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Reviews for Ojibway Canoe by Old Town Canoe


Rated: 8.44/10 Based On: 18 Reviews

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09-14-2012
Submitted by: GuySend Email
Rating: 8 of 10

     I paddle the estuaries in Suffolk on the East coast of England and needed another canoe so that our party of four could travel the Alde, Ore, Deben and the sea in between. I picked it up with vests and paddles for 320. I can confirm many of the themes already set out here.

It paddles solo well (front seat reversed), is pretty quick and very hardy and stable. On the downside it is really heavy and with its tumbledown gunwhales a bugger to handle and drain out of water. Car topping needs a bit of care or it will try and escape your grip. I'm 188cm and 97kg and the rear seat is too tight without a pad to lift you. It makes my Grumman 1550 seem very light.

Mine is red and came with strap in bags that are useful. I recommend it if you can get it at a fair price and don't mind the weight. It's a tough canoe.

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06-27-2011
Submitted by: C.J.Send Email
Rating: 10 of 10

     I have an Ojibway. I built a wooden seat over the back seat that is flush with the gunwale. The factory seat is too narrow for anyone. For that I give Old Town a 1. No, a half.

Other than that, it is a stable boat that is greasy. Cargo rating nearly 1k. Solo is great in swift water going upstream with a kayak paddle. Durable and worth the money if a used one is located.

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04-08-2011
Submitted by: PeteSend Email
Rating: 10 of 10

     I bought my Ojibway in 1973. I went up to Maine and bought it directly from Old Town. Mine looks similar to the old OLD TOWN C-2's but with out the top. It dosent resemble the modle they sell now. I bought it for white water in the north east. I have a custom made grumman with heavy gage aluminum and no keel. I boufgt the old town because of the flat bottom (no keel) and it weighed half the weight of the grummen. I have used it for class I through class IV in the northeast. it is real fun in rapids and very easy to control, but as with all open boats, it does take on water and i have swam dome of the biggest drops in NE because my canoe swamped. Although I have never wrapped it around a rock, I have cracked it and split the seam a couple times. It is expected and the boat takes fiberglass patching very well. It's almost 40 years old and still hanging in my garage.
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06-22-2010
Submitted by: reddypaSend Email
Rating: 8 of 10

     Am about to take my 8 year old on his first overnighter and for the first time I will have a boat mate that can't split the cost of our rental! Time to buy a canoe.

I needed something < $600 and found this canoe very lightly used for $500. Was looking for an OT 158 or 169 but couldn't find one in my price range.

Have only had this one on flat water as a test run and so far I'm very pleased. I am 6'3" and 245 lbs. The rear seat, as others have mentioned, is tiny - my back end barely squeezes in and I wonder what a 3 day trip will be like. I do have plenty of leg room and can paddle easily even with someone int he middle seat. The canoe is kind of heavy, but no heavier than the Coleman I'm used to toting around. All-in-all, I really like the speed, tracking,and stability. Maneuvering is yet to be seen, but so far, on the lake, it seemed to do just fine for the Missouri and Arkansas streams I float.

I will drill drain holes, too. One more thing to note is that the curved gunwales reduce the interior width considerably.

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04-07-2008
Submitted by: jlSend Email
Rating: 10 of 10

     I have had an Ojibway for 4 years now and absolutely love it. We use it primarily for fishing on flatwater and with 2 anglers the center bench makes a great table for a tacklebox. My wife, 6 year old son, and I have taken it on a couple of group paddles on small rivers and it handles beautifully.

It is also, in my opinion, indestructible! I believe the rolled in gunwales are perfect... we nearly tipped the canoe when we high centered a rock, but the rolled in design kept the water from pouring in too fast and we were able to shift our weight and keep it upright! Yes... the rolled in sides hold the water in when trying to dump out... I was surprised to hear so many people would drill holes in the darn canoe instead of invest 20 dollars on a good kayak pump which is what I did... I can empty the boat in 2 minutes!

