1946 Chris Craft Brightside U22 Preservation

A totally original, very early 1946, Chris-Craft mahogany U22, Hull # U-22-068. She is one of very few mahogany-planked, varnished U22 produced in Algonac, MI.

Included in the project

  • A True 5200 bottom that will most likely require all new external planking, given that the original planking is so oil-soaked that it will not hold paint, which tells me that its structural integrity is compromised.
  • Significant structural work: Several major frame sisters can be seen beneath the helm seating. The chines have been heavily sistered chines amidships on both port and starboard. We and her owners are prepared for what will likely be complete chine replacement.
  • The topsides and transom will be stripped bare both for cosmetic and more importantly, structural reasons. Several planks are split. Most of the butt joints on the topside are fastened only at their outer edges. (Rapping them returns a hollow, rather than crisp response.) Some of the bungs stand proud of the planking, which indicates fastener issues.
  • Her gauges will be shipped to Kocian Instruments in Minnesota today for cosmetic and mechanical preservation.
1946 chris craft brightside u22 arrives

1946 Chris Craft Mahogany U22 Arrives

A totally original, very early 1946, Chris-Craft mahogany U22, Hull # U-22-068, arrived today from ...
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how to flip 1946 chris craft u22

How to Flip a 1946 Chris Craft Mahogany U22

If you remember the challenges we faced flipping my 22’ Shepherd runabout, you will understand ...
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1946 chris craft brightside u22 hull reveal

1946 Chris Craft Mahogany U22 Empty Hulls Reveal Much!

She was shipped from Algonac, MI to Ahmic Lake in Magnetawan, Ontario, which is about ...
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1946-chris craft brightside u22 bottom stripping

1946 Chris Craft Mahogany U22 Bottom Stripping

Now that the 1946 Chris-Craft mahogany U22 is flipped, we are launching into the True ...
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1946 chris craft mahogany u22 bottom update

1946 Chris Craft Mahogany U22 Bottom Update

Such an interesting discovery, but completely consistent with the realities of sourcing materials, especially mahogany, ...
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1946 chris craft brightside u22 bottom planking update

1946 Chris Craft U22 Bottom Planking Update

Maybe half a milestone? As of today’s close, the U22’s starboard bottom planking, both inner ...
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1946 chris craft u22 bottom frame fully exposed

1946 Chris Craft Mahogany U22 Bottom Framing Fully Exposed

Well, with all of the bottom planking released, now we can get to work. The ...
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1946 chris craft brightside u22 how to fix bottom

1946 Chris Craft U22 Bottom Work Continues

By Friday we have deconstructed the 1946 U22’s bottom, chines and chine planks, and are ...
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1946 chris craft u22 replacing gripe

1946 Chris Craft U22 – How to Release the Gripe

And now to the gripe. As we released the keel from the gripe, we could ...
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1946 chris craft u22 how to release the keel

1946 Chris Craft U22 – How To Release the Keel

Fifteen bilge frames with one ¼” x 6” brass carriage bolt securing the keel to ...
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1946 chris craft mahogany u22 transom corner issues

1946 Chris Craft U22 Transom Corner Issues

No more surprises, please! It is Monday, but discovering that, because of a water trap ...
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1946 chris craft brightside u22 how to fabricate gripe

1946 Chris Craft Brightside U22: How to fabricate a new Gripe (part 1)

Finally, the moisture content of the white oak planks purchased from Newport Nautical Timbers reached ...
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1946 chris craft brightside u22 gripe fabrication

1946 Chris Craft Brightside U22: How to Fabricate her New Gripe (part II)

Roughing out the new gripe is kids play relative to getting it, first to fit, ...
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1946 chris craft brightside u22 deconstruction 2

1946 Chris Craft Bright U22 Deconstruction Continues

Finally! I expressed the hope that we had unearthed all travesties committed by prior “restorer(s)” ...
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1946 chris craft brightside u22 hog transom droop

1946 Chris Craft Brightside U22 Hog & Transom Droop Update

John and I agreed that solving the keel’s aft section hog must precede any fabrication ...
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1946 chris craft brightside u22 transom restoration

1946 Chris Craft Bright U22 Transom Travails Continue

Well, what we had hoped was a “corner” problem, one occurring at both aft corners ...
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1946 chris craft u22 mahogany planking stain removal

1946 Chris Craft U22: How to bleed all of the residual stain out of mahogany planking

The 1046 bright U22 is finally looking, well, a bit bright. Her port topsides are ...
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1946 chris craft brightside u22 framing restoration

