Petter
Petter

May 18th, 2011, 9:25 am #51

Bought my boat some weeks ago in Stockholm, Sweden.
Could not find the hull number anywhere but looking att your pics it pretty much looks the same except the front double seats. I have two single seats. My boat might have been an inboard since there have been two exhaust pipe holes? in the transom. What i can see the inboard has single seats i front.

Here is some photos. Anyone knows if the light pole is chris craft?








Going deeper restoring the boat and have some questions

Some of the panels are plywood and some of them thinner plywood glued to masonite. All of them about 0.3-4 " thick. Anyone knows why some of them have masonite? Softer and easier to fit maybe?
Will "pure" plywood boards work?

Have no rail list. Anyone knows what size and profile of the rail list? How to nail it to the rail?

Thanks

/Petter
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Paul
Paul

May 18th, 2011, 12:48 pm #52

Some of the upholstered panels that run up front would be tough to fit with true plywood becuase it won't conform to the curvature of the hull as well as a masonite would. Some of the so-mentioned "masonite" might have been finished with a wood layer, and my dashboard cover on the 1966 Skiff was masonite with wood grain "contact paper" which was just a vinyl paper sort of cheap covering. These were not real expensive boats, but they sure had a great form and they are a lot of fun to run today.

Did you ever find a serial number? I still think you could by lightly sanding around the Port nose and aft Starboard rail location mentioned earlier. Easy does it with the sandpaper, however, because once its gone it is gone forever. Virtually any numbers you may find would be of some value in helping with the identification.

Not sure I am following your question about the rail list, are you referring to the bow rail? Actually I find my bow rail looks good but it just gets in the way when trying to get the boat back on the trailer, however, as of lately I have drastically adjusted my retrieval methods due to having fallen into the water late last season, ruined an Iphone, tore out a little fiberglass I have to fix.

regards, best, send photos,

Paul
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Petter
Petter

May 18th, 2011, 2:12 pm #53

Thanks for all your great info Paul.

About the "rail list" I am obviously not not using the right word in English. Is it called fender list maybe? I mean the rubber along the boat where the hull meets deck. Preventing damage when bumping in to other boats.

Have not found the serial. Unfortunately it seems that previous owners sanded to much in their effort to make the hull in nice shape but i will try sanding on those places anyway.
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Paul
Paul

May 18th, 2011, 3:05 pm #54

Hi Petter,

Now I know what we are discussing, it is the bumper rail around the boat, and it has been called by many names. The original equipment rail is not available. There are some that could be used, however, but it is a custom application. Dave Krugler found a product that almost looks original, but to date I have not seen anything that is authentic and fits the old casting like an original piece. The problem, at least on our Skiff boats, perhaps the same on your Corsair since they're essentially the same boat with different badges, is the fact that the bumper part was vinyl. Vinyl, as opposed to rubber, has a very bad habit of shrinking as it gets older. Any break in the vinyl would after 30 or 40 years look like a piece 8 inches wide was missing, just due to shrinkage.

regards,

Paul
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Cliff Black
Cliff Black

July 19th, 2011, 9:13 pm #55

As I mentioned to you a while back, I love the B-18, what a robust and wonderful iron beast it is. Solid lifter, OHV, gear drive (no chain), huge bearing surfaces. I had a PV-544 Sport (egg on wheels, similar to the 1946 Ford) and I hot rodded it with parts from IPD here in the USA, a performance house specializing in Volvos (still exists in that role today too). Hot cam, ported and polished cylinder head, big carbs from an Austin Healey 3000, headers, the works! That thing was geared so low it would barely reach 100 but it sure would pull in the lower speed ranges and easily rev past 6000 rpm.

I raced it around when street racing was a little more socially acceptable, and I always enjoyed surprising people with the unbelievable power it had with that stump puller of a low gear. Ha! Great snow car too, especially with a load of concrete blocks in the trunk.

At the time I had a buddy with a Cortina GT with the special crossflow head. It was a nice cross-country ralley car, and it handled better than the Volvo. However, on acceleration my 544 would eat that car alive. He always wondered why.

I still have a spare block and cylinder head holding up one end of my shop. Those parts have so much iron in them, I think I recall the block could be bored out to 2000 cc. I have an intake manifold with dual SU carbs too, lol.

They are very simple motors, very strong, easily worked on, and they would make a great boat motor. As one of my friends said, the good thing about a Volvo is they last forever, and the bad thing about a Volvo is they last forever. I've had 6 of them, still have two. They're great cars.

