Chris Craft Launch 36 – The Perfect Family Boat

A question often asked by all those who are toying with the idea of buying a boat, “Does a perfect boat exist?” You know you would love to take the family on a cruise, go fishing, or water skiing. Now that would require a boat that has a wide open deck. But then you are also looking for a boat that can be used to entertain in style. Brunch on a warm day or cocktails in the evening on the boat sounds lovely. Hey! What happened to the idea of basking in the sun on a sunbed in your boat? If you are looking for a boat that meets all these needs and more, then the Chris Craft Launch 36 is near perfect.

CCLAUNCH36-006Marketed as the perfect family boat, the Launch 36 made her debut at the Miami International Boat Show in February 2014. The Launch 36 was designed to present a new concept of the Chris Craft brand. It is intended to be a toy boat but comes equipped with the toys and water sports equipment associated with a yacht. While most of Chris Craft’s boats from the Launch line-up are bow riders, this one is more like a cuddy cabin with a full walk-around deck and center console. Designed to enable families to have fun on the water, it came as no surprise when the Chris Craft Launch 36 was announced as 2014’s ‘Boat of the Year’.

A Chris Craft boat is known for its use of teak wood. Based on the level of teak trim the Launch 36 is available in 3 editions; Standard, Heritage Trim and Heritage. What makes the Launch 36’s design impressive is its intelligent use of space. The sunbed at the bow might turn into your favorite hangout space. For guests who want a glowing tan, the aft sofa along with the retractable table can be converted into a large sunbed. The Bimini top to keep you out of the sun can be stowed effortlessly. The fully-equipped galley located right behind the 3-seater helm is one of the best. A ceramic cooktop, sink, grill, refrigerator, microwave, icemaker and not to forget, ample storage space for your crockery and cutlery is more than enough to show off your culinary skills. On most boats, having a table aboard is unnecessary wastage of space as it is difficult to stow away. But not on Chris Craft’s Launch 36. The retractable dining table in the aft cockpit is hidden beneath the cockpit sole. Whenever you feel like dining al fresco, press a switch and the table rises. The dedicated stowage space and lockers in multiple locations make it possible to carry water-sports equipment, life jackets, folding bicycles, and deck chairs. Even the engine room doubles up as storage space.

The Chris Craft Launch 36 may be a day boat, but is capable of providing a comfortable overnight stay for 5 adults. Under the deck is the main cabin in the bow area and an aft cabin with a twin and single bed. There is a separate head and shower enclosure. Exquisite woodwork, another Chris Craft trademark, is evident on the deck and below. The flared bow on the Launch 36 sends the spray low and wide, keeping the boat dry. You will surely notice this when you take the boat on a test drive from your favorite Chris Craft dealer. With its gorgeous looks and great layout, the Launch 36 continues to capture hearts and recently awed the crowds at the 2016 London Boat Show. Capable of giving any mini-yacht a run for its money, this perfect family boat is a total stunner.

A Trip to Chris Craft Boat Factory

Why is Chris Craft known as the undisputed king in the world of motorboats? A trip to their boat factory provides the answer. The brand spells quality in each process of boat making. Chris Craft boats are manufactured in a state-of-the-art facility located in Sarasota, Florida. The Chris Craft manufacturing plant is spread over 20 acres of land and employs a team of engineers, craftsmen, and skilled workers, many of which are industry veterans. Each boat is made to order and the company follows a detailed 6-sigma process to ensure the finest quality product. Though it has a rich heritage, the machines, tools, and processes used in Chris Craft manufacturing facility is state of the art.

A typical day at the factory starts with a discussion on the production schedule and the participants include all the different departments involved in designing and building a Chris Craft boat. A very important contribution that sets Chris Craft apart from the other boat manufacturers is its careful preservation of original molds. The first step in the production process is mold preparation and some of the molds have been preserved and utilized for nearly 50 years.

Lamination

The hull is designed by following a 6-step lamination process.

