EXCLUSIVE: 1959 Crown Craft Speedboat

While not in our typical wheelhouse, Reader Ray K’s 1959 Crown Craft Speedboat seems like one cool find! This 16-foot vintage speedboat is powered by a Buick Nailhead V8 and should make a splash when and if you get it back on the water. Ray hasn’t attempted to start the engine during the time he’s owned it but as long as it’s not seized you should be able to get it running again. The real concern isn’t the mechanicals, rather the condition of the hull. More on that below. If you’re interested in making this sleek speedboat, you can find it in Madera County, California with a $1,500 asking price and you can reach Ray via the form below.

Asking Price: $1,500
Location: Madera County, California
Mileage: N/A
Title Status: Clean

Seller’s Description: 16′ old school speedboat with custom trailer. Professionally marinized 1956 Buick 322 Nailhead V8 with original WCFB carburetor and super cool scoop. FWD/neutral/Reverse transmission. Direct shaft drive (not “v” drive). All there, original and ready for the courageous nostalgic boatnick restorer. The trailer needs shackle repair to move. Registration is out of the system. As is where is.

Body Condition: Fiberglass over mahogany bones. The glass has delaminated in several spots. The trailer is not rusted out and is engineered for the single axle to be under the mid-engine location.

Mechanical Condition: Have not tried to start since I’ve owned it. I did pull the exhaust manifolds and plugs with no signs of oil or carbon build. No typical block cracks near the starter flange. All there as originally built.

It looks like the fiberglass is going to need some repairs, but doesn’t look too bad overall. You will want to inspect the mahogany to make sure the wood is solid. If the wood is past saving, that could pose a major setback with getting it back on the water. While it could prove to be a huge project, it could be fun to work on and it sure would be sweet when it’s done. So, if you are up to the task of restoring this vintage speedboat, be sure to contact Ray and make him an offer.

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  1. Chinga-Trailer

    Looks like a hullovalotta work.

    Like 8
  2. grant

    This will be cool if any one finishes it. But not me. Never again. I’ll let someone else do it and buy it from them for half of what they’ve spent. Reading between the lines the seller is telling us the boat is rotten. If you are looking for a project that is going to be way more involved and expensive than you think is remotely possible, this is the one for you.

    Like 4
  3. HoA Howard AMember

    Good time to buy a boat. Good time to buy a motorcycle too. I just “unloaded”, gave away, really, my GW for $500 bucks, and jumped for joy.

    Like 2
  4. Dave Mazz

    What’s the phrase they say about boats? ‘A.a hole in the water you pour money into!” This baby might be the boat that inspired it :-) :-)

    Like 1
    • TomMember

      The best two days of being a boat owner are the day you bought it and the day you sold it !

      Like 1
  5. Jay From Detroit

    BOAT – Bust Out Another Thousand. Enough Said.

    Like 0
  6. Bryan W Cohn

    You have to be a wood boat lover to tackle a project like this. My father was just that guy and would have jumped on a project like this. Like cars, its not about the cost but the end result and the experience of saving something worthwhile.

    We grew up with wood boats, mostly 16-18 foot runabouts with his favorite 40 hp Johnson on the back. I’d be willing to be the wood is not as bad as you all think, but the lack of side photos doesn’t help does it? My father saved some wood boats that you’d have thought wouldn’t make good kindling. Like cars, if you can do it yourself you are halfway there.

    Like 1

    If it was last registered in 2011, I can’t imagine it being too rotten.

    Like 0

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