1938 Hacker-Craft 28′ & 1914 Fay & Bowen 26’ Featured At RM Sotheby’s Motor City Auction On Saturday!

1938 Hacker-Craft 28' Twin Cockpit Runabout Sea Flow II_Courtesy RM Sotheby's_3

1938 Hacker-Craft 28′ Twin Cockpit Runabout “Seaflow II” – Represented by Freedom Boat Service.

TWO SIGNIFICANT WOODEN BOATS will cross the block on Saturday (July 25th) at the big RM Sotheby’s annual Motor City sale in Plymouth, Michigan – in conjunction with the Concours d’Elegance of America at St. John’s. This is your chance to buy the boat of your dreams and be on the water next weekend. – Texx

RM Sotheby’s Motor City Sale
Press Release & Photos Courtesy RM Sotheby’s

A longstanding summer tradition for collectors, RM Sotheby’s annual Motor City sale has carved a reputation over the past two decades as one of the leading events honoring the American automobile and celebrating Detroit’s rich automotive history.

Returning to Plymouth, Michigan, July 25, the sale is the official auction of the Concours d’Elegance of America at St. John’s and together, the events are a wonderful illustration of the passion that drives the hobby. As is quickly becoming tradition for the well-established sale, Motor City will also offer two exceptional classic American vessels for the discerning motor boat collector:

1938 Hacker-Craft 28’ Twin Cockpit Runabout “Sea Flow II”
Lot 126 (Est. $375,000 – $425,000)

1938 Hacker-Craft 28' Twin Cockpit Runabout Sea Flow II_Courtesy RM Sotheby's

As the 1920s came to an end, America’s obsession with speed extended to all motorized vehicles: airplanes, automobiles, motorcycles, and speed boats. Records were set and broken, and faster hulls and bigger engines were the order of the day. Hacker-Craft boats were among the most coveted and their new models were introduced to great fanfare.

One of only two 1938 28’ Hacker-Crafts known to exist today, “Seaflow II” was built in 1938 for a Mr. Sibley of Detroit, Michigan. It features a unique Hacker design element: the “rumble seat” aft cockpit, with a folding hatch cover that serves as the aft seat back when open. In 1948, the vessel was purchased by Stan Sayres of Seattle, Washington, a well-known automobile dealer and early impresario of Gold Cup Hydroplane racing. From 1950 to 1956 “Seaflow II” served as the chase and tow boat for Slo Mo Shun IV & V, which were the prototypes of modern racing hydroplanes, and world record holders. “Seaflow II” was also the Sayres family boat, frequently seen on Lake Washington.

1938 Hacker-Craft 28' Twin Cockpit Runabout Sea Flow II_Courtesy RM Sotheby's_2

With both the hull and its Scripps V-12 engine beautifully restored, “Seaflow II” has been fully prepared and vetted by Freedom Boat Service for an immediate return to the water.

1914 Fay & Bowen 26’ Special Launch “May LaFever”
Lot 151 (Est. $160,000 – $200,000)

1914 Fay & Bowen 26' Special Launch May LaFever _Courtesy RM Sotheby's

1914 Fay & Bowen 26’ Special Launch “May LaFever” – Represented by Antique Boat Center.

Built in 1912 in Geneva, New York at the Fay & Bowen Company headquarters, “May LaFever” spent most of her early years in the Adirondack lakes. In the early 1920s, the original owners returned the boat to the Geneva plant to upgrade the engine to the current 4-cylinder, 16hp example, and to move the steering and bulkhead to the rear of the engine. Taken out of service in the late 1930s and hidden away in storage for years, it wasn’t until 1996 that its new owner would begin restoring the Launch to her former glory.

1914 Fay & Bowen 26' Special Launch May LaFever _Courtesy RM Sotheby's_3

Following an expert, authentic restoration in the early 2000s, “May LaFever” has received countless awards at shows around Michigan and across North America. Benefitting from a cosmetic freshening in 2013, the boat is complete with its original topsides and deck planks, new white oak framework, copper rivet and rove, and is equipped with its period engine, wiring, and systems detailing. Having resided in Michigan for a number of years, “May LaFever” would be a crowning addition to any fine collection of motor boats. This boat is represented by Antique Boat Center.

1914 Fay & Bowen 26' Special Launch May LaFever _Courtesy RM Sotheby's_2

The RM Sotheby’s annual Motor City Auction is scheduled to run from 11:00 AM to 4:00 PM local time on Saturday, July 25, 2015. Viewing is on Friday, July 24 from 10:00 AM to 6:00 PM.

The auction preview will be open to the public free of charge on Friday, July 24th. The Saturday auction will only be open to registered bidders and qualified media.

The auction will also be streamed live on the RM Sotheby’s website HERE.


4 replies
    • Texx
      Texx says:

      Unfortunately, the 1938 Hackercraft was a no sale at 300K. The 1914 Fay & Bowen was a no sale at 120K.

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