Rockin’ The Woody Boater Cradle In Seattle, WA

Kate's Wooden Rocking Boat - Circa 1992

Well, it appears that some wooden boat restorer’s think alike… (There’s a surprise). Yesterday fellow Woody Boater Jim Frechette from Austin, Texas sent us a few cool shots of the wooden cradle / boat he made for his daughter Lillie as they celebrated her 23rd birthday. And today fellow Woody Boater Robert DaPron from Seattle, Washington shared some great images of the Rocking Boat / Cradle he made for his daughter Kate back in 1992.

When we received the images, I e-mailed Robert and asked him to describe Kate’s rocking boat / cradle. And Robert, being the detail guy he is, gave us the following description….

Texx – Kate’s boat is a one-off rocking boat that I threw together I believe in 1992. Plank on frame construction just like the real thing, batten seam, ¼’ planking with real bungs. Looking back, a dumb way to build the thing, I could have been much easier on myself if I chose not to construct it like a real boat. Off the shelf hardware, some made by me. Bow light works, dummy engine painted CC blue under the aft hatch connected by a copper exhaust that pokes out the transom.

Kate was born in November of 1991, picture of her in the boat was taken when I would guess she was around 1 ½ to 2 years old. Mom could tell better than me.

The picture of Kate (below) was taken last year in her college dorm when we went back to Michigan to help her settle in her new school as a freshman. My niece has the boat now, her kids now play with / on it. Not sure what kind of shape it will be in when and if it ever comes back.

Way back in time when I was restoring my Century Resorter, I took the rocking boat to our ACBS boat show in Kirkland, Washington – It was a huge hit! The Seattle Times came down and ran the picture of the boat with Kate in it the next day. I think we still have a copy of the paper somewhere. Probably of no surprise, but this is Kate’s second boat, her first was a rocking cradle.

Robert DaPron – DaPron Marine Restorations

Kate in her College Dorm - Circa 2011

Thanks Robert for sharing these images and story of Kate and her Rockin’ Boat, proof once again how time marches on…

And “NO Alex & Mike” – Were not going to have a Woody Boater Cradle Shoot Out…

At least not yet… Texx

10 replies
  1. chad
    chad says:

    Another beauty and her cradle/boat. Nice work Robert!

    Drop a real motor in it and you can train a toddler (or monkey) to drive it around at shows.

    I believe Chris Smith made a pedal car for his grandchild. Someone should have a shot of that laying around.

  2. ARRRGH!
    ARRRGH! says:

    Creativity in Varnish! I love it! Well done, Robert! Now give her the Resorter for a graduation present and we have a lifetime woody boatress! Woo Hoo!

  3. Dick Dow
    Dick Dow says:

    One of our favorite pictures of our son Paul is in that rocker at the Carillon Show the year Rob and Sue displayed it – Wide smiles all around! About the header: I didn’t know Scotsmen wear terrycloth kilts…

  4. Rick
    Rick says:

    That settles it, WoodyBoaters have good looking children. The only problem I see with both boat designs is no bilge pump thru-hulls are visible. Guess you kept diapers on the kids.

    • Texx
      Texx says:

      I agree Rick, the children are beautiful.

      Looks like we have a “Kids Boat Shoot Out” beginning to take shape, stay tuned for the next chapter – it’s wild!

  5. Philip Andrew
    Philip Andrew says:

    Hey Robert , that’s a great story. Just today I collected my daughter Renee from Wellington Airport when she arrived home for Easter break from Melbourne university. Our kids grow up fast, they sure do.
    Thanks for sharing your story about Kate.

  6. Salter
    Salter says:

    Another very cool “toy.” Hardly. That’s amazing dedication and fine craftsmanship.

    Of course there will be a shoot out, Mr. Texx. This is America, dammit! My daddy says everything gets raced. Ride mowers, shopping carts, grannies in those little Rascal electric carts at Walmart. Everything! Shall we say, cradles at dawn?

  7. Alex
    Alex says:

    Excuse me people. Salter said a bad word. I have no idea where he picked that up. Oh. That’s right. It was when he got his finger stuck in that hole on my steering wheel last Spring.

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