Yeah... it is heavy, but I work out regularly and don't mind heavy lifting. If you want a light canoe don't buy this one! Love the canoe and would buy another one but don't think I'll ever have to because this one will last a good long time!

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07-06-2007
Submitted by: koSend Email
Rating: 7 of 10

     Just got back from a three day float on the buffalo with my ojibway. I was impressed with its handling, ease of paddling, and stability. I took my 5yr old son and a German Shepherd pup (3month) not on tip even when high centered on rocks. The weight of camping gear, passengers, and an ice chest added to its stability and did not cause the canoe to run deep in the water. The sides suck badly; definitely drill holes to help with water removal and if you get gravel or small rocks you're going to have to pick by hand. Flippin the canoe over simply puts them in the gunwales and when you flip it back there they are. Back seat also sucks. I tied a regular boat cushion to my stern rope (drill hole to attach) the rope helped hold it in place as I sat on it. Rate it at a 7.
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06-11-2007
Submitted by: LBSend Email
Rating: 4 of 10

     I bought the Ojibay brand new for $350 from the local Old town dealer. I have had the boat for a couple of years. I have found the boat to be uncomfortable on any trip over a half hour. The rear seat was horrible; was on my knees paddling more than in the seat. I can barely keep the canoe going in a straight line. The weight is terrible; I can move our 20' wood and canvas canoe easer than the ojibway. The molded gunnels make it impossible to get any water out of the poorly placed drain hole.

I will admit that the boat was a fun water toy. We have put the boat through hell and back and it has come out a champ. The boat is cheap and tough. I would only recommend the boat to persons just getting into canoing.

It is great for kids to play with. But the lack of refinement forces me to give it a low score.

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12-14-2006
Submitted by: Send Email
Rating: 5 of 10

     I liked the hull as a good all-around work platform and beater boat but hated the rotomolded top. Sold mine for $300 and bought the same hull for $350 in a real OT Discovery 158, complete with thwarts and seats. No regrets; it was a good ride and a great experiment, but melding kayaks and canoes wasn't a big success in my book.
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09-12-2005
Submitted by: Eric W.Send Email
Rating: 8 of 10

     When I bought this boat, I wanted something cheap, tough, and well rounded to different activities.

The canoe proved well behaved and manageable on a Class I and II day trip with kids. Stable, well tracking, and comfortable, etc. Even a little "oil canning" of the bottom didn't make it seem slow. The flexible plastic construction that gives the craft its durability is to blame, but the effect cannot be escaped without going for more expensive materials.

I then spent two days on a Class I through V river. There I initiated it with plenty of scratches, gouges. We flipped it, bashed it into rocks, drug it through brush and over rocky ledges for hours. Through out, the hull held up quite well. The controllability of the boat in whitewater was fine, and we kept it upright in large waves even without the secondary stability of a rounder bottom.

Although a comfort advantage on flat water, I knew the shortfalls of a low gunwale in rougher water. When nosing down into foam off of shelves, we would take on water and would have to stop and bail or dump.

This brings me to the other major problem with the craft, which I also saw before purchasing it: the large inner lip of the gunwale. The 3" lip makes flipping a swamped Ojibway out of the water almost impossible without superhuman strength, and with only one provided 1/2" drain hole, it takes a ridiculously impractical amount of time to let all the water out. Before even getting on the water, I used a 1/2" spade bit to drill an additional hole in both the prow and stern, and every 18" down each side. Even with the added drain holes, the lipped gunwale was almost dangerous to deal with in moving water. I will go back and add at least another 1/2" hole every 6" down the sides, and a couple more in the ends of the boat. I noticed no weakening, flexing, or stress on the gunwale after the water time, and although a good period of time would be needed to fully examine this, I expect no ill effects on the strength of the gunwale.

