Fancy`s Oars & Paddles

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Family History

Over 100 years of oar and paddle making experience is in the Fancy Family.


Van Fancy - 24 years and counting.

Grandfather - Clarence Fancy 24 years. 1957 to 1981

Father - Milton Fancy 49 years. 1957 to 2006

Uncle - Arnold Fancy 23 years. 1957 to 1980


1957 the Fancy's went to work for Nathan Joudrey and Sons.

Producing sportsman's pride oars and paddles in Blockhouse, Nova Scotia.

Nathan's products was shipped all over Canada.

Selling to Simpson-Sears, Niska and Wool co.

The business was sold to Dave and Ron Boston in 1971.


Sportsman's Pride Logo.



The Boston's renamed it Dafron Industry Ltd.

Running the business in the blockhouse shop for 5 years. 

They built a new plant in Oakhill, Nova Scotia.

Selling world wide solid one piece and laminated oars and paddles.

Dafron Industry closed in 1982.

Clarence retired and Arnold went to work for a wooden box company.


Dafron logo.



Milton Fancy & Sons Oars & Paddles started May 1983.

Fixing an old shop in his back yard in Middle Cornwall, Nova Scotia.

 Purchasing some of the machinery left over in blockhouse and oakhill.

He built what ever was needed to make the product.


Running the business with his wife Melba by his side for 25 years.

Melba doing the book work and helping in the shop when needed.

They have two sons Carson and Van who helped some but went on to other jobs.


Milton's oars and paddles are well known through out North America.

Supplying the International Dory Racing and many marine shops.


He was a humble man and enjoyed life to the fullest. 

The craftsman ship was done to perfection.

Milton passed away in August 2006 at the age of 67.


Milton Fancy & Sons logo.



Van came to work for his father in September of 2000.

May of 2006 he and his wife Janice started Van Fancy Oars & Paddles.

Van had the honor to be taught for six years by the man that was known as the best.

Since then they have been making and selling oars and paddles all over the world.


Van Fancy logo.



The traditional steps are still done in the same way.

The machinery runs as it did in the 60's.


If it's loose... tighten it.

If it squeaks... grease or oil it.

If it's dull... then sharpen it.



    Quality... Craftmanship... Longevity...



Fancy's products have been featured in:


Radio interviews


Newspaper articles





TV showsHandCraftedNS/videos





Pirates of the Caribbean




Moby Dick




The Disappeared



January 22,1980

Milton Fancy (left) and Lester Willniff loading boxes of spruce oars.

Early 1980's

Clinton Eisner (left) sanding and Clarence Fancy planning an oar on the same lathe used today.


Arnold Fancy showing the Sportsman's Pride paddles.

Late 1980's

Arnold Fancy sawing out a oar on the same bandsaw used today.



Website created and designed by Van Fancy and Janice Dares.