Step 1– A gel coat is applied to form the outer surface of the hull. The thickness of the gel coat is constantly checked using a mill gauge, as it needs to be between 18-22 mils.

Step 2 – Spray application of a vinyl coat that provides thermal protection and a smoother finish.

Step 3 – Application of stranded fiberglass to the whole mold, along with a resin coating that is applied by hand.

Step 4 – The whole interior structure is locked in place. All Chris Craft boats feature the trademark tumble home design. The unique closed cell foam construction incorporated in the hull is responsible for minimizing the sound of water lapping against the hull at high speeds.

Step 5 – This is the curing process after which the fiberglass hull is separated from the mold.

Step 6 – The quality assurance team monitors every area of lamination to ensure that a hull of exceptional quality is ready.

Electrical System

The finished hull is sent to the cutting department where holes are bored to support the electrical wiring that forms a main component of the boat. All electrical components used in the boat ranging from battery cables to instrument panels is manufactured in-house.

Fabrication

The fabricating team at Chris Craft is responsible for creating cabinets, seating upholstery and other key components that make a Chris Craft boat. All wood and plastic components are cut using CNC routers that are programmed to ensure proper fit and alignment of the components. The craftsmen design the beautiful interior and comfortable seating that Chris Craft boats are famous for. The upholstery has a luxurious texture and is very durable. The hull then goes to the engine station for installation and base assembly functions.

Decking Station

After engine installation, the hull is moved to the decking station where the boat’s look is completed with a wood finishing. All Chris Craft boats use the highest grade of teak wood, and this is installed by hand.

Assembly Department

Each boat has its own custom-fitted wood parts and the process of assembling the interior can take anywhere between 6 to 40 hours depending on the boat’s model and size. The boat is then ready to go on its maiden trip in water, in a pond located within the factory premises. After this test run, it is cleaned and packed after final inspection.

Now that you have completed a virtual trip to the boat factory, you know you are going to own the best boat in the industry when you contact your nearest Chris Craft dealer.

Chris Craft Antique Boat Club

Looking for information on the 1936 Chris Craft 19-foot race boat? Or wondering how you can renovate an antique boat?  The answer is simple, become a registered member of the Chris Craft Antique Boat Club. If you are someone who owns a Chris Craft or takes interest in antique collections of Chris Craft boats or classic boats in general, then you definitely qualify for a membership. This club is one of the prestigious and oldest active marine marque club in the world.Chris Craft Boat Club Image

The Chris Craft Antique Boat Club was founded in 1973 in honor of Chris Craft’s rich history. It is dedicated to research, documentation and preservation of classic Chris Craft boats. But what led to the launch of this club? In the 1960’s traditional wooden boats were rapidly replaced by boats made of fiberglass. This change had an impact on Chris Craft, the giant among recreational boat manufacturers. Production of Chris Craft’s classic mahogany-hulled boats stopped in 1971 and the last wooden boat was sold to a customer in 1972. But even after Chris Craft stopped production of these boats, the interest in them kept growing. All these boats that remind us of the golden-era of Chris Craft constitute what is known as the antiques and classics of today.

The Chris Craft Antique Boat Club was formed by a group of boating enthusiasts and chief among them was Bill MacKerer. Also known as “Mr. Chris Craft” because of his long-standing career of over 40 years as a Chris Craft employee, he was the first to suggest that a club be formed to encourage preservation of old Chris Craft boats. MacKerer was in charge of production at the factory and was a meticulous recorder of facts and procedures. He maintained detailed notebooks of boat specifications, both Chris Craft’s as well as its competitors. This habit of his led to the detailed engineering catalogs of Chris Craft’s operation in later years. Apart from preserving antique Chris Craft boats, the boat club was formed to establish a means of communication between owners, dealers and Chris Craft Corporation.

