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Hollywood Hank
08-05-2011, 04:15 PM
Just purchased this '65 Formula here in Norhern California. Very interested in getting in touch with owners of these boats around the same year.
Trying to figure out how many was made and such.

Thanks / Hank

jl1962
08-05-2011, 04:51 PM
Looks very nice and original. Love the colors. Did the old car come with it?

There are a few Formula Jr owners on the board including this guy:
http://www.donzi.net/forums/showthread.php?t=65952

silverghost
08-05-2011, 04:55 PM
WoW !
Two Formula Jr popped-up on this forum in the very same week.

Do a web forum search here above for more great information on your "Formula Jr" .
Use "Formula Jr" on the above search function.
There are several owners of these great boats who have posted much history & information here about the Formula Jr built by Thunderbird in the past.

Great Boat ~
The Thunderbird "Formula Jr' is the cousin to the great Donzi 16 & 18 "Classics".
Please tell us more about it's past history.
Do you have any more photos of it's engine & interior?
How long have you owned ths great little speedboat ?
Is that your great old car sitting outside at the curb ?

Hollywood Hank
08-08-2011, 12:14 PM
Hi! Well, yes it is our '59 Ford sitting at the curb..Just a daily driver.

I will post more pics of the engine and interior here shortly. Just picked it up the other day. Will clean it up today, rebuild the carb, replace hard dry fuel lines and such. Hope to launch it within a few weeks. It has been sitting for over 2 years now... It has a Ford V8 260cui engine with a aluminum Shelby intake, 4 barrel carb. Hopefully we'll start her up later this week!!

Hollywood Hank
08-08-2011, 10:49 PM
Cleaned it up a little today, and here's some pics. To me it appears it is all stock, except from some of the gauges and the driver seat.
I am told it is a Ford 260cui but has not checked any numbers yet!

silverghost
08-09-2011, 01:18 AM
Is that a pair of automotive style exhaust mufflers ?
If so~
They won't last very long.

Never saw anything like them on a boat in my 50+ years of boating.

h20loo
08-09-2011, 08:36 AM
Wow! What a gorgeous boat. I'd love to redo that interior- is that the correct frame for the seat or is it out of a later skisporter?

rustnrot
08-09-2011, 08:53 AM
They could very well be marine mufflers. I saw a set like these as a factory option (with Chris Craft stamped into them) on a 1965 Chris Craft Supersport once.

Hollywood Hank
08-09-2011, 10:05 AM
I do not know, they where in it when we bought it. Seems to be a modern seat. We will re-upholster the whole interior when winter comes, as well as restore the trailer!


Wow! What a gorgeous boat. I'd love to redo that interior- is that the correct frame for the seat or is it out of a later skisporter?

Hollywood Hank
08-10-2011, 06:09 PM
Just got her running!! New tires on the trailer tomorrow, then hoepfully launch time this weekend :)

Hollywood Hank
08-15-2011, 10:45 AM
So yesterday we launched the boat for the first time in the bay area. Went up the Mare Island straight up into the Napa River.
Took it easy just to "try everything out"
Coasted at 25-30 mph and it all seemed good. When we let go of the steering wheel, she veered heavily to the right all the time. Don't know if that is something adjustable or not, but will look into it.

Spent almost 3/4 of a tank of gas and had lotsa fun.

Conquistador_del_mar
08-15-2011, 01:05 PM
Congratulations! You might want to try to adjust the trim compensator at the back of the cavitation plate to try to get some of the steering problem resolved. I also noticed that you are running a right hand prop - most boats with the driver on the left do better with left hand props to help compensate for the primary weight of the driver, but if you always have passengers this would not be as much of an issue. What a great looking boat from the past - :yes: Bill

Hollywood Hank
08-15-2011, 07:47 PM
Hey man and thanks for the info. I'm new to the boating life, but are trying to learn and listen.
I'll check that out today and hopefully it'll be better next time.

Appreciate it / Hank


Congratulations! You might want to try to adjust the trim compensator at the back of the cavitation plate to try to get some of the steering problem resolved. I also noticed that you are running a right hand prop - most boats with the driver on the left do better with left hand props to help compensate for the primary weight of the driver, but if you always have passengers this would not be as much of an issue. What a great looking boat from the past - :yes: Bill

Hollywood Hank
08-16-2011, 09:52 PM
It seems there's way to many play in the steering. Really hard to manover at low speeds.
Is there anyone that can give some tips about what to do, or if there is a drawing or something that i can look at before taking this apart??

olredalert
08-17-2011, 10:11 PM
----Hank,,,Looking at your pics the steering "compensator isnt even on your drive. At least, I cant see it........Bill S

Hollywood Hank
08-18-2011, 10:54 AM
Yeah, i figured that out..There's no such compensator. Well well...time for another launch this weekend :)

silverghost
08-18-2011, 06:11 PM
Hank~
Few Eaton/Interceptor outdrives seem to have survived to be still in use today.
It is very rare to see one still on the water today.
Most have long since self-destructed; or corroded away and have been swapped for Volvo or Merc drives.

Eaton outdrive parts are very hard to find today.
Some do pop-up on ebay from time to time however.

There are also a handfull of very early Donzi/ Eaton drive owners here on this forum.
Eatons cannot handle a lot of horsepower. Their spare parts are very hard to find.
Spare parts seem to be made of "Un-obtainium".
The rubber outdrive bellow boots are especially hard to locate as New Old Stock items today.
These were reproduced in the aftermarket some time ago.
I would be looking for a spare bellows boot if I were you .
You will need a new bellows boot sooner or later.

Eaton-Interceptor dicontinued making these early out-drives decades ago.
I remember them when they were first brand new in the very early 60s !
They were then called Inboard-Outboards.
The entire boating industry was changed forever for the better by them & the early Volvo Aquamatics.

