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Old 02-12-2022, 13:20   #1
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21 Davidson “Chugger” anyone know about these boats?

Hi all,

I just picked up this Davidson “Chugger “ it has a 4 cylinder diesel “westland”

I’m having trouble finding any factory markings on the hull.

Does anyone on here know these boats ?

It’s a double ender so not where they usually are on a Davidson life boat ,on the stern.

Any info at all on these hulls would be appreciated.

Happy holidays
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Old 03-12-2022, 05:11   #2
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Re: 21 Davidson “Chugger” anyone know about these boats?

I don't know the answer but that is a sweet looking little trawler. Nice !
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Old 03-12-2022, 18:27   #3
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Re: 21 Davidson “Chugger” anyone know about these boats?

When Vancouver was still a village in the rainforest, Hamish Davidson - how Scottish can you get? - ran a company called Davidson Manufacturing Ltd. located on Georgia Street, very near the entrance to Stanley Park and with Benson's Shipyard and Coal Harbour just on the other side of that street. Jimmy Spillsbury's radio factory that outfitted all the fishing boats on this coast was two blocks away. I knew Hamish only slightly, and always as "Old Man Davidson".

He had been building small wooden watercraft for use by Vancouver's watermen and Yotsmen since the end of WWII (and probably before), but when I knew him in the mid-50s he was pioneering building these small craft in "frozen snot" and supporting the pioneering by continuing to build small wooden boats such as yours.

Your boat is typical of the lifeboat-hulls built be Hamish and his son. The superstructure looks late-50ish, so it could be original. I have never heard of a "Westland" engine, but there used to be a "Westland" diesel repair outfit, tho' I believe they have "gone west" by now.

I would think that if there is a "Westland" reference on your engine, it may be because some fairly common diesel like perhaps a Perkins (as used by busses and "lorries" in "the Old Country") had been "marinized" by Westland.

For some reason I think there was a connexion twixt the Davidsons and the Clarkes who owned and ran a vessel, a ferry-cum-excursion boat, called Hollyburn (for obvious reasons). Hollyburn plied the excursion route to WigWam Inn at the top of Indian Arm. WigWam Inn had, by my youth in Vancouver, essentially been abandoned and was derelict, but having always been accessible only by a three-hour voyage in Hollyburn, (ordinary blokes rarely having any kinda boat of their own), the place was completely intact, and all the furnishings, including a functioning wind-up Victrola c/w "platters", were still there from its glory days during America's "prohibition" when it was a gathering place for all sorts of unsavory types engaged in rum running. What times we had both aboard Hollyburn and at WigWam. I still remember some of the "young ladies" in our "set" with great affection :-)!

Nowadays, "Davidsons" is no more, and WigWam is, I believe, an outstation of the Royal Vancouver Yacht Club.

Treasure your little boat! She might very well remember Indian Arm and WigWam Inn, as I do, when they were still delightfully Kiplingesque "outposts of The Empire". With apologies to Old Man Rudyard:

"Can't you 'ear the paddles chunkin'
from Stanley Park to WigWam Inn"...

Cheers
TrentePieds
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Old 03-12-2022, 19:46   #4
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Re: 21 Davidson “Chugger” anyone know about these boats?

Quote:
Originally Posted by TrentePieds View Post
When Vancouver was still a village in the rainforest, Hamish Davidson - how Scottish can you get? - ran a company called Davidson Manufacturing Ltd. located on Georgia Street, very near the entrance to Stanley Park and with Benson's Shipyard and Coal Harbour just on the other side of that street. Jimmy Spillsbury's radio factory that outfitted all the fishing boats on this coast was two blocks away. I knew Hamish only slightly, and always as "Old Man Davidson".

He had been building small wooden watercraft for use by Vancouver's watermen and Yotsmen since the end of WWII (and probably before), but when I knew him in the mid-50s he was pioneering building these small craft in "frozen snot" and supporting the pioneering by continuing to build small wooden boats such as yours.

Your boat is typical of the lifeboat-hulls built be Hamish and his son. The superstructure looks late-50ish, so it could be original. I have never heard of a "Westland" engine, but there used to be a "Westland" diesel repair outfit, tho' I believe they have "gone west" by now.

I would think that if there is a "Westland" reference on your engine, it may be because some fairly common diesel like perhaps a Perkins (as used by busses and "lorries" in "the Old Country") had been "marinized" by Westland.

For some reason I think there was a connexion twixt the Davidsons and the Clarkes who owned and ran a vessel, a ferry-cum-excursion boat, called Hollyburn (for obvious reasons). Hollyburn plied the excursion route to WigWam Inn at the top of Indian Arm. WigWam Inn had, by my youth in Vancouver, essentially been abandoned and was derelict, but having always been accessible only by a three-hour voyage in Hollyburn, (ordinary blokes rarely having any kinda boat of their own), the place was completely intact, and all the furnishings, including a functioning wind-up Victrola c/w "platters", were still there from its glory days during America's "prohibition" when it was a gathering place for all sorts of unsavory types engaged in rum running. What times we had both aboard Hollyburn and at WigWam. I still remember some of the "young ladies" in our "set" with great affection :-)!

Nowadays, "Davidsons" is no more, and WigWam is, I believe, an outstation of the Royal Vancouver Yacht Club.