Chris Craft Antique Boat Club that started with a membership of around 100 in its early years, now boasts of over 3600 members across 35 countries. The club has an amazing website that makes it possible to complete membership formalities online. Members of the club become part of an international network that works together to solve problems related to classic boats. Do you know that every classic Chris-Craft boat was assigned a hull number and hull card that recorded details of the boat including dates, materials, colors and accessories? Owners of such boats can use the hull number to research the origin of the specified boat. Members of the club get exclusive access to an online hull registry that lists all antique and classic Chris Craft boats irrespective of make or age. Though owning a Chris Craft is not mandatory to become a member of this distinguished club, most current members of the club own a Chris Craft boat.

The next time you have a question on a classic Chris Craft boat or need help with restoration of a Chris Craft boat, you know you just have to take advantage of the benefits that come with being a member of this esteemed club. Participate in the club’s online auctions of Chris-Craft accessories, gain access to the club’s quarterly newsletter ‘The Brass Bell’, or take part in its online discussion forum ‘Boat Buzz’. And most importantly, realize that with each passing day your Chris Craft boat becomes more rare and invaluable.

Chris Craft – Own a Masterpiece

According to a survey by Recreational Boating and Fishing Foundation (RBBF), 90% of Americans believe that boating reduces stress and is a great way to spend quality time with family and friends. To quote Kenneth Grahame, a British writer “There is nothing- absolutely nothing – half so much worth doing as simply messing about in boats.” This is true as recreational boating ranks high as the #1 leisure activity for Americans.

If you are planning on buying a boat, the first step is to determine the type of boat that will suit your needs. You can find different types of boats catering to three main activities: cruising, fishing and water sports. You may opt for a new or pre-owned boat, but which brand of boat do you go for? There is no confusion here because there can be nothing better than the leader in boat craftsmanship – Chris Craft.

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Chris Craft is a name that is synonymous with boat craftsmanship and quality. Established in 1874, Chris Craft turns 142 years old in 2016. The legend of Christ Craft began when Christopher Columbus Smith dreamt of building the finest fishing and duck hunting boat. His first rowboat was launched in 1876. He continued building boats that offered great speed. In 1904, Smith was the first recipient of the Gold Cup, the oldest active trophy in motor sports. As the demand for speed boats grew the company started designing and manufacturing its own engines. Vintage models of the company’s boats are treasured by antique-boat collectors even today.

During the course of time, the company changed multiple hands and is now owned by Stellican Ltd., under the brand-name Chris Craft Inc. What makes a Chris Craft boat unique is that though each model is refreshing and new, the base idea comes from its old designs. It is not designed to resemble other boats trending in the market. So if you want to get noticed, then a Chris Craft is the boat to own.

Here are a few standards that every Chris Craft boat adheres to.

  • Timeless Design – Each design of Chris Craft is inspired from its past and a reminder of its rich American heritage.
  • Durability – You can see Chris Craft boats from the 60’s and 70’s still plying today. The boats are built using a 6-step lamination technique with quality-control monitoring at each step.
  • Agility – The boats provide excellent handling and are renowned for its speed.
  • Comfort – The boats feature an excellent use of space that is stylish and comfortable. The seat backs are all angled and multiple density foams are used to provide support wherever required.
  • Traditional Craftsmanship – Each boat is designed using the fusion of technology and traditional hands-on boat making technique. Even today a Chris Craft can be recognized by its hand-crafted teak deck.

It is said that years ago, when Chris Craft launched a model called ‘Mad Wilmar’, a New York banker purchased it to commute from his home in Long Island Sound to a dock at the base of Wall Street from where he used to walk to his office. This idyllic way to go to work was probably something that Chris Smith had envisioned when he crafted beautiful designs of boats. To find the right Chris Craft boat that suits your need, consider visiting Long Island’s boat dealer – Dave Bofill Marine Inc.

There is nothing to match the cruising experience that this brand of boat can give you. If you are someone who appreciates the finer things in life, then a Chris Craft would be the right choice.