1946 Chris Craft Brightside U22 Framing Milestone (part I)

Our 1946 Chris-Craft bright U22 preservation project crossed a major milestone overnight when John finished ...
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1946 chris craft brightside u22 framing restoration

1946 Chris Craft Brightside U22 Framing Milestone (part II)

OMG! He’s taking everything apart, just after he fitted, sanded and screwed it together! Yes ...
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1946 chris craft brightside u22 install new bottom frame

1946 Chris Craft Brightside U22: How to Install New Bottom Frames

Reassembly is fully under way today. The half dozen new frames and about a dozen ...
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1946 chris craft brightside u22 weak bottom frame remedy

1946 Chris Craft Brightside U22 Weak Bottom Frame Design Remedy

Yes, another update on the Brightside Chris-Craft U22’s bottom framing. The bottom is framed with ...
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1946 chris craft brightside u22 bottom framing

1946 Chris Craft Brightside U22 Bottom Framing Update

By this time next week we should be fabricating and installing the inner layer of ...
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1946 chris craft brightside u22 bottom framing

1946 Chris Craft Brightside U22 Bottom Framing Milestone in Sight!

We so hoped we would have passed the bottom framing milestone by the New Year, ...
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1946 chris craft brightside u22 milestone

1946 Chris Craft Brightside U22 Major Milestone!

Finally! She, and her previous “restorers” fought us every inch of the way. Perhaps most ...
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1946 chris craft brightside 5200 bottom patterning

1946 Chris Craft Brightside U22 5200 Bottom Patterning

OK, we’ve received a myriad of questions about how, once the hull is ready, we ...
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1946 chris craft brightside u22 transom planking bottom

1946 Chris Craft Brightside U22 Transom Planking & Bottom Milestones

Launching the True 5200 Bottom assembly is upon us … finally! But first John and ...
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1946 chris craft U22 5200 bottom launch

1946 Chris Craft U22 5200 Bottom Assembly is Launched!

Let the True 5200 Bottom assembly begin! It has been a long winter, but, finally, ...
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1946 chris craft brightside-u22-5200 bottom transom framing

1946 Chris Craft Brightside U22 5200 Bottom & Transom Framing Update

As promised two videos above, here are both an up-close view of the finished product ...
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1946 chris craft brightside u22 plywood inner bottom skin

1946 Chris Craft Brightside U22 Plywood Inner Bottom Skin Milestone!

Not much to say, or that I can say, other than, “Her bottom is skinned!” ...
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1946 chris craft u22 bottom planking

1946 Chris Craft Mahogany U22 Bottom Planking Fabrication

Our 1946 Chris-Craft Mahogany (Brightside) U22 project enters the bottom planking fabrication stage today. We ...
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1946 chris craft mahogany u22 true 5200 bottom progress

1946 Chris Craft Mahogany U22 True 5200 Bottom Progress

Haven’t seen it snow white oak before? Well now you can as flakes fly off ...
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1946 chris craft u22 plank bedded in 5200

1946 Chris Craft Brightside U22: How to Plank Bedded in 5200

Bedding the bottom planking in a 1/8” thick layer of 3M5200 without making a huge ...
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1946 chris craft brightside u22 bottom planking

1946 Chris Craft Brightside U22 Bottom Planking Update

This update continues following as we install the starboard bottom planks to our 1946 U22 ...
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1946 chris craft brightside u22 true5200 bottom planks installed

1946 Chris Craft Brightside U22: How to Install True5200 Bottom Planks

3M5200, signals a major, major milestone fading into our wake, as we work towards completing ...
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1946 Chris Craft Brightside filling countersinks 3M premium marine filler

1946 Chris Craft Brightside Filling Countersinks with 3M Premium Marine Filler

Time to fill a few – thousand – countersink holes! We use 3M Premium Marine ...
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1946 chrism craft brightside u22 topside dutchman repair

1946 Chris Craft Brightside U22 Topside Dutchman Repairs

With our 1946 Chris-Craft Brightside U22’s bottom paint is fully cured, our attention turns to ...
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1946 chris craft brightside u22 how to paint bottom

1946 Chris Craft Brightside U22: How to Paint Bottom

Paint! I could claim that it seems like only yesterday when we launched the preservation ...
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1946 chris craft brightside u22 bottom painting

1946 Chris Craft Brightside U22 Bottom Paint!

Since the last update video, we have applied five coats of Interlux 2000E two-part primer, ...
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1946 chris craft dutchman stitch removal

1946 Chris Craft U22 Removing Stitches from a Dutchman

So … you have the slots dadoed and the Dutchmen shaped and trimmed to a ...
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1946 chris craft u22 dutchman repair

