Posts Tagged ‘antique classic boat society’

Glaspar G – 3 with aluminum Buick V-8 V-Drive Inboard

glaspar g 3 fiberglass boat photo image 1960 inboard v-drive custom runabout ski boat

Note, the custom wood covered fiberglass transom

This is an inboard G-3. She is the custom creation of a Jersey Speed Skiff and classic 1962 Chris Craft Golden Arrow 19’ boat owner. Her builder owns and races the famous Orange Crate, the 1965 JSS class vintage racer. This 1960 Glaspar is owned by an accomplished marine craftsman. His work speaks for him. Just take a look at his race boat Orange Crate in any racing pits and see it for yourself.

G 3 Glaspar inboard v drive fiberglass boat photo image

Custom G 3 Glaspar 1960 classic fiberglass boat

Skip started with a 1960 Glaspar “Center deck”. He instantly got around one problem with a classic G 3 by putting in a souped-up inboard engine in his Glaspar fiberglass boat at the correct balance point for the hull by using a v-drive transmission. Using a Buick Aluminum small block 215 cubic inch V-8 gave him plenty of power with a 318 lb. engine weight. This aluminum head and aluminum block engine was used in both Buick Specials and in Pontiac Le Mans cars in 1961-63.  These engines were rated from 150 to 200 HP, when stock. This classic fiberglass boat is not stock. Seabuddy does not know the power that Skip coaxed out of his Buick engine here. I do know that a different crank can bring the displacement up from 215 to 305 cubic inches. Do more parts changing and a 340 cu. in engine is possible, but not easy.

g 3 glaspar classic fiberglass boat photo image v drive inboard ski boat runabout

Cockpit photo of 1960 G-3 Glaspar classic fiberglass boat


Mickey Thompson entered racing driver Dan Gurney in a “stock block” Buick Indy Racer of his own design in 1962. Their car did not finish  the race. Apollo Gran Turismo cars also used these Buick engines in 1962-63 for a limited run.

glaspar g 3 fiberglass classic boat photo image 1960 shifter v drive

V Drive shifter in this custom G-3 Glaspar fiberglass boat

Now, a Chris Craft Golden Arrow 19’, is another classic that Skip owns. It is a Cavalier Division Chris Craft boat model. She is a high styled plywood ski boat runabout with a center arrow stripe on her foredeck. Seabuddy projects that some of the wood touches that Skip’s custom G-3 displays may have come from his Golden Arrow 19 footer’s styling. A Golden Arrow is a rare boat. Only 170 of these boats were made by C-C.

g 3 glaspar ski boat boat photo image 1960

Skip added a wood stripe on his G-3s foredeck

A stock Glaspar G-3 is a 13’ 7” fiberglass model boat of about 390 lbs. in boat weight that is rated for an up to a 60 Horsepower, short shaft, outboard motor. The most seabuddy ever powered one of his G-3s was with a 85 HP Mercury Marine “Tower of Power” engine. Seabuddy understands that Bill Tritt’s Glaspar Boat company made 16,000 boats in 1960 and while the outside of all of them was fiberglass, there was plenty of plywood in the floor and transoms of Glaspar boats.

g-3 glaspar 1960 classic fiberglass boat boat photo image

Skip made his G-3 Glaspar shine

Skip has promised to bring his G- 3 to the 26th Annual Antique and classic Boat Show and Festival held on the expansive grounds of the Chesapeake Bay Maritime Museum in St. Michaels. Maryland on June 14, 15, and 16, 2013. Look for seabuddy there, too!

classic fiberglass g-3 glaspar 1960 boat photo image

Wood was added to the transom and note the racing caviation plate

12th report, Tavares, FL, Antique and Classic Boat Show, Mount Dora, Lake Dora, Gar Wood, Chris Craft, and Nap Lisee

Gar Wood is known in classic boating as the man who won five straight years if powerboat Gold cup races. Garfield Wood was the first man to break 100 MPH in a boat. He was also the owner of Chris Craft boats for at least five years. He invented the famous “Baby Gar” line of boats with his designer, Nap Lisee. With Howard Lyon, he put boats on Broadway in New York City.

