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You are browsing the archive for Uncategorized | Port Carling Boats - Antique & Classic Wooden Boats for Sale.

by Don

Over this past decade…

January 11, 2021 in Uncategorized



Over this past decade, we have had the unique pleasure of Rob Attfield’s work at Port Carling Boats .com. It was through his exceptional talent and energy that you, the reader, have been treated to videos of boat shows, tours of boat-building enterprises, well written descriptions, and entertaining posts. When I, or for that matter, any of our illustrious readers requested something special, he valiantly came through. I thank Rob for all his excellent work.

Rob is now encountering health challenges that prevent him from continuing in his role as chief “cook” at PCB. So we wish him well, and hope he can enjoy this time. We now need help with this endeavor, either someone to take his place, or someone to take over the PCB, or at the very least, some frequent contributors who can add some content to the blog for the time being.

Please let us know if you would like to contribute some blog content, and we would be very appreciative. Please also spread the word that PCB is at that proverbial “fork in the road” and ready to choose new directions, perhaps even new ownership if the right person comes along.

We have had excellent readership, and we very much appreciate each and every one of you, the readers and members of the regular Blog viewership.

Happy New Year, and let’s hope 2021 turns out to be a good year!
Take care, be kind.
S.M. Givens
Owner of Port Carling Boats

by Don

SeaBirD boats; a brief history.

December 23, 2020 in Uncategorized


The Port Carling Boat Works, a company which operated from 1925 to 1959, apparently produced more wooden runabouts and launches than any other company in Muskoka, and possibly Canada.
The boats squeezed out of the factory were known generally as SeaBirDs, a moniker created when a Muskoka visitor noticed a test model emerging from a fog, sleek and graceful. “Why, it’s just like a seabird sailing gracefully out of the fog,” he commented. The name stuck thereafter.
Port Carling Boat Works was founded in 1925, following the collapse of the Disappearing Propeller Boat Company in Port Carling. The founders included Billie Johnson Jr., who also later produced watercraft under his own name.

Unlike other builders who produced mainly custom boats, Port Carling Boats built stock models, using a small production line. Purchasers could pick up a SeaBirD at the factory, at a showroom, or through dealers across the Country.
There are three fairly distinct periods in the life of the Port Carling Boat Works:
1925-1939…the expansion of the company
1939-1945…the war years
1945-1959…the C.J. McCulley years

The first production-line SeaBirDs sold for a reasonable $400. They were good quality boats with an inboard engine and reverse gear. From the beginning, SeaBirds were powered with engines from Fred Buchanan, who ran a machine shop in Orillia, Ontario

The first production line could not keep up with the demand. Letters of appreciation from new owners, (including McLaughlin of General Motors) gave encouragement to the owners and employees.

Unfortunately, the factory was completely destroyed by a fire in October, 1931. A larger and greatly improved building was constructed soon afterwards. Production increased to the point where the firm’s accountant noted that the Company had sold more inboard motor launches than any other company in Canada.

By 1935 Port Carling Boat Works had opened a branch at Honey Harbour in Georgian Bay. This offered access to the Great Lakes.

In 1938 the Ditchburn Boat Company folded. Port Cartling Boat Works bought all the hulls that had been partially finished as well as their stock of lumber and supplies. These boats were finished in Port Carling.  One of them, a twin engine, twenty-six foot model, was sold to Ewart McLaughlin of General Motors fame. Unfortunately, this boat burned in a fire in 1960.

By 1939 Port Carling Boat Works had “the finest outlet in the world for boats, with service and parts in sixty-odd countries”, according to the Company’s accountant.

Note: Information for this article is credited to Douglas Garfield McCulley, author of “SeaBird…Muskoka’s SeaBirds:’

by Don

Just because classic boating….

December 16, 2020 in Uncategorized


Just because classic boating events have been largely canceled in Canada and the United States, doesn’t mean we can’t enjoy the beauty and craftsmanship of our nautical heritage.
Enjoy the photos below. We hope that they will rekindle your love of wooden boats – and perhaps inspire you to begin or accelerate work on your own boat project!




This beefy and roomy Chris Craft was owned by a Canadian doctor who really cared for Big Red




A bow-on view of the Chris Craft.




A stunning Greavette Streamliner struts its stuff at the ACBS Toronto Chapter Antique and Classic Boat show in Gravenhurst, Ontario




A beautiful reproduction of “Dolly Durklin” A Peter Breen work of art modelled after Lady Eaton’s classic launch from the earlier 1900s.



A triple cockpit launch, complete with folding windscreen…handy on those really hot days.




Shepherd boats, built in Niagara on the Lake, Ontario, are known for their ability to handle larger lakes (and their hard ride!)





No classic boat show is really complete without a collection of beautiful antique autos.




This likely newer build, probably a Hacker-Craft design, offers a very racy, low-cut, streamlined look.




This twin-engine beauty looks suspiciously like a Greavette Executive, likely from the late 1960s or early 70s.





The Field of Dreams an annual part of the Gravenhurst Antique and Classic Boat Show usually offers a wide array of seductive woodies in all shapes and conditions.



by Don

Two Recently sold boats!

December 10, 2020 in Uncategorized


Congratulations to the buys and sellers of both of these beautiful boats!

The first boat is a 20 ft. 1954 Chris-Craft that was listed at $22,500 CAD, and was is in EXCELLENT condition! The new owner of this boat is extremely lucky to have purchased it. (Picture Below)

The second boat ‘Hope’ recently had the Dippy and Coventry Victor engine rebuilt/refurbished “top to bottom” and are running extremely well. The new owner of this gorgeous boat got a great buy as this Greavette offers excellent value for the price. It was priced at $6000 CAD. (Picture Below)


by Rob

Our newest listing: a Greavette Disappearing Propeller Boat (Dippy)

October 17, 2020 in Uncategorized


Greavette Disappearing Propeller Boat (Dippy): 1964 (#3)

“Hope” is in very good operating condition. Both the Dippy boat and Coventry Victor engine have been “top to bottom”  rebuilt/refurbished and both are running very well. (Sept 2020) Two new coats of exterior varnish were applied this past July. A new bilge pump and mini pump at the bow end were installed in Aug. 2020 (suggestion of Ian Dickson,(Dispro expert!) for all Dispros.
The trailer, with Bearing Buddies, is in very serviceable condition. Custom clips hold the cover in place during transport. The cover has been repaired/protected and is quite serviceable. “Hope” comes with two beautiful spoon-blade oars.
(Everything works!) In my opinion,this Greavette offers excellent value for the price. If it weren’t for a sudden, catastrophic illness,
there’s no way I would sell this beautiful Dippy  Rob A.

Ad number pb922
Price: $6000 CAD


Someone is going to get a great buy!
See the video below…


Port Carling Boats – Antique & Classic Wooden Boats for Sale