View Full Version : Blackhawk 22C vs. Standard 22C.

06-27-2016, 03:42 PM
Hi everyone

In my ongoing quest to understand the differences between a true, factory built Black Hawk edition 22 Classic vs. a standard 22 Classic with a Black Hawk drive on it, I have learned the following:

1) Per Chuck Wagner at Donzi, the Vin# should have BH as the 4th and 5th letters in the VIN if it was a true Black Hawk 22 C. (Apparently the documentation on older boats was destroyed years back so they cannot look anything up for me by VIN)
2) Per others postings here, I've seen people say that the Black Hawk 22 C has the fuel tank mounted further back than a standard 22 C. Therefore, the ski locker isn't a ski locker on a Black Hawk 22 C. So, I suppose the compartment is there, but if you open it you see the top of the fuel tank? Or is there simply no compartment there at all?
3) There is apparently a "rocker hull" characteristic on a true Black Hawk 22 C. Can someone dumb it down for me and explain to me how I can determine whether or not a boat has the "rocker hull"? What does that mean? Would it appear to have more of a flat bottom, near the stern as opposed to a standard 22 C, which has some roundness to the underside, near the stern?
4) "sometimes" a Black Hawk 22 C has a hook at the rear to help keep the nose down. So... why only sometimes?

Are there any other tell tale differences I can look for to be able to tell what I'm looking at, when looking at a 22 C that has a Black Hawk drive on it?

Thanks in advance!


Just Say N20
06-27-2016, 04:34 PM
Rocker and Hook are the opposite of each other.

If you look down the bottom of a hull towards the transom, a hull with a rocker will appear to sweep up slightly towards the transom, like the curved portion of a rocking chair. On a Donzi Blackhawk, that is to help lift the nose of the boat to minimize running surface because the outdrive is a surfacing style running half the prop out of the water. As such they don't provide the bow lift that you would normally get by trimming a standard drive up.

When looking down a hull toward the transom, a hook will look like the hull is bending towards the ground near the transom. You can see the "hook" on Donzi 16 when looking at the boot stripe. It will curve downward at the transom. The idea behind a hook is that it is usually on the outer portions of the hull, and not the keel, which will be straight, is that the hook acts like a trim tab that will help boats that are stern heavy plane off more quickly. In the 16, once the boat is up and running fast, the hooked portion of the bottom isn't in the water, so it has no detrimental consequences.

06-27-2016, 05:56 PM
they made the Black hawk LE models bird and gold they should have a plaque on the dash with a number out of 40 something they also made several plain clothes Blackhawks in regular 22 c graphics a factory BH boat will have a very high X leading to tail pipes that come out right at the deck line the beauty rings on the exhaust are usually flat at the top at right up by the deck

I do recall that they may have also made one regular 22 in the LE graphics

06-27-2016, 08:52 PM
Hi there!

Thank you for taking the time to correspond with me about this. Below is a link to the boat on Boat Trader website.


Also, attached are some close up pics I had the seller send to me. He thinks there is no rocker shape whatsoever and there doesn't appear to be any "hooks" built into the transom at the edges (unless I did a lousy job of explaining... which is possible!) Also, I asked him to check for the plate or sticker inside the boat where it shows the max number of passengers, weight, etc. and to see if it says "black hawk" anywhere on that label. He says he will take a photo of that for me tomorrow.

He's willing to take more photos, what do you think of this?


06-27-2016, 09:15 PM
have him lift up the ski locker hatch and take a picture . the fuel tank on a blackhawk is further aft . looking at the transom pics from the boat trader ad , i would say it is a blackhawk .

06-28-2016, 06:21 AM
Have the current owner hold a straight edge up to the bottom running the long way.

Make sure the straight edge goes beyond the transom a bit.

If there is a hook, the straight edge will not sit flush at the aft end of the hull.

If there is rocker the hull bottom will "pull" away from the straight edge.

Take pictures.


06-28-2016, 08:05 AM
i'm going out on a limb and say it's not..

but, i've been wrong before :cool:

06-28-2016, 09:52 AM
Looking at those pictures I would say its not a BH hull. How about a picture of the transom? A real BH edition would have an X-dim about 3" higher than standard bravo.

06-28-2016, 10:25 AM
The seller says that the ski locker is a actual ski locker on this boat, it is not just a door that shows you the top of the fuel tank. I will get some more pictures of the transom.

I'm supposed to fly over there this weekend for a water test. I like this one because it is the color scheme I like, just like the one I used to have. Except the one I had was a '92 Classic with an inferior power package to this one. This one is a "American Marine" Donzi, which I have heard was done a little better then when Donzi belonged to Chris-Craft.