All in all, the Ojibway is a fun, cheap, tough, great all-around canoe. It's not for purists (fast on flat water, good for white water), but it's great for kids and general recreation.

I really like the earth tone color I bought it in.

With a few drain holes and float bags, it can be good for a thrill on up to Class III water. I may even make a skirt for it, just for a giggle. I got a few comments from others on the river that day, fully outfitted in their expensive kayaks and banana shaped canoes, but we all had a blast.

Disclaimer:
*I must say that I'm young, skinny, and strong, so the rear seat doesn't hurt my backside, the boat doesn't seem that heavy to me, and less skilled canoeists might have turned it over more than we did... Know your abilities before you take any boat into moving water.

Buy this boat if you're on a budget, and enjoy.

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08-16-2005
Submitted by: ---
Rating: 10 of 10

     I bought the deluxe model for I think $599. After one year I love it! I have been in many canoes, but most or all have been cheap ones. This one was cheap but looks great, is durable, sturdy and practical. I am getting older and weaker but it sure seems like it weighs more than 84 pounds!
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06-08-2005
Submitted by: View Profile Send Email
Rating: 9 of 10

     We bought it as a family canoe so the kid in the middle could have a seat. I agree that the rear seat is a bit narrow but it's an incentive for me to lose weight. The rear seat sags but I like that because it's kind of a sling and I like to kneel. The middle seat gives me a lot of options for foot bracing and different leg positions. It is a very stable canoe, my boys (9 & 11) can rock it pretty good as they try to catch fish and we've never had a scare let alone a tip.

We had it on a 6 hour trip through the Okeefenokee this spring and it was maneuverable through tight places. Speed has never been a factor with us because we aren't trying to go far or fast. The biggest downside is loading it on top of the pickup truck by myself. It weighs about 85 lbs and has a tendency to want to roll over and right itself when you have it half way on. We solved that problem with a trailer. It is not easy to carry. I didn't really want to drill holes in it to make a yoke but a cart works well. The plastic construction is tough. We've done some shallow rocky rivers and scraped along with only cosmetic damage.

If you are looking for a family beater canoe that is stable and tough, cleans up easy, and is comfortable then consider this boat. We bought it at a year-end closeout for under $500 and have been very pleased.

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05-11-2005
Submitted by: JBSend Email
Rating: 9 of 10

     So far, after a few lake outings and a few I/II river trips, I have been quite happy. Without being redundant to the other comments, it is a very stable canoe: I and the 6 year old can stand up to free a caught lure. It is not as maneuverable as a lighter canoe that is shorter and has a greater rocker but one trades this for stability. I wanted to added a motor for longer family lake outings but the standard motor mounts that attach under a gunwale won't work... expect to do a bit of simple engineering and a little drilling (on low speed so as to cut but not burn/melt the plastic). I have made a short incision along the gunwale to add rod holders and, in doing so, see no reason why one couldn't make 1/2" holes every 18-24" to lose water faster when draining (maybe this would lose 1-2 lbs also). I can load it on a Cherokee by myself but it is work... if I would have been working out reg., maybe a bit easier but, the pt. is that it is doable. In summary, a great all purpose boat that is quite stable. My second choice was the MadRiver Adv 16 and I think this is much more durable and not as 'cheap plastic' looking.
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02-27-2005
Submitted by: Send Email
Rating: 8 of 10

     We primarily use our Ojibway to serve as our creek clearing boat and have not been disappointed as the wide, flat bottom gives us a great work platform and the tough plastic easily scrapes past snags and branches while shrugging off errant saw blades.

That fact that it also paddles well and is a canoe we can lend to anybody who wants to do anything with it -- did I say seemingly indestructible? -- is an added bonus.

It does have some "heavy" downsides, like weight, for instance. The book weight says 84 lbs. but after a day on the water it may as well be 250 lbs.

Over time, the plastic seats will sag, which does make them more comfortable, but in a light rain last month we found ourselves sitting in puddles of water. A series of 1/4-inch holes drilled in the seats fixed this chilling problem.