Porsche helped design the 4-valve cylinder heads that came out in the late 1980s, and I have one of those on a 740 GLE 16V which is my old standby. It's pretty remarkable too, lots of high end power, not much torque, but very happy on the interstate.

The B-18, however, is the motor that established Volvo's reputation in the United States for being so durable. Mine was a 1963 model, and the marketing byline for that year was "drive it like you hate it". When I bought my PV-544 Sport, I asked the engineer who sold it to me how many miles it had on it. He said, Ohhh, about 300,000. Nobody knew for sure. I hot rodded it, ran the daylights out of it, and sold it for 3X what I paid for it, and never broke anything on the car. When I sold it, the car had new paint, new upholstery, CN36 Pirelli tires just like the turbo Porsche of the day, and it ran like a sewing machine until you stepped on the gas, and then it would howl. I actually towed a 17' Chris Craft Sportsman with it on numerous occasions too. Bachelor life was fun, heh heh.

Now my wife wants one. We've been looking casually, and guess what? The price has skyrocketed. I think she needs to stick with her XC-90. That will be our tow vehicle with the Sea Skiff, and the 740 will also do some towing too.

Got to love those Volvos ! My mom and dad have a V-70 like yours

Regards, Paul
Paul --

I was perusing some of the exchanges on the site and alerted when I saw "PV-544." My brother had a brand new 1963 (or '64) PV-544 B-18. What a neat and wonderful car it was. It was very gutsy, had gobs of both torque and power (for its day), and was an absolute ball to drive. It handled well, had front disc brakes, and that tall-handled floor-mounted four-speed. I was 21 years old and bought a 1964 (new) Jaguar E-Type coupe, which was admittedly faster and sexier, but that Volvo was almost as much fun to drive as the Jag. If I could have either car back in new condition, I'm really conflicted over which one I'd choose, the PV-544 was that good.

A mechanic friend of my brother drag raced one of the cars at NRHA-sanctioned drag strips in Southern New England back in the mid-60's and won many trophies while positively stunning drivers of bigger, more powerful cars. Those were the days.

Having fun with my '68 Corsair. Too much fun, in fact. I've essentially postponed all upgrading and repair until fall/winter. Need to find suitable winter housing for the beast, though, and that will be a challenge.

Best,

Cliff
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Paul
Paul

July 20th, 2011, 1:58 pm #56

Hi Cliff,

I painted my PV-544 Chrysler Cordoba Maroon, put in a nice all black interior with pleated perforated seats, and Pirelli CN36 tires (the same tire that came on the turbo Porsche of the day). It was well muffled, but it had a sport cam and totally ported and polished cylinder head, and it would really suprise you. I had a custom trailer hitch assembly, made up of square tube steel and anchored with through bolts into the trunk in proper fashion, and believe it or not I haulde a 17' Chris Craft speedboat with it. I will scan some photos of that era, which happened long before digital cameras.

Yes, that was one great car, I loved it and it gave me tons of fun and great service. I sold it for 3X what I paid for it and used the money for a down payment on a 15 acre farm inside the city limits of Nashville, which had an old farm house on it. The seller (widow) worked out a deal for me, $39,000 paid out monthly with a balloon payment at the end in ten years. I paid it off early and still live on the property today

best,

Paul
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Joined: January 5th, 2012, 11:01 pm

May 25th, 2012, 10:37 am #57

Rather than to make people hunt for the post, here is the latest one!

It is truely the missing link between wood and fiberglass, right at the very time CC was being acquired and NAFI was building the sport boat facility in Cortland New York. As a matter of fact, this boat may have been built at the very time bulldoziers and cranes were on site across the street building tne fiberglass wing! Sure looks like the Sea Skiff and Corsair family tree, eh?

http://www.network54.com/Forum/424840/m ... 1248470292

Regards, Cheers,

Paul
The Corsair fiberglass plant was built across town on Route 11, not across the street, from the Thomspon Boat factory on Elm Street in Cortland.

Excavation started on the new factory on 13 September 1962. Fiberglass boats were being made in a Cortland Street facility in nearby Homer, NY prior to the new factory being completed.

Andreas
Last edited by thompsonboat on May 25th, 2012, 10:46 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Andreas
Andreas

May 30th, 2012, 3:54 pm #58

This is the first of the scans from the Rob DaPron collection. Thanks to Rob for sharing this info with the forum !

A chriscraftcommmander.com EXCLUSIVE !
You're not going to read this anywhere else, becuase it's not on the net anywhere else !

