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1970 ski boat

Posted: Wed Mar 23, 2016 6:59 am
by dholdmann
Need some help here guys. I'm looking at two boats. First is a 1970 chris craft ski boat, red. Looks in ok shape, at some point someone put a jasper engine in it with what looks like a bunch of automobile parts. Front seat has been removed and replaced with some fishing seats and it has a few soft spots on the floor. Other that that looks likes like a nice boat. Boat two is a 1972 century 18' resorter. This boat is in way better shape. All original and has been taken care of for many years by a older man. New floor fiberglassed in ,engine rebuilt, fully functioning boat. I'm looking for a classic fiberglass boat to complement my wood chris crafts that I can use as a daily family boat. Something that I can launch after work with the kids just to go for a ride. I really the the chris craft but the century might be a better boat. Are the chris craft ski boats going to become as popular as the Xk boats? Thanks for the help.

Re: 1970 ski boat

Posted: Wed Mar 23, 2016 9:14 am
by mfine
Are you prepared for the time and expense to restore the CC? If the floor is soft, you may need to clean out water logged floatations foam and replace it. Plus, you already know about engine work and the seat. I would plan on that project costing more than the boat will be worth. Go in to it as a labor of love and to have a unique and cool boat and you are OK. If you are looking at it as an investment or even a cost effective decision, fuhgettaboutit.

Re: 1970 ski boat

Posted: Wed Mar 23, 2016 12:02 pm
by quitchabitchin
The '69 & '70 Ski Boats are very solid hulls. There is no Flotation Foam in them and the floor is 3/4" plywood, which is easily replaced. The Seat bases are very simple and easy to replicate, using 2x lumber and plywood. I would be most concerned about the engine in this boat. The original was a Flywheel Forward Q Series due to the angle of the prop shaft compared to the length of the boat. These boats fully restored are in the range of $12K. If you are able to complete the work yourself, you could do it for 50-75% of that cost, depending on how much you complete vs. sub out.

If you are looking to return to original, please be advised that the red Nautolex flooring is extinct for all practical purposes. You could have it remade, but the cost is pretty high. These are great, fun boats that are good for calm water, but will not take on rough seas very well as the deadrise at the transom is nearly non existent. Feel free to send me any pictures or questions via Private Messaging here on Boat Buzz, I spent 3 years in the depths of a '69 Ski Boat and know every inch pretty well. ... oat_id=989

Re: 1970 ski boat

Posted: Wed Mar 23, 2016 4:00 pm
by cenger
I went through a similar experience last year. I was looking for something fun and easy to take the kids water skiing. I bought a 1969 17' Formula that looked to be in good shape. Had i been less emotional I would have seen the flaws more clearly. I wound up having to replace the engine, stringers, outdrive, interior and while I was at it, repainted it. In hind site I paid way to much for the boat and had to sink a significant amount of money into it to get it to a satisfactory condition. While I do like the boat, the investment far outweighs what the boat is worth.

While the Chris Craft is a way cooler boat then the Resorter, it likely will need similar attention that my Formula did. Have a survey done so you get the boat at a price that accounts for what you will need to put into it.

Re: 1970 ski boat

Posted: Wed Mar 23, 2016 7:14 pm
by bflaherty
Quitchabitchin is absolutely correct!! I too am in the midst of "restoring" out 1969 Ski Boat (structurally identical to the 1970) and they are dirt simple! There is next no wood in the structure to have to worry about. The floors are just 3/4" plywood that isn't even glassed in! Other than the red nautalex vinyl flooring everything else was super common parts used by all the major Builder's in the late 60's thru early 80's, so parts are easy to find and replace (with the exception of the horn, I've been searching to no avail for 6 years for a proper replacement)

We love our boat cause it is so simple and a total blast on the lake!! Like quitchabitchin stated these are definitely NOT rough water boats like the XKs by any means!! But the resorter wouldn't be any better so I'm guessing your not looking for a rough water boat??

As for the engine, that is a concern, but if the current motor runs then just use until your ready to go back to original or something more marine appropriate. If it doesn't run, then any marine engine builder would be able to build a "like original" Q motor easily at only moderate expense. We have several ACBS members up here in the Northwest that have built (and have stock piles of parts for) Q motors from 283s up to 350s...

Best of luck in your search!!

Re: 1970 ski boat

Posted: Wed Mar 23, 2016 9:17 pm
by mfine
Has someone figured out replacement manifolds for Q engines? If you want to fully restore the boat to get near the quoted $12k in value, I would urge you to get a solid quote on a rebuilt Q engine plus put together a spreadsheet of the other parts and materials you need and their costs. I would also suggest you research the sales volume and prices. Just because one XK sold for $40k a few years ago does not mean you could quickly unload one next week at that price if you had to move one. These old boats do sell, but the pool of buyers is small and prices are not always steady. If you just want to keep it and use it, resale value and originality should be lesser concerns, but you are still going to want to make it safe and reliable.

If you are looking for a project and are not worried about the economics, I certainly would not want to dissuade someone from saving a great old boat. That said, I also don't want to see someone get into a costly project they were not prepared for and end up soured on the hobby.

Re: 1970 ski boat

Posted: Thu Mar 24, 2016 1:28 am
by bflaherty
MFine, I couldn't agree more!! I love our ski boat but when we bought it we were looking for a glassic that we will have for many, many, years so I wasn't concerned with the economics of restoring her... That being said the former owner was told by members of this club that these boats in great condition should sell for around 10k (this was 2009) we ended up buying her for 3.5k.... And we were the first people to respond to their ad in two weeks! Our boat was cosmetically aging but turn-key ready to play with everything but the vinyl as original! So theoretically she should have sold for more but there just wasn't any interest until their price dropped into our 4K budget...

So I seriously question whether one of these Cavaliers, even 100 point, restored would really sell anywhere near 12k. Though they only built 100 in '69 and 53 in '70 they are rare but mostly cause they were cheap entry level boats then and not many have been saved or well cared for because they went to entry level boaters..

So if you're looking for a return on investment, purely from economics, I suggest looking at a different boat. However, if you are willing to factor in the "coolness" and enjoyment of use, rather than pure economics then the Cavalier 17 Ski Boat is a contender!!

Re: 1970 ski boat

Posted: Thu Mar 24, 2016 10:56 pm
by quitchabitchin
Matt, Nobody has figured it out unless Pletcher is filing for a patent...meanwhile, I'm building a bunker in the backyard where I'm going to start hoarding any remaining, Undamaged Q intakes. That's my new retirement plan.

As far as values go, my boat was appraised for $12,000 by a reputable shop that sells lots of classic and antique boats when they did a survey and evaluation for my insurance company. I wouldn't even begin to entertain any offers much less than that. These boats do not come up for sale very often and I've seen them sell from $1500 for an absolute basketcase to well over $10,000 in very recent years. Most user boats in good to fair condition would be in the $5000-$7000 range. I haven't seen one on eBay in quite some time, but they do pop up every once in a while.

I have viewed the ad for the boat in question and it appears to be in better shape than was described. This particular boat was listed on eBay a few years ago and I believe it sold for a decent price. I'll have to see if I can find it in the archives. This boat doesn't appear as though it will need a much to get it in good user shape, depending on the floor situation. The front seat is easily duplicated and there a few things I would address on the engine, but the deck and hull appear to be in nice shape, glossy and not bad overall. That being said, I am only going off of the pictures, which can be deceiving.