Gar made his money from his inventions, patents, and non-boat building businesses. He spent it on boats. His Miss America series of race boats cost him a fortune. His two boat building plants (the original Algonac Chris Craft plant and a bigger one that he scratch-built in Marysville, MI.) He financed his son in a start-up fiberglass boat building business after W. W. II.

classic wood boat gar wood mahogany planked boat photo image

note the opening windshield on this classic Gar Wood Cabin Cruiser

Seabuddy shows in these two photos one of Gar Wood and Nap Lisee’s more popular designs. This is not a race boat. She is a family boat. A pre-war Gar Wood 20.5 foot long Streamline Cabin Utility. This 1940 classic wood boat is richly restored. She is powered by a Gray Fireball inboard engine of 160 horsepower. She has a straight shaft, center located engine drive system. This is a classic wood boat. She is a mahogany planked cabin cruiser that is bright finished. This style was a best seller for Gar Wood brand boats since they invented it in 1936.

Gar Wood was born in 1880 and died in Miami in 1971. His last invention that made Popular Mechanics magazine was an electric car and that car write-up was published in 1967. He never stopped inventing.

classic wooden cabin cruiser gar wood restored inboard boat photo image

restored 20.5 foot Gar Wood 1940 cabin cruiser

11th report, Tavares, Lake Dora, Mount Dora, FL, Boat For Sale, Field of Dreams, fiberglass classic Century Boats, 17’ Resorter

This is one of about 134 fiberglass 17 foot Century Resorter examples made for the 1968 model year. Century was still within its transition from wood boats to fiberglass boats. They also made 61 wood hulled examples of this boat model at that time.

bow view classic fiberglass century resorter inboard boat photo image runabout

bow view, note the added-on wood spray knocker

Resorters are utility-style, walk around, single cockpit boats with a center mounted inboard engine that have a fore deck with a high windshield (most likely an automotive rear window, which was popular at this time) and a small aft deck. Seating was in front of the engine and across the stern. The engine box dominates the cockpit space while the transmission and straight shaft propeller drive with its separate rudder is hidden under the cockpit floor. This boat has a 210 horsepower Chrysler V-8.

engine box and rear seat century resorter photo boat image

engine box and rear seat in this Century Resorter

This is really a wood boat design that was re-tooled into a fiberglass boat. Over the years, Century often made 170-180 wood examples of 17’ Resorters each model year. So, at 61 wood boats for this year, one can see the wood boat sales rate falling off. BTW, Leon Slikkers (of Tiara Yachts and Pursuit Fish boats)  is rumored to have made the tooling for some of the fiberglass Centurys.  These fiberglass ones were only a year or two into production at Century Boats, at the time this boat was made.

Resorters came in different sizes, 15’, 16’, 17’, 18’, 19’, and 21’ over the years. Collectors champion among themselves for their favorite size as cockpits, seating comfort, engines,   and handling performance differ. Some mention a “Fun Factor” with certain ones. Others sight the freedom of movement while presenting a high style, one that all Resorter models Century Boats offer.

dash cockpit century resorter fiberglass classic runabout inboard boat photo image

Windshield and dash of 17' Century Resorter 1968

Century Boats started in Milwaukee in 1926 with a 14 foot outboard wood planked racer runabout with a step in its bottom. Next, a 12 foot outboard and a 17’ footer joined that 14’ model, named, Kid. Century moved its boat building plant to Mansitee in 1929. 1930 saw the first year of inboard powered boats. As far as seabuddy knows, the 15’ Palomino and Roan models of 1961 were the last outboard Century runabouts.

transom swim ladder 1968 century resorter 17 classic fiberglass runabout inboard

transom of 17' inboard runabout Classic Century Resorter 1968

21 feet of custom designed outboard, Tenth Report, Tavares, FL Antique and Classic Boat Show, Lake Dora, Mount Dora She is a one-off hand sculptured beauty

custom one off twin engine outboard fiberglass classic boat

One of the top boats at the Classic Boat Show

It is not about twin engine outboards on a classic boat. It is about fine art on the water in seabuddy’s book. Ventuno is Italian for 21 I am told. To me, this boat looks like an early 1950s fiberglass outboard boat. But, she is still being finished and she was just a gleam in the mind of Gary Mac Norris in 2005.

frame work for custom fiberglass outboard boat

frame work started

Construction started the following year as a chalk line on a shop garage floor. Gary, like most artists, knew what he wanted. He bent a thin flexible section of wood into a more defined outline. Then he made the wood framework. So the boat would come off the building frame, that was covered with visqueen.

scribed sheet balsa squares over building frame work

beginning of composite hull balsa core

Now the hull was started over the framework. Sheets of balsa wood scribed into 21/2 inch square blocks and set on a cloth like backing was applied over the form. That balsa was shaped and sanded into the final contours of what Norris had imaged in his mind.