1946 Chris Craft U22 Dutchman Next Steps

Following this morning’s video update on the Dutchman repairs John is executing on the port ...
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1946 chris craft dutchman repair

1946 Chris Craft U22 Dutchman Repair

Thank you for the many requests for a video-taped Dutchman “clinic” that follows John through ...
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1946 chris craft brightside u22 post flip

1946 Chris Craft Brightside U22 Post Flip Observations

An odd silence engulfed the shop once we had her resting on her dollies and ...
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1946 chris craft brightside u22 how to flip

1946 Chris Craft Brightside U22: How to Flip

I just checked. Our first video, the 1946 Chris-Craft brightside U22, arriving from Canada, is ...
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1946 chris craft brightside u22 stripped

1946 Chris Craft Brightside U22 Stripping Milestone

Another milestone, well, almost fading in our wake. John has a bit of Sikaflex to ...
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1946 chris craft brightside u22 bleaching

1946 Chris Craft Brightside U22 Almost Bleaching Time!

We are so close to bleaching the 1946 Chris-Craft brightside U22’s hull, decks, transom, etc ...
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1946 chris craft brightside u22 bleaching prep

1946 Chris Craft Brightside U22 Bleaching Time is Near

It has now been about one year since the 1946 Chris-Craft Brightside U22 arrived at ...
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1946 chris craft u22 bleaching

1946 Chris Craft U22 – Bleaching Time!

The bleaching milestone is about to disappear into our wake! Starting very, very early this ...
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1946 chris craft u22 bleached albino

1946 Chris Craft U22 – Bleached “Albino”

John and RJ trekked between home and the shop periodically into the evening last night, ...
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1946 chris craft brightside u22 stained

1946 Chris Craft Brightside U22 Stained!

Finally! The 1946 Chris-Craft Brightside U22 is all but completely stained. Our SMB staining methodology ...
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1946 chris craft brightside u22 how to stain

1946 Chris Craft Brightside: How to Stain

Staining the 1946 Chris-Craft Brightside U22 is a daunting task, one that we divided into ...
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1946 chris craft brightside u22 sikaflex

1946 Chris Craft U22: How to Fill Seams with Sikaflex

Getting the seams filled with Sikaflex 295 UV is materially transforming the 1946 Chris-Craft Brightside ...
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1946 chris craft brightside u22 varnish update

1946 Chris Craft Brightside U22 Varnishing Update

Varnish! With seven coats of Interlux Perfection Plus Two-Part Varnish having been applied, combined with ...
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1946 chris craft u22 sanding varnish

1946 Chris Craft: How to Sand Varnish to Snow

Flat = Gloss This update on our conservation process at it applies to the 1946 ...
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1946 chris craft brightside u22 splash rails

1946 Chris Craft Brightside U22 Installing Her Splash Rails

Thank you for the several requests that we record how we install the splash rails ...
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1946 chris craft brightside u22 how to varnish

1946 Chris Craft Brightside U22: How to Varnish 10+ Coats

We have now passed the ten-coat milestone of our varnishing schedule, so it is time ...
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1946 chris craft mahogany u22 varnish

1946 Chris Craft Mahogany U22 Varnishing Milestone!

We are so close to blasting through the varnished! milestone that I can almost taste ...
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1946 chris craft brightside u22 engine install

1946 Chris Craft Brightside U22 Engine Install

One more milestone as come and gone. Finally, her newly rebuilt power plant is sitting ...
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1946 chris craft brightside u22 varnish buffing

1946 Chris Craft Brightside U22 Varnish Buffing Update

John has worked last week and through late yesterday to wet sand our 1946 Brightside ...
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1946 chris craft brightside u22 how to buff varnish

1946 Chris Craft Brightside U22: How to Buff Varnish

John has now made 16 passes over the 1946 Chris-Craft Brightside U22’s hull. Buffing her ...
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1946 chris craft brightside u22 buffed

1946 Chris Craft Brightside U22 Buffed!

Finally… Only two years plus into this incredible journey, our 1946 Chris-Craft Brightside U22’s hull ...
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1946 chris craft brightside u22 water strainer winterizing

1946 Chris Craft Brightside U22 Water Strainer & Winterizing System

After dealing with two engines that had been run in Lake Champlain for two seasons ...
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1946 chris craft brightside u22 preserved

1946 Chris Craft Brightside U22 Preserved!

As she emerged triumphantly from the shop this morning, our 1946 Chris-Craft Brightside U22 roared ...
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1946 chris craft brightside u22 engine test

1946 Chris Craft Brightside U22 Engine Test

She’s been in storage over the late winter, through spring and until now. Finally, Lake ...
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