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1953 19' Chris Craft Racing Runabout

Talk about sleek, sexy, and fast. This is one cool boat. Not exactly the model you want to take your family out tubing or fishing in, but if you want a thrill ride with the wind blowing through your hair, this this is the boat for you. All in the shop agreed this is one of the smartest looking models Chris-Craft ever designed. They look like they're doing fifty mph moored at the dock.

This boat comes from Texas. It was purchased by a thirty-year US Army veteran about ten years ago, and not much has been done to it since. Now that he's retired it's time to 'get her done' and start doing some boating.

Here we go...

Looks like that dead body we found in the rear cockpit...oh, I guess that was one of us disconnecting the fuel line from the tank. Sorry. The boat had dried out and needed some cosmetic TLC. She's also in to get a new 5200 bottom.
That engine was crammed in there so tight we needed some Vaseline to sliiiide her out without pulling off the decks.
Ohhh, so that's why she was taking on water. Now I get it. Silly me.
Dry fit everything first, beginning with the inner Okume. Then seal and attach with 5200 and temporary fasteners. Let cure 4-5 days before removing the temporary screws. During that time you can begin fabricating the new outer mahogany planks. Always allow that 'penny' gap between the plans for the 5200.
Ok, now the bottom is finished and is even better than new. Let her sit for a few days to fully dry, then roll over and start on the fun stuff...this sides and decks.
All we were going to do was a strip, stain, and refinish. One problem. You could move the planks back and forth simply by pushing on them. The battens underneath had become so tired and cracked the fasteners were not holding. The owner wanted a 'preserved' boat and insisted on keeping the old planks, so we suggested we remove them, replace the battens, reseal the original planks on the inside and reattach with new fasteners. He said 'do it'. So, we did.
Almost done, just another fifty hours to put her all back together...
Now she looks better, and is on her way back to Texas. What a cool boat.