Then several layers of epoxy saturated fiberglass mat/cloth over that made the outside hull finish. Then, the boat was taken off its building frame and the epoxy fiberglass layup was put on the under (or the inside) of the hull.

transom boat photo image engines outboard mercury custom runabout classic boat

twin Mercury outboard engines on 21' custom fiberglass runabout boat

Thus, this art boat is a composite boat. A boat hull and deck of a sandwich of epoxy resin, fiberglass cloth, and balsa wood. OH! And lots of custom tricks to get that super glossy smooth finish that stops everyone’s eye when they see the boat.

wood finished deck fiberglass balsa composite boat photo image

custom touch shows the levle of finish

There are lots of custom touches on this classic boat. The dash is machine water cut engine turned metal from the aluminum mock up Gary gave to an aircraft builder. No stock seats fit in the narrow cockpit that was in this art design, so four had to be bought and cut / narrowed to fit. One of the top three boats at the Tavares Classic Boat Show, IMO.

custom boat dash panel windscreen 21 runabout boat photo image

Hand made dash and Windshield

Ninth Report of Tavares, Lake Dora, Mount Dora, Florida, Antique and Classic Boat Show, Donzi 18

In the early 1960s an office, shopping center, and apartment builder / developer from New Jersey started a boutique boat building company. He built race boats at first. He liked rough, open-water offshore powerboat racing and built a boat company to build a winning boat. That was the 28 foot race boat.

Names that come to mind for this era of offshore boat racing are Jim Martenhoff, Odell Lewis, Pete Rittmaster, Forest Johnson, Jacoby, Brownie Allan Brown, Bill Wishnick, Red Crise, Sam Griffith, and Carl Kiekhaefer.

It was 1964 when Don Aronow made his first production Donzi Marine recreational boat. It was the Ski Sporter or “Sweet 16”. Jim Wynne, Brownie, and others were involved in the 110 Hp 4 cylinder powered 16. The boat made the company. It became a viable, small production Miami boat builder. Much of that design was adopted from Jim’s Wyn-Mill II race boat that also was powered by a Volvo car engine. Wynne had a business deal with Volvo.

He first had had Ray Hunt design him a 17’ boat. This boat, Wyn-Mill, did not do the job. But this size boat seemed to be right. Wynne then, himself, designed a 17’ boat named Wyn-Mill II. With that boat he then went out and set eight world class marathon power boat racing records with it.

donzi marine 18 fiberglass classic boat inboard outboard boat image photo

Donzi Marine 18 Classic

Most of the difference between the two boats was in the running strakes location /shape and also in the chine location. The relocation of the chines made this second design a truly different boat design from the first Wyn-Mill. A 17′ fiberglass boat was made from the race boat wooden plug of the Wynn-Mill II. This boat was then put in the water for some prototype fine-tuning by Don Aronow. Once Aronow sold his prior Formula boat company, Aronow found himself with this rough test boat, so, it went back to his Donzi Marine boat factory.  This boat was shortened somewhat and it is that shortened Aronow tested hull that became at least a third boat design and that became  the Donzi Sweet 16’/ Donzi Marine Ski Sporter.

Now, the world was turned upside down in small boats, with this Don Aronow Donzi Marine Sweet 16, first powered by a 110 Hp Volvo engine. Bigger engines and higher speeds came later.

classic fiberglass runabout boat photo image cockpit

Classic Donzi Marine fiberglass 18

Next up was the introduction of  14’ and 18’ variants of the original Sweet 16.  That brings us to this boat, the Donzi 18.

By the way, Donzi was still making less than 50 boats per year within a boat building factory leased out to Teleflex, but owned by Don Aronow. It was in 1985 or so, that another new ownership of Donzi moved it from 188thst and within a Don Arorow owned building on the east coast of Florida, to Sarasota, FL on the west coast of the state. There the production was expanded with more models and to about 350-400 boats per year, from 16 to 43 feet in length.

classic fiberglass seats cockpit donzi marine boat photo image runabout inboard outboard

Seating in a stock Classic Donzi Marine 18


Report Eight, Sunnyland Antique and Classic Boat Show, Tavares, Lake Dora, Mount Dora, FL Lyman Boat Johnson Outboard Wooden Boat

This model Lyman was only made for two model years, and this one is from the last year of production. She is a 1960 outboard Lyman 17’.

classic wooden outboard boat 1960 Lyman 17

Nice restored wood Lyman outboard powered boat

This is Seabuddy’s favorite Lyman model for its balance of easy trailering, roomy cockpit, and plenty of power. Go smaller, to the 16 1/2 foot outboard Lyman and one is limited to a 60 horsepower engine. The next size up in the Lyman outboard powered line-up was the 18’ where most would choose twin 35-40 horsepower engines, which adds complication in systems, controls, and over-the-road towing weight.