Treasure your little boat! She might very well remember Indian Arm and WigWam Inn, as I do, when they were still delightfully Kiplingesque "outposts of The Empire". With apologies to Old Man Rudyard:

"Can't you 'ear the paddles chunkin'
from Stanley Park to WigWam Inn"...

Cheers
TrentePieds
Hi,
Thank you for the reply,
This one is fibreglass and I’m not sure it’s the original superstructure.
The engine for sure says made in Canada right on the exhaust manifold ,I’m not 100% about Westland but will double check.
Would be nice to know what kind of motor it is as I’d like to adjust the valves etc.
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Old 03-12-2022, 20:09   #5
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21 Davidson “Chugger” anyone know about these boats?

That’s a great bit of history Trente Pieds, thank you. In answer to the OP’s other question, it’s a Kubota V1305.... I think...... I had the Betamarine marinisation in my little tugboat, a very similar boat to yours but made in UK
Hmmm oil filler is in the wrong place for a 1305, it could be the 38hp model.
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Old 27-12-2022, 14:36   #6
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Re: 21 Davidson “Chugger” anyone know about these boats?

You’ve got yourself a very rare and coveted Vancouver made boat there. I am currently in the middle of a complete refit of a ‘77 Chugger21. It’s the second one I’ve taken on and one of my favorite boat designs of all time. They are extremely seaworthy and efficient hulls.
Converted the first one to plug-in electric with solar canopy back in 2014. This one is staying diesel as the owner will have no power at the dock.
Feel free to contact me if you have any technical questions (they do come with a few flaws as do all boat designs) and I’ll be happy to help.
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Old 27-12-2022, 14:58   #7
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Re: 21 Davidson “Chugger” anyone know about these boats?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Smoothwake View Post
You’ve got yourself a very rare and coveted Vancouver made boat there. I am currently in the middle of a complete refit of a ‘77 Chugger21. It’s the second one I’ve taken on and one of my favorite boat designs of all time. They are extremely seaworthy and efficient hulls.
Converted the first one to plug-in electric with solar canopy back in 2014. This one is staying diesel as the owner will have no power at the dock.
Feel free to contact me if you have any technical questions (they do come with a few flaws as do all boat designs) and I’ll be happy to help.
Hi,Thanks for the reply,
I’m planning to get a


https://shop.pkys.com/Balmar-XT-SF-2...or_p_8180.html


And a lithium battery plus inverter.


It seems to run really well but needs a lot of small stuff done ( one run rail,engine needs painting from where the rad capped leaked) I’m planning to get a hard top made from aluminum that’s a little bigger as the current one allows rainwater into the wheel house.


Any idea what they are worth?


Happy holidays ,
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Old 27-12-2022, 17:38   #8
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Re: 21 Davidson “Chugger” anyone know about these boats?

Is that alternator and lithium pack for extended house power for while at anchor?
I’m not surprised the helm station is getting wet. They all do. I just molded a fibreglass canopy with generous overhang for this boat molded, an extension to raise the windshield (they are built too short) and will be adding full canvas as well as it rains here a lot.
As to value, it all depends on condition; anywhere from $5k-$25k but at +50yrs old I would not see one commanding a higher price despite the quality
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Old 27-12-2022, 20:00   #9
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Re: 21 Davidson “Chugger” anyone know about these boats?

That looks really nice.

I’ve noticed the windshield is low for me and im 6.3 so I’m thinking I will have the aluminum top built from the top of the dash up with bigger windows and a gravity feed diesel tank for the Dickinson on the roof ,maybe some mounts for solar panels,luggage tie down’s on the roof.

Yes,it’s pretty hard to find shore power at a lot of places north of here (Sunshine Coast,BC) so I’m thinking that alternator will be a good alternative even is a guy had to run the motor to top up the battery every day at anchor it’s easier then bringing a gas gene.
Solar panels seem great but don’t really do much a lot of the year here.

Is there anything else you would recommend doing before heading out on extended voyages?
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Old 27-12-2022, 23:29   #10
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Re: 21 Davidson “Chugger” anyone know about these boats?

Small world, I’m over here in Comox.
The two items I recommend are scalloping the heel of the keel for better flow over the prop to improve fuel economy and steering control in reverse, and adding rolling chocks that allow for drying out the boat on a sandy beach.
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Old 28-12-2022, 10:23   #11
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Re: 21 Davidson “Chugger” anyone know about these boats?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Clamdigger888 View Post
That looks really nice.

I’ve noticed the windshield is low for me and im 6.3 so I’m thinking I will have the aluminum top built from the top of the dash up with bigger windows and a gravity feed diesel tank for the Dickinson on the roof ,maybe some mounts for solar panels,luggage tie down’s on the roof.

Yes,it’s pretty hard to find shore power at a lot of places north of here (Sunshine Coast,BC) so I’m thinking that alternator will be a good alternative even is a guy had to run the motor to top up the battery every day at anchor it’s easier then bringing a gas gene.
Solar panels seem great but don’t really do much a lot of the year here.

Is there anything else you would recommend doing before heading out on extended voyages?

Welcome to the (yet to be formed) Chugger Club! I believe you're the 4th Chugger owner that I/we know. We're the owners of the 21' that Smoothwake is describing and retrofitting.
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