Race Boat Shop
Part 2 - the new sapelee mahogany deck &
fresh varnish !!!
My Precious - a Jersey Speed Skiff
Owner/Driver - Gerri Prusko
Riding Mechanic - Bill John
First - some background
In all started with an innocent boat ride at the 2004 Clayton
Vintage Race Boat Regatta, with local skiff-head Len Finithy.
The photos below were taken at Clayton on that fateful Sunday
morning. That was it, in the fall of 2004 Gerri commissioned
the Vintage Race Boat Shop to build her a reproduction of a Jersey Speed Skiff.
of a Jersey Speed Skiff was done "in
the spirit of vintage" with a wood deck and transom, bench
seats and looks like a Jersey Speed Skiff of the
1960's. It runs a stock, warranted
marine motor with a restrictor plate, a Borg Warner Velvet Drive transmission, is a legal
CRA and APBA vintage
race boat and runs
Vintage Race Boat
These photos were taken
at Clayton, NY by Phil Kunz.
These photos were taken
at Wheeling, West Virginia by Phil Kunz.
Part 2 - the new sapelee mahogany deck !!!
spring of 2009, after several years of hard use and many, many boat
rides, it was decided to upgrade the 1/4 inch plywood deck with a
thicker 3/8 inch sapelee mahogany plywood deck. Local craftsman
Jason Conley and mentor Dave Whitcher did the actual deck
replacement, and the many coats of Epifanes varnish and final
rigging was done at
the Vintage Race Boat Shop.
The existing 1/4 inch deck came off easily and work
began to strengthen the deck support structure. We added
lots if white oak support beams, and we made it real
was off to Maine Coast Lumber in York, Maine to select and pickup
three sheets of very expensive marine plywood - 3/8 inch sapelee
mahogany at $250 per sheet !!!
3/8 inch sapelee mahogany deck was fitted and secured using 3M-5200
adhesive and many stainless steel staples. The staple dimples will
be puttied after the first varnish coat and will disappear under the
planned 12 coats of amber tinted Epifanes varnish. The actual deck
replacement was complete in two weeks - a very nice job by Jason
Conley and Dave Whitcher.
boat was then delivered to the Vintage Race Boat Shop for finish
work and rigging. The existing 1/4 inch deck came off easily and
work began to strengthen the deck support structure. We added lots
if white oak support beams, and we made it real strong. The new sapelee mahogany deck was well sanded,
sealed and then varnished without any stain, to highlight the
beautiful grain of the mahogany. Twelve coats of amber tinted Epifanes varnish
After two coats of Epifanes sealer, My Precious was
hoisted off the trailer and onto dollies, then moved to the
other side of the shop, ready for the many coats of Epifanes varnish. We also added just a titch of bling to the
motor compartment, with a new set of engraved valve covers from
Ruth & Leo at
the first several coats of thick Epifanes varnish, the grain of the
beautiful sapelee mahogany was just beginning to be filled. Usually
takes at least six coats to completely fill the grain, then the
following coats provide a deeper, darker and smoother finish. We
also replaced the shaker hood scoop with a more traditional, under
the hatch flame arrester.
History of Jersey Speed Skiffs
These boats are safe and fun to run
with comfortable bench seats in the fore and aft cockpits, and with a stock warranted motor, provide for many years of fun
boat rides. Complete with a custom mooring/travel cover and a custom Eagle
trailer, this skiff loves to Rock & Roll on the APBA vintage circuit and
on Loon Pond, in Gilmanton, NH.
Return to My Precious - Part 1
Update - Spring
After many years of wanting to make the Mt
Dora/Tavares ACBS boat show and many years of excuses, this
is the year that we finally made the
trek south to sunny and warm Florida. We hauled
My Precious to participate at both the
Race Boat Regatta and then the Tavares Antique &
Classic Boat Show the
The weather was sunny and warm, the vintage race boats were
beautiful and fast, and we had a great time !!!
Click here for
regatta recap & photos
To get ready for our trek to warm & sunny Florida, in February we
pulled My Precious back in the shop to replace the entire
rudder assembly and of course, a few more coats of thick, amber
tinted Epifanes varnish. The previous six coats of varnish had
already sunk into the grain after a half summer of use last year. So
we first sanded the deck with 120 grit paper, followed by
Scotchbrite Pads on our trusty Dewalt random orbital sander hooked
up to our Fein vacuum. This system provides for very pretty much,
We only had time for four coats of Epifanes varnish,
applied using our rolling & tipping technique. But with each
coat of varnish, the rich grain of the sapelee mahogany got
darker and deeper, absolutely stunning !!!
My Precious - a very nice looking Jersey
Here is the link for our trek down to
sunny & warm Florida:
Tavares Spring Fling Regatta
Precious Part 3 - motor
mounts, intake manifold & fresh varnish
For locals, please join our:
Saturday Morning Gatherings
Monthly Fun Run &
Florida Vintage Race Boat Circuit
Some related vintage race
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