She is a Chris-Craft 57-foot Constellation, shown here with two A/C systems running cruising Galveston Bay. One of a kind custom layout comprised of a Chris Craft 65- foot pilot house sporting a custom combination wet bar and bench pilot seat mounted on the flush deck, and custom aft stateroom lay-out. Added private guest stateroom shower and laundry/linen locker in lieu of the traditional Pullman berth. Extended owners cabin. All original premium tiger stripe Philippine mahogany interiors. Solid honey teak planking in salon. Carpet aft. Original grass cloth wall covering replaced with mildew-proof resin wicker furniture weave.
She is an unmolested Philippine mahogany cruiser, and a sister ship to this model was the last wooden boat made by Chris-Craft. This classic yacht was shipped by rail to New York City on December 22, 1966. They made 262 of this model from 1963 to 1972. She was hand-crafted in the prestigious Holland MI plant by master boatwrights. From then on it was either fiberglass or metal (if it was from the Roamer division). After 1977 when all Roamer production was ended, it was fiberglass cruisers only..
Chris-Craft is now owned by Winnebago Industries, Inc. (since June 4, 2018). The prior owner (seller) was Stellican, Ltd. who had owned Chris-Craft from 2001. The company has a brand heritage that dates back to 1874. They build boats in 2021 from 23 to 35 feet in length.
This model Chris-Craft is 57 feet LOA with a beam of 15.5 feet. She weighs about 24-25 tons and draws 4.5 feet. She is batten-seamed double planked mahogany. The bottom is double constructed with one and a half-inch Philippine mahogany planks (longitudinal) and marine mahogany plywood (transverse) inner planking with the rest of the hull (hull sides) being double seven eighths-inch Philippine mahogany planks. Primary framing (oak) is one and a half by three and a fourth inches on 24-inch centers with intermediate oak frames of one and a fourth inches by two inches, also on 24-inch centers. Thus, the frame spacing is every 12 inches making for a very stiff wooden structure evidenced by the lack of seam movement seen clearly in the detail pictures.
The deckhouse roof and cabin top side structure plus the pilothouse are made of fiberglass. Chris-Craft started using fiberglass in the mid-1950s for various parts and some cabin tops for their cabin cruisers and speedboats. The fin on the very stunning 1955 Cobra 21-footer was fiberglass. They used it in other boats, but this boat model is the best recognized.
While there were engine choices, over the years most of the yachts were powered by twin 8V71N GM diesels. These were in the 300-hp each range. Gas engines for the river and lake-based cruisers were also listed on the price sheets when the yachts were ordered. She easily planes and cruises at 14-16 knots at 1850 RPMs with the GM diesels depending on sea state. Fuel consumption is a miserly 1.27 gallons per mile at cruise rpm!
There is a separate forward crew stateroom with upper and lower berths and Raritan Crown electric head and sink to port. Next aft is the fully equipped electric galley to starboard and a convertible U-shaped dinette to port. Two refrigerators, Princess oven and cooktop, microwave and double sink.
Up a half set of folding up stairs is an expansive main salon with a less-than-full headroom engine room under it. See the three small portholes for the engine space in the photo. The 16.5 kw Kohler 120/240 vac diesel generator with sound shield is also in this space.
Aft and down the stairs there are a guest stateroom, guest head and large shower with built-in bench seat as well as the master stateroom with private head and shower. Both offer twin beds and a private head. Dresser drawers are built-in within each. One feels a sense of spaciousness in the master, and the very cozy guest staterooms.
On deck at the support panel are zip panel opening into the full bimini canvas enclosure to keep the breeze and weather off the aft sitting area. Spacious side decks lead to the bow area were there is room for deck chairs in addition to the expansive built-in seating at the front of the deckhouse.
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