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Free NWC Canoe Plans

Why would sane canoe builders offer their canoe plans and not collect a single dime? It's simple... to encourage you to experience the outdoors in your custom hand-built canoe. We routinely do so and feel nothing else compares. The offer is a nudge to get you started building a NorthWest River, NorthWest Cruiser, NorthWest Merlin or NorthWest Passage.

If there's a catch it's this... support paddlesports with a ten-dollar gift to one of our partners in paddling: Northern Forest Canoe Trail, Urban Boatbuilders, Wilderness Inquiry or the Wooden Canoe Heritage Association. Four outstanding paddlesports non-profits, tough decision, so why not go for a ten-dollar donation to each. Four Hamilton's is half the retail value of canoe plans. Tight budget? You can still receive NWC canoe plans absolutely free, details on checkout. Click any design sketch to visit the NWC  store, download your plans and start building your canoe.



NWC Proudly Offers John Winters Designs

John Winters merges statistical analysis of paddlers and boats with contemporary hydrodynamic theory. Winters has designed record setting racing canoes to revolutionary touring and tripping canoes. A member of the Society of Naval Architects and Marine Engineers, Winters is the most published designer of canoes and kayaks in North America. An avid paddler, Winters has enlightened a new generation of canoeists.

NorthWest Canoe proudly offers canoeists and home builders selected Canoe Plans and the following Winters articles, writings that dive into the science behind the art of building and paddling small boats. Enjoy.



NorthWest Tadpole

Thinking of the kids, we designed the Tadpole. Fun. A pint-size canoe that’s easy to handle on and off the water. Grab the double blade - Tadpole feels remarkably stable with floor level seating. You’ll wonder why other people’s kids still paddle plastic kayaks. Coming in a tad short of 13-feet means you’ll have no trouble building a 30-pound Tadpole.

Light, nimble and quick to accelerate this symmetrical hull also makes a fantastic freestyle canoe for big kids. Position the seat a few inches below the gunwale and she transforms into a kneeling paddler’s polo pony. The design offers plenty of volume for a day paddle and really doesn’t care about your age.

  NorthWest Tadpole
  Overall Length   12 ft 8 in


Click Sketch For
Canoe Plans
  Rocker: Bow/Stern   2 in
  Beam at Gunwales   26½ in
  Maximum Beam   28 in
  4 in. Waterline   24½ in
  Sheer Bow/ Stern   16 in
  Amidships Depth   11 in
  Approx Weight   30 lbs



Osprey

John Winters said, “The Osprey was originally designed as my personal solo. It is what I perceived to be the ideal small solo canoe for Canadian wilderness travel. The designed displacement is adequate for a large padder on a long weekend trip, or a smaller paddler for longer trips. Unlike many American solos, this boat is heavily rockered forward with slightly less aft. The combination provides good maneuverability in smaller streams and excellent tracking on open water.”

  Osprey
  Overall Length   14 ft10 in


Click Sketch To
Purchase Canoe Plans
  Waterline Length   14 ft 2½
  Rocker: Bow/Stern   1¾ / ¾
  Maximum Beam   30 in
  Beam - Waterline   27¼ in
  Sheer Bow   19 in
  Amidships Depth   12¼ in
  Sheer Stern   16 in
  Displacement   283 lbs



NorthWest Passage Solo

If you've admired the Merlin but wished for a solo with rocker, look no further. The Passage Solo gives you two inches of bow and an inch of stern rocker. Differential rocker provides maneuverability in heavy water, yet tracks when you lay the hull flat. If you're ready to build a solo canoe, but don't have the time or space for a stable-full of boats, the NorthWest Passage Solo will see you down the creek or take you on a week-long portage and paddle excursion.

  NorthWest Passage Solo
  Overall Length   15 ft

Click Sketch For
Canoe Plans
  Rocker: Bow/Stern   2 / 1 in
  Beam at Gunwales   27 in
  Maximum Beam   30 in
  3 in. Waterline   26½ in
  Sheer Bow   17 in
  Amidships Depth   12 in
  Sheer Stern   15 in
  Approx Weight   40 lbs



Barracuda

The speed of a solo marathon racer, the maneuverability and seaworthiness you expect in a tripping canoe. A paddler with good sit-and-switch technique will make this boat fly. Barracuda is not for novices, the narrow waterline will keep you on your toes. But you won't be able to race the Barracuda; it’s too narrow to meet marathon spec. You won’t mind though. The best part of paddling Barracuda has nothing to do with competition and a lot to do with the thrill of flying over the water, and the possibility of making that ultra-light solo trip.

