CHRIS CRAFT COMMANDER FORUM ® .......A photo-intensive technical reference file and ongoing newsletter regarding the original fiberglass Chris-Craft Commander series. This is an independent not-for-profit and non-commercial web site, not affiliated with the Chris Craft Commander Club ~~ or ~~ Chris-Craft Corporation. Our mission here is to "have fun and share information" about the Commander series (and those associated fiberglass boats on the Chris-Craft family tree) for your individual personal use, and by doing so help promote the good name of Chris-Craft, and help preserve, restore, and appreciate Chris-Craft boats. The main reference feature is the ever expanding MASTER INDEX File which contains what we believe to be the world's largest collection of documentation photos and technical information on the Chris-Craft Commander line of boats, (like these original brochure scans, featuring the iconic first 38 Commander styled by Fred Hudson, and many of the great Dick Avery renditions that followed) , (a huge collection of Chris-Craft 427 tuning and specification information), and a few words about how to use the forum.

We extend to you a cordial "WELCOME ABOARD !" Come on in, make yourself at home, we are a friendly group of enthusiasts, and we also appreciate the classic Chris Craft Roamer, Corsair, and Lancer boats too , as they are all on the same family tree and share much in common ! Just start by posting a note introducing yourself to the group, that's all it takes here (we don't ask for or retain any personal information here, because our intention is to just "have fun and share information".

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(Tavares)...............Are we there yet ?

March 26 2015 at 6:18 PM

Chris Wade  (Login wadecon1)

Looking forward to Tavares postings happy.gif


    
This message has been edited by FEfinaticP on Apr 1, 2015 9:42 AM


 
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AuthorReply

Paul
(Premier Login FEfinaticP)
Owner

Cobra time !

March 27 2015, 9:22 AM 

Sitting on an upstairs patio having coffee now, getting ready to strive over to check everything out in an hour or two !
We have a Cobra reserved for some special duty, more on that later. !!

Our young traveling companion is still in the sack, ha!

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Regards
Paul
"\"\""

 
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Craig Judge
(Login craigjudge)

Based on the few pictures I've seen..

March 27 2015, 9:37 AM 

It's clear to see why folks like Brian Gagnon are pushing for a new generation of members to be involved.Looking forward to hearing more on that angle from a major show like this one.
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Craig L
(Login clindberg)

Re: Based on the few pictures I've seen..

March 27 2015, 1:51 PM 

Excellent observation Mr. Judge. Unless some things change for the better, alot of their kids may simply wind up with estate items that they may or may not give a hoot about. That can translate into fetching less than good prices which in turn can depress an entire market that gets on a downward spiral. On the other hand if there were a thriving audience of new enthusiasts, it would be a different matter. Of course we're not in it for the money but the sport and hobby so I'm sure we'd all like to see these boats be more than a bookmark in American manufacturing but rather transcend that to a level reserved for truly special representations of their era deserving of preservation.

Happy Friday Forum Followers!

Skol!
Craig L

 
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Jim C
(Login lancer17)

It's economic too.

March 27 2015, 2:24 PM 

Interesting observations. Unfortunately, I think the economics of the current times don't help either. Younger generations seem to have a lot less disposable income. We have people retiring with mortgages and credit card debt at the highest rates in history. Those aren't good signs for hobbies like this. A good time for collectors (buyers) though.


 
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Craig Judge
(Login craigjudge)

Economics are a small part

March 27 2015, 5:43 PM 

What disturbs me about the aging trend goes beyond just boats being bought and sold. With respect to restorations and wood boats specifically, the talents and knowledge required to master the techniques really can't be taught in a book or website. These are things that are handed down from generation to generation and without the younger folks being in the shops learning the ropes, the old timers simply have nobody to pass their skills and know how down to.
I remember a couple years back going to a local guy who was known around the world for repairing old stereo equipment and turntables specifically. I brought an old Dual table to him for repair and was shocked when I walked into his shop. He had boxes of stereos and turntables shipped to him from all over the world. Some had been there for over a year. He explained that boxes just showed up UPS every day without so much of a phone call first. He's a one man show. Not by design, because no matter what he did he simply couldn't find anyone who wanted to work as an apprentice and learn the trade. He said "I don't know who's going to fix all this stuff when I retire". Here was a guy who had a going profitable business with a year of backlog and he couldn't retire or sell the business at any price.
So many industries are facing this crisis. X-box and smart phones have replaced screwdrivers and the ability to read a wiring schematic.

