The Special V8 Project – You Are Getting Sleepy.. Sleepy!

It’s cold! Before the snow. Work with me here.

Today we take you on a journey back in time. Are you ready? You are getting sleepy, sleepy.. Close your eyes and imagine you are in Michigan, the year 1948, there is a crisp feeling in the air, you can imagine yourself walking in the snow, the silent sound of snow falling, the light crunch as snow packs under each footstep closer to your building. As the door opens you are greeted by the art team, and some Engineers.

Come on in!

They proclaim, It’s official on the name,  Here is where the graphics stand for the new SPECIAL V EIGHT. This is a new concept for them. The folks at Chevrolet have a new V8 prototype, it’s the engine of the future. but the folks at Chris Craft are a tad nervous about rolling, or floating it out there without some testing. But Chevy is also feeling that way and is asking Chris Craft to try it as an experiment. Free engines as ginny pigs.

Gregories added some logo to the V8 and no horsepower.

Make it a special silver sticker?

COME ON just roll with me here. I have to go deep into a mind set, like an actor or author needs to immerse themselves into the situation. I am method designing here. Anyway, I am in the art dept now.. And the name is simple. SPECIAL V EIGHT, That’s it. Simple and no high drama. The artist. Gregory is sitting at the drafting table and thinking. Gregory is a confirmed bachelor, has wonderful cocktail parties and is the favorite of the secretarial pool. And that’s as far as anyone wants to dive into Gregory’s universe, cause he is a joy to be around, and is one amazing artist.

The stock engine from the Secret Labs.

The room smells like a combination of ink, mens hair tonic, hair spray and machine oil. For some reason that machine oil smell is everywhere. And  Gregory is sketching. And is thinking, how can he add some flair so the idea is branded, yet not too much as to draw too much attention to it.

A special flame arrestor is installed with a special prototype red. The red indicates a special Test model, Disregard the Washer dryer, thats a special project from maytag.

And so it’s decided to take the layouts to a small group of customers to see how it feels. They call these Focus Groups today. So today you are that group. Theo, and his design team are behind the mirrored wall, and want your thoughts. You may want to grab a sweater, it’s cold in there.

Clean on valve cover

On a silver decal. Not metallic, non reflective silver color

ANNNNNND Finger snap!

52 replies
  1. Jon
    Jon says:

    I imagine a prototype would have minimal labeling like the ‘clean’ version, but I like the silver background! How’s that for wishy washy?

  2. Steve Anderson from Michigan
    Steve Anderson from Michigan says:

    I really liked the idea of the silver, but seeing it on the engine it’s 2nd place.

    The clean look is a winner by a landslide in my book!

  3. Murdock
    Murdock says:

    I like the “clean on” or clear decal as it’s less busy without the silver background. Let the blue show through without introducing another color.
    Visually, the CC logo is too small to mean much unless you’re going for a trademark “*” symbol?
    It’s also a tad redundant as “Chris Craft” is boldly shown on the exhaust manifold directly below and it’s red to match the new carb flame arrestor base, plus the “V” on the V8.
    Damn, that just came from too many “Zoom”, Go-To, Mega and Teams meetings these days……
    Single, fat exhaust at the transom, correct? Gotta have the right “tone”.

  4. Rabbit
    Rabbit says:

    Clean, not silver is my vote. Simple always wins.

    BTW: Any statistics on how many Chevy/GM small blocks made their way into boats? It has to be the most common boat motor ever… by far. I have one in our floating patio Clorox bottle deck boat thing.

  5. Mike K
    Mike K says:

    My Cadillac crusader has a stamped metal plate
    Sorry no picture I escaped to florida
    Maybe too difficult or expensive for 1 off

  6. m-fine
    m-fine says:

    I vote clean.

    BTW, I missed yesterday’s story, but I think all the guys saying you need a reduction gear are wrong. If Van Ness is getting 325 hp out of that engine at normal RPM ranges, he’s doing it with more torque than the original W produced. You don’t need the torque boost of the reduction gear.

    I am also thinking you are going to spend 99% of the time running below max speed, probably cruising in the low 30’s or below. Without the reduction you’ll be able to do that at a proportionally lower RPM.

    You made the right choice.

    • Greg W
      Greg W says:

      As I recall, the W reaches peak torque practically “off Idle” and stays there. The curve resembles a plateau and a high one at that. I’ll bet a 350 making that kind of HP has a curve that is more “pointy” at peak. IMHO A 1:25 or 1:5 reduction will make the 350 think its a 502 (or a W) under load. You may even get away with the same prop with a little cup rolled in. From my experience you might give up a little on max speed light load but everywhere else especially with a full crew and “gear” you will be very pleased.

