6 Different Views On Life With A Vintage Boat
What’s life like at the helm of a vintage boat? You answered in kind, sharing a number of stories, photos, and links that have inspired us to add a few new events to our summer calendar. From stories of motoring along in a vintage wooden boat to a teenager’s unexpected day out in a Riva, there’s plenty of inspiration for taking the plunge, so to speak—better start making friends at the marina.
To start, commenter Doug Jacobs shares a marque we weren’t familiar with…but now covet: “There are very few things that are cooler than a well heeled FeatherCraft boat. Made from the 1940-70s, they are beautiful to behold and are about a 10th the price of a really nice teak boat.”
We do have an appreciation for all vintage boats, and Matt Hinkle shares a marque not likely talked about much in Europe: “I’ve always loved classic Rybovich [boats]. I know they’re a different genre than the boats you’re talking about, but they were almost always proportionally perfect, and ahead of their time in so many ways. Some great history, too.”
Famous for its sport fishing boats since 1919, Florida-based Rybovich enjoys a very loyal following even today.
We’re so thankful that Vincent Crasborn shared this amazing story of what sounds like—and he says was—a pretty perfect day:
“Last summer I was on holiday with my family in a town called Salò on the western side of Lake Garda in Italy. It’s a stunning region and I recommend everyone to go there at least once in their lifetime, and it has a reputation for being quite well-off as well, since it was (and still is) a popular destination for European aristocrats. Because of this reputation, the image of a sleek speedboat on crystalline water in perfect weather is the image that I associated the area with, and I’m sure I’m not the only one. The speedboat in question was also a Riva Aquarama in my mind (thanks to Top Gear and James Bond), and you can imagine how happy I was to see one flash by on the first day of our visit.
“A few days in, however, my little brother got off of his phone for long enough to tell me that a friend of his was in the area, and her parents had invited us for some waterskiing. We turned up at the hotel they were at, expecting that it’d be shore-based, but they surprised us by telling us they had a “little boat” in a berth on the lake. They walked us to the back of the hotel, where I was astonished to see a real ’60s Riva Super Aquarama, and we casually hopped in.
“I spent the rest of the day living the image in had in my mind, everything from speeding around to the sound of what I think [were] two American V8s, to cruising into a different town and getting an ice-cream. I can honestly say it was one of the best days of my life.”
We’re just a bit envious of this photo from Mathias Jahn, who says, “The Best about owning a Riva? The View. I used to own one for a few years but sold [it], because it kind of fixes your vacation planning to Italian lakes ;)”
Thomas Maine shares his story of piloting a Swiss-built Pedrazzini: “Couple of years back I was lucky enough piloting a Pedrazzini for a guy, who owned one but had no license. In Europe, you need to have one and for boats this powerful one should have one (my opinion). It was an older model from the 70-ties, and it looked like a classic Riva.”
“These wooden boats are a piece of art and this particular one was a fast piece of art. These boats really please the eyes, and not only yours. The sound isn’t bad either. Two big V8s and around 400 hp. I was glad that it wasn’t I who had to pay the gas bills…”
Kevin Kemper says, “There is a definite cross-over between the passion for classic cars and classic boats. As Matthias writes, the view is the best, both coming and going. Here is the view off the back of our 1941 Chris Craft at Tahoe last summer. The equivalent of Petrolicious in the wooden boat world is WoodyBoater.com. Check it out!”