trying to get rid of flex. However, flex is good when you encounter shallow rocks. It can be seen on worn boats that are set up with pedestal/thwart, that there is a lot of wear around the edge of the pedestal. The hull is flexing to let canoe scrape over the rock, then it gets to the stiff section under the pedestal and it catches and, often, hangs.

So, pick your poison, I guess. Flex vs hull wear and hanging up on rocks. Canoes are all about compromise.


I’ve had foam pedestals between

– Last Updated: Jul-27-10 7:03 PM EST –

the center thwart and the bottom of the boat on several whitewater OC-1s and C-1s. A minicell pedestal allows enough flex, even with this 225# paddler in the saddle. I've been over quite a number of sharp rocks and narrow logs, and I've never had boat breakage under the pedestal. My oldest Royalex boat did not show wear at the borders of the pedestal, but did wear through the vinyl right under the pedestal. Two layers of S-glass, and voila ! Best skid plate ever.

never paddled an oilcanning
Tripper. Most of my friends boats are Trippers (hey I am in Maine) and the bottoms may have picked up a wee bit of bondo.

Five hundred paddlers on the Kenduskeag cant be wrong. All in OT Trippers. Never fitted with a pedestal either. The Maine way is to sit on your York Box.

The Penobscot River in Old Town is a great test of bottom durability. Its an old logging river full of sharp rocks (from dynamiting rocks to allow the logs to pass).

It would be a shame for OT to lose the heritage of bottom durability. How else can you race the same tripper for 20 years dragging it on the road that is a portage for the race?

True, I never saw ours go concave,
though the bottom did move a little. The advantage of the pedestal was that it made our Tripper much better in whitewater, by producing a better central pivot zone.

But the bottom is arched enough, and the Oltonar is heavy enough (unh!- Let’s just drag it) that I don’t think anyone would have problems with hogging or oil canning.

b-dog, can you give us more detail on
what sort of flimsiness you’re seeing? And I have to ask, is yours a Royalex/Oltonar/ABS Tripper, or the poly equivalent in the “Discovery” line? No point in our reassuring you about the ABS if that isn’t what you’ve got.

I don’t believe it …
… I have a real hard time believing an Old Town Tripper 172 can oil can … maybe flex ever so slightly when lightly loaded with only bow and stern paddlers , but never anything like oil canning … I just can’t believe it .

Was there ever an OT Tripper that wasn’t made out of Royalex ??

Give him a chance to respond. What
can happen is that someone with that size Discovery may want a more specific name. Sometimes that size are referred to as Trippers.

But there’s a finite chance he has a real Tripper that’s unusually flexy. We all know Spartech has not been providing the Royalex stock in the last few years that we were accustomed to in the past.

ot tripper
my tripper is roylex. it is about an '06 model. it was one that was demo a couple of time but had never been sold. it may not be oil canning and just flexing. i may not know the differance.

Royalex boats in recent years have
generally seemed flexier than they did previously. Possibly yours was flexier than average. The ABS layers seem to harden with age. So you can continue to wait for improvement, or you can brace the bottom against the center thwart with a minicell foam pedestal or even with a properly selected bucket. Then you can re-assess the boat’s behavior.