Curley's Custom Canoe is based on a 90 year old Thompson Bros. Wood canoe which I bought 38 years ago. I bought it from Camp Chickagami, for $15, where it had resided for 25 years in rafters of the handy-craft lodge. "Curley" was my grandfather, who was a canoeist of local renown, who retired the points trophy from Canoe City. I call the canoes a Curley to honor him. Since these are custom built canoes the customer can select their own name.

Curley's Custom Canoe, is custom built for each person. It is a two-person 16 foot 4 inches in length and the width is 34 inches. Weight is between 62 and 65 lbs. depending on the type of wood used. It is a fiberglass hull, gelcoated color, with built in composite ribs, which greatly increases the strength with only a small weight penalty. The rest of the canoe is trimmed out in solid wood. You select the wood to be used. Gunwales can be ash or white oak. Thwarts can be ash. Bow and stem pieces can be walnut, walnut burl, cherry, cherry burl, mulberry, or cedar. Seats are ash with woven wicker inserts. All fasteners used are either stainless or brass. Diamond head brass can be used for small additional cost. A bow/keel piece of either copper or osage orange can be added.

The canoe is slick, fast, and has good entry lines. With enough rock for good agility but very stable, wetted area remains constant. Has a traditional appearance and rounded ends.

Price varies from only $548 to $588 depending on wood and fasteners used.

Any questions please email me.






The expedition special is named after the handmade paddles that Lewis and Clark were presented by the wood wright member of their 1803 expedition. These paddles were made to be rugged, efficient and to look pretty darn good. This paddle is as close of a copy of their paddle as I could make. It is designed to be made from a solid piece of wood. Not a group of scrap pieces glued together. The weight of the blade is offset by added strength and wood in the handle, the end result is your grip becomes the balance point. The blade has thin entry lines for less drag. The chord line of the blade tapers from a strong ridge to give the paddle excellent strength in case you need a paddle that can take some abuse. If you are on a three year expedition and can only take one paddle, you need the Expedition.

Sassafras is a scrub tree that is very small in size. To find sassafras large enough to make a paddle is as rare as the famous two headed chicken. Sassafras makes the best wood paddle you can use. You can not buy these paddles; they are so rare that they are always given as gifts by people fortunate enough to find one. Sassafras is strong, springy and light , and takes to water well. It also has the added feature that you can leave it lying around after a hard day of paddling; the coons and other salt loving critters will not chew on it. This means that you don't have to sleep with your paddle. Unless you want to, it is your best friend while paddling..

This paddle is hand crafted and designed by Wayne (Curley) Hetzler. The "l" in curley is a paddle. I can promise you that this is a one of a kind paddle.

If you think this paddle is for you. Take this simple test. Do you eat real butter? Do you buy your companion bread unsliced? Do you avoid diet drinks? Yes, is the correct answer. There is a way around this because; hopefully some one that does appreciate the better things in life will present it to you as a gift. It worked for Lewis and Clark.







3540 N HWY 94, ST CHARLES, MO 63301

1-636-946-7888 OR EMAIL