Welcome, Guest
Username: Password: Remember me

TOPIC: 1952 DR Restoration "the Marathon Special"

1952 DR Restoration the "Marathon Special" 22 May 2019 18:02 #95674

Locomotion wrote: After seeing the last photo I'm convinced, it's a DR for sure, does it have a folding rear seat back?
Looks to be in great condition, was it set up as a front or rear steer?


Good for a positive ID and glad I do not have to try and change the thread title. No back seat rest right now. I am not sure what one would even look like to look for evidence of it having one at some point, would like pics if anyone has a good one. It has been rear, front and most recently tiller steered. The rear dash is all welded up and ground smooth, front has a variety of holes that are covered up with a pop riveted on face plate.

Please Log in or Create an account to join the conversation.

1952 Deluxe Runabout

1952 DR Restoration the "Marathon Special" 22 May 2019 17:57 #95673

  • JR
  • JR's Avatar
  • Offline
  • Boatswain's Mate
  • Boatswain's Mate
  • Posts: 1469
  • Karma: 5
  • Thank you received: 348
I think you are right Ray. The Flyer has a much wider/beefier cockpit gunnel.
The following user(s) said Thank You: The Art Doctor

Please Log in or Create an account to join the conversation.

1955 Vagabond, 1957 Crestliner Voyager Hardtop, 1958 Crestliner Jetstreak 15, past boats: 54 Vagabond, 55 Vagabond, 57 Vagabond, 50 FC Flyer, 46 FC Runabout, 57 FC Rocket, 57 Jetstreak

1952 DR Restoration the "Marathon Special" 22 May 2019 17:49 #95672

After seeing the last photo I'm convinced, it's a DR for sure, does it have a folding rear seat back?
Looks to be in great condition, was it set up as a front or rear steer?
The following user(s) said Thank You: The Art Doctor

Please Log in or Create an account to join the conversation.

Ray

"Every man takes the limits of his own field of vision for the limits of the world."
Arthur Schopenhauer

1956 Vagabond I - 50 HP Johnson
1950 Flyer - 50 HP Evinrude
1/2-195something Flash - KG7
1956 Golden Rocket, Sawzall Special

1952 DR Restoration the "Marathon Special" 22 May 2019 14:30 #95668

Locomotion wrote: It looks almost like a standard Runabout, the DR is 56" wide per the catalog, in the one photo of the boat in the back of the pickup it appears the boat is down in between the fender wells which are usually about 48' or so wide.
The Flash, by the way, is 10' 3" long (at least the one we have).
Any photos of the boat from above that shows the whole boat including the interior? Odd ball sizes seem to not be too far from the norm with Feather Crafts, especially the earlier ones.


I actually was thinking Flyer not flash (I will edit prior post) The 52 catalog does not list a standard Runabout just a Deluxe




Best over head I have at the moment

This message has attachments images.
Please log in or register to see it.

Please Log in or Create an account to join the conversation.

1952 Deluxe Runabout
Last edit: by The Art Doctor.

1952 DR Restoration "the Marathon Special" 22 May 2019 13:51 #95667

It looks almost like a standard Runabout, the DR is 56" wide per the catalog, in the one photo of the boat in the back of the pickup it appears the boat is down in between the fender wells which are usually about 48' or so wide.
The Flash, by the way, is 10' 3" long (at least the one we have).
Any photos of the boat from above that shows the whole boat including the interior? Odd ball sizes seem to not be too far from the norm with Feather Crafts, especially the earlier ones.
The following user(s) said Thank You: The Art Doctor

Please Log in or Create an account to join the conversation.

Ray

"Every man takes the limits of his own field of vision for the limits of the world."
Arthur Schopenhauer

1956 Vagabond I - 50 HP Johnson
1950 Flyer - 50 HP Evinrude
1/2-195something Flash - KG7
1956 Golden Rocket, Sawzall Special
Last edit: by Locomotion.

1952 DR Restoration "the Marathon Special" 22 May 2019 02:38 #95664

I'm ready for the next chapter, this is a great story!
The following user(s) said Thank You: The Art Doctor

Please Log in or Create an account to join the conversation.

1952 DR Restoration "the Marathon Special" 22 May 2019 02:25 #95663

The drive home was rather uneventful, in a good way. A little rain, a stop at Jack in the Box in Charlotte and 8 hours later we were home. It was 10PM it had been 21 hours since we left and 39 since I had last slept, I was wired! I forced the wife to put on shoes and come outside and see my treasure in her PJ's. After a brief tour I got "the look" and it was time to head in. Lying in bed exhausted but euphoric I was looking at the catalog pages trying to figure out just what I had. When I first examined it I looked for a serial number. There was only a partial:



The inside in that area shows quite a bit of welding:



I knew it was a 52, I could see the 140 and I think there may be a 5 before that but the rest was gone. So judging by the 52 catalog photo (on my cell phone's small screen as i'm doing this lying in bed trying to be quiet) and tape measurements it could only be a DR or a Flyer (edited from Flash) as it is 12' 4" long. The width falls between the advertised measurements so no help there.





