November 02, 2006
Saturday, November 4 brings the long awaited 1st annual ClassicAquasport.com owners' rendezvous. The inaugural event, organized by several loyal CA members, will begin at Noon along the south shore of Shell Island, located just north of the mouth of Tampa Bay. The rendezvous will be a casual affair (BYOB and food). Family and friends are welcome and their attendance is encouraged. I'm sure this will be the first of many successful Classic Aquasport rendezvous events! See ya'll this weekend!
September 29, 2005
I took a great trip offshore last weekend with my friend and fellow shark, err, Florida personal injury attorney, Joe Saunders. We took Joe's 31' Cabo, Viola Belle, out about 55 miles West of Pinellas county into 150 feet of water. It was fairly rough early in the day as the Gulf was still settling down from the recent hurricanes. However, as the day progressed the seas began to calm.
Joe had some good numbers and before too long we were hooking up with Amberjack, Snapper, and large Grouper. We returned home that night with maybe 25 fish in the box. Thanks Joe!
September 28, 2005
The annual Tampa Boat Show is this weekend at the Tampa Convention Center downtown. As many of you know, Genmar will not be there displaying their Aquasport line as the brand was discontinued a few months ago. That's probably for the best as the direction Genmar was taking Aquasport was getting very far from from the brand's classic looks and functionality.
Thanks to all of our members who graciously donated money to the ClassicAquasport Katrina relief fund. We raised $700 that was used by ClassicMako.com to purchase relief supplies for the people of Mississippi and Louisiana. ClassicMako is located in Louisiana. Let's hope we don't see any additional major storms this year!
August 31, 2005
The good folks over at ClassicMako.com have spearheaded a relief effort for their members and others who live in the areas devastated by Katrina. Unfortunately, since ClassicMako.com is hosted in Louisiana, their site is down.
I have created a PayPal account where ClassicAquasport.com members and guests can make donations to the relief effort. Simply follow that link, create your free PayPal account, and enter my email address, firstname.lastname@example.org, where requested. Your donation, however small, will be greatly appreciated. I'm getting the donations going with a personal contribution of $500.
My goal is to present a check to Ringleader over at ClassicMako.com on behalf of all of our members.
Caveat: Your donations to this account will likely not be tax deductible as I am not set up as a non-profit organization. In fact, I personally may run into some tax issues with this, but I guess I'll just figure that out down the road.
Posted by captain at 05:19 PM | Link
April 12, 2005
Our faithful member steved in Rome has been kind enough to put together an Aquasport Specification Document as an Excel file with specs from various models of Aquasports. Steved has gathered this information through an exhaustive search of pre-Genmar marketing materials, owner manuals, and other documents. While it is a work-in-progress, steved's efforts will prove very useful for those of you rebuilding your classic Aquasports to their original specifications. As steved gathers more information on additional models, we'll update this file accordingly. Finally, if any ClassicAquasport.com users have additional information to contribute to this effort, please contact steved. Thanks again steved!
March 25, 2005
The official ClassicAquasport.com flyer is now online in PDF format. Feel free to print as many as you like and distribute them to your favorite local marinas, bait shops and boat ramps. Thanks!
March 17, 2005
Steve Dembner, better known to ClassicAquasport.com members as steved, is initiating an effort to document Aquasport boats and their unique history in small boat manufacturing and fishing. Aquasport was founded in 1967 and then was taken over by Genmar in 1988. Unfortunately, the takeover was preceded by tumultuous times and Genmar has very little material related to Aquasport prior to 1988.
Research will include any original Aquasport documentation that can be obtained, either from Aquasport directly or, more likely, from Aquasport owners and enthusiasts; back issues of boating magazines that published at that time, as well as back issues of newspapers that may have published stories on Aquasport (originally located in Hialeah, Florida). Personal contacts with former Aquasport employees, dealers, etc. will also be key. The objective is a clear history of the company and complete technical information on all of the boat models built by Aquasport during the period 1967-1988. The results will be published on ClassicAquasport.com as a work in progress and user input will be welcome, in fact essential.
