Brian Gagnon shares this 2016 ACBS-ABM Symposium Report.

Twenty-one attendees from as far away as Miami and Chicago, came to the Antique Boat Museum in Clayton, NY to listen to, watch, and sometimes participate in a wide range of subjects.  Events started Friday afternoon with outboard motor expert Peter Hunn starting with a lecture on the history of outboards.  We then moved to the collection on display at the ABM and then drove to the nearby Doebler storage building where many more outboards are stored.  This building is normally not open to the public so it was a real treat for many.  That evening we all had dinner together at The Clipper Inn, one of the nicest restaurants in the area and then retired to get ready for Saturday’s events.

On Saturday morning, participants had a choice of either going to St. Lawrence Restoration for a seminar and demonstration on repairing fiberglass boats or staying at the ABM to learn from Bo Muller how to repair damaged planks.  It was also possible to attend both if one wanted to hit only the highlights.  Both breakfast and lunch were provided as part of the registration fee and then it was time to go and hear Kathy Muller present how to properly stain and finish planking.  The day concluded with a great presentation by Tony Mollica on the association between local builder Fitzgerald & Lee and Gar Wood.  Dinner that evening was on our own.

Breakfast was again provided on Sunday morning and then the weekend concluded but not until after two additional seminars.  One was done by Doug Mehring on lost wax and sand casting while the other was on how to get the most efficiency out of your boat.  The latter was conducted by noted marine mechanic Hans Wahl.

The ABM’s new Educator, Debra Rantanen, provided everyone with a personalized event folder, took care of the handouts that accompanied all the sessions, arranged name tags for all and took a LOT of pictures.  She seemed to be EVERYWHERE all at the same time.  All in all, a wonderful, educational weekend!

The ACBS-ABM Symposium Report and photographs were contributed by Brian Gagnon, past president of the Antique & Classic Boat Society.


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