Posts Tagged ‘wood’
This runabout is so very much original and, in addition, it holds a special place in history that she is a major marker in Riva Boats history in the USA. Made by Riva in Italy, she was displayed in the New York Riva Showroom to example the luxury of Riva boats to all of the tourists that visit Manhattan. Please take your time in looking at her today.
She is a classic wood straight shaft inboard runabout with its engine in the center of the cockpit. This model features the special design ideas of the Riva boat building company for water sports. The Riva slogan for her was ”It’s the young people’s rocket” She is fast, maneuverable, with easy cockpit access, and a special sunning bed. Riva sold examples of these 18.5 ‘boats to Elizabeth Taylor, Peter Seller, and Bridget Bardot.
This boat has had its Riva-Crusader V-8 engine rebuilt as part of her restoration. Other interior parts that needed freshening were replaced with what is properly titled “New, Old Stock” pieces. Seabuddy has seen and heard her run and she quietly fills my expectations for Riva luxury in a fast sport boat.
She makes a major statement in person. Her wood is spectacular. The unique cockpit sun bed takes one’s mind off mundane things and off to dreaming about lovely Italian women, Champaign, and some decadent Pate.
This 15th built boat represents the Riva Junior model line that was made from 1966 to 1972. Riva made 626 examples of this model in those years. She has had two owners in her history and shows rather low hours for 50 plus year old boat.
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… www.woodenboatrestorationllc.com
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.
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.
Chris Craft made 786 of these 19 foot Capri wooden runabouts over four years in the late 1950′s. It was a popular boat model. With a LOA of 18’ 7”, she fits in many garages. At a weight of 2100 to 2300 lbs. she is easy to tow. Her beam of 6’ 3” makes her a good boathouse boat.
This one is shown mid-restoration here. She is having a “no soak” trailer able bottom as old wood needed to be replaced and the owner wants to take her anywhere, drop her in for a quick spin, and without any need to soak up or swell the bottom planks on this bottom.
Proper use of modern materials within the original Chris Craft mahogany wood planks and wood framing structure allow for the easy trailer, launch, and use of this classic boat. When this boat sits in the water, ready for a quick spin around the lake, one does not see anything different than what she showed when she was first built. She is an ideal Classic Boat Show boat.
Ever expect to get to Annapolis, MD this spring? Stop by Dave Hannam’s boat restoration shop in Annapolis see this stylish Chris Craft Capri wooden runabout undergo its steps into a thing of beauty for yourself. More info here… www.classicwatercraftrestoration.com
Hey, go late enough into the spring-summer and Dave will maybe have some gas in the 20 gallon tank and you might be able to go for a final test ride with the boat owner.
Here is the punch line. This photo shows Dixie IV setting the official world’s speedboat record in 1911 off Huntington, NY.
The rest of the story is here…
Dixie IV set the world’s record for speed on the water in during the Mile Trials held with the competition for the Harmsworth Trophy contest for 1911, on Long Island Sound. The photo shows her at full speed off Huntington, Long Island. Dixie IV had come to the contest after losing that year’s Gold Cup, which had been raced on the St. Lawrence River to her competitor, MIT II. Dixie IV failed to start for the final heat due to a spun bearing in that month’s earlier race series in July, 1911.
It is interesting that two premiere powerboat races were held on New York Waterways back before World War I.
Dixie IV was 39’ 6” long with a beam of 7’. She had two V-8s built by Henry M. Crane rated at 250 Horse Power plus for each engine. Both engines were almost in line, front to back, but canted slightly outboard if one looked down from above such that the two props were spaced apart, side by side, but with the engines looking as if they were in line with each other. The front engine had a starter, but the rear engine was started by engaging a driveline clutch after the boat got up to a 30 MPH boat speed, where the spinning port prop got the rear engine to start running. She had this very different arrangement in attempt to fit lots of engine power within a narrow hull. The hull bottom was single planked with 1” thick Mahogany on closely spaced framing. Dixie IV was built by Staten Island Shipbuilding earlier that spring.
The driver sat high at the stern to see over the spray. Each engine carried its own mechanic during the race and often an extra person was onboard to navigate.
This boat had a short career. She was destroyed in a bad crash into some shoreline rocks after she went out of control in a September, 1911 race in Buffalo, NY.
Curt designed, built, drove, and turned the wrenches on his Wood Race Boat, Dancing Bear. He designed and built this racer over a two year period along the banks of the Miami River while he was the sales Manager at the Merrill-Stevens Yacht Company.
Curt came to Florida in 1963 after racing his boat, The Violator, in Buffalo, NY, earlier in the 1950-1960s time frame with time out for military service for the Berlin Crisis. He also has spent time in St. Petersburg, Florida.
