Meanwhile Back In The Barrel Back Barn


Clean-ish now

While we wait on the report in from Hessel Michigan, we thought we would update you on the barn find progress. The goal here is to start her up once the new RAYCO fuel tank gets here. And possibly take her to the big 50th anniversary Smith Mountain Lake Show for her public debut.

clean bilge 2

Gitt’n clean ish

clean bilge

Under rear seat clean!

Chris craft H engine

Still thinking about leaving her head without paint. New wires, plugs and other stuff on its way from VanNess this week.

Her bilge is completely clean and we are starting to apply a fresh coat of bilge paint. If anything, its covering a lot of stinkyness from turds. The boatress will actually walk up to the boat now and not smirk. Between the old gas and animal issues.. We also are painting the engine the correct pre war blue.


Look at the pre war color.. Is this the hull color? It would make sense they would do that?

YEAH YEAH, I know.. Its a cosmetic thing. BUT, after the engine was cleaned, lots of exposed metal was there and its a protective thing, and it drives me nuts to have a wrong color on anything.


She has just one windshield part, we need the PORT one. Anyone got one they want to sell?


The hull is clean, not the right color, would it have been the pre war engine color?


Love these stock hatch handles


The red will need to be redone. And the original did not have white stripes, they came clean

We did test and start her, so we arn’t painting a dead engine. That would just be foolish, not driving 12 hrs to buy a boat you have no idea what it is foolish. See there is a low bar that sets every other thing we do as smart!


THAYER IV’s old original transom looks on it all.


Her life jackets are on standby ready to go


No shortage of boat cushions. She is not alone in her home of foolish purchases!

Barn art

She is at home though

Stay tuned for updates as they happen, and for a fantastic report from the big Hessel show. Also a huge shout out to Steve Natale for his reporting from Tahoe!


That transom is just screaming for her new name. And yes, she was never named. Story on that later.

23 replies
  1. Dan T
    Dan T says:

    She’s cleaning up real nice. Can’t wait to see her on the water. I’m a little superstitious about changing boat names. I’d just go with

  2. m-fine
    m-fine says:

    Name it “Nameless”

    Also, is that kayak the correct Pelican post war blue? Is seems a touch too dark.

  3. Alan Frederick
    Alan Frederick says:

    Matt –
    With all the events focusing on the 50th anniversary of SML, our club would be thrilled to have the racer making it’s debut here at the “Jewel of the Blue Ridge”.
    I’ll even call our local Sheriff to let him know that he should give you a special escort for the Red, White, and Blue boat. Hell, between you and Miss America IX, the docks will be buzzing!

  4. Verne
    Verne says:

    This is about the neatest story I”ve ever read on this site. I love barn finds and this one is so close to operational, it’s sweet.
    Matt, did you quiz the previous owner about the whereabouts of the missing windshield, etc? Sometimes, after a little prodding, their memory kicks in. Maybe the wife or friend might remember a story that was told???? Reuniting the original equipment is the icing on the cake. (or the hardware on the deck)

  5. Bruce
    Bruce says:

    Awesome find, Matt.
    In my humble opinion, the new blue engine paint looks a little out of place, as does the bilge. Reminds me of my 90 year old grandma wearing hot pink lipstick.

    • Matt
      Matt says:

      I know. But that bilge stuck to high heaven. And when we get that thing started and in the water I want to be able to see stuff clean. The outside may stay the same. Although it looks cool in photos but not all that cool in real life

  6. Wylie
    Wylie says:

    Looks Great Matt and it is cleaning up nice. American Pickers would be proud. You are right, fantastic show in Hessel. It was overcast but the rain held and the boats shined.

  7. Troy in ANE
    Troy in ANE says:

    When is the SML show. Sandi and I are talking about doing a getaway after our daughters wedding. That would be a very cool getaway!

  8. Chris Wade
    Chris Wade says:

    I almost don’t want to post this, but please move the battery away from the gas cans. It is making me nervous…..And of course, awesome find! Awesome shop! Awesome Woody Boater 🙂

    • Matt
      Matt says:

      Ouch. The gas cans are the empties but regardless. Not sure when that happened. Can someone say boom!

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