  Barracuda
  Overall Length   17 ft 3 in


Click Sketch To
Purchase Canoe Plans
  Waterline Length   16 ft 9 in
  Rocker: Bow/Stern   2 / 1.3 in
  Maximum Beam   28 in
  Beam - Waterline   243/8 in
  Sheer Bow   14.5 in
  Amidships Depth   10 in
  Sheer Stern   11.4 in
  Displacement   210 lbs




NorthWest Merlin

So you're packing extra doughnuts, portage packs, taking dog for a paddle... you need a Merlin. The NorthWest Merlin gives you plenty of volume in an sleek 16 foot solo canoe. The lines of this seaworthy design provide more than eye candy, this efficient solo allows you to cover greater distances with fewer strokes.

  NorthWest Merlin
  Overall Length   16 ft


Click Sketch For
Canoe Plans
  Rocker: Bow/Stern   1 / ½ in
  Beam at Gunwales   26½ in
  Maximum Beam   29 in
  3 in Waterline   27 in
  Sheer Bow   16 in
  Amidships Depth   12 in
  Sheer Stern   14½ in
  Approx Weight   40 lbs.



Mattawa

Mattawa is quick, responsive and a delight to paddle wherever your journey takes you. Through subtle manipulating of hull shape, John Winters designed a canoe equally at home on flatwater or whitewater. Mattawa’s performance comes with a solid, stable feel, predictable stability that allows you to heel the canoe all the way to the gunwale. Mattawa is perfect for smaller paddling partners and weekend getaways.

  Mattawa
  Overall Length   15 ft 8 in


Click Sketch To
Purchase Canoe Plans
  Waterline Length   14 ft 10 in
  Rocker: Bow/Stern   2 ½ / 1¾
  Maximum Beam   36 in
  Beam - Waterline   33 in
  Sheer Bow   22 in
  Amidships Depth   14½ in
  Sheer Stern   19½ in
  Freebrd @ 360 lbs   9 in



NorthWest River

You enjoy day trips on the local river? This is your canoe. The NorthWest River is sixteen feet of paddling fun. It carries a lot of stuff for a sixteen-foot canoe, so don’t be afraid to stay out longer. We designed this hull with prospector-like maneuverability while maintaining the stability and classic lines of canoes like the Minnesota Canoe Association’s Guide. It’s not the fastest canoe on the planet. Who cares? The NorthWest River fits everyone’s idea of how a canoe ought to look and behave.

  NorthWest River
  Overall Length   16 ft


Click Sketch For
Canoe Plans
  Rocker: Bow/Stern   2½ in
  Beam at Gunwales   33½ in
  Maximum Beam   35½ in
  4 in. Waterline   32½ in
  Sheer Bow / Stern   22 in
  Amidships Depth   14 in
  Approx Weight   55 lbs


Winisk

Winisk is your all around tripping canoe engineered for open water paddling. Canadian designer John Winters has travel hundreds of miles on Lake Superior and Georgian Bay in his Winisk. Its asymmetrical shape and 525 pound displacement make Winisk the ideal extended tripper, although many paddlers are perfectly happy taking their Winisk out for a weekend jaunt.

  Winisk
  Overall Length   17 ft 6 in


Click Sketch To
Purchase Canoe Plans
  Waterline Length   17 ft
  Rocker: Bow/Stern   3¼ / 1 in
  Maximum Beam   36 in
  Beam - Waterline   32½ in
  Sheer Bow   21 in
  Amidships Depth   14 in
  Sheer Stern   19 in
  Freebrd @ 525 lbs.   9 in


NorthWest Cruiser

Big lakes, big waves, big kids... the NorthWest Cruiser can handle them all. A NorthWest Canoe exclusive, this design shows the water nothing but sweet curves. It slips through water with little resistance. Gone for the summer or gone for a Sunday, the stable NorthWest Cruiser works to keep you, passengers and gear safe and dry. This efficient symmetrical design puts you in a canoe that's simple to build and a pleasure to paddle.

  Northwest Cruiser
  Overall Length   17 ft


Click Sketch For
Canoe Plans
  Rocker: Bow/Stern   1 / 1 in
  Beam at Gunwales   33 in
  Maximum Beam   35 in
  4 in. Waterline   33½ in
  Sheer Bow / Stern   18½ in
  Amidships Depth   14 in
  Approx Weight   55 lbs


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