This is an important part of Chris Craft Commander family tree, and an equally important part of Chris Craft fiberglass history. This is an important saga in the Corsair role in developing the Commander 19' SS or XK-19, or the 23' Commander, at the Cortland, New York (Thompson) Plant. There are several smaller (outboard and i/o) models that were built during this time frame, but for now we're concentrating on the larger boats that were in the Chris Craft Commander immediate family tree.

In 1962 CC acquired the Thompson Boat Co. of New York and they immediately started construction on a factory on the adjoining lot, with intentions of getting into the fiberglass sport boat business. Two years after the aquisition, as we know, the 1964 fiberglass 38 Chris Craft Commander Express was first introduced. Prior to this, however, CC was busy at work on smaller boats (too), and this series of scans shows the boats that came out of the Thompson/Chris Craft/Corsair division at Cortland.

The boats eventually evolved into the Lancer line, which is a direct and immediate relative of the 19' Commander SS (which used a cut down Lancer hull) and the 23' Commander (which used the 23' Lancer hull).

Chris Craft not only got a complete division they could dedicate to fiberglass boats, they also got all of Thompson's extensive knowledge of the inboard/outboard business which they marketed under the name of "Transdrive".

Regards, enjoy,

Paul




Hi all,

There continues to be some confusion and mis-information about the Thompson and Chris-Craft connection. I'll attempt to provide a review.

Thompson Bros. Boat Mfg. Co. started at Peshtigo, WI in 1904 by two brothers, Peter and Christ Thompson. Four other brothers eventually joined them; Edward, twins Adolph (called Tom) and Theodore, and Richard. Peter (and possibly Christ) had worked in the boat industry since the 1880s. Peter worked at Racine Hardware Mfg. Co. (the maker of Racine boats) and for a period of less than a year for Christopher Columbus Smith in Algonac, MI.

In 1924 they expanded by obtaining production facilities at Cortland, NY. They bought an existing building and remodeled it for boat production. Boat manufacturing started in early 1925. Adolph (Tom) and sister Hanna came to Cortland to run it. This was a branch of the main facility at Peshtigo.

In 1953 second generation Thompson men started Cruisers, Inc. at Oconto, WI and they built lapstrake outboard boats for Thompson Bros. Boat Mfg. Co. By late 1954 they had their own line of "Cruisers, Inc." boats but they continued to have a very close association with Thompson Bros. Boat Mfg. Co. There was no split or fued. Cruisers, Inc. started with the full knolwedge and blessing of the elder Thompson men and the Thompson Company at Peshtigo and Cortland. Ray L. Thompson was president and general manager at Cruisers and also at the same time treasurer of Thompson Bros. Boat Mfg. Co.

In late 1958 the three Thompson family owned boat manufacturing operations at Peshtigo, Cortland and Oconto were split amongst various family groups. The elder Thompson men retired. This was the result of some long standing stock ownership issues. It became effective on 01 January 1959.

Thompson Bros. Boat Mfg. Co. at Peshtigo continued to operate and it became property of Ray L. Thomspon and his wife Winne and their children Peter and Carol Rae.

Cruisers, Inc. became property of brothers Roy H and G. Grant Thompson. One day Ray L. was president and general manager of Cruisers, Inc. and the next he was president and general manager of Thompson Bros. Boat Mfg. Co.

A new corporation was created called "Thompson Boat Company of New York, Inc." to operate the former branch at Cortland, NY. Brothers Bob and Ted, Jr. and their cousin Glenn were owners. Glenn moved from Thompson at Peshtigo were he had been general manager to Cortland. Glenn did not like NY and he sold his interestes in Cortland to Bob and Ted and he returned to Wisconsin in 1960. He started T & T Boats, Inc. at Wausaukee, WI.

The three companies now competed against each other. Initially there was a verbal agreement that Thompson of NY got the eastern seaboard and southern markets and Thompson of Wisconsin got the midwest and western markets.

In January 1962 Bob and Ted sold Thompson Boat Company of New York, Inc. to Chris-Craft. It became a wholly owned subsidiary. They continued to make wooden lapstrake outboard and stern drive boats. They did not make fiberglass boats prior to this time.

All three companies were using a patented strake beveling device for making the plywood planking for their clinker boats. The patent was owned by Edward Thompson and all three firms were paying a royalty to him.

Ted Thompson, Jr. told me that part of the reason they sold was they knew they had to get into fiberglass to survive, but they did not have the capital to tool up for glass. The sale to Chris-Craft would make that transition possible.