Before boat racing, Curt raced Stock Cars and Motorcycles for years. Quite the mechanic, Curt likes tuning multiple carbs. Dancing Bear has six Strombergs on a log-type manifold on a 1957 392 cubic inch Hemi. In the theme of F Service Runabout class rules the engine is under 400 inches in displacement and $1,500 cost in cost.
My photos were taken at the Antique Boat Museum in Clayton, New York during the Race Boat Regatta that is held every other year in August. Curt seems to be at the Vintage Boat Racing effort on the St. Lawrence River in the N Y side of the Thousand Islands area all the time.
I really love the either long wood covered or the padded vinyl uncovered front bench seat set-up in front of the main/driver’s cockpit. Sitting behind your guests while driving is the right idea in my book. Let them have to turn around and twist their necks to hold a conversation!
Hackers are being made today on the shores of Lake George, NY. They make classic and modern wood boats using all the safety and ease of use modern engines and equipment for maximum on-the-water enjoyment. Being in control and comand is important to any owner of boat that he wants to use as well as show.
Hacker Craft is a boat building company, not just a two-man boat shop. They have a 32,000 square foot main boat building north of the lake, and they have a Silver Bay location on the lake for showings, demonstrations, and deliveries. Plus, they have another 11,000 sq. ft. plus for finishing work and two more additional locations for the storing of as many as 240 boats. It is quite a campus devoted to boats that boats lovers get excited about. A tour of Hacker Craft Boats is a must in any pre-buying process, if one wants a top-of-the-line quality boat.
Hacker-Crafts are an enduring brand. As custom and small run hand-built classic craft, they have led the idea of boat craftsmen-ship in the USA. Each boat has thousands, not 50 hours of hard work in its creation. Such attention causes other boaters on the lake or bay to say to their friends onboard… Look, there is a Hacker!
These fine classic craft use the ideas and designs of John L. Hacker, the noted naval architect of such boats as Pardon Me. Thunderbird. El Largarto. Bootlegger. Peerless. Dolphin. Kitty Hawk. The Belle Isle Bear Cats. My Sweetie. Others may take their thoughts on mahogany boat design from John Hacker, but his designs lead the way.
Seabuddy understands that Hacker Craft build in several sizes from 20 to 42 foot boats.
More info here … http://www.hackerboat.com/?locale=en_US
Fred McCarthy, Sea Mac, wooden boats, Jersey Yachts, fiberglass sport fishermen, Real Ships, steel yachts
Meet the only production boat builder seabuddy knows that made boats out of wood, fiberglass, and steel (each of these different matieral boat building companies were at different times in his life) over a lifetime of messing with boats. Here are (left to right) Fred McCarthy, Etta McCarthy, and seabuddy in front of a Sea Mac wooden classic boat at Tuckerton Seaport, NJ in 2012. This photo was taken at the Philadelphia Chapter of the ACBS Antique and Classic Boat Show in this past summer.
Sea Mac wood boats were mostly an outboard powered 14’ deluxe runabout water ski boat. This boat used Philippine Mahogany lumber stock covering boards and hull framing with marine grade plywood being used pretty much everywhere else. Then; forward steering, remote controls, a windshield, and two rows of vinyl covered padded seating made for a Bill Deed designed water sports boat that handled lake, bay, inlet, and ocean waters very well.
The prototypes were tested in 1954 with a 20 horsepower outboard, but most Sea Mac wooden boats used a 40 Hp. engine with a few being repowered with a “Tower of Power” 70 Hp Mercury Marine outboard. This boat was tuff and many boats outlasted more than one motor’s life span on its transom. Once, this sporty runabout was a prize on the TV show, “The Price is Right, in the 1961 show season. The company also built 8’ prams in New Jersey. The Sea Mac boat brand disappeared in around 1963.
Jersey Yachts and/or Jersey Boat Works were sport fishing fiberglass boats 28’ to 47’ in length. Many of the boats crafted were the popular 31’ and 40’ models. Besides changing over from a wood boat builder to manufacturing fiberglass boats, Fred took his new company from single outboards to twin inboards for power. And then, later, he took it from gas engines to diesel power as the boats got bigger. I think of Fred McCarthy’s Jersey Yachts fiberglass boat building business as alive from 1964 to 1988.
Real Ships, which was given its company name by Etta, started up around 1993, after several years of living and cruising aboard a yacht by the McCarthys. They build steel hulled, ship-like yachts from 61’ to 76’ in length. These are typically Jay Benford / Fred McCarthy designed 40 to 80 ton long range displacement cruisers, built one at a time.