ClassicAquasport.com members or guests who have knowledge or leads about Aquasport and/or classic Aquasport boats are requested to contact Steve Dembner. You can also reach Steve through his ClassicAquasport.com username steved. ClassicAquasport.com management thanks Steve for all of the hard work he has put into this project!
March 07, 2005
Wilson and I came across the Everglades Canoe Company's display at the Tampa Tribune Outdoors Expo & Boat Show last weekend. They have put together what appears to be the next generation version of the Gheenoe. I hope the Everglades folks don't take that as an insult. It's just the best comparison my uncreative mind can come up with.
Anyway, the design is unlike anything I've seen in a production boat. The company officially opened its doors about six weeks ago and currently offers the Gladesmen 18 as their flagship model. These boats offer some cool options as well. The company plans on launching a 17' and 15' model in the near future. Definitely some boats to keep an eye out for. I wonder if you could throw a Go-Devil on these?
March 06, 2005
Wilson and I had an opportunity to speak with Ben Sheaffer, President of Sheaffer Boats, while attending the Tampa Tribune Outdoors Expo & Boat Show on Friday. I've posted some pictures in the photo gallery. Ben is one of the most knowledgeable custom boat builders in Florida. He is also a pioneer who helped to resurrect the fishing friendly design of boats like the original Aquasports.
Those of you in the Tampa Bay area are likely familiar with The Boat Doctor, a boat repair and refurbishing facility owned and operated by Ben. After spending many years running The Boat Doctor, repairing and refurbishing old boats (and many Aquasports), Ben realized he had gained the knowledge and expertise to build the ultimate fishing platform, the Sheaffer 239 - V. These boats are impeccably built and Ben spares no expense. They are not for those light in the wallet! However, if you want classic lines in a new boat, the Sheaffer is the way to go. Ben uses only the highest quality materials and he has literally thought out every square inch of this boat.
March 04, 2005
Wilson and I are heading over to the Florida State Fairgrounds this afternoon to get an early look at the Tampa Tribune Outdoors Expo & Boat Show. The event, hosted by the prolific author and Tribune outdoor writer Frank Sargeant, is Florida's largest outdoors show.
While the exhibitors will be quite different from what we saw at the Miami Boat Show, I think they will be of more interest to us. After all, I can't afford a 60' Bertram like the ones we saw in Miami!. The following exibitors will be of particular interest to me, Shaeffer Boats, T.A. Mahoney (where Wilson purchased those cool garboard plugs), and Young Boats (never heard of them, but maybe I'm related?). I also hope to get a chance to speak with Capt. Bill Miller from the Hooked on Fishing television program. Capt. Miller probably knows plenty of folks with older Aquasports who would be interested in getting involved with our group. I'll try to post some pictures from the show later this weekend.
February 27, 2005
So, Wilson and I were pretty much sold on the E-Tec from Evinrude. We went to the Miami Boat Show looking to find a dealer willing to wheel and deal on the new 'Rude. We spent a good part of the day on Sunday talking to the Evinrude folks. On Monday we decided to make our purchase. However, on the way to the Evinrude dealer's pavilion, we happened by the Suzuki area. We were stopped dead in our tracks by Craig Clements, a Suzuki dealer with Travis Boating out of Stuart. After showing us a cut-away of a big Suzuki 4-stroke, taking us for a spin with Suzuki senior engineer David Greenwood in a DF250 Suzuki equipped CC and hitting us with a price that couldn't be beat, we were sold. We'll take delivery in the next few weeks over at Travis Boating's Clearwater store.
The Suzuki utilizes a chain rather than belts. That was one of the unique features we really liked about this engine. It seems a lot less likely that a chain will break as opposed to a belt.
February 26, 2005
Well, it looks like the folks over at Florida Sportsman did not intentionally delete a post about ClassicAquasport.com as first reported a few weeks ago. We appreciate their help in getting the word out to Aquasport owners and others interested in this great brand. Thanks FS!
