Why does Old Town 16.5' Lapstrake loose control and cavitate at 20 mph+/-

by Jim Shetrawski
(Rindge, NH)

Long story short.

Had beautiful 1999 Malibu Sunsetter for the last 13 years, but it needed to go where it could be used more.

Purchased the required pontoon for us older folks.

Then I decided it was time for the old wood boat.

Looking for something simple, but cool and found a 1963 16.5' runabout made by Old Town Canoe.

Boat's in great shape with a 1988's 55hp Yamaha outboard.

Lapstrake construction, not been in water since 2011.

Filled right up with water when put into lake overnight, pumped her out the next day, minor infiltration.

One week later, no leaks!

Problem: Boat planes out at maybe 10 mph and rides well.

Any more acceleration beyond that causes almost a complete lose of steering, a steep roll to port and prop cavitation.

I've been in and owned boats of all sorts for 40 years but never had this experience.

It's a dangerous loss of control and I would like to get it corrected ASAP.

My guess is the outboard?

Plan is to cruise the boat this summer and then put her in my shop for repairs and the like.

Was going to re-power with new four stroke next spring as this will be a classy daily driver and not a show piece!

Also, anyone have an idea where I could track down a pair of the "Old Town" cast names plates?

Comments for Why does Old Town 16.5' Lapstrake loose control and cavitate at 20 mph+/-

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Jul 06, 2014
Steering Issues
by: Paul

When I bought my 1967 Trojan 31 it had weird steering / veering starboard issues as I accelerated.
Eventually detected a sheen on the water at the marina coming from a leak on one side of my trim tabs. (hydraulic fluid)

As I increased speed the force of the water on one of the two tabs pushed it up and the other remained down.
Explaining the unusual veering as speed increased.

Easy fix below the water line so boat was hauled out for that.

Now, every time my boat is lifted or hauled I inspect the hydraulic hoses and clamps.

Clamps in rough shape this spring so replaced.

Hope this is useful

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