This one seems to have been taken care of very well. He claims there are no stress cracks anywhere. He owns three different boat covers for it, stores it in a heated warehouse during the winter, it has only 235 original hours on the meter. The seller is 71 years old and says he drove it gently for 20 years, because the original owner told him not to punch it out of the hole with a Black Hawk drive. He bought it from the original owner when it was only two years old.

I was actually hoping this was not an actual Blackhawk boat in case I decide to buy this boat and ultimately decide to remove the Blackhawk Drive and replace it with a Bravo One. I think I would prefer to have a non-Blackhawk hull under those circumstances.

06-28-2016, 10:33 AM
I just followed that link I previously posted to the boat trader ad, there is a pretty good picture of the back of the boat. I don't see any kind of an "x" do you guys? Also what do you guys think of those steering stabilizers? He says he put them on there in case the drive ever failed, the boat wouldn't go into an involuntary sharp turn while decelerating

Just Say N20
06-28-2016, 12:55 PM
Location of the exhaust tips will tell all.

Can you post a picture of the transom without a cover?

Pat McPherson
06-28-2016, 01:10 PM
Here's a shot of my standard 96.

Pat McPherson
06-28-2016, 01:11 PM

06-28-2016, 02:11 PM
Smokediver, it turns out that when he removed the cover for the ski locker, the fuel tank IS right there! He was initially mistaken when he told me there was a ski locker there. He's an older gentleman and said he must have confused this with his jet boat.

Chachi, he says the straight edge remained flush all the way down the edge of the boat, did not appear to taper up or down, which seems odd. That would suggest this boat only has some of the typical Black Hawk characteristics, but not all (no hook, no rocker). (unless he misunderstood what he should be looking for)

Patrick posted a good photo of a standard classic from the back. The exhaust pipes on this one I'm looking at are clearly mounted higher up, which also is consistent with the Black Hawk design so I'm going to decide that this boat is a true Black Hawk.

Now... guys, if I decide to buy this one and later decide that I don't like the Black Hawk experience and decide to switch the out drive, will this boat feel like a standard classic with a Bravo One drive on it, or do you think it would be a bad idea for some reason to convert to a Bravo one if I want to?

The seller told me this morning that he has two other people interested. One has offered a security deposit and the other says he will pay for it in full (sight unseen) so I'm suddenly finding myself needing to make a decision. I'm going to try and line up a boat surveyor to meet me there this Friday when I fly up to see it and drive it.

Many thanks to you guys for being available to help me out here. I'd love your input on this one last question about the idea of switching drives, and then I'll leave you guys alone for a while :-)


Pat McPherson
06-28-2016, 04:08 PM
I have no experience with driving a Blackhawk boat but I've spoken with a few owners. The Blackhawk hull is not likely as stable as the standard hull because of its rocker hull and you may experience a few handling quirks if you swap the drive. The hull was redesigned with the surface drive in mind. The X dim is higher so you may have to add a spacer to lower the propshaft with a stock bravo. I'm sure with a little time the bugs could be worked out; I guess my point is that it's not likely a simple swap of one drive for the other.

06-28-2016, 04:08 PM
I don't think a Blackhawk hull is considered desireable sans Blackhawk drive.

A std 22C hull works well with a BH drive or with others.

My perception from reading here, not first hand experience driving either.

06-28-2016, 07:36 PM
My thought is that it is a true blackhawk boat..

roadtrip se
06-28-2016, 08:26 PM
I don't think a Blackhawk hull is considered desireable sans Blackhawk drive.

A std 22C hull works well with a BH drive or with others.

My perception from reading here, not first hand experience driving either.

It isn't. I've driven both. Think pogo stick driving a Bravo should be Blackhawk.

roadtrip se
06-28-2016, 08:32 PM
Looked at the ad, and it's a Blackhawk boat. Clue is the exhaust flange cut-outs.
A little confused by the struts on the drive to the transom...

06-29-2016, 09:08 AM
+1 with RT, I didn't see the add pictures before. The position of the drive and exaust tips on the transom look like a BH edition. If the fuel tank is in the floor storage locker then that would clinch it. Also, as Pat said I would not put a bravo drive on a BH hull. Test the boat and see if you like it. If you're not sure if you want a BH drive than I wouldn't buy the boat, there must be some nice stock 22's out there. From my experience, a standard 22 hull with big hp performs well with the BH drive, but with stock power its not worth it.

Pat McPherson
06-29-2016, 09:48 AM
Not sure where you are; I'm in CT.
My boat is for sale or trade plus $ for an 18.