H2O Canoe Company

Now accepting orders for Summer / Fall 2022

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Canoes FAQ

Are most canoes the same?

In concept many canoes are similar, however while selecting one there are many differences and categories to pick from. Solo, tandem or more paddlers in canoes for tripping, racing, whitewater and recreational paddling.

What is the difference between symmetrical and asymmetrical canoes?

A symmetrical canoe is the same shape at each end. They are often classic designs, versatile and suitable turned backward to solo from the bow seat. Asymmetrical canoes are narrower in the bow and wider in the stern promoting efficiency of glide forward. Asymmetrical are often flared in the bow for shedding water and lower in the shearline to be less affected by cross wind.

What is initial and secondary stability?

Initial stability is the ease with which a canoe maintains stability upon entry. Secondary stability describes the level it maintains while in motion.

What does it mean when a canoe is efficient?

Efficiency of the canoe describes the performance gained by the effort generated by the paddler. Canoes going faster or maneuvering easiest are performing more efficiently than one that takes more effort and achieves less desirable results with similar input.

Why do some canoes have a keel, and some don’t?

In most cases a shoe keel in tripping & recreational canoes is inherent to construction techniques requiring the channel of the keel to become the longitudinal rigidity of the hull. There is very little if any benefit to directional assistance. The best example being the well-designed Marathon Racing Canoes which are the straightest tracking, most efficient hulls available, none of which have a raised keel. H2O Canoe Company canoes with a shoe keel are mostly stylistic & represent aesthetics of cedar strip and canvas canoe hulls of classic designs using the keel as a wear strip.

Are kevlar canoes the toughest?

Kevlar as a product is very tough. In a canoe it provides excellent resilience at light weight. This is also accomplished with combinations of various materials in build systems designed to be tough. Kevlar should be regarded as a tough product within the system.

Are carbon canoes the lightest?

Carbon Fiber is the strongest re-enforcement regarding strength to weight ratios. For this reason, it often is used in the very lightest products. Carbon Fiber provides structure and rigidity at less weight than other choices. Carbon Fiber excels in applications require low flex and speed.

Why do you focus on epoxy resin?

Epoxy resin cures as a polymer maintaining inherent flexibility and strength. Epoxy is structural, resilient and an important component to a high-quality part.

Can I go tripping in a race canoe?

Our stock Marathon Racing Canoes absolutely suit dual-purpose lives. The Slingshot 202 or 222 can be used as tripping canoes while not training or racing in them. Our Pro Marathon Canoes are best suited for training and racing conditions.

Will more than 1 person fit in a solo canoe?

Our specific solo canoes only suit one paddler. The paddler is strategically placed in a balanced center position which has minor opportunity for variance. The ends of the solo canoe do not suit a seat mount for tandem use.

Can more than 2 people fit in a tandem canoe?

The answer to this is situational in most cases. Strategically placed extra bodies may fit in the average size canoes, possibly an extra seat. Our 17’ plus canoes generally suit a third or even fourth seat and should be assessed case by case.

Purchase FAQ

Where can I purchase an H2O Canoe?

Purchases can be made through H2O Paddlesport Inc. in Tavistock Ontario. H2O operates on an appointment basis and is primarily built to order. We aim to have many models on hand for viewing or test paddling. H2O also distributes through select retailers in different regions, which you can find under our Partners page.

Can I test paddle before purchase?
By appointment, when possible, a test paddle may be arranged where we will meet you at a local body of water to confirm the boat you wish to purchase suits your needs. We often paddle in the Nith River, New Hamburg ON. Our partner Avon Boat Rental in Stratford ON has many models on hand during summer months which can be rented by the hour to try. If you keep your rental receipt this cost may be applied to purchase. Some of our retail partners offer test paddling, please contact them for details. Another way to try before you buy is to rent from our outfitting partners for a backcountry trial run.
Do you have inventory in stock to select from?

On occasion we will make extra boats that can be purchased, please contact us for a list of canoes available. Generally, we are a custom built to order shop and will need lead time for your new canoe.

How long will it take to make my canoe?

Lead time varies due to the season, model required and availability of materials. Many times, within a time frame of 6 weeks is achievable but circumstances such as the Covid Pandemic have shifted what is normal lead time. Spring and early Summer in Ontario is the most sought-after completion dates and require the most advanced purchase commitment.

What is the process to order my canoe?

Direct from H2O Paddlesport Inc. we will work with you in person, over the phone or by email to determine the canoe you require and all the choices available to personalize it. We produce and invoice for you to approve, collect a deposit with the balance due upon completion and you are booked in firm for a build. Our retailers have various sales opportunities which include sales from inventory on hand and pre order sales for arrival on dates throughout the year. If geography suits you are welcome to order your new Tripping Canoe or Pack Canoe through our retail partners and work with them to advise arrival estimates.

