Story and Pictures by Rob Pryor

After spending the summers at Normandy Beach NJ since 1955 and enjoying the use of the Barnegat Bay, my family and I decided it was time for a new boat. 

In January of 1965, we went to the New York Boat Show and found a 16’ Chris Craft Cavalier Ski Boat which would be perfect for our summer fun.  We took delivery at Belmar Marina in June of the boat we named Pryority.  For the next Twenty Two Summers, we had lots of skiing including five-man pyramid’s, ski  jumps, even flying on a “Kite with ski’s” giving us lots of pleasure with our Cavalier. 

At the end of 1987, my brother and I became very busy with work and I sold the summer house and moved two miles inland.  The next twenty-seven years the Cavalier sat on the trailer in the side yard in disrepair. 

In 2015 I decided it was time to rebuild the boat.  In February I put the boat in the garage ready to turn it over.  I took the 283 V8 / 185hp to Van Ness Engineering for a complete re-build.  The engine was completed November.  I replaced the ribs and bottom on the boat and did a lot of internet search to find needed parts. 

Pryority was completed with the finishing touches and ready for the summer of 2016.  



This website serves so many purposes.  First of all, it is to share the experiences of those who love vintage boats and boating.  Those viewers who are lucky enough to belong to a chapter of the Antique and Classic Boat Society get to share those experiences face-to-face. 

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Individual pictures of a boat will be included in the next Tuesday Tour of Vintage Boats
          include owner’s name(s), year, make, model, given name, location, and photographer if known

Boat Story may include several pictures.  The story might focus on the history, or restoration, or travels with the boat, etc. 

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9 Comments

  1. That 65 Chris Craft Cavalier is an awesome boat. I bought one used in 1968 and owned it for about 10 years. I pulled up to 15 skiers with that boat. I lost track of it over the years and have never seen another until now. I wish I had mine back. Great job and story .

    • Bob Thanks for your comment. Growing up, we had a lot of good years with the Cavalier. Only six skiers at once, Managed a five man pyramids. In 2014 It was either going in a dumpster or re-build it.
      With to many memories I decided to get it back to its original condition. As well as enjoying it on the water now. I’ve been showing it at the boat shows in NJ, LHACBS, BBACBS, and Phil ACBS and having good response. I would forward some pictures but unable to copy them here.
      I reached a point in my life to start down sizing. The Cavalier is For Sale and looking for a good home. Rob

      • Hi, I have also a Chris Craft Cavalier 16 from 1965. I have done some job with it but have same left. I am interested to see more picture of it inside. I want to get it back to original. I live in Sweden and the boat was sold as new here directly from the factory in Italy.

        Can you please email some more pictures of your boat?

        • June 2, 2018
          Johnny
          Thanks for your interest in my boat and restoring another CC Cavalier Ski Boat
          Photos and material info. available.
          Rob Pryor [email protected]
          ( If email address does not show, contact ACBS for my email and I will forward boat photos)

  2. Hello,

    I too had a 1965 Cavalier for several enjoyable summers.

    If you have need for a factory stern flag / light mast, I have one.

    All the best

    • E M Waterbury 1/12/19
      Thanks for your response. I have the the original stern mast and light globe, had it re-chromed with restoration.
      Would enjoy seeing photo’s of your boat and restoration comments
      Rob Pryor [email protected]

  3. I grew up through high school spending time on Rocky Fork Lake in Hillsboro, Ohio. I lived 45 minutes from the lake but my parents and grandparents had campers on site at the lake. My grandfather owned a boat that I grew up with. It was a 1965 Chris Craft 18.5′ boat with a 327 Corvette engine with a 4 barrel carburetor. It was a Cavalier model. It was the sweetest of boats ! My grandfather died of of a heart attack in 1983. My grandmother had no choice in 1983 but to sell it. At the time, I was 23 yrs old, freshly married, bought a new car in 1982 and didn’t think I could afford to buy it from my grandma. One of the biggest mistakes I’ve ever made, in retrospect ! I would love to find this boat and buy it now that I’m a little riskier and have a little mor financial stability. As I recall, it had blue as the main color in the center of the boat and gold on the bottom. I used to help grandpa paint it every spring in his garage before boating season

    • Kevin Stockwell 9/14/2020
      Came across your comments of your about your grandfathers boat. As with me I am sure your family had many fun memories. If your unable to find the CC Cavalier your grandfather had and still interested
      in having a CC Cavalier 16′ 283 /185 hp. , mine is For Sale
      Rob Pryor [email protected]

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