Wandering around the Miami boat show, I wondered aloud to Wilson why the various marine radar manufacturers don't incorporate some sort of mechanism to adjust the angle of the mount that the radar sits on. A few minutes later we stumbled upon a small booth manned by the soft spoken Capt. Pat Caudle out of Post Isabel, Texas. It seems Capt. Pat wondered the same thing a year or so ago when he developed The Patrick Level, a remotely controlled self leveling radar mount.
The Patrick Level allows users to adjust the antenna angle regardless of the running angle of your boat by the simple use of an up/down switch. Since radar is by line of sight, this will maximize the aquisition of targets that radar is designed to detect. The device consists of a standard mount modified with a hinge, which is raised or lowered using a Lenco trim tab actuator. The Patrick Level gets my vote for innovation of the year!
February 23, 2005
Wilson and I returned from the Miami International Boat Show on Monday. We spent two full days at the Miami Beach Convention Center and the Sealine Marina. We never made it over to the sailing area or the large yacht brokerage show (which I believe is not officially associated with the main show). It would have taken at least three days and possibly four to see everything.
February 19, 2005
Thanks to the tireless dedication of several of our employees from my "real" company, we've been able to get the photo gallery section of ClassicAquasport.com up and running sooner than expected Check out just one of the many beauties that have been posted so far.
Wilson and I are headed to Miami in the morning to catch the last 2 days of the Miami International Boat Show. I've never been, but Wilson has gone a couple of times. I'm sure it will be impressive, if not a little depressing, since my eyes are much bigger than my wallet! Our primary mission, other than drooling over the megayachts, is to outfit our 1975 23' Mako that we (primarily Wilson, I'm just the cabin boy) are restoring. We need to investigate and/or buy an outboard (leaning toward the E-TEC), plotter/fishfinder/radar (maybe the Raymarine C-Series), auto pilot, and probably some other goodies. We'll be posting to the blog and forum while in Miami and I'll make sure to upload lots of pictures to the photo gallery.
February 13, 2005
Well, it looks like the folks over at The Hull Truth have not deleted the post about ClassicAquasport.com as first reported a few days ago. We appreciate their help in getting the word out to Aquasport owners and others interested in this great brand. Thanks THT!
February 10, 2005
It has come to our attention that The Hull Truth and Florida Sportsman have decided to prohibit any mention of ClassicAquasport.com in their forums. Many members of The Hull Truth and Florida Sportsman are owners of classic Aquasports. It is unfortunate that these two fine web sites have taken this stance. I can only hope that they will reconsider, as there is no reason why all of these boating and fishing sites cannot work together for the mutual benefit of our respective members. As I mentioned in our forums, we will continue to provide links to both THT and FS, as we believe our users find those sites useful and informative.
February 09, 2005
Wilson and I spent Monday afternoon spraying prairie yellow Gelcoat from Fiberglass Coatings Inc. on our 1975 23' Mako, which is profiled over at ClassicMako.com. I purchased a half interest in Wilson's Mako a couple of months ago. He has done the lion's share of the difficult work, and I've luckily come in just in time for the fun stuff. We also added Duratec Polyester Clear Hi-Gloss Additive to the mix and the finished product turned out very nice. We still need to do a little sanding and buffing, but overall we are very pleased. The Duratec seemed to work quite well.
Don't worry fellow Aquasport fans, once we finish our experimentation with the guinea pig Mako, we'll get to work on my 1976 Aquasport 222. I'd prefer to make some mistakes on the Mako rather than the Classic Aquasport!
February 08, 2005
We hope you enjoy the new site that we launched today. This is the blog section of the site. If you need some help understanding what a blog is and how it works, simply click on the link titled "Blog Help" under the calendar on the left.
There are a lot more features to come, including a photo gallery page to upload your pictures and a page where you can purchase some cool ClassicAquasport.com gear (t-shirts, hats, stickers, etc). Please be patient with us as we make this the premier site for Aquasport fans! Stay tuned!
A shout out to my good friend and a great Florida wrongful death lawyer I know, Bob Carroll, on his newly launched blog.
