Yesterday Woody Boater reached out to the community to inquire about the high cost of antique & classic wooden boat restoration and what steps could be taken to control restoration costs prior to and during the professional restoration process.
The original discussion was based on a newcomer to the hobby in his late 40’s, who was considering purchasing a standard post-war Chris-Craft runabout which required an complete restoration. The story summarized the challenges he faced in terms determining the initial costs for the proposed restoration by a professional restoration company. In the end, he decided to not move forward with the boat purchase and subsequent restoration due to concerns about the high cost of professional restoration services and the high risk he felt was associated with the project.
1. Is there a “Generational Shift” currently taking place in the antique & classic boating hobby, where baby boomers are now becoming more involved in the hobby?
2. If so, is there a realistic entry level method for these newcomers to become involved in the hobby for a reasonable cost?
3. What should the hobby do to encourage the so-called new generation of enthusiasts to join the hobby?
4. Should the hobby be putting more emphasis on encouraging other less expensive non-wooden classic boats to participate in local & national boat shows and related events. And will this ultimately result in the newcomers moving in to the wooden boat ranks over time?
5. As the so-called next generation of antique & classic boating enthusiasts become more involved in the hobby, for the folks that want to purchase and restore a wooden boat is there an adequate supply of restorable wooden boats?
6. Will the so-called next generation of wooden boat enthusiasts be more interested in restoring classic boats from the 1950’s & 1960’s due to availability as opposed to harder to find, more expensive pre-war boats?
7. Should the professional restoration companies be gearing themselves towards the so-called new generation of enthusiasts in terms of pricing options for entry level wooden boats, plywood boats and non-wooden boat restoration work?
8. Does the hobby need to rethink how it reaches out to that next generation? What age is young in this hobby?
9. Does it even matter? Are old wood boats the model A’s of today. No one of the age of 30 grew up with a wood boat.. Is there anything that these woody boats can stand for that is beyond just memories?
10. Did Bristol Palin really get plastic surgery? And if you don’t care, is the hobby doomed!
Let us know what’s on your mind, we enjoy the feedback and any related comments you may have on the subject.
Matt & Texx – Woody Boater
Classic dashboard image courtesy of Miracle Photography.