View Full Version : Just bought a 1969 Ski Sporter - Info Needed

08-24-2012, 10:54 AM
Hi guys, new to the forums, just picked up a 1969 Ski Sporter from a guy on Lake Joe in the Muskokas in Ontario. Looking for some information and opinions on the boat.

It was advertised as a 351C engine, but I'm 99.9% sure she's a 289 as it's an interceptor motor, and I think it had the 6 bolt valve covers. Not a big deal either way as I know a ton more about Windsors than I do the Clevelands. (I'll post an engine bay pic in a bit)

Anyways. If she is an interceptor, is there an easy way to distinguish between the 165 and 210 hp versions? I kinda bought this thing on a whim because it looked cool and I've been a huge Donzi fan for a long time now....seeing a 22'er on our lake a few weeks ago rekindled my love, and well...here we are.

Any good places to find information/specs/original parts (or information on what was original on these boats) for the 1969 year etc. Also, does anyone know anything or have pictures of the original Trailers that these boats came with? The owner has a trailer, he's not sure if it's original or not. If it's original I'd like to convince him to sell it to me.


08-24-2012, 12:42 PM
The 165 HP was a 260 cu. in. with a 2bbl. carb. I don't think it was still available in 1969.

08-24-2012, 01:14 PM
Doesn't the rear vent mean it's earlier?...say '67ish?

08-24-2012, 01:18 PM
is there a big dish in the bow?

as far as trailers don't over pay for something cause its "original"

you would be better off to go buy a brand new one and not have to worry about servicing it

08-24-2012, 01:49 PM
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Yah there's a small dip in the bow...looks alot bigger in the pictures than it actually is. It's only an inch or so and has been there since the guy I bought it off off picked it up 12 years ago. Not too worried about it. If I keep it it'll get a deck-off restoration in a couple years.

08-24-2012, 03:30 PM
A 351C would be a tight fit in a 16. The easiest way to tell them apart is on the 351C, the water leaves the block vertically in front of the intake manifold, on the others, it leaves horizontal from the intake manifold. The pic is the 351C that was in my 18.

08-24-2012, 05:16 PM
the 351w in a 16 is tight a 351C would be even tighter.

looking at the pics this may very well be an early 16 earlier than a 69. the lack of clamshell vents and the rear louvre it must be a functional vent with the blower. the grab rail is not there is there any evidence it was there and the holes were filled and faired? if you have any numbers on the motor ,bell housing, drive it would help.

I can give you some historical data on the 16 and can give you an idea on how it was setup. is the deck cored with wood?

if there is any thing I can help with just shoot me a pm

08-24-2012, 05:32 PM
Thanks, I've been reading through the forums most of the day and have found some information. I'll get the hull ID number when I pick the boat up (Does anyone have a picture of where it is?). The deck was refinished on the top side but never removed. (How do you split the deck anyways...do you have to cut it, or just pull it apart???). Also, if there is no water coming out of the exhaust when the boat is running I'm assuming this is an issue....how do the cooling systems work on these boats anyways...am I looking for a plugged intake hose somewhere, water pump etc? I've been working on cars (mainly mustangs....hence buying a boat with a Ford Motor in it) and small engines/ outboards up to 135 hp the past 10 years so I have the mechanical knowledge, I'm just brand new to the I/O scene.

08-24-2012, 05:43 PM
the hull number will be handwritten in black marker on the back side of the dash and up by the backing plate of the bow eye. the deck is screwed together at the deck hull seam and has small glass tabs in the floor locker , rear seat and ski locker areas these need to be cut then the deck can be split from the hull. the cooling is a tad different from auto stuff and lack of water could be a bad impellor or plugged plumbing or both . i would not run the motor like that and make sure the impellor has not broken up and caused issues downstream.

post some pics of the motor and look on the top of the drive for a silver tag with a serial number, engine block casting numbers by the starter and a metal tag on the bell housing with numbers on it. that will help me help you ID they boat.

Rob M
08-24-2012, 06:58 PM
I remember seeing that boat at the Lake Joe Club about 8 years ago. The deck was wonky then. Looks like deck core rot.

08-24-2012, 09:24 PM
I have an original Rocket trailer for a 16 if you want it...free. I'm in Minnesota....

08-25-2012, 10:40 AM
I'll get all that information today when I pick the boat up. I'm trying to find some information on what these boats weigh but all I'm find is a 1500 lb gross weight. Has anyone ever weighed one of these classic sweet 16's. Just want to ensure it can be towed with the Ford Escape (3500 lbs tow cap.)

