1967 48' ChrisCraft Constellation Restoration

Discussion in 'Wooden Boat Building and Restoration' started by robster, Aug 12, 2008.

  1. robster
    Joined: Apr 2008
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    Location: Seattle Washington

    robster Junior Member

    Hello all,

    3 months ago I bought a wooden Constellation and in process of complete restoration. It had extensive rot above the waterline and have replaced 8 ribs, and still replacing most of the battens and planks. fortunately from the waterline down the wood was pickled and was very solid.

    Any input on the restoration process in wellcome. Also if anyone has any questions on restoring one of these, I may be able to help advise.

    ChrisCraft mostly builds a good boat, but I am changing some obvious flaws in some of the design.

    On the ribs and battens I am replacing with white oak, the planks are Hondurous mahogany. I am soaking everything with Penetrating epoxy and seaming with 3M 5200 sealer.

    When I get done, the boat will be virtualy waterproof and water tight before I put it back into the water.
     

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  2. jaydonaldson
    Joined: Jan 2009
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    Location: Michigan

    jaydonaldson New Member

    48 Chris Craft

    Wow, Your boat brings back such wonderful memories. As a kid, we had that exact boat. Hull was all white. Only 24 48 where build. We had the single engine room port hole....extended hardtop. I heard our boat was shipped to Seattle. That could be our old boat. Does she have 534 seamasters for power (Ford truck engines)????? Morse controls???? either way...that is one hell of a boat you have there. Great lines and one of the prettiest boats CC ever made. Good luck on your restoration...it will be worth it in the end. Jay Donaldson 248 933 1047
     
  3. robster
    Joined: Apr 2008
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    Location: Seattle Washington

    robster Junior Member

    48' Constellation

    Very interesting, this could be your old boat. it has the single engine room port and extended hard top with the 534 Seamasters. It is the 2 stateroom model with the queen bed.

    When I got it, it was sitting in Tacoma marina rotting. The guy that had it wanted to restore it, but had no idea what he was doing. someone had filled the rot holes with styrofoam and painted the sides with latex house paint.


    Hopefully we will have it back in the Water this April and will be crusing it this summer in the San Juan Islands. You are wellcome to go with us anytime :)

    I have a question, How many gallons per hour does it use at crusing speed?

    Thanks,

    Rob Leighton
    425-502-0807
     
  4. jaydonaldson
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    Location: Michigan

    jaydonaldson New Member

    fuel

    My brother thinks they where around 25 gal per hour. they burn less fuel than the ford 427 block. they produce more tourqe at lower rpms. My 42 commander burned about 30 gal per hour 427s. I sure that is our old boat. Your boat (motors) is one of the best sounding boats you will ever hear. It was always a head turner. Keep in touch. jdonaldson01@comcast.net
     
  5. Areyouliving
    Joined: Apr 2009
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    Location: Sacramento

    Areyouliving New Member

    Rob hows is this boat coming along?

    Bill
     
  6. Brightside
    Joined: Oct 2009
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    Location: 44`31`59N 069`53`09W

    Brightside New Member

    Good Morning,
    We saw your Constellation photos. Wondering if you could provide additional
    shots? We are just starting a 1966 45. She has plenty of structural
    problems, but were up for the task. Any thoughts or input will be appreciated.
     
  7. KnottyBuoyz
    Joined: Jul 2006
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    Location: Iroquois, Ontario

    KnottyBuoyz Provocateur & Raconteur

    Wow! What a great project. Good Luck robster.

    I have nothing to contribute that might help you out but cheers!!!

    Here's a link to a 55' 1961 Connie that was refitted. Plenty of pics & info if you haven't seen it already. Might be some insights there. Good luck!

    http://www.ftkltd.com/
     
  8. gonzo
    Joined: Aug 2002
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    Location: Milwaukee, WI

    gonzo Senior Member

    That is a bad change in the design. The planks are supposed to be caulked with cotton and when they swelll it creates a rigid panel. The epoxy will keep them from swelling. 5200 is a flexible adhesive, it will not lock the planks like a proper caulking job is supposed to do. All the stress will be in the fasteners. Definetely a typical amateur disaster.
     
  9. PAR
    Joined: Nov 2003
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    Location: Eustis, FL

    PAR Yacht Designer/Builder

    You'll note I left this one alone Gonzo. Anyone making these types of "repairs" clearly hasn't a good grasp and probably will not pay attention, especially when they're looking to "help advise". I hope his fasteners are really tight, 'cause his planks will not be for long.
     
  10. fhutto
    Joined: Mar 2010
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    Location: Denver

    fhutto New Member

    criscraft restoration

    I was thinking of buing a 67 constellation and repowering with twin diesels-cats or detroits-Is this crazy?
     
  11. missinginaction
    Joined: Aug 2007
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    Location: New York

    missinginaction Senior Member

    Hi fhutto,

    Are you crazy?

    I'm not qualified to comment on your mental health but I would say this.

    A. If you have done restoration before and understand the time, effort and money involved and you want to do this inspite of that knowledge then give it a whirl.

    B. On the other hand.....If you're new to this (and asking your question leads me to believe you are) then I would't say you're crazy but I would say that you just don't understand the process of doing a restoration such as you are considering.

    What you are proposing is a huge financial, time and work comittment.

    Huge.....

    MIA
     
  12. dacarls
    Joined: Mar 2010
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    Location: Gainesville Florida USA

    dacarls Junior Member

    One of these (nearly- a 54') was newly rebuilt and 2 years ago was travelling North in Lake Michigan. They caved in the bow just offshore of Little Point Sauble lighthouse and sank quickly. Fortunately the 2 on boat were rescued.
    I found a lovely 2 foot piece of mahogany rail onshore last summer- broken off brass screws, new white paint. Care to guess where it came from?
     
  13. robster
    Joined: Apr 2008
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    Location: Seattle Washington

    robster Junior Member

    Chris Craft Progress

    Hello Bill,

    The Constellation is back in the water and doing well. I have completely rebuilt the hull and deck, I am now working on the interior. it has taken me longer that anticipated but it has been worth it.

    My boat building methods with wood have created some interesting comments on this forum, but it just shows how some people can be stuck in traditional outdated boat building methods and not advance themselves.
    I have always been one that pushes the technological edge and can create controversy hahaha.

    I will post pictures later

    Thanks

    Rob L
     
  14. PAR
    Joined: Nov 2003
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    Location: Eustis, FL

    PAR Yacht Designer/Builder

    Rob, nothing personal, but I've repaired dozens of boats that have been given your "technological edge" treatment. Best of luck and I hope your insurance is up to date. Of course, when they find out how you've repaired her, it'll void any claim, but hey what do I know, I'm just outdated, though one of the only wooden boat surveyors in all of central Florida, for the biggest insurance company going.
     

  15. robster
    Joined: Apr 2008
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    Location: Seattle Washington

    robster Junior Member

    This comment is typical of a traditional wooden boat builder that has little knowledge of modern materials and stress/strain analysis. because of the materials I have used that I haven't mentioned, I could take out all the fasteners in my planks and they still would never come loose. But since you want to act like you know it all, I will keep the info for someone that actually wants to learn something new. I will put my boat up against anything you guys have anyday.
     
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