VINTAGE GRUMMAN 17′ SQUARE STERN CANOE Bethpage NY 1947-52 Aluminum Sail Mounts



Manufactured by the Grumman Aircraft Engineering Corporation in Bethpage, N.Y., this rare vintage 17′ square stern canoe is from Grumman’s earliest production of aluminum canoes on the Bethpage, N.Y. facility in the years of 1947 – 1952.  Bethpage I.D. plate attached.

Manufacturerer:  Grumman Aircraft Engineering Corporation
Size:  17′
Style:  Square Stern
Material:  Aircraft grade aluminum
Location of manufacture:  Bethpage, Long Island, NY
Serial # 136-C-17 SQ
Circa:  1947 – 1952
Equipped with factory mounts for sail kit (See photo #11)

Classic “Old School” Grumman aluminum canoe, super stable, tracks straight, tough as nails with the flexibility to paddle, sail or motor.  Used in the Elk, Buffalo and White rivers of Missouri and Arkansas.

Handed down through the circle of relatives, this canoe has not been in the water in the last 40 years. In nice vintage condition. Some paint remains. One patch is present on lower right stern. Repair dates from the 1960s or earlier.  

Local pickup or FOB, buyer arranges for shipping and pays shipping costs.  

Grumman Canoe History:

In the summer of 1944, after portaging a heavy wood and canvas canoe on a fishing commute in the Adirondack Mountains, William Hoffman, Vice President of Grumman Aircraft Engineering, had an idea to make a canoe from the same lightweight, stretch-formed aluminum that Grumman had used to change into the single largest producer of carrier-based fighter planes right through World War II.  Soon 17′ prototypes of the new canoe were being built in the employees’ bowling alley at Grumman Aircraft Engineering Corporation in Bethpage NY.

In 1945, the first actual aluminum canoe, a 13-footer, was once produced on the aircraft plant in Bethpage, Long Island, N.Y.  John Achilich, a Grumman tooling engineer, designed the 15, 17 and 19 foot canoes.  “The vital thing about a Grumman canoe was once that it was once so strong.  It had a nice flat bottom for stability and had a nice prow,” stated Achilich.  The plant relocated to Marathon, N.Y. in 1952.

Executive Director of the Canadian Canoe Museum James Raffan described the Grumman aluminum canoe. “Grumman learned to bend and rivet flat sheets of aluminum into elegant, complex curves because of making aircraft wings and fuselages,” explained Raffan. “The process of the usage of panels of hand-riveted, stretchformed aluminum alloy translated ideally to canoe construction.”



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