 
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Jay
(Login Yankee85)

It is all in the age

March 27 2015, 6:43 PM 

My father (77 Yr old) has a Ford Model A, his pride and joy. His Uncle had one and as a kid he thought that was a cool car. I look at this museum quality car and think it needs to be chopped, dropped and a small block Chevy dropped in. The car is worth about 1/2 of what it was worth 25 years ago since 1/2 of the people who remember that car as cool are no longer driving.

Give me a 65 Mustang, 67 Camero, 70 442 or 1969 Commander 19. That is what was cool when I was a kid and I (and 76 million other boomers) have a little more coin than we did 40 years ago and are buying these at outrageous prices that will fall as we become too old to drive them. None of that matters because we just enjoy these boats and our time working on them and enjoying them while reliving our youthful dreams.

As an investment my question is what will my son and others the same age want in 25 years when he is 45 has a little coin to spend and wants to relive his youth. I don't see him wanting a mint Xbox 360 or classic iphone 6 but If I could figure that out and purchase a few of what these kids will want (remember when a 68 convertible firebird could be had for <$1000 in 1979) My retirement could go very well.

What is it that todays kids will want to spend their money on in 2040?


 
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Jim C
(Login lancer17)

Had to laugh at vintage Xbox!

March 27 2015, 8:46 PM 

So true Jay! Probably because I have a 17 y/o step-daughter who doesn't seem to be passionate about anything! And I don't think it's just her, it's a lot of the kids her age. Maybe I'm just getting to that age where where I start to say tings like that, but I don't remember it being that way for me. We all had hobbies and could name a few things we were really passionate about. My problem has always been too many hobbies/interests.

Craig brings up an interesting point...there are fewer people acquiring the skills needed for hobbies like these. Listening to talk radio the other day I heard them mention how poorly the "box stores" are doing in Europe because there has been such a decline in do-it-yourselfer's. Perhaps it's, like he said, a lack of mentorship. Perhaps it's just different interests. I will say, I have one employee who's 26 and he is actually buying old turntables and tube amps. Fun to see his reaction when he hears how good "true analog" sounds. I think if you are over 35 you know how good audio can sound, but these younger adults have been raised on compressed garbage and don't know the difference. I think all the digital is creating a bit of an analog revolution in these younger generations.

...sorry - totally off into the weeds. I thought we were talking about boats. happy.gif

 
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RJP
(Login RotaryRacer)

Good Question....

March 27 2015, 9:21 PM 

As a "kid" (35), I still like the old boats and cars and vintage 60s-70s stuff. But the kids a decade younger than me are hit and miss. There are still gear heads, but computers, gaming and the like has changed things for sure. I've worked with quite a few kids in there 20s. What is eye opening to me, is that I can remember my first interactions with a computer in grade school. We didn't have a home computer until 91 or 92. I was 12. I had already become interested in boats and cars. I already had my own boat and had just gotten my "boat license" to use the family boat.....I had a pretty easy life living on the lake allowed to use the boats as I felt and I spent pretty much all my free time in the summers on the water. Boats were accessible and many families and friends had boats in our circle of friends. Even the families that were simply making a living but had a few extra bucks to spend on the weekend.

I also spent time on a computer but not playing games online for hours and hours like the "kids" today. I never had a game console and still don't. It is not how I wanted to spend my time or money. Boats and cars were cooler to me.

Guys now in their 20s have had computers in the house since they were born and have literally not known a world without them and game consoles and have learned that spending free time playing games is normal. I actually think in 20-25 years we will see kids value "vintage" games, consoles, etc.

My generation has already shown that. People spend unreasonable amounts of money on old rare Nintendo games already. 5 figures for some really rare games...that 10 years earlier were sold at garage sales for $0.25...crazy you say.

There are some kids in their 20s that do appreciate cars and other mechanical things, cars were still cool when they were growing up. Camaros & Mustangs still made loud noises and could do smokey burnouts. BUT they all looked so bland....so what will they value when they get to middle age?

Kids that had there formative years between 1995-2010 really didn't have that many accessible and emotional cars to look up to. They had pickup trucks, Honda Civics (rice burners with fart cans) and Luxury sedans to look up to. Sure there have always been Ferraris and the like...but you need good entry level cars to really initiate the interest.

Boats nowadays are a whole other ball game. It seems you have fishing boats, wakeboard boats and pontoons. If you can get a kid interested in wakeboarding and stuff that is probably good, but who can afford a $70k dedicated wake boat?

So what should you invest in now? I honestly have no idea. But you have me thinking.

 
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Paul
(no login)

Not many young people going to be contenders for the Sea Lyon that is now for sale

March 30 2015, 2:39 PM 

It's education, economics, and social background. The bright colored wood boats have always been a symbol of affluence.

