Q: Canoe— Sans Gunnels

-- Last Updated: Nov-12-10 9:34 AM EST --

This past Spring, a friend was driving along and saw a sign that read "Free Canoe." Even though she's a kayaker, she grabbed it. It turns out it's a Mad River Slipper, but it lacks a seat and gunnels. Just today she offered it to me. I don't really need the boat, and I don't have much interest in restoring it. I do have needy friends, though. I have two questions: How much expense and work will be required for restoration? Secondly, how can I haul it home. I assume my friend just threw it on her roof racks, but this seems risky to me since there's no gunnels. It's only a few miles away. Would padding the rack with towels help? Or should I try to borrow a van or truck? Is this even worth the trouble?

slit 2X4
Take two ~ 24" pieces of 2X4. Lay across the skittle top, mark the top edges location and angle with a magic marker. Cut ~ 1/2 way through on those lines with a skill saw.

Mount the boat into the 4 slots, mount the 2X4 on your top carrier. Drive slowly, but the top edge shouldn’t vibrate too much. [You may need to cut longitudinal v’s in the back side of the 2X4 if mounting on a rod type rack. 2 long, shallow, cuts at 45 dg.]

One can make inexpensive rails on a table saw for the price of the wood, or buy pre-mades from Ed’s or Essex Industries.

Rails, seat…
…No problemo! I should be so lucky to find such a deal…

I would grab it in a heart beat.
Not for myself, but to fix up and give it to someone who can’t afford a canoe.

Besides, it sounds like a learning experience!

Jack L

Fine Thought!
I like the concept Jack! While never the best design, Slipper was one of the more successful solo canoes ever made. To acquire and re-trim cheap, enjoying the experience,then passing it on to a deserving other is a wonderful, community loving thought.

Email me at charliewilson77@gmail.com for re-rail protocol.

OP here. My plan is to indeed give it to a needy friend. I used to own a Slipper a long time ago. While I can always use another boat, a Slipper doesn’t fit a current need. So it will go to a friend. The thing is, the friend in mind has actually put rails on a MR Explorer before. I probably pass this one onto him “as is” and let him do the rest. He’s “canoe needy,” not poor, although it’s having two kids that’s keeping him from owning a boat.

did ya get another free canoe? i need to watch this site more often, i always want another boat.

just redone the inside of a old town wood that was fiberglassed, looks good maybe after i move i can get it in the water!!

be well see ya