Shipping FAQ

Do you deliver?

We may deliver boats in quantity to our outfitters and retailers. Delivery will be quoted case by case. Individual canoes are not typically delivered to door but sometimes it may work out to meet along the way to a bulk order destination, if there is room on the trailer. Costs to be quoted case by case.

Can I pick up my canoe?

You certainly can pick up your canoe at a pre-arranged time.

Do you ship out of province / internationally?

We have capable delivery opportunities to deliver to most of Canada and the USA by transport carrier. Please ask for a quote by sending the address preferred for delivery. Delivery may be to a close destination suitable for transport truck size vehicles to stop. Delivery to other destinations may be arranged to port by sea freight. We have successfully shipped to the UK and European destinations.

Ownership FAQ

How should I store my canoe?

Canoes may be an outdoor item but do prefer to be stored indoors when possible. As with virtually any consumer goods UV exposure by the sun is detrimental to longevity and less time exposed will equal longer life with less deterioration. A canoe can be safely stored outside with a combination of shade or covering, proper resting place like a set of sturdy stands or rack and good airflow to keep moisture from negatively affecting it. Wind and snow load are other factors to consider to prevent damage, and a tie down may be necessary to accomplish safe storage outside.

Does my canoe need maintenance?

Maintenance can be intermittent for prevention such as UV inhibiting coatings applied and general cleaning. Maintenance can also be reactive to wear and tear. This may include basic repair or re-coating. An H2O Canoe requires very little routine maintenance as it is constructed with exterior and interior coatings to be resistant to wear and easy to clean. Hardware is stainless steel; aluminum is anodized, and wood is varnished.

Can my canoe be repaired if damaged?

An H2O Canoe Company canoe can virtually be a lifetime product with care and the ability to repair and renew it. One of the benefits of the H2O build systems is the ability to repair and refurbish them in varying degrees of damage and wear. Using approved techniques and materials an H2O canoe can be fixed if broken and refurbished when worn. Our clear canoes look excellent years down the road with a simple sanding and roll coat of Epoxy, almost anyone can accomplish DIY.

What is the warranty on an H2O Canoe?

H2O Canoe Company canoes are offered with a limited lifetime satisfaction guarantee. The limitation is the usable lifetime of the canoe. During the usable lifetime of the canoe, an H2O canoe that is owned by the original owner, maintained, used and stored with care should not deteriorate or have manufacturing defects. Deterioration and defects will be determined solely by H2O Paddlesport Inc. and if repair or replacement is necessary. H2O Paddlesport Inc. also advises that different components of the canoe may have a different usable lifetime. For instance, it is reasonable to expect aluminum or steel parts to last longer than wood ones. It will be the responsibility of the purchaser to transport the canoe to H2O or a pre-determined location for service.

General FAQ

Can I see what my canoe will look like?

To see pictures of our different canoe models please visit our Gallery page. If you have a request for a specific fabric and/or colour finish and you don’t see it on our Gallery page, please Contact Us.

Who designs H2O Canoes?

All H2O Canoe Company canoes master molds have been designed and built-in house. Decades of experience are utilized developing our original models and new launches.

How do you determine the build process?

Targets are set regarding weight, strength and selling price. Material selection is based on those targets and a system is developed to combine them for repeatable results.

What is composite construction?

Composite construction is combining multiple plies of raw material resulting in a structural product or component.

Why do you consider your construction technically advanced?

H2O Canoe Company creates its products by using techniques developed by professional Composite Engineers for optimum technical results. H2O employs the use of resin infusion, CNC cutting and CAD programming to name a few progressive tools.

Contact FAQ

I have called the phone number and left a message when will you respond?

The H2O number rings through to a Cell at the Shop. If we can’t get either right away please leave a message or ideally send us an email at info@h2ocanoe.com. H2O Paddlesport Inc. is a very hand on business, we are often in protective gear or involved in time sensitive procedures. While we attempt to get as many calls as possible we require some time before returning communication.

I will be nearby your location, can I just drop in?

Please make an appointment to visit us at H2O Paddlesport Inc. Whether shopping or picking up your product you will be best served when we know you are coming and arrange to be free and committed to your service. If you would like a test paddle, please make an appointment to confirm the model availability, date, time & location is available.

I would like a shop tour, when can we do that?

While it may be necessary to host a customer in a portion of the facility while shopping, a shop tour is generally not available. A variety of circumstances ranging from health & safety protocol to proprietary process protection make a shop tour improbable. We may however provide a variety of process descriptions and pictures if possible.  Please message us at info@h2ocanoe.com for requests.