08-25-2012, 10:48 AM
my 16 with a 351w/Volvo sitting on an overbuilt custom steel tandem trailer 3400-3500lbs depending on fuel and equipment. I would figure around 2400-2500 lbs for the boat rigged with fuel then plus your trailer. depending on the era of the 16 the layup and layup methods were different. I towed my 16 with a ford 3.3 6cyl windstar many miles without issue.

08-27-2012, 02:21 PM
I took a bunch of pictures this weekend, and of course as soon as I got home my blackberry went for a crap. I'll be back up next weekend to GPS/re photgraph the boat.

The only number I got was off the engine. its D1OE-6105-AA (so, somehow it has a 1971 engine in it?), and the intake manifold had a FoMoCo C5 casting number. The carb is an original looking holley 4 barrel leading me to believe its a 210 hp interceptor engine. Hull number behind the dash, and on the transom have some overspray from when the deck was repainted so I can't make them out. I didn't check the drive or the nose (forgot).

Also, there is no issue with the impeller, it pushes a good amount of water through, and runs cold. I'm thinking the t-stat might have been removed at some point.

It also looks like the deck was off at some point, but the tank appears to be original. Perhaps the deck was removed to replace the original engine? I wish people kept records of their toys 1/10th as good as I keep of mine, so any future buyer won't have to ask so many questions.

And to answer an earlier question, yes the deck is cored with wood.

08-27-2012, 03:55 PM
not really all that strange probably a cracked block and they replaced the original motor with a 71 302 block and kept all the "tinware" hard to judge what you have without knowing the casting on the heads and the cam specs. I have an 87 5.0 ho that's dressed up with the original 225 hp 289 trimmings

08-27-2012, 04:20 PM
I'll yank the valve covers and get the head casting numbers this weekend...I'll also try to find the number near the backing plate of the bow eye, and on the original drive (the original drive is actually in my garage, so I'll check that tonight.) Anything else I can look for that might indicate what year it was built, or were they pretty well the same through the early years?

PS - Tell me more about the 87 HO 302 you're running....I own 2 classic 5.0 mustangs (92 and 93, with less than 80k miles combined), and have built 4 or 5 of those engines and have a few laying around the garage...I'm sure I could make a donzi screeeeaaaammmm with a built 302 engine). What did you do to marinize it, what kind of car is it out of, and what cam are you running?

08-27-2012, 05:14 PM
not sure on the origin of the motor I inherited it . the original owner must have cracked the original 68 289 225 hp motor and got an 87 225 5.0 ho to replace it and mated all the old 289 fittings to it. I had it rebuilt by a highly recommended motor shop the motor was a car motor down to the vac advan dist they marinized it put a new cam in it I have the specs here some where they estimated it at about 230 hp. they wanted to get a little more radical with the build but I didn't want to go that route right away. one thing you'll find with a ford hi-po marine build is going to be the exhaust the lack of or the cost of that will work with a aggressive cam.

check the gas tank for a build date

10-09-2012, 04:51 PM
More questions:

- Anyone have a suggestion at the cause of the dip in the bow?
- Does anyone have pictures of what the deck looks like 'apart' (with the support material exposed)
- How do you get down to the deck support material in order to repair it - and how do you finish off the deck once it's repaired
- What's the best method for winterizing this boat as the cold weather quickly approaches (this is my first I/O boat)

Any additional help will be greatly appreciated. I'm considering getting this boat apart over winter and refinishing it/swapping in a late 80's mustang 302 w/ some mild mods to bump up the power.

10-09-2012, 04:59 PM
Check out the thread on the 67 Ski Sporter V-Drive in the For Sale section: http://www.donzi.net/forums/showthread.php?67963-1967-16-Ski-Sporter-V-drive-15000

Especially this picture: https://picasaweb.google.com/104907524492737323190/DonziInProgress#5316606624754729858

That boat had a similar dip in the bow. There are a lot of pictures of the restoration done by a very capable yard out in the Northwest.

PM the owner/seller who might be able to put you in touch w/ the people who did the work. Perhaps they could point you in the right direction.

10-09-2012, 06:14 PM

That pic will give me nightmares/second thoughts about doing this restoration on my own. I rarely back down from a challenge, but my god that looks involved. It looks like they built a jig to fit the shape of the deck (the jig alone looks like a work of art), laid the deck on it up-side-down, cut off the bottom side fibreglass, used screws to suck the deck into shape with the jig, then refibreglassed over it...?