Nowdays, what kid (except for one fortunate to have been brought up in a blue-blood family) would even KNOW or care what a Sea Lyon is, for instande.............and have the $150,000 or so to buy it as a toy.........not to mention the annual operations and maintenance budget wihch would be large. Not your average Volvo or Toyota 4 cylinder automobile trailerable runabout that fits into an urban housing situation.

Not many kids can afford waterfront homes with boat houses and vintage wood boats. They might be able to have a house with a garage somewhere. Eventually, as they get older they get smarter, and their pay increases hopefully with age and knowledge. Even then, an older guy like me can't afford to be popping down money like this. So not only is the age factor in play, the cost factor is too.

So in addition to the excellent observations you guys have made, let me just tell you that Tavares was also an old guy show. I am old enough to be able to say that to anyone and back it up.

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Regards,
Paul
























 
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Don
(Login sealyon)

Old guys were young once too

March 31 2015, 7:30 PM 

Hi Paul and thanks for riding in my Sea Lyon with us. I hope you enjoyed it and was hoping you might send some of the pictures you took. I am enjoying my first time on your website and as you know I also have an XK-19 so this should be fun for me.
In your discussion of "Old Guys", well at 62 I guess I am one. And many people are concerned about the future of the wooden boat hobby due to the entry costs. It is a valid concern, and I think the ACBS was smart to approve 25 year old glass boats for attendance at premier events for judging. I am looking forward to seeing more and more classic glass at our shows. I know you took pictures and did a great article that included my XK-19 at Sunnyland last year and I think that may have helped the voting on getting glass approved with the ACBS.

I am far from a blue blood guy and I want to encourage everyone to save for and acquire the boat of their dreams. When I find something in life that I really want, I get a model or photo of it and place somewhere where I see it frequently and start saving to buy one. I have a buddy that just bought his first wooden boat; a 1948 Chris Craft special for $400. He is working actively to bring it back to glory. So, not everyone needs to start with a 28' triple cockpit runabout. I am hoping that we will see lots of glass boats at all the shows and a whole new generation of boat lovers. Who knows, some of them may decide to adopt a woodie too.

Thanks for all you do to promote the XK's and Commanders! I took Mike and Helen out in mine yesterday so he could drive it and he is excited to buy one soon!
Don

 
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Paul
(no login)

Yes, and we still look at the world through the same eyes we did when we were young !!

April 1 2015, 9:35 AM 

Hey HELLO Don, and good morning !

WELCOME to the Forum, please feel free to ask any questions or post anything you think others might be interested in. We have an amazing team here, able to deal with just about anything you would encounter on your XK.

We had a wonderful trip, really enjoyed spending time with you aboard the Sea Lyon, meeting your wife, and please thank her for running us back into town. Gosh that was such a fabulous opportunity to even see a Sea Lyon, but getting a ride is something very special and a was absolutely thrilled Helene could be aboard too, she has no idea how special that was even though I have told her many times now. It was a teaching moment, as she was one of the younger people there at the show, and since she is now our adopted daugthter it seems that she will someday want somethng on the water, perhaps a wood boat, so please be on the look-out for an elegible young man that would pass the "Paul Test", ha. I don't know if you knew she won "Musician of the Year" in Nashville, Tennessee, from the National RAW organization that supports young upcoming talent. If you want a link just click on her promo image on our sliding bar here on The Forum.

When I used the term "old man show" of course I was referring only to the fact that the average age of people both showing boats, and even attending the show, was rather high. I used your Sea Lyon as an example of something out of reach for most young people, and certainly did not mean to infer you were an old guy, lol. By the way, you do seem to be having some pretty nice quality fun on Lake Dora, wow. How nice it would be to be able to take an evening cruise to Mt. Dora for cocktails and dinner happy.gif

I did not see many young people at the show although I did miss Saturday due to Helene and Janet insisting on going to St. Augustine for the day. We had our boating fun on Friday and Sunday. I alwo use the term "blue blood" with artistic license too, meaning that some lucky young people will inheret the hobby (and boat) directly, but few other young people are going to go out of their way and seek out an old wood boat that requires so much time, expense, and specialized knowledge. If you are born into the hobby one way or another it sure helps.

Many of us our age were born into the era, not necessarily the direct connection. My family never had a wood boat, they were beyond what we could do so we had our fun in an aluminum Dura-Craft with tail fins and a 35 Evinrude Lark. I did, however, see a lot of wood boats at the docks in Conneaut Lake, Pennsylvania, and later became the lifeguard at Midway Hotel right around the corner from the Miklos family cottage (of Century Boat fame). I caught the bug that way, but I don't see too many young people out there now being exposed enough to this hobby and the fiberglass boats are an entry level pathway for them to get involved, have some fun, grow older/wiser/richer and eventually spring for a nice wood boat.

