Chris Craft Commander Forum: * What is a Chris Craft Commander? ( Updated Photo Introduction )

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Chris-Craft 31

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What is a Chris Craft Commander? ( Updated Photo Introduction )

The CC Commander series began many years before 1964, using traditional wood construction, and they

are very fine boats (too).

However, the focus of this site, is the Chris Craft fiberglass Commander, which began in 1964 and

lasted essentialy in the same general form until 1972 and continuing many years thereafter.

These boats are bulletproof, and generally retain their value so well, they are often the candidate for

a hundred-thousand-dollar refurbishing.

Here are a few photos of what a Chris Craft Commander looks like.

This is John Even aboard his 36′ Commander TF on Lake Michigan, John has since moved up to a very similar

looking but larger 42′ TF.

Here is the boat John now owns, PUNCHLIST, a fabulous diesel powered 42′ Tournament Fisherman.

Here is Philippe Boulanger’s fabulous looking 42′ Sports Cruiser, Montreal, Canada, on the St. Lawrence

River system.

Here is my 1966 38 Express, TRADITION.

Here is Bill Policastro’s 23′ Commander, sitting on Lake Michigan at Traverse City.

Here is Don Endres’s 42′ Aft Cabin Commander, sitting on an elongated version of the original 38′ Commander hull.

Here is the Mathis’s 47′ Commander!

Here is an impressive lineup of Commanders at a recent rendezvous.

Here is Terry Hart’s 45′ TF backed up to the yellow hull 45′ TF, and also sitting next to a 42′ Commander.

Hopefully these few photos will give you an idea of why this particular classic Chris Craft is still so

hotly sought after. Look at those classic lines, and then also remember the very first fiberglass Commander

was designed to withstand 3-times the stress of running full speed in a six foot sea. The standard was set

for all Commanders that followed (and there are many sizes and variations). The Commander series is the

standard for classic fiberglass cruisers of the era.

Anyone interested in getting a full overview of the Commander line, might consider the following book that

outlines the model line from 19′ to 60′ foot. It could be a very good reference book for anyone owning these

boats or just interested in knowing more. Naturally you can find just about all the same information here on


the forum free if you do a little searching.

As of May 2012, the Second Edition of this book has also SOLD OUT, but be patient, there will be another printing.

The original 38-foot design caused such a stir at the 1964 New York Boat Show started it all. The design was

Chris-Craft Commander

done under secrecy, the boat was shipped under wraps, and nobody, even the dealers, had a clue about it before

the sheets were pulled off at the boat show. This model became the muscle-cruiser of the era, especially when

powered by those big blocks.

If you are starting in on a hunt for information here on The Forum, be sure to check out this thread

and be sure to also check out our MASTER INDEX files, loaded with information you will not be able to find

anywhere else.

regards, Paul

This message has been edited by FEfinaticP on May 17, 2012 10:34 AM

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