This boat seems to have gloss rather than a semi-gloss white painted hull sides on its clinker built outboard. The natural wood stains and varnishes look spot on. Many Lyman owners prefer the gloss finish, so she should be easy to be sold if one wanted to so in the future. Here the seats, deck and other parts show, to me, the correct, or “as built”, finishes. Lyman mahogany filler stain with varnish over would be the proper choice. Lyman boats was also known for its use of ribbon striped (sometimes called tiger striped) mahogany veneered marine-grade plywood. That material grade is more expensive, but to seabuddy it is worth it.

lyman boat wood outboard cockpit restored

nice, correct interior with lots of room

What is “clinker built”? It is the lapstrake construction style of planking. Each plank edge overlaps the other and they are clinched nailed to the ribs (plus, screwed to the frames) such that an edge is shown at each plank for its full length along the hull side that helps soften the ride. Also, these are flexible boats that can twist over the waves somewhat to give a better ride than most classic boat persons would expect. Get a ride in a Lyman to experience this for yourself.

outboard powered lyman boat wood restored

Note, the trim tabs for low speed planning performance

Lyman Boats had their production peak in 1955, with over 5,000 boats produced in sizes from 13’ to 20’ in length. These 1950-1960 year Lyman boats were well built, light, long lasting wooden boats.

Antique and Classic Boat Show, Mount Dora, Lake Dora, Tavares, Sunnyland Boat Show Report number 2

Chris “seabuddy”Brown in a Donzi 14 at Lake Dora Tavares Mount Dora Antique and Classic Boat Show (he is in the black shirt) here…..

A 14 foot Donzi is a rare bird. They only made 14 boats and only in 1967. She is a Donzi Baby. Seabuddy ran pedal to the metal, trimmed out at just over 5,000 rpm across Lake Dora on Saturday in boat that is number 14 of that run.

donzi marine baby donzi 14 inboard outboard i/o stern drive classic boat photo image

Jumping wakes in a Donzi Classic Boat

Small, performance boats have a special place in my heart. Donzi Boats and Glaspar G-3 boats and Glastron GT 150 boats are right there for me as fun boats. Outboard, inboard, v-drive, stern drive, and jet, are the various ways to go for these boats. Higher horsepower outboards in a short shaft length are getting harder to find. Seabuddy has been told that only up to 25 Hp. outboards are out there for 2013.

Donzi Marine was started by Don Aronow in 1964. His first model was the Ski Sportster called the Sweet 16 model. These boats were powered by a Volvo 110 horsepower 4 cylinder engine with a Eaton Outdrive. They were 43-46 mph boats that turned on a dime and rode soft, because of their deep vee bottom shape. Later boat came with V-6 and V-8 engines. From their race success the Donzi Boats were called the “Damned Donzis”.

1965 brought the 28’ Broad Jumper, Donzi Diesel and other famous boats and names. Think Don Aronow, JakeTrotter, Jim Wynne, Walt Walters, Allan “Brownie” Brown, and Dick Cole. The boats were shown in clothing showrooms on 5th Avenue in Manhattan in New York. President LBJ had one. The company was sold to TeleFlex. The 18’ 2+ 3 came to market. 1966 brought the 28’ 008 race boat. Here came Astronauts Gus Grissom, Gordon Cooper, Fireman Red Adair, and Dick Genth in a Donzi race boat on the various race courses. The 14’ Donzi came in 1967. A rare boat then and it is a rare boat now. Photo not from the seabuddy fun.

Restoring a 1946 Greavette Classic Cedar and Mahogany planked Wooden Inboard Runabout

new cedar planking on Greavette boat bottom

new cedar wood bottom planking on 1946 Greavette Boat ltd

This is a 1946 model Canada built Greavette 20 foot classic wooden boat. She is still owned by the original family. Wooden Boat Restoration llc is restoring the boat with some new mahogany ribs and a cedar wood chine as well as “as original” cedar wood planked bottom. George Hazzard likes to keep his boat restoration work as close to original as possible while still meeting a boat owner’s needs for a functional show piece. If the boat only needs a “clean-up” that is what it gets. Does it need selective replacement of some wood? Well, he does that, too. He even takes what some would have to cut up and make an Antique and Classic Boat Society Award Winner out of it.

See more at…

Like many Greavette boats this one came from Tom Greavette’s Gravenhurst shop powered by a 4 cylinder Buchanan engine. The family had that engine replaced with its current 6 cylinder Grey Marine. Yes, it is a not the engine this custom wood boat left the factory with in 1946, but the first owners recognized that they needed more power after just one short Canadian season of lake use. Is it properly called a “replacement engine” in ACBS judging rules? An engine that was in the boat for 65 of its 66 years? I would hate to be an ACBS judge on this one.