The drain plug looked fragile, which proved to be a valid concern as it no longer exists. But life is easier not worrying about breaking it and the drain hole now serves as an excellent place to attach a stern line.

Others have wondered if the drain hole might be too small. On a recent group journey on a slow-moving river, the rookies we lent the boat to surprised us by being the first to capsize our Ojibway and it took seemingly forever to get all the water out. On the positive side, by the time the water was all drained out they had stopped arguing about who was at fault before they resumed paddling!

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08-12-2004
Submitted by: Send Email
Rating: 10 of 10

     In response to DW, I had the exact same experience with the back seat-- not quite wide enough & my legs went numb. I figured I needed to lose some weight!! Otherwise, took my brand new Ojibwa out on Sunday for a great paddle with three of us in it. It was a great paddle. We were around a lot of motor boats & successfully navigated around their wakes. It's a good, all-purpose canoe. I was surprised it didn't really have traditional gunwales, so my foam block car top carrier didn't work, but it went on top of the roof rack just fine without the blocks.
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08-10-2004
Submitted by: DanielSend Email
Rating: 9 of 10

     General purpose. That covers it well. I haven't been on any long river floats yet, but from my experience so far I expect her to be great. I think this is a great family boat, (cup holders, molded seats, center bench). Seems pretty stable, paddles easy. With the center bench, I am considering a Kayak paddle for solo fishing trips on small lakes.

The great unknown will be emptying the water from her the first time I turn her over. The molded top/sides make her strong, but will hold water when draining the boat. The front drain plug is small, as expected, but will take a while to drain out. As you know a boat full of water is very heavy.

Am I glad I bought this one. YES. Would I buy it again. YES. Am I satisfied with the value for the investment. YES. Any regrets. Not sure. Kind of wish I had a Kayak for solo trips. But then I could only go on trips with other people who have a Kayaks, when I don't want to be alone. None of my friends have Kayaks. So I think I bought the right boat.

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08-10-2004
Submitted by: DW
Rating: 8 of 10

     I am a beginner and the Ojibway is my 1st canoe. I purchased the Deluxe model from LL Bean and am very happy with the purchase. I would give this canoe a higher score if only the rear seat was a little wider. The middle and front seats are very comfortable but when I use the rear seat my legs go numb.
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07-01-2004
Submitted by: ---
Rating: 10 of 10

     Had a cool experience on a lake. Paddling about in the gold (schoolbus yellow) version we had paddlers coming closer to see the world's fastest inflatable. It was good for a chuckle, as it hadn't occured to us that from a distance we looked like your typical cheap yellow inflatable. Charmed, I'm sure.
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04-27-2004
Submitted by: BKSend Email
Rating: 9 of 10

     I bought the new Old Town Ojibway for five reasons: 1.) I wanted a canoe with which I could do all those things one is not supposed to do with a "good" canoe; 2.) We often found ourselves one canoe short for outings with friends; 3.) My wife had been lobbying for a flat bottomed canoe for casual paddling; 4.) We needed a good "kids" canoe; and, 5.) It was cheap (and my wife thought it was "cute").

Old Town quality for the price of a Coleman. Who could argue with that? This is not one of those cheap, floppy plastic fantastics, as the PolyLink material is 3/8-inch thick at the inner rails.

As to its performance, the best I can say is that the Ojibway is a Discovery 158 hull with a kayak-styled top and I find myself in general agreement with the Disco 158 comments found elsewhere on this site.

I will add that after six outings (five tandem, one solo), I have not been disappointed as this appears to be an excellent general purpose canoe.

The canoe purist in me says to give it a 6, as it does nothing extremely well. However, since I've found that I now use it more than any of my other canoes I'm tempted to give it a 7, but since my total outlay at L.L. Bean was only $512, I'm giving it a 9!

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