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Thread: Suggestions for Outfitting a 20' West Coast Canoe Co. Freighter

  1. #1

    Default Suggestions for Outfitting a 20' West Coast Canoe Co. Freighter

    Hello All,
    New Member, First post. Been reading quite a bit on the Canoe forum. Really Interesting Stuff!

    I'm interested in the subject canoe but in a cedar strip or maybe stitch & glue. I've built both types before so I'm familiar with the construction. Although they were a good deal smaller. Here is a link to the canoe in question: http://www.islandnet.com/~canoes/20ft_freighter.htm
    Quick specs. are a 20' x 47" wide, 25" depth & 35" bow height.

    My use seems to be a little out of the norm due to my cabin located in Haines. We have mainly two types of water here. Very fast braided glacier rivers & semi-protected ocean areas and that's what I will be doing. The main emphasis is on safety. There is absolutely no room for error. If you make a mistake on one of these large glacier areas you may pay the ultimate price. The ocean is a little more forgiving since you can pick your day, but being able to stay overnight or longer to wait out big storms would be important. 2-3ft waves would be max I would take the canoe out in. I should also mention that the glacier rivers can get really skinny & would require dragging the canoe thru some shallow sections. The water depth is very difficult to read because it is very silty & flat gray. As a whitewater kayaker/rafter & fly fishermen I find it the most difficult water to read. It is difficult to describe this water unless you've actually seen or paddled it.

    Load is not that big of a deal. It would under be maybe be 1000 lbs. max. (2 people, gear for a week & a few blacktails). Also, would be used for crabbing, shrimping, & halibut, ... etc. I like that this canoe will have a good deal of freeboard for big waves, but not happy about all that windage, but I'm willing to sacrifice all that windage for safety. I could bring the sides down from say 25" to around 22"? My ultimate goal is to get as high upstream in these glacier rivers as possible. Most all the major outfitters use airboats for this country to give you an idea. But usually they don't take those out in the ocean. So if I had a freighter that could do both I could get into some remote areas in the handful of glacier rivers in the upper Lynn canal.

    My main question is what would be the ideal copperhead motor for this? Speed is important out in the ocean to outrun an approaching storms. And what are your thoughts on this approach for this type usage? Am I right in thinking I should have as flat a bottom on the canoe as possible for the skinny water within reason. I realize this is a difficult design because your trying to make a big-laker-type, double-ended canoe for the ocean & then a light weight flat bottom with wide stern for the river, but I think a good compromise can be found?

    Thanks in Advance for your input

  2. #2
    Member mainer_in_ak's Avatar
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    give a shout at 907-903-2101. I honestly feel a 14 hp copperhead may be the right power for that canoe. I just dipnetted 70 salmon in an Albany canoe, and felt this was plenty of motor for a load in the 1500 lb-2000lb range. There were two of us dipping from the canoe, for additional 430 lbs of people weight in the little freighter. This is my third season dipnetting with this motor. All combined, over 150 reds have been put away, 2 caribou, and one 55" racked bull moose with this little motor.
    That stern won't take kindly to anymore weight. If you use the right epoxy, a flexible blend....that boat should hold up ok in the conditions you describe. Not sure If I'd like to dip an expensive motor such as this in the salt though, so extra care to keep you motor in good shape may be necessary. The sell sacrificial anodes to bolt up to the frame.....that might help a bit.

  3. #3
    Supporting Member Amigo Will's Avatar
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    Are you talking about the Chilkat and Chilkoot rivers up to the lakes? If so I think those canoes might tear up fairly quick..Have you looked at Kanoe peoples canoe up in Whitehorse,tuffer canoes easier to patch up.
    Now left only to be a turd in the forrest and the circle will be complete.Use me as I have used you

  4. #4

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    Quote Originally Posted by Amigo Will View Post
    Are you talking about the Chilkat and Chilkoot rivers up to the lakes? If so I think those canoes might tear up fairly quick..Have you looked at Kanoe peoples canoe up in Whitehorse,tuffer canoes easier to patch up.
    Yes, to the lakes & even further upstream, although Chilkat Lake will be limited. But there are several others: Tsirku, Taiyasanka, Berners Bay, Klehini ... There are quite a few in Lynn Canal. Have not checked with Kanoe folks in Whitehorse, but will give them a visit the next time I'm in Whitehorse.

    Thanks

  5. #5
    Supporting Member Amigo Will's Avatar
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    Ya I lived at 5 3/4 mile Mudbay about seven years and all those rivers are hard on bottoms.
    Now left only to be a turd in the forrest and the circle will be complete.Use me as I have used you

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