  7. Troy in ANE
    Troy in ANE says:

    This is definitely a case of less is more.

    Reminds me of the novel “The Glass Bikini” by C. Moore Hair
    (Of course nowadays that doesn’t really apply.)

  8. Nehmer KId
    Nehmer KId says:

    When you said Michigan and snow, I’m living it. I went to the auction in Holland when they sold off all the stuff from the Holland Chris Craft plant and I bought as much as I could afford at the time. They had two drafting tables made of mahogany and I wanted one bad. But I had already purchased a ton of stuff and did not get one. You were setting the stage. I did buy a chair that came from the drafting office and still use it to this day. Still snowing

  9. MO Whaler
    MO Whaler says:

    Why are you taking us thru the sewing room to reach the oil smelling engineering department – – Singer sewing machines don’t need that much oil – – Neither does Maytag – –

  10. Dan
    Dan says:

    Keep it clean! Keep it simple! 7 degrees in Michigan as I type, lakes are frozen with a beautiful new layer of natures bounty!!

  11. Kentucky Wonder
    Kentucky Wonder says:

    Now that we have cleared the primary voting, and are on to the actual election (Troy: Note the L in that word, not R), I am voting for the clean design, with the “no Chris-Craft” option. The exhaust manifold only inches away are already screaming CC.

  12. Mark in Ohio (sometimes da U P)
    Mark in Ohio (sometimes da U P) says:

    I like the one in the header. Keep it simple. It looks late 40s, let the sound and the performance do the talking. But if you want to go all out!

  13. Ollon
    Ollon says:

    Keep it clean without the silver. Curious how your going to do the exhaust. Run a second pipe through the transom or use a crossover and a collector??

  14. Art
    Art says:

    Owning a Chris Craft and having worked at Chevrolet Engineering makes me the EXPERT on this subject. Soooo deep 6 the “gray” back ground and make the V 8 thinner and taller (btw taller and thinner are not Engineering terms but I use them for the Marketing wannabes to understand. (Insert smiley face here!!)

  15. floyd r turbo
    floyd r turbo says:

    I think you need to widen the “V” character and outline it to accentuate otherwise it seems to disappear as a character and just looks like a red background accent. Take it or leave it. My $.02.

  16. tom
    tom says:

    Small block Chevy was introduced in 1955,right?A boat like Wecatchem might have been repowered with what would be considered modern power (at that time) maybe sometime in the late fiftys, early sixtys,so why not go for a more authentic look of the era,rather than this “special”thing?My two cents worth.

    • Steve L
      Steve L says:

      This is the version I like best… It looks like a crate motor that you could have upgraded to back in the day. Only the well educated will know something’s up?
      It also has defined edges which will make it easier to mask off when its time to touch up the blue paint.

  17. Donald Downer
    Donald Downer says:

    My biggest issue with your proposed artwork is that the V8 part of the graphic, as it is depicted, is so strongly tied to Ford engines historically. Ford used many variations of that over the years.

  18. Dan T
    Dan T says:

    My twin 350’s have pvc valves on both valve covers. The flame arresters have pipe fittings attached to the sides to suck up the blow by and redirect it back into the engine.

  19. Dick Dow
    Dick Dow says:

    I personally like the “283” option, because it looks like it could be original/factory and the V8 graphic on the latest version says “flatbread Ford” to me – but what do I know? I am definitely in the reduction gear camp as far as the gearbox goes, based on my time and experience with my CC Red & White boats, but will defer to the engine builder. I don’t know the 25’ Sportsman well enough, but have to think the running gear and bottom are pretty much the same on all the 25’ hulls of the era. I ran a 1.5 to 1 gear and a 17×17 cupped prop behind the 454 in “Tango” and anticipate doing the same with our current R&W. My $.02 worth. 🙂

  20. Jeffrey Martinson
    Jeffrey Martinson says:

    Neat, Matt! Although I say so now, I was rooting for B or C because it made it more your own. And you went way down the rabbit hole with Gregory, cocktails and machine oil… I’m guessing you were the kid whose school notebooks were filled with the best limericks and doodles!

  21. Jim G
    Jim G says:

    Just put these on it. Correct font and all. When you leave the other boats behind. They’ll all wonder how a 283 out ran them.

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