Regarding ACBS voting on glass, I think you may have had something to do about that directly or indirectly through other means than me. Maybe we were working as a team and didn't know we were on the same team at the time, but hanging around Paul Harrison like you do, certainly did not hurt the cause. If he put his eyes on a nice fiberglass boat now and then, hey that probably had something to do about it too.

We loved meeting Mike and Helen Moore, and have corresponded with him since, with some follow up due. We booked our rooms again in Mt. Dora so we'll be seeing you again, hopefully sooner than a year from now.

Here is the teaching moment for Helene. She was taking it all in, very observant but not really knowing what all was happening.
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I told her about the big Scripps being a low rpm motor, about the way the boat handled at cruise speed, etc. Janet wanted to go too but was too far away to get to the dock on time (getting something from the car) and just told us to have a good time.

Here is the handsome and debonaire guy sitting next to Helene at the helm, and don't think she wasn't taking note of that too, ha! She may be quiet but she does not miss much!
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Intrepid guests aboard the Sea Lyon, Helen Moore and Paul Harrison.
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Here are the Sea Lyon photos !!

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Here is the approach to your boat house and I wanted to get the whole thing but responsibly put the phone down in order to be at ready, in the event I was needed to help center the boat. As it turned out, you must have done this before because it slid directly and smoothly onto the life. Well done, my friend. happy.gif
http://vidmg.photobucket.com/albums/v472/Dogsharks/Mobile%20Uploads/trim.5D920230-ED5F-4F26-877B-27E9759B4C06.mp4



Here is your XK at the show last week.
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Here are photos I took in 2014, some of which were published happy.gif
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Regards, all the best, please stay in touch.
Paul


 
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Don
(Login sealyon)

thanks Paul

April 1 2015, 6:56 PM 

Thanks for your nice note back. We had a great weekend and am glad you could join us.
I'll try to look up Helen's musical work. My wife and I enjoy "the Voice" too.
I'd like to try to copy a few of the photo's you sent of my XK-19 but haven't figured out how to do that on my mac. Is it o.k. to copy them?
thanks again,
don

 
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Paul
(no login)

Here is Helene's link

April 1 2015, 8:09 PM 

All original material, we are proud of her work ethic and integrity.
Any eligible bachelors should send their credentials directly to me, and if they pass the "Paul Test" then we might be able to pass the info on to Helene, lol.

http://www.helenemichele.com/music/

Regards,
Paul


    
This message has been edited by FEfinaticP on Apr 2, 2015 12:28 PM


 
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Chris Wade
(Login wadecon1)

Just logged on.....SUP?

March 27 2015, 7:24 PM 

Okay, so the younger part of the crew slept in, probably because she was up past 9, probably with JP cruising the docks while our moderator caught up on some Z's. So, the question is, will we be kept informed on a day today basis? Or will we be kept in suspense while the crew and their fearless leader soak it all in. I hope for the former as there is only so much basketball I can stand , knowing there is fresh varnish curing and Coppertone glistening in the Florida sun....

CW, Land locked for now!

 
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Paul
(Premier Login FEfinaticP)
Owner

Let the games begin !!!!

March 27 2015, 8:46 PM 

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Originally sold to Switzerland, restored in Switzerland w maple inlay at seams !!

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Original except electric chokes.


Here ya go !!!!!!! Cadillac !
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More later, phone service here is very poor !

Regards
Paul, Janet, Helene




"\"\""

 
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Chris Wade
(Login wadecon1)

Cool!

March 27 2015, 9:20 PM 

Thanks, for the fix! happy.gif

 
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Paul
(no login)

More photos !

March 27 2015, 11:36 PM 

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Cobra #12 being exquisitely rebuilt.
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Regards
Paul










 
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Paul
(Premier Login FEfinaticP)
Owner

More photos !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

March 30 2015, 6:29 PM 

Here are more photos from the event.

A happy wife is a happy life.........
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There's more, lots more.
Some of the images I am not able to share with everyone just yet, because they are for a very special project, and I think you will know later when you see them, why they are held back now. Stay tuned !!!

Regards,
Paul


















"\"\""

 
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Rich Duane
(Login richduane)

Missed you

March 30 2015, 8:09 PM 

Paul'
I was there Friday and Saturday, I thought we would run into one another. I see you met Donald on the Sea Lion.
I saw the 68' Sea V 20 in the Field of Dreams. Nice show and great people.

Rich

 
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