This gives an idea of how bad the original dash looked. I know this was early in the fiberglass production run at the Corsair Division, but sheesh, this is terrible.
Here is the dash now cut out of the planed mahogany board (left over from another boat project in the past). I'm going to ease the edges of the piece and fix it to the dash just like the other one. I may also add another panel below, perhaps on a hinge that can fold up out of the way, to mount my additional modern equipment such as digital depth gauge, sniffer, etc., all of which are small round dials. These are needed for modern boating, but I'd like to be able to fold them up out of the way if I go to a boat show with this boat, because the dials won't be looking as good as the nice chrome ring dials Dale Kocian restored for me.
Added to this thread, for the record, here are the instruments that Dale Kocian restored for me.
Here are two 41 year old instruments, recently restored by Dale Kocian, of Kocian Instruments . These are from the Cortland, New York, Thompson/Chris Craft Corsair Division, circa 1966. They were installed as original equipment in my 1966 20 fiberglass Sea Skiff, and I suspect they were also installed in numerous other Lancer, Corsair, and Sea Skiff models, and potentially the 19 and 23 Commander as well. During the disassembly Dale discovered something odd, one bezel was brass, and the other one was steel. They looked identical and both looked good from the outside, however, steel rusts and the steel one came back from the re-chroming shop looking below Dales standard..
At the 2007 Mt. Dora Boat Show, Dale found me another brass bezel. In addition, he discovered the ammeter electronic movement was bad and he replaced it. All of this was done for the initial price quote.
I am a firm believer that instruments make a big impact when looking at a vintage boat. If the instruments look ratty, its hard for the rest of the boat to overcome this impression. If the instruments look perfect, some of the other faults on the boat may actually be overlooked! In any case, these instruments will be on proud display at many a boat show over the next foreseeable future, as we trailer our low production 1966 20 fiberglass Sea Skiff to ACBS events.
If you have a project that needs to have the instruments restored, Dale can make them look dead stock new. The backs are even painted in the original color, the 12V sticker is in place. Amazing!
Close-up photos are unforgiving. They show EVERYTHING. Take a look at these photos, they tell the story better than I can.
Dont be in a hurry to have instrument restoration work done. Take care of this on the off season, and dont wait too late to send your instruments in. Quality work takes time, and it cant be rushed.
Dale and Mrs. Kocian, photo taken at the Mt. Dora Boat Show, 2007.
If you subscribe to Classic Boating Magazine, you may have seen Dales advertisements. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org
2341 Indy Court
De Pere, WI 54115
(920) 336-1591- Phone
Check out the next post, to see what these gauges looked like when they were sent in (Warning, not for the squeemish, not a pretty sight !!)