Tom Turba x6774 (turba@UNIRSVL.RSVL.UNISYS.COM)
Thu, 6 Apr 1995 12:11:38 CDT
>>>if you want new canoes that are indestructable and inexpensive, consider
>>> Coleman canoes. The campus recreation department here at NIU buys
>>> coleman canoes because even the frat boys can't destroy them.
>> I guess frat boys just arn't as creative as scouts :-) A couple
>>of years ago two of the scouts managed to damage one of the Coleman
>Coleman also makes a "plastic" canoe that is more durable than the aluminum.
>I think the material is called "Kevlar" or something similar, I'd have
>to look up my refs (which are at home). It is also more expensive. But if
>the kids had hit the rock with one the canoe would probably have bent back
>into shape (provided they could get it off the rock :) ) This new material
>'springs back' as long as a hole isn't punched in it. And it is supposed
>to be harder to punch a hole in also. I can't remember what it said about
>handling, I have never used one.
I enjoy whitewater canoeing, and have two of these canoes. One from the
first year they were made. I was so impressed with the first one I bought
another one a few years later when my boys were old enough to handle a canoe
by themselves. The canoes have been on countless whitewater trips and have
the scars to prove it. They have also been on many lakes, including those in
the Boundary Waters.
The shell of the canoe is made of a durable plastic. The gunnels, inner
keel, and seat supports are made of aluminum. They come in kit form and need
to be assembled. They normally cost less than an equivalent sized aluminum
The plastic bends easily and springs back when deformed, the aluminum pieces
do not. The plastic is very durable, but some scaring occurs when going over
rocks. Repair kits are available, but I have only heard of one case where
one was needed, this was the result of continued abuse over a several year
period. With normal care one of these canoes should last a lifetime, even
when used for whitewater canoeing.
The canoes handle a little differently than aluminum canoes. Rather than
catching on rocks, they tend to slip over them as the plastic bends. This is
both good and bad. You don't get hung up on small rocks, but when you do get
hung up, more of the canoe is on the rock.
The canoes weigh about the same as a standard (heavy) gauge aluminum canoe,
which is more than light-weight aluminum canoes or more expensive light-weight
plastic canoes. They can be easily portaged by an adult or good sized boy.
A small boy could not portage one alone, but two can easily handle it.
They are less noisy than aluminum canoes. If you hit a rock, there is very
little noise, and most people in your party will not hear it. There is also
less noise when moving gear around when fishing, so you don't scare as many
fish away. The canoes are also warmer because the plastic does not conduct
the cold of the water as well as aluminum.
In my opinion they are a good all-around canoe. I recommend them for Scout
or family type activities.
T. N. T.
Thomas N. Turba
ASM Troop 297
Terry Howerton Sakima Group, Inc. SCOUTER Magazine Kansas City