Change to "17" from "16" in Classic 16-foot 7-inch Hull

A conversation among Whalers
Posts: 9244
Joined: Fri Oct 09, 2015 12:25 pm
Location: Michigan, Lower Peninsula

Change to "17" from "16" in Classic 16-foot 7-inch Hull

Postby jimh » Thu Mar 18, 2021 1:08 pm

ASIDE on the "16" and "17" hulls: these two model designators were used for the same length boat, a 16-foot 7-inch hull. The initial model designator was "16" beginning with initial production in 1961, when Boston Whaler was owned by Fisher-Pierce (or in essence by Dick Fisher and Bob Pierce). FIsher gave the boat the designator "16" perhaps because he was an old-fashioned guy and did not round hull lengths up to the next largest whole number of feet.

In 1969 Boston Whaler was acquired by CML, but Fisher stayed on as a consultant until 1972.

In c.1976 the hull bottom mold for the 16-foot 7-inch hullwas changed to incorporate a new design at the bow (that later became known as the "smirk" bow) and the model designator changed to "17". This change may have been made by Bob Dougherty.

Mr. Dougherty was head of Boston Whaler design around that time. He wanted to give some organization to the boat length designators. Boats with odd-number hull length designators, like the 13-footer, the 15-footer, the 19-footer, and the 21-footer, all had rounded bottom hulls. The newer vee-bottom hull boats like the Outrage 22, and later the Outrage 18, Outrage 20, and the Outrage 24, were all designated with even numbers. The only exception was the classic "16" hull, and this was renamed to be a "17" in order to fit into the even-odd correlation with vee or round bottom. (The Outrage 24 did get "enlarged" by marketing to become the Outrage 25, perhaps over Bob's objection.)