Who Wins Barn Find Of The Year, This Year? Asking For A Friend.
In the world of useless debates, because we all are winners. Like little league baseball these days. I ask a fun question for 2021. Hey, it’s that time of year. What was the barn find of the year? In my mind, it came down to three boats. The Hydro, and Baby Chick, the 25 Sportsman, and the DEE WHITE Proto. Yes, there have been others. A cool Carver, Miss Buttaface, which is a time capsule. But as far as real Barnfinds. Rats and all. The Hydro and Baby Chick, and the Dee White prototype are on my top 3 list. Here is a break down of the two candidates. and of course I am always into a write in.
The Step Hydro Racer – Of all the boats to find and drool all over, the Step Hydro 16 Racer barrel back is the peak of the peak. Like finding the cherry on top of Everest. Its rare, Racer, Cool as hell, were not designed to last, absolutely stunning, and fun as hell when done. Also I will add, worth every penny you pore into it. Mike Green from Maritime Classics is doing a very cool Youtube series on this Racers restoration. Mike is a great guy and direct descendent of Chris Smith of Chris Craft. So it’s as close as it gets to going back to the factory to be restored.
I put into the same category as a COBRA, THUNDERBOLT find. Heck A Shelby Cobra. Also its a very historic boat for Chris Craft and a MUST have for any collector and sure fire show winner. It’s the big boob blond babe of any boat show. And can compete with the Cobra’s and so on.
BABY CHICK 25 Sportsman – Okay, yes we found it. So discount that, personally I would vote for the Step Hydro. So dont feel weird voting that way. BUT, it was actually in a barn. And 100% There, okay no engine. So that part is a dinger. But as parts go, all there. One family owned since new, and is a 25 Sportsman, hands down the best boat Chris Craft ever made as a usable boat. Very rare, and loved by all that have owned one. This boat after restoration is a keeper, user, and will hold its value. Not cheap to restore, but worth every penny. This one has it all including tell tale details of how she was loved, and will be kept that way for a while.
The Stoped in time feel and the originalness of it all is its beauty. I actually am not in a hurry to restore her. Maybe because I already have a perfect one in WECATCHEM. She belongs in the same Preresrtic family as the Ramsey Bros Dart, and Wise boat. Sometimes old ratty age is part of its glory. This year at the Reedville Show, I will have both WECATCHEM and BABY CHICK side by side. And I would bet BABY CHICK wins the hearts and minds 2 to 1.
THE DEE WHITE PROTOTYPE – This is a last minute addition to the event. Its rare, a prototype, and has a unique Outdrive set up. This is an unrestored gold mine of history. This is Museum stuff, and one could even question restoring it to use. Since its real history and importance is already there. You can feel it radiating off the screen and in person would send me into a trance of history and time well spend. In Storage.
So there ya have it. Three barnfinds that remind us all that “They are still out there” Or in there. Some other insane finds are below to get your hopes up. Woohoooo.
Since I’m biased as hell, I have to vote for the Ramsey Brothers Dart floating at the Algonac launch ramp!
Greg, how do you know it is at the Algonac boat ramp…………..I don’t ever remember a dock like that at the ramp.
I can’t pick just one they are all ART in my book.
That was a sight to see that year. I still remember that big old water pump hanging off the side to pump water out, just to keep her afloat during the show.
And the Ramsey’s Dart also gets my vote…
I vote for all of them. My problem is I need a barn for my boat. Then someone can find my boat after I am done.
Matt, thank you for the shout out! I’m going to have to go with the Hydro, it is such a cool boat and a very low production build.
I thought they were all really cool. However my vote goes to the Cobra prototype. This is due to the rarity of the boat, amount that it took to restore her, and of course the sh!t that it stirred up here on woody boater.
Even though it is not as rare as the ones you posted I still like my ’58 coronado barn find that was my familys boat when I was a kid. It was sitting in an old chicken coup for at least the last 2o yrs.
Ramsey Bros get my vote!
They are always there and cool to see.
John in Va.
Though I am not a fan of our “Everyone gets a Trophy” society in this case I would say there are NO losers.
Anyone how became the recipient of any of these beautys is very fortunate.
Baby Chick for sure!
Wasn’t this a barn find? shed find? boat storage find? whatever you want to call it. “Cruisers get no respect”, Rodney Dangercraft.
Any more info on the barn STUFFED launch , the basement boat or the thunderbolt. … asking for myself.
Now that’s a story! Great read today Matt. I’m going to join in with the Blue Grey Arabian prototype we found and restored at Katz. Such a cool find.
Definitely, not this one. So sad – a glassed & outboarded Riviera. Ugh!
Now THAT is a restomod
It’s for sale-$50K……………..leave your taste at the door.
1929 24′ Hacker Craft Triple…….
That is a beauty. Was this a prior story? If so, what day? I’d definitely would like to know more about this one.
1968 Century Coronado found after a 17 plus years hibernation. Special Order 427 interceptor 400hp power plant.
Do container/shed/barns count?
Anyone can restore a complete barn find . It takes Talent on Loan From God! to bring back a field find!
Bringing the Hunter 22 (McHenry, IL) into the light of day and discovering it was once a triple punched all the right buttons for me.