You should have seen the fitting of the new chine on the starboard side. Wow! It follows the curve of the hull, the upward sweep near the bow, curves inward to match each rib curve/angle, and notches into some places along the way! This was done with table saw rough cut wood, tapered with some hand planes, and then almost hand-carved to its finish for a perfect fit.

classic wooden boat bottom planking

note the angle of the planking in relationship to the keel

Note, the same-as-original “angled” bottom planks in my photos. It is very different from other classics in the direction of planking line-ups, which is usually parallel to the keel.

Tom Greavette, the founder, started what was Greavette Boats, LTD in 1930 and died in 1958 pretty much still running the business. His daughter ran it with her husband until 1962.  Other owners/managers offered a “Greavette” boat till about 1978.

sister ship Greavette boats ltd

sister ship


On Golden Pond Movie Boat

On Golden Pond 19 Century Raven wood classic boat image photo mail boat

This is the boat that was in the Katharine Hepburn, Henry Fonda, Jane Fonda, and Dabney Coleman movie called “On Golden Pond”. It was the second highest grossing film of 1981. Dabney Coleman’s character, Bill Ray, did a split between this boat and the Thayer’s summer cottage’s pier, falling into the lake waters of the movie’s lake Golden Pond, which was really Squam Lake, New Hampshire.

Century Raven Lapstrake skiff classic wood boat 19' 1963

note the windshield detailing signage


Here are some memorial quotes from the movie.


The boy, Billy Ray: A canoe! Just like the Indians used.

Henry Fonda, Norman: Actually, the Indians used a different grade of aluminum.


Katharine Hepburn, Ethel: Listen to me, mister. You’re my knight in shining armor. Don’t forget it. You’re going to get back on that horse and I’m going to be right behind you, holding on tight and away we’re going to go, go, go!


Katharine Hepburn, Ethel: Come here, Norman. Hurry up. The loons! The loons! They’re welcoming us back.


Dabney Coleman, Bill Ray: [as he heads out to the lake to go skinny-dipping with Ethel and Chelsea] Are there any bears around here?

Henry Fonda, Norman: Oh, sure. Black bears, grizzlies. One of ’em came along here and ate an old lesbian just last month.


Henry Fonda, Norman: Wanna dance or would you rather just suck face?

This 1963 Century Raven 19 footer was cast as the U. S. Mail Boat for all of the Golden Pond lake summer residents. This boat has since been restored by Katz’s Marina. More info here… .

classic wood boat image photo bow century raven on golden pond mail boat

seabuddy photo of the bow of this classic wooden boat



Wood Race Boat TV Movie Coming

Shh! A first class movie made for TV is coming. A 200 MPH race boat has been restored (I heard the engine run), the story is now documented, and the drama of the top Canadian Boat Racing Team is getting ready to be shown to you and other fellow Classic Boaters. This is an Antique and Classic Boat Society race boat story.

harold and lorna race movie  Miss Canada IV boat photo image

restored Gold Cup race boat Miss Canada IV

The 200 mph wood racer is from the late 1940s to early 1950s era, when hydros were king. The 33’ wood Greavette Boats Ltd hydroplane Miss Canada IV set records as she beat Miss America X’s speed record, set a North American straight-a-way record, ran in other races, and competed in the Harmsworth Trophy Race. Besides a story about an antique and classic boat society correct boat, this television documentary is a story of the racers that were in the cockpit. Harold and Lorna Wilson went from sweethearts, to man and wife, parents, all the while being a race boat driver (Harold) and a race boat riding mechanic (Lorna). They set records on the race course for some 15 years and had a wonderful life while doing it. They both came to the White House to receive the Presidents Cup from President Franklin D. Roosevelt. He and other political leaders then asked them to represent boat racing across Europe. WW II got in the way of that. While Miss Canada IV was a 33’ racer, Miss Canada III was 25’ by 7’, and Miss Canada II was a 26’ by 71/2’ race boat. II was designed by John L. Hacker. I understand that III and IV were designed by Douglas Van Patten. Some of the members of the Van Patten family are readers of seabuddy. By the way, much of this boat sizing was demanded by the rules limiting engine size. The earlier boats used engines in the 650 to 700 plus cubic inch size. Miss Canada IV was designed for and used a 2,239 cubic inch two staged supercharged engine. Yup, Unlimited again meant BIG! Keep up with the movie, the story, and its future showings here…