Tuesday, December 1, 2009

Boat Building Inspiration

Here's a picture of the homemade boat that inspired me to build my own. The plan for this boat is called "Mustang" from Science and Mechanics magazine from the early 1950's. To the left is another boat called the "Bluestreak" from the same magazine. I was given the opportunity to take these boats for a spin and had a blast taking these boats around the lake. They both have 15 hp OMC outboards and scoot along quite well.

My other inspiration for building a boat was having this Chrysler 9.9 that was my dad's. It is a 1969 and he bought it new back in the day. He put it on a 14' Sea Nymph aluminum boat which was purchased from Northwestern Boat Co. He loved the motor as it started easily and replaced a 7.5hp Scott on a 12' Clyde wooden boat. The Scott never started easily and he was in no mood to fish after working himself into a lather trying to start the thing. He sold the aluminum boat in his retirement years but did not want to part with the motor. Now as you can imagine, having an outboard motor with no boat is not very useful. So it seemed buiding a small boat would be a perfect match for this baby. So I got started with the boat build. However, so far it appears that a remote hook-up for throttle, shift and steering may not have been offered for this motor and might be difficult be to cobble up.

The next photo is from around 1961 during a vacation. I'm in the middle of the boat, my mom and sister Sue on the dock. My dad is at the tiller of his first outboard motor, a 5hp Johnson. I believe now from my recollection of this silver colored motor and comparing it to pictures of old Johnson's, that it is a 1942 or thereabouts. I recall that we rented the boat during our stay. There was a steep set of stairs leading down to the lake with a motorized platform that traveled up and down to bring people and luggage etc. up and down. Our cabin was half way down the hill. One of the pictures in the group had Ludington Lake written on the back, but I can't find it on a map. My dad later rued the day he sold the old Johnson. It always started easily, unlike the Low-profile Scott he bought to replace it.

This picture of a wooden runabout is from the same vacation. We got a ride on it and I remember loving the sound of the V8 exhaust burbling in the water and what a cool boat it was. It was used to deliver the mail to people living on the lake. After posting this picture, I clicked on it and could see that the flag on the front of the boat says "US Mail"....so my memory is correct.

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