We are having a great discussion with some expert classic wooden Riva fans, restorers, and current/past owners of the brand via email. I am a fan, the others are, too. I may be right or wrong in a post here at www.seabuddyonboats.com, but I try for the truth in discussing boats. They are a long time love.
In one of my articles on Riva wood boats, I posted some photos and that started our current discussion. I enjoy such opportunities to learn and talk about boats. Everyone has a voice and input to the base of knowledge about classic Riva boats.
So, this is the wood boat. These are some additional Riva boat photo images taken by me on the same day of the same boat. Plus, here is a link back to the other write-up and pictures of the same Classic Wood Riva Boat taken the same day as these were.
Some boat model name choices are Tritone, Ariston, Super Ariston, Aquarama, Super Aquarama, and Long Super Aquarama. These are single and twin engine boat models and perhaps the first point would be to decide if this classic has one or two engines. Next think about the hatches on the rear deck as they I.D. some models. Next, look at the dashboard where some script and gauges and the throttle/shift information is mounted around the steering wheel. Then the raised toe rail at the outside edge of the foredeck and the presence of a siren are clues.
This is not a contest. It is a desire to correctly name this classic wood Riva boat model.
I went to print with my model name thoughts in the link I have put into this posting, but I now I believe my I.D. to be at least suspect if not downright wrong. Please use firstname.lastname@example.org to join in the discussion.
I have heard from an impectable source that the boat is a 1966 Riva Super. She is unusal in that she has hatches on her aft deck, not the main stream for this model, sun lounge pad that Ted Kennedy once made infamous. Power is twin 427 engines.
Thanks. This was fun!
An Ariston and the Super Ariston are the single engine style of the Riva Aquarama classic wood boat. These runabout boats are considered the top classic mahogany, cedar, and oak wood boats that used only the best wood, hardware, glass, and marine parts from Italy, France, Switzerland, England, Belgium and other countries to give a wooden boat owner simply the best product that the Riva Factory could build.
Riva Yachts selected its lumber by hand. They seasoned that lumber that went into the boats themselves; they decided when it was ready for boat building, where on the boat it had its best use, and how it was to be used with screws, glue, and then finished. Almost all of a boat was sprayed several time and then hand brushed several more times to a high gloss polished varnish bright finish. Some interior boards were called out on every model for a paint finish, however, and lesser quality wood was used there. Think about areas like the seat frames, under the bow, side, and aft decks for a painted finish.
Windshield glass, screws, the metal for the boat’s hardware, and much of the material used in the seating was out sourced from other counties. Engines came from the USA. The varnish used in the finish of their classic boats was Italian.
A great book on the history, boats, and boat owners of Riva Boats is Riva by Roberto Franzoni. It is a hardcover book that is printed in several languages within each copy. Like these classic wood boats, this book is rare. It is now an out-of-print book. Amazon.com sometimes has a book collector type seller that is willing to part with his or her copy, if you want one for more information about Riva Classic Wood Boats.
The photos here are seabuddy photos.
This 18 foot boat is a beauty. She is one of only 28 boats made in this model in 1932 by the famous Gar Wood boat building company. That makes her a rare piece of wooden boat building history. She is one of just five of these boats left still around in the world. That fact makes her super rare. Her condition then makes her even more of a sought after rare classic boat. This is as nice as it gets in an under 20’ classic boat.
It was in 1911 that Gar Wood got the racing “bug”. By 1916 he had bought a well-used Chris Smith made Chris Craft race boat. At that time Chris Smith was calling his company the C. C. Smith Boat & Engine Co. Wood also became the largest shareholder of Chris Smith’s company. He and Chris Smith split their boat building interests in 1921. Gar Wood then created the Gar Wood Company to build his pleasure and race boats. His first boat building plant was in Algonac, MI. At this plant was the start of the 33′ “Baby Gar” Runabout that was then and now so famous. That small almost custom boat building shop was supplemented by a bigger plant in Marysville, MI. Gar Wood in his Marysville plant made a 28’ runabout and a 22 footer starting in 1930. The Baby Gar thirty three foot runabout was still being made in Algonac along with a 40’ cruiser. It was in 1932 that this 18’ twin cockpit (or split cockpit) runabout shown here was introduced.
If this boat was a nice but not the best restored copy and perhaps re-powered with a more modern engine she seems to be able to bring around a $50,000 price today. This one; with its very high level of a truly total restoration, all correct parts, it’s level of fit and finish that must be seem to be fully appreciated, may very well bring more along the lines of a $250,000 price if it was to be a classic wooden boat for sale.