The paperwork I got had a long ID number that started with FL so In my sleep deprived state I figured it as a Flyer, having never seen either a Flyer or DR in person I really had no clue but was so excited I posted as such in the CL listings thread. Well by morning all my new friends on here came to my rescue and helped determine that it was in fact a DR with a Florida assigned number thus the FL .

The next day I tried to figure out who this Timmy Sheldon figure who piloted the Marathon Special was. As they say Google is your friend and the first thing I came up with was an obit:

SHELDON, THOMAS E.
Melrose - Thomas 'THE BOATMAN' Sheldon passed away 6/12/2016 at his home in Melrose. He was born and raised in Miami but has called Melrose his home for 30+ years. He retired from the Gainesville Airport as an Electrician. Thomas was an avid boat racer.

Florida, The Boatman, avid boat racer, must be the right guy, bummer he is dead and I cannot ask him about my boat. He was 77 when he passed putting his birth around 1939 or so. That would have made him about 13 or so in 1952, possibly this could have been his boat the dates at least add up. I kept digging and found these images of him in other period boats:




And this shot of a boat that he restored, note the same number 51 that is on mine on the side and his name on the cowling, my DR must have been his boat.




It turns out he was an accomplished racer in Miami in the 50's and 60's and was frequently entered in long distance 6 hour races. 6 hours= Marathon Special, possibly....

So now first thought was cool I have an old racer with history. Second thought was damn I have an old racer that now i have to restore to period correct or everyone will be pissed at me and the damn Smoking Man has my engine. Double damn I would also have to set aside all the things I wanted to do to MY boat you know like paint a P-40 Warhawk shark mouth on it, or paint it pink and cut a hole in the bottom add a Jet Ski drive :yikes:

So I needed to get more information on Sheldon and hopefully Sheldon with my boat. I had found most of my info on him on hydro racing forums so I signed up and started a thread looking for information on Sheldon posting pics of my boat and the steering components trying to date them. Two days later I get a PM from a user named olegator who's signature line is The Wheelman of "The Sunshine Syndicate" saying he was good friends with Sheldon and knows my boat stating he is old and "does not do computers" and gave me his number to call him in a few days when he gets back to town. Those were a rough two days to wait.........

This message has attachments images.
Please log in or register to see it.

The following user(s) said Thank You: VinTin

Please Log in or Create an account to join the conversation.

1952 Deluxe Runabout
Last edit: by The Art Doctor.

1952 DR Restoration "the Marathon Special" 13 May 2019 03:46 #95440

  • DrChip
  • DrChip's Avatar
  • Offline
  • Helmsman/Woman
  • Helmsman/Woman
  • Posts: 2396
  • Karma: 2
  • Thank you received: 173
..aw shucks...next up, my lake Lanier diving buddy on recovering a full set of,false teeth at 60ft....seriously....stay turned kids for the next exciting adventure of water related adventures...and order those decoder rings for for receiving secret messages...
The following user(s) said Thank You: Locomotion, The Art Doctor

Please Log in or Create an account to join the conversation.

1952 DR Restoration "the Marathon Special" 13 May 2019 03:04 #95439

So I'm standing there with the golden ticket in my hand when I realize that I have another reason why I am there. Flash back time: Chip you ready for your part? So a few days before the sale I began e-mailing Chip about his collection seeing if he had something for me. We discussed needs vs wants and came up with a plan to spend time touring collections of local boats checking them out. I confided that as a kid I had a fascination with wooden Chris Crafts especially Finger Lakes Gentleman Raceabouts and the Feather Craft tumblehome models with divided cockpits were really the ones I "wanted". But I "needed" something that would fit four under my meager budget, and if it was water ready all the better; the reality was a functioning vagabond was probably just out of reach. Then the Estate Sale Monkey Wrench was thrown and we spun off on a different discussion line, vintage motors. The sale included 10 green tank Mercury KG7's and a bunch of Hurricanes. Now I know just enough about Feather Craft's to be dangerous but absolute nothing about boat motors, especially vintage ones. So I hit up Chip for some info on what was listed at the sale and he lets me know about the Racing Leg being a desirable item that he would be interested in, and he points me to google to get the full Mercury KG story. So armed with a little knowledge and a small budget I went off to the sale thinking grabbing a motor or two was on the list. Now between the time of arriving and the beginning of the sale I had 2 and a half hours to sit there and think about all this. The boat was in full sight while the motors were locked up inside the home's garage. My buddy went off to shoot some pics (he is a remarkable photographer and carries a giant lens at all times) and I followed into the woods to think this all over. I have to admit I had second thoughts, what the F was I doing 7 hours from home buying a boat, this little boat that four could barley squeeze in, no motor and certainly not water ready. But damn it was sexy as all get out. After about of an hour of sitting around I called my wife and told her I was thinking of checking out and leaving. God Bless her she told me to stay and try and get the racing leg KG7 for Chip. For the next hour I wavered and worked up a plan with my buddy how were were going to attack the sale. Him being #8 was behind me and with 2 minutes till they opened the door I decided that the boat was my A#1 priority, motors second and he was going to play Lebron James and run the pick for me. He is a short but heavily muscled guy and no one tried to move him, unlike me and fuchsia hair lady (sorry about that but do not get between and boy and his toys), as he slowly walked down the hallway into the garage, it worked.

