The Value of Classic Wooden Boats

Antique Classic Boat Society (ACBS), held at Reefpoint Marina in Racine, Wis., where there were about 120 boats in the water. The ACBS has about 7,000 members in 54 chapters, most scattered across the USA and Canada, “dedicated to the preservation and restoration of historic, antique and classic boats.”

My guide for the weekend was Dave Bortner, founder of Freedom Boat Service in Mound, Minn., a far-western suburb of Minneapolis on Lake Minnetonka, one of the classic-boat epicenters of the Midwest. Freedom Boat Service specializes in the restoration, maintenance and sale of Chris-Craft, Century, Gar Wood, Riva, Hacker and Lyman wood boats – how’s that for a chorus line of varnished beauty. Dave explained the vintage-boat hobby – for example, if it was built in 1942 or earlier it’s an antique; post-war is a classic – and dispelled a few myths about owning a vintage boat.


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