A couple weeks ago in a comment we noticed an insane nice Lyman and asked for the back story.. So, Thanks to fellow Woody Boater Ryan Nagel for sending in this fun story and better yet, some very nice photos of his “investment” Take it away Ryan..
As promised a few weeks ago, Ive included the story on my 72 Lyman Islander Sedan Flybridge.
I was in graduate school at the University of Cincinnati working at the Antique Boat Center (not a bad part time gig.) I had just completed a 2 year restoration of my 1969 26′ Cruisette hardtop “Buoys of Summer” when Dennis asked if I would consider selling my pride and joy. I was reluctant at first; however with an offer I couldn’t refuse the boat was headed to Texas and I was without a boat.
At 23 years old I had a choice. I could pay off my student loans and start my professional life without debt, or start shopping for the boat I had wanted since I was a little kid; A 28 or 30′ Lyman. Naturally I chose to start boat shopping.
Growing up between Sandusky and Cleveland I live in the heart of Lyman Land and was well connected in the Lyman world. I searched near and far, even making trips up to Clayton to see boats that turned out looking far better in photos than in person. With no luck, I resorted to posting an ad on Craigslist “WTB 28-30’ Lyman”. A guy from a town only a few miles away responded and said his mother had a boat I might like to see.
I went and saw the boat in January and was finally pleasantly surprised. It was a 1972 Lyman Islander Sedan Flybridge, one of only 5 ever made with a fully enclosed bulkhead, full size door and aft facing sliding windows. The woman who owned it was 78 years old at the time and had owned the boat since 1980. Bad hips prevented her from climbing up to the flybridge so it was finally time to let the boat go. She had every receipt from fuel receipts to overnight dockage slips to full documentation of the engine rebuilds and restoration work. Over 30 years’ worth of receipts in 3 large boxes.
The boat had spent its early life at the Cleveland Yacht Club until 1980 and Catawba Island/Middle Bass Island Yacht Club until about 2005. She completed the Great Lakes loop twice in 1989 and 1994, from Catawba Island, Lake Erie up to Duluth MN down to Chicago and back. I have many notebooks of the shiplogs that were included in the boxes. A trip any woody boater would love to do on a 30’ Lyman one day.
At first glance it looked ugly with its “Lymanade” yellow, and upholstery that reflected the age of the boat and its owner. Upon inspecting it closely the boat was in terrific shape and had all the features essential for spending weekends boating on Lake Erie. The boat features a stand up head with bathroom sink, two burner electric stove, galley sink, refrigerator, microwave, relatively large v-berth, fold down dinette table and the original 1972 Koldwave air conditioner which is awesome for extended weekends at the islands.
Perhaps best of all, the boat weighs only 7800lbs dry and is powered by its original twin 270hp Crusaders which had just been completely overhauled and only had about 20 hours on them.
The boat had been out of the water since 2005 and she had spent a small fortune on restoration including a new transom, refinished interior, flooring and new ½” solid teak decks professionally done by a former Lyman employee that installed decks in the 1960s until they switched to fiberglass in 1973.
She was reluctant to sell the boat at first but soon realized I had the desire and energy to preserve and improve the boat. A deal was struck in the spring and I immediately began a mostly cosmetic makeover including new paint, Sikkens Cetol deck finish, cushions, upholstery, varnish, varnish and more varnish. It may also be the only Lyman on the Great Lakes with underwater LED lights.
My friends and family have enjoyed the boat over the past four years. It is a mainstay at Put in Bay and Kelley’s Island during the summer and gets 10x the attention of the 50’ SeaRays at the marina. With an open 11’x10 ½’ aft deck and flybridge it’s the ultimate boat for entertaining, spending long weekends and getting to port safely in heavy seas.