After grabbing the tag from the boat and letting the heart rate slow and adrenaline rush fade off for a second I looked over my shoulder and realized that the sale had just begun and most of the crowd was still in line outside the home waiting to get in. This is also the moment I realized that I had twisted my ankle in the ill advised lawn mower hurdle and hobbled into the garage trying to get the motors. But alas you win some you loose some, the Smoking Man had pulled the tickets on the only two motors of the group I was interested in; the tired red painted KG7 with the racing leg and a nicely restored KG7, one $250 the other $300, bummer, sorry Chip. I am pretty sure he had little interest in the motors themselves but was sent there to get the very nice and I assume rare and expensive cast iron Mercury branded stands they were sitting on. I asked him later why he pulled them, and his story was not entirely believable, it was a flip product plain and simple. The rest of the motors were obviously tired collectibles that at $200 each would certainly need work to be functioning. Thinking of my budget and lack of hard knowledge I could not see spending the money to buy five or more possible anchors to try and assemble one good one out of, the risk for me was too high, so I passed and slowly limped into the house to see what else was for sale.

I paid for my boat, two small hand weights and a cheap harbor freight IR temperature gun I got for $2 and went outside to figure out how I was going to get this thing home. The boat purchase came with a trailer. But in my brief pre-sale inspection (didn't want to look too long and show my cards) I could tell it was old, rusty and homemade (and not in a cool trailer man! kind of way). Once it was mine I could tell the tires were 20 years old, one bearing was rattling, the leaf springs were creaking, shackles frozen, the wiring was chewed and the taillights smashed, but being cheap I still wanted it but no way was it fit to pull. I had packed all sorts of tools for just this problem, but there were just too many issues to deal with. So, we simply picked up the hull and slid it in the bed of my borrowed truck. This is a 6 foot bed truck and with the tailgate down is 8 foot, so 4 ft was hanging out, no problem right? Totally legal, right? I had a dozen ratchet straps and it was very secure especially being the ribbed bed liner helped hold the keel straight and kept it from sliding and it fit neatly between the wheel well humps. We spent the next hour stripping good parts off the trailer and left the shell behind, it was hot sweaty work. We packed up at 2PM and were ready to head back. I decide a bathroom break and soaping up was in order and headed back in the house through the garage. All the other motors were still there, t]nobody seemed to want them. But the rest of the house was nearly picked clean in just over 2 hours. On the way back to the truck through the garage I spotted matched vintage Keller aluminum boat steering wheel assembly and deadman racing throttle. Were these to my boat? When checking out the boat I had readily noticed the number 51 painted on the sides. I went over the boat again looking for evidence these Keller parts could have been on it and discovered the shadowed remnants of pant on the cowl of the rear dash that read "piloted by Tommy Sheldon" and even more faintly on the rear quarter "Marathon Special". I went back and got the wheel and throttle.

Oh yeah, having a boat hanging out the bed 4 feet must be somewhat legal as the two cops who rode my slow driving ass at various times getting out of the country and onto the interstate did not pull me over.

This message has attachments images.
Please log in or register to see it.

The following user(s) said Thank You: WetWillie, VinTin

Please Log in or Create an account to join the conversation.

1952 Deluxe Runabout

1952 DR Restoration "the Marathon Special" 12 May 2019 00:23 #95397

  • DrChip
  • DrChip's Avatar
  • Offline
  • Helmsman/Woman
  • Helmsman/Woman
  • Posts: 2396
  • Karma: 2
  • Thank you received: 173
...too much....is -just enough’”. Dan Gurney....my Yamato-85lbs on my 10.5 ft 165 lb Fire Fly

This message has attachments images.
Please log in or register to see it.

The following user(s) said Thank You: The Art Doctor

Please Log in or Create an account to join the conversation.

Last edit: by DrChip.
Time to create page: 0.135 seconds

Forum Statistics

  • Total Users:2017
  • Latest Member:Cleathead
  • Total Posts:89.6k
  • Total Topics:6739
  • Total Sections:9
  • Total Categories:22
  • Today Open:1
  • Yesterday Open:1
  • Today Answer:4
  • Yesterday Answer:7

Top Posters

Top Posters Posts
jabe 5580
VinTin 4762
sgower 4627
Eagle127 4607
Locomotion 3916
Boatboy 3761
BigBadJon 3390
unclbuz 2916
Carol 2905
Bikecop1 2577

Contact

How to get ahold of Us

www.feathercraft.net Command Central
52457 Robins Drive
New Baltimore, Michigan 48047

Webmaster

Steve Gower
This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

 810-614-0734

Support

for support
This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

 

Events

Event Coordinator
This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

 

Log in

Register



property of:

Feather Craft Technologies - Copyright © 2016 www.feathercraft.net