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17' Cavalier Ski Boat...........Jacksonville FL area $450

Posted: Tue Oct 16, 2012 9:53 am
by Paul P

This is a PERFECT EXAMPLE of how fiberglass boats can be found sitting out in the hinterlands, just waiting for someone to come along and bring them back into service.

This one is in FL near Jacksonville, just got an email this morning about it, the guy wants $450.

Here is the Craigslist link

If you wanted a 17' ski boat, had the basic skills to work on something pretty simple, did not want to be in the business of replacing planks and tending to a wood hull, THIS might be your ticket to fame!

This boat has no motor, just as well because if it did the motor would most likely be trashed anyway. Therefore, this is a candidate for a replacement motor, inboard transmission, new risers, etc., and in case you have not been on ebay lately, all that stuff is regularly traded and you can get about everything you would need to bring this one back to a 50-mile-per-hour rocket.

Hope someone gets it and takes the care and restraint to do it right. On a relative scale, I would consider this one to have very good bones and to be a pretty straight-forward restoration project.



Posted: Tue Oct 16, 2012 7:59 pm
by quitchabitchin
If it was closer, I would buy it for parts. I know that's against the messagfe of your post, but there are a ton of good parts here. A Jetson stern light, original steering wheel, windshield frame, aluminum rub rail (try finding that!), just to name a few that make it worth more than the asking price.

But I also agree that it is a very good restoration candidate. I just wish it was closer.

Posted: Wed Oct 17, 2012 8:51 am
by Paul P
This boat deserves to remain intact and not be canibalized, because if someone strips it, then it would be very tough to ever get it back and the chances that it would end up either burned or "customized" would be greater. Due to the rarity and very desirable features of this boat, I would think there should be some serious interest in restoring it to 100% new original condition. Have you ever seen one on the water? I'll bet most of us would have to say "no".

Although this one comes from the "Corsair" family tree, it is more of a lake and river ski boat as it has a nearly flat hull profile in the typical manner of a ski boat and it follows many of the traditional CC hull configurations, only in fiberglass.

This one is a PERFECT example of what is out there if you do a little hunting. With V8 power this thing would be a LOT of fun.



Posted: Wed Oct 17, 2012 10:05 am
by JohnKadimik
Look's like Wilson's "Rocket Red".

Posted: Wed Oct 17, 2012 4:00 pm
by quitchabitchin
I have seen one, I own one, but need a few parts to make mine complete. It is a very fun boat to drive. I would just like to swap a few parts with the good ones on this particular one.

Posted: Wed Oct 17, 2012 5:33 pm
by Paul P
JohnKadimik wrote:Look's like Wilson's "Rocket Red".
This is exactly what makes these classic Chris Crafts so much fun, especially around 1`969 becuase that is the ONE YEAR of 19-foot Commander SS production, and the second of two years of 23-foot Commander production, and there is some thought this particular model when called the 17' Ski Boat of 1969 would be also called a Commander. The CC marketing department thought otherwise and called it a Cavaliler for one year and only 100 hulls.

This same hull appeared the next year (1970) being sold as the 17-foot Ski boat again only this time it was called the Corsair, and 53 hulls were built under this name.

Any way you look at it, these are fun and fast ski boats, able to stay with most any Master-Craft style boat being sold new today and look a lot better.

This particular boat has the topside clamshells but Wilson's has the downturned aft clamshells which CC adjusted to get them functionally out of the way of all the intended ski activities.

Here is Wilson's boat as photographed 6 or 7 years ago at Mt. Dora. Note the downturned clamshells. Once you removed the flagstaff and hooked up the ski tow line, you were ready to go without fear of popping off a vent, which undoubtedly is THE REASON for the change of location.


To add even more interest in this model, in 1967-1968 Chris Craft built 106 boats out of plywood and mahogany trim that was the identical format of the fiberglass model although the wood boat had a beam of 6-foot 10-inches, and the fiberglass version is 7-foot two-inches.



Posted: Wed Oct 17, 2012 9:47 pm
by quitchabitchin
We saved #47 from "being cannabalized" as the previous owner had listed the engine, transmission, and dashboard on eBay after not selling the boat for several months. I tracked down a phone number on Milwaukee's Craigslist and we made the deal sight unseen and road tripped to pick her up.

There are a few slight differences between the 69 and 70 models. The 70 has the relocated clamshells, a molded fiberglass/plastic dash, only one engine option-327Q 230HP, a white racing stripe, crash pads, and the few I've seen also have trim tabs, which I suspect were added because this boat bounces up and down with a little extra weight in the back. The biggest difference is the 1 piece vs. 3 piece windshield. The 69 is a single molded piece of plexiglass, the 70 is 3 pieces. I imagine this was changed because the one piece window frame has a weak spot in the top corners and they are prone to cracking. I am going to have it TIG welded with a small gusset to strengthen it. Either way, they are a very fun boat with a rated top speed of 43 MPH with a great holeshot. I can't wait to ger mine back together.