Classic Yachts

The "Golden Age of Motoryachts" is generally considered to be the 1920's and 30's, and many of these boats are still with us, offering a glimpse into life in much simpler times.   I grew up and learned about boats aboard our family's Lake Union Dreamboat, and came to appreciate their rugged comfort, good handling and seakeeping abilities. 

Below are some of the classic and historic vessels I have worked on. (All drawings are by me.)

Classic Restoration Projects:

  • Argosy - Our family yacht for 11 years. 65' Watts/Higgins design built in Tacoma 1925. That's her above, at anchor in South Puget Sound. [website]
  • Carlisle II - 65' 1917 Mosquito Fleet Foot Ferry, currently operating in Bremerton-Port Orchard.

  • Carmelita -- 68' Harold Lee design, Mojean & Erickson built 1935.  Obtained U.S. Coast Guard certification for 35 passengers.
  • Dorothea -- Naval architecture and marine engineering support for the massive Seattle refit 2006-2007.  104' 1965 William Garden design, Vic Franck built.  Tragically destroyed by fire 2007. [website]
  • Malibu -- Naval architecture support for modifications. 100' Ted Geary design, Blanchard built, 1925. Rick Etsell, captain 2015-present.
  • Olympus -- Rick Etsell captain, 2008-2015.  1929 New York Launch, 92'
    More details  | Owner's website  |  Facebook Page
  • Thea Foss -- Naval architecture and marine engineering support including drawing revisions for alterations, trim and stability calculations, etc. 120' Ted Geary design, steel hull, 1930.
  • Virginia V -- Naval architect for 2002 restoration including new superstructure design and construction plans, Coast Guard plan submittals, etc. 122', triple expansion steam engine, 1922.  Last of the Mosquito Fleet steamers, V5 is on the National Register of Historic Places.  [website]

More Classic Links:

Olympus   Rick Etsell is captain of the glorious 1929 motoryacht Olympus.

Relax...    An article from a 1935 Pacific Motorboat, which epitomizes the appeal of cruising in the classic style.

Fantail Motoryachts   The Great Fantail Motoryachts of the Pacific Northwest.   Also, I've added more about Ted Geary here.

Lake Union Dreamboats   Standardized cruisers from Blanchard Boat Co. and Lake Union Drydock produced between 1924 and 1930, many still going strong today.

Classic Yacht Books  A list of essential reading about classic motoryachts.

Classic Yacht Documentary.  Throwbacks to a Golden Age of Northwest Boats-- A tribute to the Designers who penned the Lines, To the Builders who Bent the Frames and to the Owners who labor in their Care" is a new documentary produced by John Sabella & Associates, Inc., now available at John Sabella, Inc.  Rick Etsell is interviewed in the video.

Flickr Classic Motoryacht Photos Group.  Free to join -- add your classic motoryacht photos to the group!

Classic Yacht Charters in the Pacific Northwest.  My page of info regarding chartering in the Pacific Northwest.

I am also the webmaster for the Classic Yacht Association's Boat Pages,  There you can find a wealth of photos and information about classic motoryachts.