Re: Steering issues.
As others have stated the cavitation plate rudder torque skeg fin rudder would help overcome the steering issues that come from prop rotational torque steering issues.
You adjust this rudder fin to just slightly to one side off straight center line to overcome the torque steer issues caused by the prop's direction of rotation.
I would add a new fin.
If you cannot find a Eaton fin you should be able to adapt an early Volvo Aquamatic style torque rudder fin which is very easy to find new, or used in today's afermarket.
It is a single Stainless Steel cap machine screw installation.
It is also possible to fabricate that missing Eaton rudder torque fin out of plate aluminum.

Give us a photo of the underside of your outdrive's cavitation plate; which is the flat plate just above the propshaft & prop .
We will then see what type of fin mounting you may need to retrofit to your old Eaton outdrive...

..Also make sure that your entire steering cable & helm system is tight with no slack pr looseness at any of it's various connections.

Small Deep-V hull boats
by their very nature are not very agile & great handlers at very slow dockng speeds.
The missing torque rudder fin only adds to this problem of slow & high speed steering torque steering issues .

Replacing that missing torque fin should help quite a bit.
I would add a torque fin rudder skeg as soon as possible.

Hollywood Hank
08-19-2011, 10:38 AM
Hi!
Ok, that all makes sense.
I'll post a picture after the weekend.
I did tighten everything up and it does seem better. We're gonna try it out in the Califonia Delta over the weekend.

Appreciate the answer alot. Pic's coming soon!!!

H


Hank~
Few Eaton/Interceptor outdrives seem to have survived to be still in use today.
It is very rare to see one still on the water today.
Most have long since self-destructed; or corroded away and have been swapped for Volvo or Merc drives.

Eaton outdrive parts are very hard to find today.
Some do pop-up on ebay from time to time however.

There are also a handfull of very early Donzi/ Eaton drive owners here on this forum.
Eatons cannot handle a lot of horsepower. Their spare parts are very hard to find.
Spare parts seem to be made of "Un-obtainium".
The rubber outdrive bellow boots are especially hard to locate as New Old Stock items today.
These were reproduced in the aftermarket some time ago.
I would be looking for a spare bellows boot if I were you .
You will need a new bellows sooner or later.

Eaton-Interceptor dicontinued making these early out-drives decades ago.
I remember them when they were first brand new in the very early 60s !
They were then called Inboard-Outboards.
The entire boating industry was changed forever for the better by them & the early Volvo Aquamatics.

Re: Steering issues.
As others have stated the cavitation plate rudder torque skeg fin rudder would help overcome the steering issues that come from prop rotational torque steering issues.
You adjust this rudder fin slightly to one side off straight center line to overcome the torque steer issues of the prop's direction of rotation.
I would add a new fin.
If you cannot find a Eaton fin you should be able to adapt an early Volvo Aquamatic style torque rudder fin which is very easy to find new, or used in today's afermarket.
It is a single Stainless Steel cap machine screw installation.
It is also possible to fabricate that missing Eaton fin out of plate aluminum.

Give us a photo of the underside of your outdrive's cavitation plate; which is the flat plate just above the propshaft & prop .
We will then see what type of fin mounting you may need to retrofit to your old Eaton outdrive...

..Also make sure that your entire steering cable & helm system is tight with no slack pr looseness at any of it's various connections.

Small Deep-V hull boats
by their very nature are not very agile & great handlers at very slow dockng speeds.
The missing torque rudder fin only adds to this problem of slow & high speed steering torque steer issues .

Replacing that missing torque fin should help quite a bit.
I would add a torque fin rudder skeg soon.

Hollywood Hank
08-21-2011, 02:55 PM
Had it out in the Califonia Delta over the weekend..Went fine and had fun. Still I THINK there's a little too much play in the steering, and it still veers right.
I'll post pic's of the outdrive tomorrow and maybe somebody can come up with some good ideas.
Maybe even change the outdrive??

Had it up to 50mph and that was fun ;)

Hollywood Hank
08-22-2011, 10:42 AM
Here's some pic's of the outdrive and steering!

Conquistador_del_mar
08-22-2011, 02:15 PM
Hank,
Someone added the rusted steel double finned trim compensator that you show in the pictures. Loosen it and try moving it slightly to have the leading edges facing to port to see if that helps. Bill

Craig S
08-24-2011, 12:13 PM
Wow! What a beautiful boat and daily driver!

saintaignan
10-10-2011, 05:10 PM
Here's some pic's of fomula JR from France before 1966

biggiefl
10-12-2011, 02:13 PM
Your steering is probably fine. These boats are tough at slow speed as they "wander". It is common on most deep V hulls, especially with I/O's. You almost need to think ahead a few seconds and automatically compensate for it before it happens. Use the SWARTZ Lonestar!

zelatore
10-12-2011, 03:33 PM
"use the swartz Lonestar!"


My respect for Biggiefl just went up a couple notches!

you can never go wrong with Mel Brooks!

biggiefl
10-12-2011, 09:46 PM
Mongo only pawn... in game of life.

Hollywood Hank
07-31-2012, 11:53 PM
I am trying to replace the rubber boot, as it's taking in water and i just had a brake down. The prop spun on the bearing, and i'm taking it all apart to check it thoroughly. Does anyone know where i can see a manual, or picture of how to take the outdrive off of the boat???

Hollywood Hank
08-06-2012, 11:22 AM
So, i took the whole outdrive apart to check if there was anything wrong with it. Everything looks great, took it all apart and cleaned it. Might need a new prop, but apart from that, it's now all back together and she's ready to go.
Unfortunetaly, we need to get a bigger boat for the family, so we will sell our Formula. Let me know if anyone is interested, we are looking to get around $4500