Posts Tagged ‘chris craft’

Classic restored wooden Chris Craft Constellation

classic wood 30' Chris Craft 1964 Constellation boat photo image

deck house side of the wood boat 1964 Chris craft Constellation

Chris Craft boats made this one in its similar series of 30 foot wood cabin cruisers from 1963-1968 which they named as a Constellation model. Constellation is a storied Chris Craft model name first used in the 1954 model year as the name for the 53’ flagship model of the Chris Craft cruiser fleet. This name has the prestige and respect that fans of the brand love. It seemingly stands for all that a wood cabin cruiser should be in most folk’s minds.

These wood boats were built by a publicly held Chris Craft Corporation. The various members of the Smith family had sold their holdings in the family business on February 7, 1960. The sales price of the company was about one year’s sales volume and roughly 16 times the profit. They were building about 8,000 boats then with their 3,500 employees.  At the time of the sale, the first non-family person became responsible to run the Chris Craft boat building business.

Starting in 1963, “Connies” came in 27’ to 57’ sizes. By 1964, the Chris Craft Connies range expanded to be as long as a 65’ diesel yacht. This and other 30 footers were somewhat re-styled over the years that they were in production and had good sales success. Chris Craft made 160 examples of this 1964 wood boat. The 30’ boats had a beam of 10’ 8” and weighted 8,920 lbs. dry. They carried a fuel capacity of 100 gallons. The keel, chines, frames, stringers, ribs, and planking were made of oak, fir, and Philippine Mahogany. The inner bottom planking was marine grade plywood. All of the side and the bottom outer planking was made out of Philippine Mahogany wood.

These photos were taken by seabuddy at the Wooden Boat Restoration, LLC boat shop. Call George Hazzard at 410.928.5500 or please see or for more information.

chine on wood 30' Chris Craft Constellation cabin cruiser boat photo

reworking chine 1964 Chris Craft Constellation 30' wood boat photo

New York Boat Show for runabouts and cruisers

Cobalt Boats, a fiberglass power boat for 2012

The 105th edition of the granddaddy of all united states boat shows runs Jan. 4 – Jan 8 at the Jacobs Javits Convention Center with the main show entrance at 11th avenue and 34th street in NY City. The driving directions address would best be expressed as 655 W. 34th Street, NY, NY 10001. Parking is handy at down or around the block or take a taxi from the train station.

Cobalt boats, a favorite fiberglass power boat brand of mine, is offering one of their 2012 models at less than $40,000 as a show boat special. Another one of their boat show specials is a two foot larger model at a price that is way less than $50,000. Its closer to the mid-40s than a flat $50,000. Yes, the prices for their even larger power boat models go up even higher, but Boat Show Specials are displayed throughout their generously sized display booth. Look for the Cobalt Boats booth display over on the right side of the convention center and a little more than half way back from the front door.

Chaparral Boats is also featuring special boat show pricing on their bow riders, cuddies, and cabin cruisers.

Chris Craft, the famous boat builder that has a boat building history as old as pleasure boating is also at the show.

Grady White Boats has several new for 2012 model year center consoles, walk –  arounds, and fishing / family bow rider boats at the show.

Ski boat and wake boat noted boat builder, Correct Craft Boats, has a special price offering on two of their most popular models at the boat show, also.

Cobalt Boat 2012 fiberglass power boat

Wooden Power Boat, a racing runabout

This one is a 1954 Chris craft. An ideal mahogany classic two cockpit runabout. With a big flathead Chris Craft she gives a great ride at normal antique and classic boat speeds and a real thrill when the throttle is opened up even more.

Specs on the boat is 18’ 11” in length and she has a beam of 6’ 1”. Her overall weight runs in the 2,100 to 2,400 lbs. area. Chris Craft built 503 of them in a production series from 1948 to 1954.

She is not a bow rider and one must change which cockpit to sit in at dockside, as this power boat is a true runabout and not a utility. She is almost all deck, engine room, two rows of seats and little, if any, walking around room in the cockpit areas.

I got a ride on a Pennsylvania Lake in a similar boat that belongs to a friend that was also lovingly restored and its ride and handling during that fresh water cruise was really a terrific experience. That one had an extremely special Chris Craft engine rebuild by an out of state noted engine builder of classic engines.

Chris Craft offered this wood power boat model in either a natural wood stained and highly varnished hull and deck or as a painted red and white finished powerboat. Most came with the seating areas finished in a Chinese red or red hue, but blue was a choice, as I understand it, but not in all of the model years the Racing Runabout was built post WWII.

The photos are from Moores Marine,  that did this runabout’s restoration. Great workmanship and attention to detail is shown in the work coming from Moores you can see.

