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Bell wildfire for sale

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I have a bell wildfire I am selling. The canoe is a garage queen that was owned by a elderly couple and was in the water twice, it’s in amazing condition. I bought it to use as my fishing cano but decided it is way too nice for fishing. I’m interested in offers and opinions on its value. I am located in Hilton Head SC
 

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Glenn MacGrady

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Welcome to site membership, Mxz066!

It appears to be lightly used black/gold layup (carbon over Kevlar), manufactured in August 1994 per the HIN.

I don't have a good feel for pricing these days. I bought a 2002 model in almost as good shape for $1050 in 2009, but composite canoe prices, both new and used, have inflated since then. Wildfires were made by Bell, Placid and then Colden, all of which are now out of business. Charlie Wilson says the Wildfire mold is now at Swift Canoe in Canada, but I haven't heard anything about them producing the Wildfire. If they did, it would surely be over $3,000 USD new.
 
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Pricing is a little tricky SteveT are you nearby? What is the market for a BG Wild? I am selling a BG Starfire of the same vintage for someone else and have not figured out a price yet. SC market would be different from my area. Used canoe prices wildly vary. But I would guess with a boat in mint garage queen shape you could get three grand.
Glenn, Placid is not out of business. When Charlie left he got the mold and transferred it to Colden. So Placid is way backlogged on orders now but does not produce the Wild Fire.
 

Glenn MacGrady

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Glenn, Placid is not out of business. When Charlie left he got the mold and transferred it to Colden. So Placid is way backlogged on orders now but does not produce the Wild Fire.
Yes, sorry, I meant everyone is now out of the business of making Wildfires. Placid Boatworks is still in the business of making pack canoes and other things. Bell Canoe is out of business, but has sort sort of been resurrected by Ted Bell as Northstar Canoes with many hulls similar to the old Bell hulls, but not the Fire series. Colden is out of business.

I don't know about $3,000. The old Bell Wildfires were vacuum bagged, not infused like the Placid and Colden Wildfires and all Swift canoes. Resin infused canoes are typically lighter and more expensive than vacuum bagged canoes. I test paddled a 40 lb. infused Colden Starfire in great condition last year that was asking around $2500. I didn't buy it and have no idea how much it sold for.
 
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Yes, I’m on HH also and I see virtually no open boats here…on cars or in the water so I imagine a buyer will be found elsewhere…just my guess. Water here not really conducive to small open boats unless you go inland a ways for some blackwater river travel.

I have a similar Wildfire and though I love the boat (it’s the only one I kept when I had to dispose of the “fleet”) I wouldn’t pay over 2K for one, but that may just be me. Even that is a stretch for a 28 year old hull in my opinion.
 
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I actually fish the creeks out of an older 12’ fiberglass canoe. I just can’t bring myself to use something so nice here after seeing what the oyster beds have done to the bottom of my canoe and kayak. I figured maybe someone in the nearby mountains would provide a better home for it.
 
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A Blackgold Bell Wildfire is definitely a desirable boat and the price of high-quality used canoes like that one have gone up dramatically in recent years. A couple of years ago I would have said price it at $1200 to $1500 but in today's market perhaps the $1500-$2000 range is a better starting point. Could it bring $3000? Ultimately it is worth whatever someone is willing to pay but I suspect you would need to wait a good while to find a buyer.
 
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Yes, oyster beds are brutal...kudos for not destroying such a great canoe! It will live a longer, happier life away from them.
 
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Yes, oyster beds are brutal...kudos for not destroying such a great canoe! It will live a longer, happier life away from them.
When Placid took over the mold, the WildFire sported a beige bottom.. You remember probably the many conversations about how well beige hides bottom scuffles.
Colden continued the beige.
My WildFire hasn't met oyster bars yet but has met scratchy rocks and sand. My RapidFire has met oyster bars and not suffered unduly with its beige belly. It gets together with the oyster bars each winter for four weeks. After 16 years of such treatment its still in fine shape. Just don't peer closely at the bottom.
 
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I'm in upstate SC, and a friend sold a Fiberglass Wildfire with very rough gunnels (with some rot) for a thousand last year. Your is a beauty and if I had space in my boat storage area I would consider it. I did have a Bell Yellowstone Solo a few years back; it is the Royalex version of the Wildfire with some modifications to ease the Royalex construction. It paddled nicely, but I didn't need the weight and rock bashing ability of Royalex for this canoe. I did keep the Yellowstone Tandem that I bought at the same time and ended up putting in a kneeling thwart along with the tandem seats.
In our area I think $1750-2000 should be about right, although I have noticed that the higher priced canoes do not move very quickly. Good luck to you with your sale.
 

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I sold it for a fair price last weekend in the range of what you thought. I got back what I had in it and hopefully gave it a proper home.
 
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