Maybe I'll stick to refinishing the hull, engine and outdrive and ship the deck off to someone with a little more experience.....

10-09-2012, 06:26 PM
Sounds about right.

I think this yard built some America's Cup boats in 2003 and 2007 - top notch.

Your boat looks to be in MUCH better shape so maybe your job will be more in reach, or you could just to buy this boat!

10-09-2012, 08:28 PM
You could also try leaving leaving the deck attached, crawling up in the front of the boat with some wood and a bottle jack. Once you get the deck straight you can glass a few two by fours to the outside so it will hold its shape. now the deck can be removed repaired from the inside and once finished the two bys can be ground off.

I made the mistake of bonding a polished stainless piece on the inside of my engine hatch with the hatch upside down. Put some weight on it to get a good bond. Ended up with a hatch that was almost flat when dry, as compared to the curve of the deck. Guess what I had to remove?


11-15-2012, 11:01 AM
Got up North to winterize the boat last weekend. Found a little bit more information on the boat.

Outdrive number is PZNRB224566 (this is not the original outdrive though)
Prop number is BNGH3463

Any insight on either?

Scott Pearson
11-15-2012, 01:50 PM
Whatever you do...dont use screws like they did on the 16. Glue or Glass the supports only.

11-15-2012, 05:24 PM
the drive serial number is a late model aq200 which was usually mated to interceptor motors due to their 210 hp max the higher hp hm motors usally came with the aq 250 drive.

11-21-2012, 06:12 PM
^^^ Thanks - am I right to assume that this would mean I have the 1.59:1 gear ratio - this might explain why the boat is a bit slow out of the holeshot - Getting some info on the prop size might help - The prop defintely appears old, but I have no idea as to the make/model etc. to figure out pitch. If I bumped the power I'd probably try to find a newer outdrive, perhaps with electric tilt - The tilt on the current updrive moves, but usually only comes up with assistance, and defintely doesn't trim one way or another under power.

11-22-2012, 09:41 AM
Yes the 200 had the 1.5 the 250 had the 1.6 ratio. I don't think that would be the cause check solas props they have several 3 blade and 4 blade choices in alum and SS the alum ones are very inexpensive like just over 100 bucks I would think your issue is the prop or a motor that is down on power

You are going to need a assortment of sizes in thrust washers to try props with the long hub and short hub. I would try a lh 19 to start with

The drive does not have trim so under power using the tilt will not work. That was for trailering, beaching, and idling thru low water. You need to go to the mid 70s drive the 280t.

I had a non trimable drive on an early 16 and didn't really feel the need for it the hull and setup give the 16 a lot of bow lift. I ran the boat with the drive in the middle hole

Jay L has a aq 200 with a nice 302 runs real nice. The 200 will take just about whatever a NA 302 will throw at it. You might want to contact Jay he had some Volvo props.

11-22-2012, 10:18 AM
Virtually no difference in the drive ratios for the 200 or 250 (1.59:1 vs. 1.62:1). Your prop should have some identifying numbers on it. Or post some pictures. A 21" Volvo prop or a 19" Solas should work well for that set up - I have both. Hole shot should not be an issue although how hard you want to hammer a 40+ year old drive is probably a more valid concern.

Do NOT even idle around w/ the drive trimmed up - you will break stuff. Your drive has tilt only NOT trim.

Ditto on what Matty said about trim - it might be nice, but w/ the right prop your boat should run fine in the middle hole.

11-22-2012, 10:41 AM
http://www.solas.com/newweb/propeller/search/volvo.asp?cat=E&SKindNo=S07&Skind=VOLVO PENTA AQUAMATIC SP STERN DRIVE


11-22-2012, 01:23 PM
Prop number is BNGH3463 (The prop is very old so some of those numbers may not be 100% exact, but that's the best I could make it out)

11-24-2012, 08:51 AM

I have run that thru a few part number searches with no luck, I would look for a solas amita 3 or 4 in alum they are selling for 115 125 bucks will be a good spare prop start in a 19 then get your benchmark and sort things out . I ordered an amita 4 just to see how a 4 blade runs on the hornetfor just about 130 bucks with shipping couldn't pass it up will be a good spare all my spare props are higher in pitch for the old boat.

once you sort things out you want a solas titan or volvo ultra SS probably 19-21 in the solas and 22-24 in the ultra