Including the latest Project Update!
February, 2013

DFW Int'l Boat Show...We're Ba-a-a-a-ack!

The Dallas Fort Worth International Boat Show is already underway at the Ballpark in Arlington. The show, which runs from Feb. 1-10, will feature over six acres of a wide variety of recreational watercraft and boating equipment. It is hosted by Texas Rangers Enterprises group, which brings non-baseball related events to the ballpark, and the United Boat Dealers of North Texas.


The WBA is making an appearance at the show, in a one-boat display provided as a courtesy by the show organizers. Lew White is showing his 1956 Willis Racing Runabout to represent the wooden boat heritage of the Dallas Fort Worth area. The Willis is in booth D50-54.

About 25 North Texas boat dealers and nearly 200 vendors will participate in the 10-day show.
The boat show will take place in a temporary 262,000-square-foot facility that will be constructed on Lot A at the corner of Randol Mill Road and Nolan Ryan Expressway.

Read more!

Annual Banquet Glows with Yellow Jacket Pride!

Things were hoppin' at the Canyon Creek Country Club when the WBA showed up for our Annual Banquet on January 19. This year's theme was Yellow Jackets, so our attendees chose wardrobe accessories in harmony with the theme. Speaker Donna Hunt, below, told an anecdotal history of the Yellow Jacket Boat Company, and several personal stories of her recollections of the company and its famous spokesperson, Roy Rogers. Donna served as editor of the Denison Herald for many years, and now devotes her time to historic research, writing and philanthropy. See one of her books here. See a slideshow of the banquet here.

Wanda Ramey (above right) was our guest of honor, joining Donna Hunt (center) and WBA Signalperson Lisa Daniels during the cocktail hour. Below, Bob Adair and Lew White unveil the Yellow Jacket Bench to Wanda. It was an emotional moment for all. Wanda donated the materials from the benches from the estate of her late husband and WBA member Gene Ramey. 39 members and guests were in attendance. Vice President Troy Marshall presented a gift certificate to President David Kanally in appreciation of his service. David, Bob and Lew are scheduled to go to Denison this coming week to present the bench to Denison leaders.

Griffitts is Bare to the Bone!

One of our home garage restoration members, Steve Griffitts of Keller, TX, reports that he has been making slow, but steady progress on the full restoration of his 1959 Chris-Craft 17’ Ski. When he bought the boat last summer, the Chevy 283 V-8 was already removed and is presently stored, fully intact and assembled, in a crate. Steve says he has no idea of its condition or when it was last started. He did mention that there is what appears to be a bullet hole in one of the valve covers. He suspects that may be a clue as to its condition. Additionally, the drive shaft, prop, and fuel tank were already removed, along with the windshield, all seats, and all the hardware. Steve believes he has all the original hardware and instrumentation. He also has a Chevy 327 V-8 that is fully disassembled, and many duplicate parts, including a drive shaft, prop, gear shift, instrumentation, and fuel tank, all of which came with the boat.


“So far I have removed the ceiling boards and the floor boards, stripped the varnish off the hull sides and transom, removed all bungs, flipped the boat, stripped the paint off the hull bottom, and then removed both the mahogany and plywood hull bottoms,” Steve said. “Presently, I am inspecting, cleaning, and repairing the frames. I have found at least three side frames that need to be replaced.”
Steve plans to bring the boat out to the shop in Lucas this Saturday to get some valuable counsel from the other WBA members. At some point in the future he says he will need some counsel and help restoring and installing the engine and drive train.

“I have not yet chosen a name for the boat,” Steve said, “But I’m considering a couple, including: ‘Double Jack Rocks’ or maybe ‘Ooh-Rah, Sir!’ for my son Taylor, who is a U.S. Marine.”

February Meeting Devoted to Planning. Don't miss it!

It's time to lay out our WBA calendar for 2013. As is our custom, the February meeting will be devoted to this important task. Join us on Thursday, February 21st at 7 p.m. at Two Guys from Italy at 11637 Webb Chapel Road, just south of Forest Road. WBA Treasurer and benefactor John Parish will be giving away one of his many boating and woodworking related books as a door prize. The February meeting will feature "Your First Workshop" by Aime Ontario Fraser.

Join us for a light meal and moderate libation at 5:30 p.m. at Two Guys from Italy prior to the meeting. We encourage you to join us for dinner, so we'll always have the required minimum number of diners to avoid a room charge.

Shop Talk and Musings:

The WBA is made up of some pretty interesting characters. Seen in their yellow trim at the recent WBA banquet are Mark Webster (left) and Bill Baldwin (right). Mark is WBA past president and longtime past membership chairman. Mark and his wife Elizabeth support the Club's activities fully, participating in every event with enthusiam, often lending the club their stuff and hosting parties. The one and only Bill Baldwin, is a past president of the WBA, an author, and as he likes to introduce himself, "a simple computer programmer." In addition to these qualifications, his resume includes his current role as editor in chief of The Brass Bell, the official magazine of the Chris Craft Antique Boat Club. Bill and the new group of leaders at the Chris Craft club have brought The Brass Bell to a new level of quality, making it one of the best publications of the wooden boat hobby to be found anywhere. Articles range from the historic to the technical, often including contributions by WBA resident wizard Seb Borrello. Check it out here! Bill and wife Pat are also deeply involved in the Chautauqua Lake Twin Tiers Chapter of ACBS (New York), helping with their annual show and the creation of the Lawson Boating Heritage Center. We take this opportunity to thank Mark, Bill and YOU! for your ongoing participation and support of the Wooden Boat Association!

And, finally:

Please take a look in the shed or garage for the leftover parts or other saleable items you can donate to the club. Bring them to any WBA meeting, or contact David Kanally at for pickup.