22 Donzi Classic

Having completed the restoration of a my 1968 18 Donzi and acquiring and Arneson ASD-6 Surface drive my interests turned towards another project.  Having fallen in love with my little 18 but wanting a bigger boat I focused my attention on the big bother to my little classic:  The 22.

Already having the propulsion package and having grand plans for my future boat I narrowed my search down to a restoration project.   Since the 22 classics are later model boats it took over 6 months to find the right boat.

December 21st 2000 marked the purchase of the yet unnamed project boat.  She was a 1986 model year that was originally powered by a Small Block Chevy Mercruiser " Tempest" coupled to an Alpha One outdrive. 

The boat was  a reasonably clean unmolested core however it had serious structural damage in the floor. 

This damage actually stemmed from a manufacturing defect. When the boat was built the floor was not properly tabbed to the stringers and the force created by the seats cracked the top laminate.  This allowed water to penetrate the floor and rot the core.

Despite this damage this boat was a prime candidate for my future plans.  Upon arrival home the boat was completely gutted and the master plan was outlined.  After detailed inspection of the boat, with the exception of the floor, the boat was in very solid, undamaged original condition. 

The Restoration Begins

The fiberglass work was the first thing to take care of.  The entire floor was removed and new floor installed using West System Epoxy.   Structural work:

bulletNew Floor
bulletNew Transom
bulletBacking tabs for K planes fiber glassed into transom
bulletHull and Deck fiber glassed together
bulletComplete Aluminum stringers creating totally rigid engine mounts
bulletFull length accessory shelves installed in engine compartment
bulletBulkhead installed in forward part of engine compartment
bulletDash completely filled and reglassed
bulletAll holes filled creating an " as molded " blank slate for the rigging process.

Following the Structural work the cosmetic issues of the boat were addressed.  The entire engine space was painted using PPG DELTA paint systems.  The entire boat was sanded and high fill primed using PPG K-36 high fill primer surfacer.  Following this the boat was strayed with PPG DBC Basecoat/Clearcoat using the red pearl additive to create a shimmer effect.  I did all the body work and primer myself and Scott Pearson graciously took care of the final paint application.





The boat was placed on a new Rolls 2670 T trailer.  Click here for more on Rolls Trailers.

The Restoration Continues...

Having completed the cosmetic aspect of the restoration it was time to focus on the mechanical end of the boat. 

One of the main reasons for the purchase of this boat was to use the Arseson ASD-6 surface drive that was actually purchased before the boat was bought.  This drive is primarily a race boat drive that is mostly used on larger race boats.   Thanks to the inspiration of my good friend George Desmond I decided this drive had tremendous merit on a smaller boat.  George's boat.

To facilitate this drive in a smaller boat an extension box needed to be made to facilitate the external mounting of the transmission.

The Engine

Originally I has a 454/330 "peanut port" big block Chevy earmarked for the project.  However after all the effort I put into the driveline it seemed a shame to put such a mild engine in.  Having already broke the bank, a few times, I needed to put something together on a budget but wanted something high quality and reliable.  Realizing the 454/330 was not a solid base for a performance engine I decided a blank slate was the only option.

While I would have preferred to do a large C.I naturally aspirated engine I got an almost free procharger for a marine BBC and decided that would be the most economical way for me to make the power I was looking for.  Having decided to go with a blower motor the lower end was going need to be strong enough to handle the 600 hp I felt this combination was going to make.  The base of the engine started off as a Mk IV 454 Mercruiser Magnum.  The machine work was taken care of by Scott at Advanced Racing and Machine in Glen Burnie Md.  The crank was a stock GM forged unit reground and nitrided.  Rods are large H beam style rods ( I believe they are Scat's) and the pistons are a SRP blower pistons.  Heads are heavily modified rectangle port GM castings.  They are pocket ported with Inconel exhaust valves and Manly severe duty intake valves.  Compression is 9:1 and the cam is a very small roller cam not much larger then the current Gen VI Mercuiser cams. 

The  engine was broken in and dyno tested in naturally aspirated form.   The engine made roughly 440 hp in this form.  After break in the Procharger was added and at 5 psi the engine made 615 Hp and 650 ft-lb.  Between the blower whine and the big block basso She sounds truly impressive on the dyno.  I hope this will be a reliable package for this boat until its replacement can be finished.... ;)