You are currently browsing the tag archive for the ‘ACF’ tag.

Back in November 2009, I did this post and I’ll repost two of my fotos from then, showing a 1940 Chris Craft and a 1939 ACF, slightly tweaked here


and here.


Earlier this week, Darrin Rice got these followup pics.


I find these poignant, yet there is some buoyancy in that


it appears this old vessel is being taken apart with care so that


planks and sections of them can be recycled, evoking what’s happening nearby.   You couldn’t do this with old fiberglass.





Many thanks to Darrin Rice for these fotos.

Here’s a site dedicated to antique and classic wooden boats in varying states of repair.

Here are some tugster posts on projects and collections.

Rust never sleeps; nor do fungi.  My first and second posts on this yard are here as one and two;  I’d love to imagine these boats could be restored like this ACF J’Ador III, but mosses and mushrooms are powerful and mahogany though beautiful is vulnerable, and


with neglect,  hardwood turn soft and planks split apart at the seams once so tight.  Wood that began life in Central America or Southern Asia might turn to dust in North America.


Beams and structures lose their strength, their integrity . . .  and


this fleet (1940 Chris Craft 33′ and 1939 ACF)  might never again ride


or be ridden upon, unless love and dollars get lavished upon them.  Some like


this Owens get reprieved and


others (like this 1963 Century Raven) hang in the balance


although once the wood turns fertile for new life, the


old one is lost.  These vessels may be preserved only on old photographs, which themselves are at risk of


leading nowhere if no identifying info is written on the back.  I wonder sometimes as we steer madly into the digital future what will


become of digital images like mine once computers update so much the old files no longer compatible  are as undecipherable as hieroglphics.

All fotos by Will Van Dorp at Miller’s Marina in Lyons, New York.  Telephone number available on google.

Note: the 1940 ChrisCraft in the second foto above has twin K 6-cylinder Hercules.  There’s also a 1964 ChrisCraft Challenger for sale, last in the water three years ago.  $3000.  I’m just the messenger.

For more boats of this type, check boneyard boats.

ACF’s have bedazzled me since I first learned about American Car & Foundry (ACF) boats; I’d been poking around a marina upstate along the Erie Canal, where I grew up, and wrote about it here.



Larry needs to part with J’Ador III (above and below), for sale at Charlestown Marina in Charlestown, MD. It’s an ACF 47’ cabin cruiser built in 1929 in Wilmington, DE, by Sharp and Jackson boat works. The original engine(single) was a 6 cylinder 175 hp Hall-Scott, through a 2:1 ratio reduction gear, delivering a speed of 16 mph. Replacement is a GM 292 in-line 6 cylinder with 160 hp.



To me this is the water equivalent of a Cord or a Dusenberg of the same era; in 1929, this sold for $29,000, which converts to nearly $300,000 in 2000 dollars. For this price you then also got a complete set of bedding, linen, blankets, pillows, table silver, china, and glassware. I wonder if monogramming was an option. For now, enjoy the






main salon, and


aftdeck seating. J’Ador III‘s creature comforts include marine air and satellite television, autohelm and GP.

For a fascinating history of Sharp and Jackson –with fotos — click here.

All fotos by Larry; contact him at lmray (at) dejazzd (dot) com

Last spring I posted a foto of a decrepit ACF (American Car Foundry) yacht, possibly beyond restoration. See it second one down here. Thanks to Dave for a foto of a restored 1924 ACF here. See the detail shots too, and the price!  @!@#! Dave’s note prompts me to add a few more shots of the unnamed boat from upstate New York.



Here’s a closeup of that weathered wood. Maybe because it’s winter, traditionally the time to refurbish and restore boats, but the traces of swirl and grain here makes me ache for a project–spending someone else’s $$ of course– to save this beautiful wood.



Anyone else know of shots of restored ACFs or Elcos?

Photos, WVD.

If second lives can happen for these two boats, they already have. Aging is a cruel and inevitable process for humans and their handicrafts alike.


Walking here feels not unlike being through a cemetery where no markers bear names. A Matthews, I guess? Compare with this.


This one is a rare ACF yacht, now too far gone to be rescued. That site should be called “free projects cum boats.”

All the fine tropical hardwoods are practically exotic mulch. A knifeblade goes clear through.


Starboard side of the ACF and bow of the Matthews.


Closer up of the starboard bow of the Matthews with ACF to port.
Here are some great links to scroll through by manufacturer.

Last heartbreaking shot for today: view into port cabin door of the ACF. Wish it had made it to a museum like this one far upstate New York.
Anyone ever see a restored ACF aka American Car & Foundry? It’s the luxury craft of another age: Elco, Hacker, Owens . . . like Cord, Dusenberg, and Packard.

Here are more survivors. Scroll to the bottom for some great links. If only we could save them all.

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September 2021