Miss Step Takes Her First Step Into The Sunshine!


Here she is from above, the boat gods are already looking.

Want to see the winner and cover boat for 2013! You saw it here first. This amazing and very rare Chris Craft Step Hydro is getting closer and closer to being ready for her closeup Mr Daville. We have followed her amazing before for years, and now we can see her during and this summer after. The good folks at Katz’s Marina have gone all out and got her done over the fall in record time. She is been completely done , down to the correct light weight wood used. And now the famous magic Katz finish.

Note the cool hull shape. This is a famous Smith bottom that won so many races in earlier years.

There she is, just hanging around the work yard! Dang!

Take a bow, Miss Step shows us all her finer points

One of the cool finds during the work was finding out her original steering wheel was red!

Only 19 hulls were made between 1941-1942 And this now may just be one of the finest and most perfect out there. We hope she will be at Lake Dora, if so, it’s worth the trip just for that. She comes with a KB with three carbs. The 16 Hydro claims speeds of 50 Miles Per Hour. OUCH… $1,690 originally…mmmm lets see with inflation in today’s numbers that’s about, I have no idea. It’s a lot, that’s for sure, and well worth it. This is a must have collectors Chris Craft. Dang, double dog dang !

1942 Brochure picture.


44 replies
  1. Rick
    Rick says:

    Don’t I have enough boats to lust after already! You guys must have a mean streak. How about some pics of boats that I can say “Glad I don’t have that one.”

  2. John Rothert
    John Rothert says:

    wow! is that the same small step hydro we all admired years ago at Dora….as a grey boat?

    John in Va.

  3. alfaguy
    alfaguy says:

    Just for fun and of no particular use, 1690.00 in 1942 is equivalent to 23,002.25 in today’s dollars.

    Or put another way if you could fire up the way back machine, 1690.00 in today’s dollars would be equivalent to 115.42 in 1942.

    I’ll be the first to offer 23002.25 for this boat when done 🙂


    • m-fine
      m-fine says:

      I will, but the interest rate will be higher than you might expect, and then there is the subject of collateral. 🙂

      It is a cool boat, but I wonder what the ride quality is like at 50 mph, or any speed for that matter. There is good reason stepped hulls stayed in racing and never made a widespread transition to sport boats so I am guessing this is not something you would want to spend a lot of time on the water in. Perhaps a great show boat to compliment Suzy, your user boat.

    • Rick
      Rick says:

      I know some guys in Brooklyn that will loan you the money. Then again you might not like their collection techniques if you are late with a weekly payment.

  4. Paul H.
    Paul H. says:

    Well, the finer points of the restoration and wonderful rarity of this boat aside, it already has my vote for Best Name!

    Loved this boat when Craig had her displayed at Dora on that 1946 EZ Float behind the period Ford 1 ton, and I am very pleased to see it coming back to life. Can’t wait to see her comleted and in the water.

  5. Alex
    Alex says:

    Years back I read a cool description I’ve never forgotten. It was of a Mercedes 300CE (no longer made). I’ve never forgotten the phrase, and it applies here equally well.

    This boat looks “like it was carved from a single block of unobtanium.”

  6. Matt
    Matt says:

    I know the guys went to extreme lengths to preserve as much of the original wood. But these were not built for durability. Just speed. The wood on the sides and deck are thinner to save weight. The frames are of a lighter weight wood as well.

  7. steve bunda
    steve bunda says:

    Very nice! This would be the boat to copy, hope they saved the frames to digitize and cnc . A frame kit in paper,ply or mahogany could be a good thing for the hobby ! steve

  8. Chris Wade
    Chris Wade says:

    About the ride, I was fortunate to catch a ride in a totally original one of these babies back in the mid nineties. She was owned by Bud Sayre of Sayre Bros. Chris-Craft on Buckeye Lake, Ohio. His boat was named Redman or Squawman. Something like that. Bud passed away years ago and I have no idea what became of the boat. His long time mechanic at the dealership, Bob, took me out one morning for a spin. It was cold and mill pond smooth. Then he opener her up, sending copious amounts of fuel into the triple down drafts and into the fire breathing KLH. It might have been 50 mph or 40 I have no idea. I can tell you this though the side g’s were pulling hard in the turns and the ride was harsh and flat. My eyes were water like hell and we were hauling ass and I was HAPPY. Thanks for the memory trigger! Love me some Woody Boater!

    • Chris Wade
      Chris Wade says:

      Okay, I have a retraction! Upon further review through my beer soaked memory, I think Mr Sayres’ boat was a 16′ Special Raceboat with varnished hull. Rare, but not like the hydos. And of course the motor not a KLH I got confused with my Harley FLH. It was the KB? something. The memory is the first thing to go they say……:)

  9. floyd r turbo
    floyd r turbo says:

    We were given one to drive around Lake Rabun to judge their 4th of July boat parade and remember sitting very low, legs straight out, like driving a small sports car with “firm” shock setting.

    Love to have the wood they’re throwing away, if any.

  10. Texx
    Texx says:

    Last year I spoke to fellow Woody Boater Brian Robinson about these rare Chris-Craft hydroplanes…

    He mentioned that this particular boat is #13 of the 19 built, a 1942. He also mentioned that to his knowledge, there are at least 6 remaining survivors still in existence.

  11. Chad
    Chad says:

    What Brian forgot to mention is that I own #1 and #19. They’ve been sitting out behind the barn for years. I almost cut them up last week to fuel my jerky smoker.

    • Brian Robinson
      Brian Robinson says:

      #1 does exist and IMHO it is the most desirable one. Only one with just two bearclaw vents, the two script step pads. Oh yeah, it is the one in all the factory photos. Doug Morin has it for sale out of Tom Mitter’s stuff. I really, really wish I could afford it. ($80k I think). I would put it in my living room. Shelly would love it.

  12. Don Ayers
    Don Ayers says:

    If someone was going to do a repro I would want a traditional bottom so you could actually use the thing.

    • Joey
      Joey says:

      Dynamite is not a Hydro by any means but a beautiful example of Chris Craft’s early race inspired boats. Miss Step happens to be Hull #42513 and they only made #42501-42519 and is a single cockpit boat. Dynamite may appear to be a single cockpit at times when the rear seats are covered by a beautiful mahogany hatch to add to that “Go Fast” look.

  13. mort
    mort says:

    Would anyone kind enough to let me know if Chris Craft with owned by Prince Bira of Siam (a Formular 1 driver) is still around?

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