A Very Rare 1935 Dodge Runabout With Some Very Serious Provenance
Alan Furth was one of the largest and most well respected wooden boat collectors in the hobby. In 1990 his diverse collection of over 75 boats was legendary, and even today with different owners, those same boats are still recognized as being from the “Alan Furth Collection” at one point in their lives. That provenance will always set those particular boats apart from the others, regardless of their condition or value.
After Alan retired from the Board of Southern Pacific Railway, he and his wife Virgina spent their summers at Lake Tahoe in California, where the majority of Alan’s collection was located. Alan enjoyed sharing his rare and unusual boats at events like the Lake Tahoe Concours d’Elegance. So legendary was his collection, that the Tahoe Yacht Club Foundation announced that the Marque Class for the 2013 Concours will be boats from the Alan Furth Collection.
Alan was also one of the first at Lake Tahoe to insure his boats with Hagerty Marine Insurance when they launched their innovative Agreed Value insurance policy for classic wooden boats in 1984.
One of those rare wooden boats was this 1935 Dodge Model 102-A 17′ Split Cockpit Runabout (then named “Kama’aina”), shown here with Alan during the 1987 Lake Tahoe Concours – which was then held at Tahoe Boat Company in Tahoe City.
In 1935 a new addition to the Horace E. Dodge Boat and Plane Corporation line-up was the 17′ Model 102 / 102-A Split Cockpit Runabout – which they referred to as the 17′ Sport Runabout. The Model 102 being the standard version (priced at 1,195.00) with the 80 HP Greymarine 6, capable of 35 MPH and the Model 102-A powered by the 115-HP Greymarine Phantom 6 (priced at 1,395.00), with an advertised top speed of 40 MPH.
The Model 102 / 102-A was listed in the 1936 Dodge sales catalog & price list, but were never produced as the Newport News, VA plant ceased production of all pleasure boats in late 1935. As a result, this particular Sport Runabout model was only produced for one year and is only one of two known to exist. To our knowledge, the other Model 102-A is currently being restored by Dave Triano at his shop in South Lake Tahoe, California.
Below is another image of Alan Furth’s 102-A “Kama’aina” from the mid to late 1980’s – also in Tahoe City, CA.
Here’s a rare Dodge sales catalog from 1935 which features the addition of the standardized 26-foot lapstrake design pocket cruiser, complete with galley area, marine toilet compartment and bunks to sleep foor people.
The 1935 sales catalog also featured both the Model 103 17′ Double Cockpit Forward Runabout (referred to as the Family Runabout) and the Model 102 / 102-A Split Cockpit Runabout (referred to as the Sport Runabout).
Since 1990 the sporty little Dodge runabout from the Alan Furth collection has been owned by fellow Woody Boater Casudi, which she used and enjoyed for many years on Lake Tahoe. She re-named the boat “DODGE ‘EM”.
When Casudi sent us this batch of photos for the Dodge, it was interesting to see the original 1935 Hull Plate for the boat which says…
Maximum satisfaction from Dodge boats depends upon engine operation. This in tern depends absolutely upon the vital factor of lubrication, hence we specify the use of Duplex Marine Engine Oil.
This oil is designed especially for marine service, and may be depended upon under all conditions. It may be obtained from the dealer who delivered this boat, from marine supply dealers everywhere, or from the makers, the Enterprise Oil Co., Inc., Buffalo, N.Y.
Horace E. Dodge Boat & Plane Corporation
Newport News, Va.
Lubricate the engine in this boat with Duplex Marine Engine Oil, grade S.
Here’s how Casudi describes “DODGE ‘EM” today…
Texx – Our Dodge is one of two (known) remaining of that Model 1935 Split Cockpit Runabout.
I bought it from Alan Furth in 1990, we used it for a couple of blissful years on Lake Tahoe… Breakfast in Emerald Bay… Fab things like that… Of course we re-named it more appropriately.
Then James said “Casudi – Lets spruce it up a bit, redo the engine and that was 20 years ago. Now I know what the term Spruce Up means, that was too early in our relationship for me to know better!”
Now James is crying out to anyone who will listen – “Save this boat – as Casudi wants to turn this all original little Dodge gem into a hot rod!… Casudi says she is burned out with all original restoration work on our recently completed Riva Tritone project and doing things to perfection… She says all original can kill all the fun, undermine relationships… And wouldn’t be such fun to do things her way… Like in an all original hot rod DODGE ‘EM…”
To date, the restoration work on the Dodge runabout is about 60% complete, with a new bottom, new transom & framing, freshly restored instruments and chrome, and the orignal Gray Phantom has been completely restored. It still needs to have the decks re-planked.
After dedicating the last 10 years of thier lives to restoring their (now) immaculate Riva Tritone, Casudi & James are planning to take a well deserved break from restoring boats for a while.
With 2013 declared to be the Alan Furth Marque Class at the Lake Tahoe Concours just over a year from now, Casudi & James feel that this would be a perfect opportunity for a fellow Woody Boater to step in and finish the 1935 Dodge and once again show it at the Lake Tahoe Concours just like Alan Furth proudly did all those years ago.
Love that lapstrake cruiser. Nuffsaid.
Hey Matt – Have a close look at the photo of the Dodge on the trailer.
It looks like they had a Jeep Wagoneer once too! Very cool rig…
love those wagoneers.. Bad gas milage, un safe , bad rear windows, the list goes on.. And just about as cool looking as it gets. I am off to eBay now..
Enterprise Oil co became part of Quaker State so if you are looking for more Duplex oil, give them a call.
Did you notice the 1987 boat show pictures? The boats dont have the anal retentive finish and detail that the ACBS dictates today. I bet those people just used their boats.
The boats were the same, it’s just that the 1980’s camera and film technology was unable to capture the gloss of 28 coats of varnish over book matched planks or the shine of fresh chrome that has never been desecrated by even the smallest drop of water.
Thanks Texx. Learned of a small model Dodge I never knew existed.
And that other WoodyBoaters are taking a “well deserved break from restoring boats for a while.” We need a WoodyBoater expression for that. “On shore leave,” perhaps?
I try to stay “on shore leave” but from time to time I have to take breaks for maintenance. Soon I am going to have to take a sabbatical from shore leave and give Squirt a proper makeover. I am sure I will miss it.
“Out of Money” is more to the point…..
And it wasn’t really 10 years, *only* 5, tho it felt like 10….
Great story. I have always loved the Dodge boats. Back in 1995, the late Ben Lowell showed his 1931 21’6″ Dodge runabout w/a Lycoming at our show in Lake Hopatcong as well as many other shows. What a beautiful boat.
Back in the late 20’s early 30’s there were Dodge races on Lake Hopatcong. Our museum has some movies of one of the races.
Saw your site. I own a 1930 21 1/2 dodge boat. Looking for any help. Thanks Ron
Ron – What kind of help are you looking for? – Texx
We have a 1935 19.5 ft runabout,dodge.all original mahogany. Sits 6 people with motor at back.trying to sell it.
I’m looking for any information regarding a Dodge Model 4-76, being the Boat #G158 Model 301, with Gray;Phantom engine #80929. The boat has been garage kept for 10 years and needs a new home. Can you tell me more about it? What’s it worth?
Rick – Contact the Dodge Boat Owners Association, they will be able to provide you with the info you require.