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You are browsing the archive for Chris-Craft boats.

by Rob

Chris-Craft boats, a history. (Part I)

February 17, 2020 in Uncategorized

Ernest Hemingway in an earlier duck boat. Note the duck decoys in the bow.

The Chris Craft dynasty really began in 1876 when Christopher Columbus Smith began helping his older brother Henry build duck boats and fishing skiffs for hunters and fishermen, and later for use as rentals in their boat livery at Algonac, Michigan. Time passed. In 1884, Chris  married Anna Rattray and went on to raise four sons and two daughters. When old enough, Chris employed the children in his workshop, helping to build rowing, sailing and small motor driven boats.

By 1906, Chris was building 26 foot boats that would reach speeds of eighteen miles per hour, fast for the time period.

In 1910, a wealthy theatre owner,  John Ryan,  engaged Chris to build a boat that would reach thirty miles per hour. Pleased with his new purchase,  Ryan soon offered to become Chris’ business partner, providing funds for the venture. Smith began building single-step hydroplanes, which promised speeds of up to fifty miles per hour. The $20,000 price tag for such a boat was an astronomical price in the early 20th century.

Boats built by Smith and his sons  won a number of races and the company’s fame grew accordingly.

After Ryan’s fortunes dwindled, Chris connected with a group of Detroit businessmen. They created the Miss Detroit Powerboat Association with the object of building a hyroplane that might win the 1915 Detroit Cup.
Their 25.5 foot Miss Detroit, with thrust from a 250 hp Sterling engine, bested the competition to become the Gold Cup Champion.

Following that episode, after which the Smiths were left with unpaid bills, Garfield Wood appeared on the scene. Already a factory owner, he inspected, then purchased Miss Detroit. Both Chris Smith and Gar Wood were creative achievers who loved fast boats. They both wanted to be the best in the world. W”Well’-heeled” Wood eventually bought the assets of the Smiths, relieving them of debt while allowing them to continue producing boats.

Miss Detroit II (and next year III)  designed by “Nap” Lisee,  was completed in time to enter the 1917 Gold Cup race, which she won with a record speed of fifty-six miles per hour. Success continued in the 1918 and 1919 Gold Cup races when they replaced the Sterling engine with a Curtis aircraft power-plant then a Packard built Liberty aircraft engine.


Note: Information for this article is condensed and  adapted from the book Chris-Craft Boats,  by Anthony Mollica Jr and Jack Savage. The book is available through MBI Publishing Company, Galtier Plaza, Suite 200, 380 Jackson St, St Paul, MN 55101-3885 USA
Stay tuned for Part II!

 

by Rob

Three recently sold classic boats.

December 27, 2019 in Uncategorized

Congratulations to the sellers and buyers of the three classics listed below. We hope that the new owners will have many years of trouble-free boating ahead.
1941 Mac Craft: 18 ft. (above)
This handsome utility had been in the same Lake Muskoka family since new. The current owner had kept the boat very well maintained and had undertaken some major restoration work over the years.  Originally priced at $35,000, the asking price was reduced to $25,000 CDN  at the time of the sale. The Mac Craft company produced a small number of boats, but they were well constructed and durable.


1964 Shepherd: 22.3 ft. (above)
This beamy Shepherd was also owned by the same family for many years… thirty-five… According to the owner, it required new varnish and upholstery, but “runs well”. This Shepherd seemed very reasonably priced at .$12,000 CDN


1951 Chris-Craft Riviera, 18 ft. ((above)
The owner of this Chris-Craft had recently invested $80,000 into its restoration! She is essentially “a new boat”, powered by a 90 hp engine.in mint condition. Complete with trailer. The asking price at the time of sale was $65,000

 

by Rob

Our newest listing: a Chris Craft Sea Skiff, 23′, 1962

June 14, 2017 in Uncategorized

Chris-Craft Sea Skiff: 23 ft, 1962


Excellent example of a Chris Craft Sea Skiff Cuddy Cabin. The boat features a 283 Chevrolet Chris Craft Marine Engine that is strong and well maintained. Newer upholstery shows well with no rips or tears. Boat comes with many spare parts including drive shaft, and extra propellers. Two new batteries were purchased for the Skiff last year. Boat comes with recent survey Fall 2015 that values the boat at $18,500 alone. Also included in the sale is a  tandem axle trailer shown in the photo, a cockpit cover, two large fenders, bilge pump, two anchors, 2 paddles, four life jackets and two white deck chairs.
Price: $17,900 or best offer.
Have a look at the video on youtube. (below)


What a great boat in which to celebrate Canada’s upcoming 150th anniversary. The red and white colour scheme really tells the story!
For further details and contact information, please click on the link. Ad number pb741. (More photos below)

by Rob

Significant price reduction on a beautiful Chris-Craft Constellation: 37 ft, 1963

February 4, 2017 in Uncategorized

pb717-1Chris-Craft Constellation: 37 ft, 1963
Notes from the owner:
A comprehensive restoration was completed in 1998 including the finishes being stripped down to bare wood from top to bottom. The bottom was redone with Interlux antifouling paint and above the water line it was primed with epoxy primer and top coated with acrylic polyurethane. The teak decks where sanded down to fresh wood and recoated with Tuffshield for a virtually maintenance free finish. The swim platform and all other miscellaneous teak surfaces were also refinished.
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In 2000 the engines were upgraded with twin 8L V10s (see advancedmarinepropulsion.com). The vessel continues to be stored inside during the off-season and looks and performs as best in class.
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In addition to the engines and surface finishes the alcohol counter burners have been replaced with electric burners. All engine gauges were rebuilt in the 1980s and all of the wiring was upgraded or replaced to ABYC standards. All instrumentation is in A-1 working order.
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Original price: $49,000. New price as of Jan. 2017 $39,500. WOW! For further details and contact information, please click on the link. Ad number pb717pb717-8
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by Rob

Sirens Boat Works continued

January 13, 2016 in Uncategorized

As well as a huge Elco cabin cruiser squeezed into the shop, the staff at Sirens Boat Works have several other projects on the go: a 1930’s Chris-Craft cabin cruiser sporting a new transom, a 1960’s skiff beautifully restored and two Shepherds, an 18 footer undergoing a strip and re-varnish, as well as a 22 footer with more major work undertaken.
1930's Chris-Craft Cruiser - before the new transom
(Chris-Craft minus the transom)

Chris-Craft transom magic!
Vive la difference! What a difference a new transom makes!

18 ft. Shepherd ready for refinishing
(18 ft Shepherd gets a face-lift!)

Shepherd planking work

Shepherd - wood work almost done

multiple craft undergoing surgery!
1960's skiff refurbished

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