Intro to Evinrude

From: Pat Stevesand <stevpm@...>
Date: Mon, 27 Jul 1998 23:56:54 -0500

Hi. My name is Mike.

Discovering this site was a rare (for me) case of finding EXACTLY what I
was looking for on the Web.

Last year we bought a small cabin on an island in a lake chain in
Wisconsin (access by road, not by boat). I've never really been a water
person, but the 2000 acre expanse of wet highway just outside our back
door got me thinking about boats. I looked at some, read about others,
and found an unusual and retro-looking tri-hull on a marina lot in a
town near the lake. It was an Evinrude Sweet 16, it seemed in good
shape, it looked old and cool (1964 as it turned out), and it wasn't for
sale, just being "fixed for a guy".

The next weekend, the local paper advertised a country auction.
Several, actually, as the local population is aging fast. This one
happened to be on our island, just a half-mile walk from the cabin. At
the bottom of the listing was a boat. As I read the description, I
realized it was the same boat I had seen at the marina.

By the number of people studying and stroking the boat, I figured I'd
have stiff competetion in the bidding, and probably it would go too high
for me (this was after all a bizarre impulse, I'd never owned a boat,
and I didn't want to abandon all logic). In the event, there was only
one other bidder and he wasn't serious. So for $1200, I walked away
with it.

The Gray Shark has a closed bow, is gun metal gray over white with an
orange stripe at the waistline (maybe they all are), and has a
washtub-size 90 HP engine in the same colors that looks like it's never
been separated from the hull. It has the original canopy and all the
snap-on curtains, the red and white tilt forward bucket seats still have
the flotation cushions underneath, a deep-throated chrome horn is
mounted on the bow, a wide angle rearview mirror is on top of the
dashboard, and the owner's manual, control installation instructions,
and 1964 national listing of Evinrude dealers are in a waterproof
envelope next to the throttle. It looks like a 1960s Pontiac Bonneville
and turns heads in a way that a boat costing 10 times as much probably

It turns out that the late owner bought it in 1967, used it rarely, and
kept it on the island in a brick boathouse for the last 31 years. His
son, who was holding the auction, was pleased that it would stay on the

There must have been a very active dealer in the area in the early
Sixties, because on the same island there is a beat up vintage Johnson
16' I/O moldering away in the back lot of a resort, and last week I saw
an ad for yet another local auction featuring another Sweet 16 that
"Needs Work".

All is not perfect of course. The Shark ran beautifully for two weeks,
but last weekend it began acting up. At trolling speed it'll hum along
all day, but after it warms up, advancing the throttle beyond no-wake
speed causes it to stall and kill. At this writing, it's bobbing at the
dock of the same marina, awaiting a diagnosis. I'd love to know if
anybody else has had similar problems. For that matter, I'd love to
hear about any experiences with Evinrude boats, and look forward to
learning as much as I can about them.

Received on Tuesday, 28 July 1998

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