A lot has been said that the stern drive cababilities of Thompson of NY played a big role in the CC decision to buy them. I don't buy this argument. Dozens if not hundreds of boat builders embraced the stern drive technology in the late 1950s and early 1960s. They were a regular option on two boat models from Thompson of WI by the summer of 1959. Cortland lagged behind Peshtigo by about a year in their use of the stern drive. It was not rocket science.

Chris-Craft started to make changes to the Thompson of NY wooden boat line almost immediately after their purchase. Only logical in my opinion. The 1963 Thompson line looked very different than the 1962 and earlier line. Also, by late 1962 the hull ID system for the Thompson wooden boats was changed to the Chris-Craft format.

Soon after the January 1962 purchase, development of an all-fiberglass line started. Thompson worked on this and Chris Smith at Holland, MI worked on this as well. This became the Corsair line. The first boats were built in a rented facility on Cortland Street in Homer, NY, just north of Cortland. They were making Corsair boats by September 1962. A brand new factory complex was under construction on the southeast edge of Cortland to house the Corsair fiberglass manufacturing operations. It opened for production in early 1963. The Thompson wooden boat factory was across town on Elm Street.

Apparently, some Chris-Craft outboard wooden Sea Skiff models were built at Cortland. They were just the same boats as the wooden Thompson line, just rebadged as a Sea Skiff.

Slowly, Thompson of NY phased out wooden boats. Their last wooden boats were shipped in July 1965. The old Thompson facility on Elm Street was sold by mid 1966. Fiberglass Corsair and eventually Lancer and Gull Wing boats were the future at Cortland.

Bob and Ted Thompson were sent by Chris-Craft to purchase the molds and tooling of the Johnson/Evinrude boats in Illinois about 1970. These became the CC Gull Wing models.

Bob Thompson went to Pompano and worked his way up the Chris-Craft ladder. Gordon Hauser also moved from Thompson at Cortland to Pompano and rose up the CC ranks. Ted Thompson remained at Cortland where he eventually became general manager.

Chris-Craft closed the Cortland, NY plant in 1974. Production was moved to other existing plants. Ted Thompson remained there working as a reginonal sales manager for CC for 10 years or so. Both he and Bob were deeply involed with the ski resort Greek Peak outside of Cortland.

Thompson Boat Co. of Peshtigo, WI continued in business until 1980 when they went bankrupt and closed. A dealer bought the assets from the bankruptcy court and moved production to St. Chalres, MI where they continued to make Thompson boats until 2002. Cruisers, Inc. went thru several ownership changes and today they are called Cruisers Yachts.

I own a 1966 Cortland built Chris-Craft Corsair Sport V 17'-6" outboard fiberglass boat. I also have a pre Chris-Craft purchase Thompson of NY 16' Sea Coaster wooden lapstrake outboard boat.

If you have questions or comments, I will be happy to hear from you.

Mr. Andreas Jordahl Rhude
President & Founder
Thompson Antique & Classic Boat Rally, Inc. - a nonprofit corporation.
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Eric Jensen
Eric Jensen

January 30th, 2013, 9:17 pm #59

We love the XC90, and it is really the car Porsche should have built, instead of the Cayenne (which weighs 800 or 900 pounds MORE than the XC). I doubt if you'll see many of those in Sweden towing boats. Too bad, they have a nice tow capacity, but the XC is good for 5,000 pounds.

Janet didn't think she would like driving a "school bus" as she initially referred to the XC when she gave up her 850 Turbo, but a week behind the wheel changed that for good. It's a marvelous machine, AWD, and Directional Stability Control, and it makes me feel good knowing she has all those safety features.

In the meantime, I'm out there driving a 22-year old car with no air bags or ABS, etc., and a stick shift (and loving that too). When I move from one to the other, I can really appreciate the differences, but the XC is one fine piece of equipment, and I like the fact that it is ONLY built in Sweden. As you may know, Volvo has plants in Canada and the Pacific Rim to build cars, and of course in Belgium too. Ooops, I miscounted, we've actually had 7 of them, the 240GL was a Canadian model, the 850 was Belgium.



Looking at the XC90, there is a hint of 544 DNA still there. Although it's been on the highways for a few years now, I think they're one of the top AWD drivers out there at any price.

They are not a truck based chassis, so they are not able to do the truck based work like true woods or rock 4WD crawling, etc., but we took ours through some moderate logging trails and creeks, and up a steep ridgeline one day and it never spun a wheel.

Regards, Paul


http://www.wimp.com/volvoengine/

ej
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Paul
Paul

January 31st, 2013, 11:12 pm #60

.......couldn't do that with mine, its AWD

And BTW, you won't find me on the "whimp.com" pages, lol.

Paul
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