It's a new lure. Just kidding. I'm sure some of you have heard of blogs, some of you even know what they are, but many of you have no clue and would probably rather not find out. Too bad, cause' I'm going to blog like crazy ("blog" can be used as a noun or verb) here on classicaquasport.com.
February 07, 2005
OK, this is really cool, but you'll have to bear with me on the explaining. The XML feature allows you to "subscribe" to the classicaquasport.com blog. This isn't the typical subscription that you'd find in a magazine. To start with, it's free. But the really neat feature is that anytime a new post is added to the classicaquasport.com blog, as a subscriber, you are automatically notified. In other words, you don't have to keep visiting the site to see if we've posted anything new.
Les Lathrop's story in Sunday's St. Petersburg Times of refurbishing a 1946 39' Abaco "Smack" sailboat makes the couple of days I've spent sanding down fairing putty seem like child's play. Les has been working on the boat for several years and has at least a couple of more to go. It's all wood, and the search for the best timbers has been painstaking. You've got to admire the passion of people like Les.
February 06, 2005
Just a way of organizing my blog posts. The actual blog posts are in the middle of the screen and are listed in chronological order. On the left, the calendar highlights days that I created a blog post. Each post is assigned to one or more topical categories. It's a little confusing looking right now b/c I only have a few posts. But, once I get several dozen up, you'll see how the archiving tools on the left help you find old posts.
Posted by captain at 01:54 PM | Link
February 04, 2005
This afternoon I came across a blog detailing the painstaking bottom up restoration of a 1972 Formula 23'3" in North Carolina. They plan to bolt twin outboards on that sucker and throw in a 107 gallon gas tank. Sounds like she's going to be a lady killer.
It's a lot of fun to watch Sea Ray and Bayliner owners crash into one another during Gasparilla in Tampa. I did see a bunch of good looking restored Aquasports though. Note that they were navigating with great care and skill.
The law enforcement presence was huge as usual. Seems like they could have spent their time more effectively rather than boarding over 800 vessels that day and citing about 70. I personally witnessed about 10 stops. Sure looked like they were stopping any and everyone who was on the water that day. I guess they forgot about that concept we lawyers call "probable cause."
I know I'm probably going to piss someone off here, but isn't the USCG Auxiliary more of a liability than an asset? I mean, do we really need geriatric boaters who probably have lost their DMV licenses for operating automobiles b/c of their age directing us on the water? A typical experience with the Auxiliary goes as follows:
Off in the distance a Bayliner approaches, USCG Auxiliary flags and pennants flying in copious numbers. The vessel is usually operated by a crew of eight, usually four men and their wives, all donning life vests. As they approach, a holier-than-thou attitude can be detected. As I'm in Florida, most Auxiliary members seems to be recently transplanted New Yorkers with little local knowledge. The ship's captain will invariably try to come alongside my very shallow draft 222 lying in less than 12" of water. The captain, unaware of the depth, will proceed to foul his props on the I/O he operates. As I laugh, the crew, frustrated and embarrassed, motors away.
February 03, 2005
As Pete over at Fishing Jones first posted a few days ago, the controversy over jig versus live bait fishing for tarpon in Boca Grand pass continues on. The Boca Beacon asserts that an exhaustive three year study comparing the mortality rates of tarpon caught on live bait to those landed on jigs, may have been swayed by bias in the Florida Fish and Wildlife Research Institute.
We do a lot of fishing in southwest Florida, particularly in the Boca Grande area. Often a 10 pound Snook morphs to 20 pounds after several drinks. We call this phenomenon the "Boca Grande Multiplier Effect." It's basically just a form of "fish-tale'ing."
These guys may have brought the art of the fish tale to the next level. See the link below. Let me know if you think it's for real.
Not really, but if I don't devote some time to my real job (read, not work on boats and this website:), things might go downhill. In the real world I'm a lawyer. Lawyers have to bill hours to make any money. I can't bill hours while sanding fairing putty! I also can't bill while posting to this blog!