JS-47  My Precious

Part 2 - the new sapelee mahogany deck & fresh varnish !!!


My Precious - a Jersey Speed Skiff

Owner/Driver - Gerri Prusko

Riding Mechanic - Bill John

First - some background


In all started with an innocent boat ride at the 2004 Clayton Vintage Race Boat Regatta, with local skiff-head Len Finithy. The photos below were taken at Clayton on that fateful Sunday morning. That was it, in the fall of 2004 Gerri commissioned the Vintage Race Boat Shop to build her a reproduction of a Jersey Speed Skiff.


This reproduction of a Jersey Speed Skiff was done "in the spirit of vintage" with a wood deck and transom, bench seats and looks like a Jersey Speed Skiff of the 1960's. It runs a stock, warranted marine motor with a restrictor plate, a Borg Warner Velvet Drive transmission, is a legal CRA and APBA vintage race boat and runs on the Vintage Race Boat Circuit

These photos were taken at Clayton, NY by Phil Kunz.




These photos were taken at Wheeling, West Virginia by Phil Kunz.



Part 2 - the new sapelee mahogany deck !!!

In the spring of 2009, after several years of hard use and many, many boat rides, it was decided to upgrade the 1/4 inch plywood deck with a thicker 3/8 inch sapelee mahogany plywood deck. Local craftsman Jason Conley and mentor Dave Whitcher did the actual deck replacement, and the many coats of Epifanes varnish and final rigging was done at the Vintage Race Boat Shop.


The existing 1/4 inch deck came off easily and work began to strengthen the deck support structure. We added lots if white oak support beams, and we made it real strong.




Then is was off to Maine Coast Lumber in York, Maine to select and pickup three sheets of very expensive marine plywood - 3/8 inch sapelee mahogany at $250 per sheet !!!


The new 3/8 inch sapelee mahogany deck was fitted and secured using 3M-5200 adhesive and many stainless steel staples. The staple dimples will be puttied after the first varnish coat and will disappear under the planned 12 coats of amber tinted Epifanes varnish. The actual deck replacement was complete in two weeks - a very nice job by Jason Conley and Dave Whitcher.


The boat was then delivered to the Vintage Race Boat Shop for finish work and rigging. The existing 1/4 inch deck came off easily and work began to strengthen the deck support structure. We added lots if white oak support beams, and we made it real strong. The new sapelee mahogany deck was well sanded, sealed and then varnished without any stain, to highlight the beautiful grain of the mahogany. Twelve coats of amber tinted Epifanes varnish are planned.






After two coats of Epifanes sealer, My Precious was hoisted off the trailer and onto dollies, then moved to the other side of the shop, ready for the many coats of Epifanes varnish. We also added just a titch of bling to the motor compartment, with a new set of engraved valve covers from Ruth & Leo at R&L Engines



After the first several coats of thick Epifanes varnish, the grain of the beautiful sapelee mahogany was just beginning to be filled. Usually takes at least six coats to completely fill the grain, then the following coats provide a deeper, darker and smoother finish. We also replaced the shaker hood scoop with a more traditional, under the hatch flame arrester.



History of Jersey Speed Skiffs

These boats are safe and fun to run with comfortable bench seats in the fore and aft cockpits, and with a stock warranted motor, provide for many years of fun boat rides. Complete with a custom mooring/travel cover and a custom Eagle trailer, this skiff loves to Rock & Roll on the APBA vintage circuit and on Loon Pond, in Gilmanton, NH.

Reproduction Vintage Race Boats

Return to My Precious - Part 1

Update - Spring of 2010

After many years of wanting to make the Mt Dora/Tavares ACBS boat show and many years of excuses, this is the year that we finally made the trek south to sunny and warm Florida. We hauled My Precious to participate at both the Tavares Vintage Race Boat Regatta and then the Tavares Antique & Classic  Boat Show the following weekend. The weather was sunny and warm, the vintage race boats were beautiful and fast, and we had a great time !!!

Click here for regatta recap & photos


To get ready for our trek to warm & sunny Florida, in February we pulled My Precious back in the shop to replace the entire rudder assembly and of course, a few more coats of thick, amber tinted Epifanes varnish. The previous six coats of varnish had already sunk into the grain after a half summer of use last year. So we first sanded the deck with 120 grit paper, followed by Scotchbrite Pads on our trusty Dewalt random orbital sander hooked up to our Fein vacuum. This system provides for very pretty much, dustless sanding.



We only had time for four coats of Epifanes varnish, applied using our rolling & tipping technique. But with each coat of varnish, the rich grain of the sapelee mahogany got darker and deeper, absolutely stunning !!!




My Precious - a very nice looking Jersey Speed Skiff.



Here is the link for our trek down to sunny & warm Florida:

Tavares Spring Fling Regatta

My Precious Part 3 - motor mounts, intake manifold & fresh varnish

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Florida Vintage Race Boat Circuit

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