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|Modell||20' Potter Built|
|Klasse||Center Console Boote|
|Rumpfmaterial||GFK / Fiberglass / Polyester|
|Angeboten von||Sunset Boat Sales|
SeaCraft is one of those brands that has a strong following and has for a long time. Started in the 60’s, the SeaCrtaft line has a reputation of being strong and dependable, with the most desirable models being those built by Bill Potter.
This 1976 Potter Built model has been truly and completely refurbished to spectacular condition from the keel up.
If you're looking for a classic that has been completely restored, this could well be the boat for you.
I know people who have aspirations in boat ownership, and it’s not to possess a million-dollar sportfish or a brand new 30-footer with triple outboards. It’s to one day own and operate a SeaCraft built in the 1970s. To these boaters, the SeaCraft name represents not only the best in small-boat building, but ranks as one of the most “unforgettable” powerboats ever built.
A 1969 20-foot SeaCraft, looking good underway after a total restoration.
It’s rare in this era of turnkey modern boatbuilding to hear people pining for old fiberglass models, but the cult of SeaCraft is strong. Jason Goldfarb, the moderator of the website Classic SeaCraft summed up the love of these boats in a single anecdote. A boatyard owner with a reputation for restoring boats had a rule: “The only hull he could bid on over the phone without seeing it in person was a Potter-built SeaCraft,” said Goldfarb.
A cross-section of a Seacraft hull showing longitudinal steps with graduated angles.
Goldfarb is not alone in his SeaCraft appreciation; the Classic SeaCraft site has 3,472 members. So what is it about these boats that draws such a devoted following?
Start with the variable-deadrise, longitudinally stepped hull, a groundbreaking design from builder Carl Moesly in the 1960s. Moesly designed it to be the perfect small fishing boat, taking advantage of the best of Ray Hunt’s deep-V design, yet balancing it with the slow-speed stability and efficiency of more flat-bottomed hulls. Variable deadrise means the angle of entry changes along the keel, with a sharper V forward that flattens aft. Longitudinally stepped means the hull is divided across the beam into three separate planing sections, with the lowest section along the centerline angled into a true deep-V. The next section out has a flatter deadrise, followed by a third section with an even flatter one. Visually, if you took a cross section, it looks like three hulls stacked on top of one another.
This design solved some of the inefficiencies of the deep-V, and particularly the problem of roll. The resulting ride provided exceptional rough-water handling both on a plane and while trolling, which brought a whole new level of operating freedom for 18- 20-foot boatowners.
The same 1969 center-console SeaCraft, during restoration.
Moesly owned the patent for the variable deadrise hull, but to devotees, SeaCraft started building true classics when he partnered with Bill Potter in 1968. You’ll hear all around the docks and on message boards about a “Potter-built SeaCraft,” which means one built between 1968 and 1980. “He was able to market the winning Moesly design combined with features that worked, a superior build quality, and a great dealer network,” said Goldfarb. Features attributed to Potter SeaCrafts include recessed handrails, a unique nonslip sole, recirculating liner vents that prevented rot, and integrating transverse frames with longitudinal stringers. Many regard the day Potter sold the company as the end of an era.
Getting your hands on a Potter hull in any state is considered a find by those willing to put in the restoration work. Goldfarb himself has owned an 18 and a 20; the latter he rebuilt in his garage.
Of course, some of today’s owners make modifications to accommodate modern outboards, particularly the heavier four-strokes—things like raising the decks or the transom well, or filling in the transom completely and adding a bracket.
Favorites include the 18 and 20 SF models, the Master Angler 20, and the 23 Outboard. SeaCraft did make boats up to 27 feet, such as the inboard-powered Master Angler 27 that had a cabin and optional tuna tower. The company also built a couple of sterndrive pleasurecraft. But it’s the center consoles that have the biggest following, particularly among Northeast striper fishermen.
Today, Tracker Marine Group owns the SeaCraft name. They had been building a limited production run of models based on the classic designs, but the company discontinued the line in 2010. That means that if you want a boat with the classic SeaCraft flavor, you’re going to have to search around. There are quite a few listed on Boats.com at the time of this writing, including several built by Potter. Visiting the Classic SeaCraft website is another great place to look.
Photos courtesy of Trayder/Classic SeaCraft
Pete McDonald writes for Boating, Yachting, and other marine and fishing publications. In the past, he has written for Power & Motoryacht and Salt Water Sportsman, and spent 11 years on staff as a technical editor at Boating. All things considered, at any given moment he would prefer to be fishing.
|Cockpit-Lautsprecher||JL Amp & Speakers|
|Bootsanhänger||2021 Continental Tandem|
|Aufkimmung am Heck||16deg|
|Kraftstofftank||227.12 l ()|