This one is a 1954 model Chris Craft

early on in the restoration work

Chris Craft, “par excellence” boat builder and its newest Boat

Chris-Craft will introduce its newest member of its storied family of launch style power boats at the Miami International Boat Show, February 16-20, 2012.  The boat buying public will get its first detailed look at the boat show. Look for it, its a stunner!

The new power boat is 32 foot long and it is both a bow rider and a sleeper. The new boat is the largest boat model of its type in Chris Craft’s model line-up.

All the folks at Chris Craft including Chris Craft President, Steve Heese, welcome boat buyers to take a long look at their newest offering at their Miami Boat Show display along with their other show boats. Heese is quoted saying that “the Launch 32 is the logical next step for the active boater that still wants a bowrider but also wants the option to overnight at a moment’s notice.”

Sunning space, an open cockpit, a sleep-in cabin, and a on-board head  as well as all the creature comforts that a first class boating experience demands awaits your family and friends aboard the new 32’ Chris Craft Launch.

Chris Craft boats are driven by active boaters. These boaters value high style, sleek-like proportions and a very practical configuration for their boating adventures. Thinking of long excursions or champagne cruises? Take a long look at a Chris Craft made boat. They very well may have the right boat for you for 2012. I have been on their boats and studied their operations inside the Chris Craft boat building plant in Florida. The value of a Chris Craft is well deserved in this writer’s opinion. The story of Chris Craft may be the story of pleasure boating, and both are a glorious one.

The Legend of Chris-Craft by Jeffrey L. Rodengen

The Legend of Chris-Craft (3rd edition) authored by Jeffrey L. Rodengen is a great book. I had a first edition copy and am very happy that I bought this 3rd edition when it came out. It is now a rare book on the used book marketplace. One book that every boater needs to have in his collection about boats and boating.

It (the 1998 edition) sells for about ten times the price of the first edition. Get your thinking about the price to pay for an excellent copy to a dollar figure north of $100. It is that much in demand. That is for a used copy that is in better shape than what most book stores sell as a “new” book. What I am talking about is a book that looks as if it just came out of a shipping carton and has had no “floor time”.

What is the book about? Chris Craft power boats. From its origins, when Christopher Columbus Smith carved his first small rowboat out of a log in 1872 (as the story goes) to the first planked boat in 1874, to his first power boat in around 1894 and the story continues.

There were several companies and partners for Chris Smith in the early times and those details are fascinating to me. Gar Wood, Ryan, brothers, and sons all helped shape this success story. Race boats and runabout pleasure boats all were a part of the quality reputation that developed around Chris Craft power boats. Boat production went from 24 power boats in 1922 to 946 in 1929, for instance.

How the boat builder made their fine runabouts covers several sub issues, like owning their own rail road to how they dealt with the wood in early Chris Craft wood power boats. And then there were the engines and the World War II war effort. Plus the post war boating boom. Then the book covers the company and its products in the fifties to the nineties in detail. Overall a great read for all of us interested in boating.

Chris Craft boats now in the movies

A Chris Craft runabout speedboat is the boat in the current hit…The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn

1938 Chris Craft Wood Boat

Chris Craft Runabout

 This a Chris Craft runabout under rstoration at a company that does quality classic boat work, Wooden Boat Restoration LLC. I also have seen the boat all but finished except for final “punch List” work. She is a great sight to see. She is 15  1/2 feet in lenght and powered as a speed boat should.

Sly Fox is a classic wood runabout, with two cockpits and two rows of seating aboard with good room for all.

She uses a utility style layout for ease of acess between the two cockpits. An engine box keeps the mechanicals out of the seating areas.

Its a joy to explore the lakes and bays of america’s waterways in such an antique and classic boat. Its a different feeling than one gets in a new boat. People that share the water with you give you a smile and a wave as they like seeing you and the boat in use.

Ft. Lauderdale Boat Show

on display at the show

The Fort Lauderdale International Boat Show opens on October 27 and runs through October 31, 2011.The Boat Show exhibits new boats from boat and yacht companies as well as yacht designers and used or brokered yachts.

A variety of boats and ocean vessels will be on display including runabouts, sport fishing boats, high performance racers, medium sized cabin cruisers, skiffs, express cruisers, motor yachts, bow riders, catamarans, trawlers, inflatables, and extraordinary super yachts.

Covering six locations and some 3 million square feet of space, the show has a transportation network of land bus, water craft, and river boats to get around the show.

A great venue for a boat show, Ft. Lauderdale, has the water and land items that make for a great boating experience.

The best day for most is the first day, although one can’t see all of the show in a day. Take even non boaters with you, it’s a terrific venue.

Speedboats in the water

Classic boats are here along with historic planes and antique cars.  Wood Antique and classic booats as well as race boats are apart of this Florida event.  Enjoy the boats on the water and on land. Ideally, one would enjoy all three (land, sea, and air) in this one event.

Sunnyland Antique and Classic Boat Show ……….March 25 – 27, 2011