Macatawa Bay Boat Works Premium Restoration 
Project completion fall of 2012
1965 Century Sabre 18' 

(Factory Photo)

Above is a factory photo of this unusual model from Century, the 1965 18' Sabre.  Described as a small sporty, runabout with a part fiberglass, part wood design, patterned after a Coronado.

This very well preserved and unusual example has been owned by the same family since new.  From the St. Louis area, this very well preserved and  boat came to Macatawa Bay Boat Works for a new MBBW "no soak / no leak" 3M-5200 double bottom. One of only 41 produced in 1965, it has only 163 hours on it!

The "T" top assembly that holds the gullwing top panels has been removed 
This model Century was built during the transition years when the company was switching over from wood to fiberglass.  This boat has fiberglass sheer and covering boards, vinyl covered plywood inner decks but the bottom and the hullsides from the sheer down are traditional wooden boat construction.
The fiberglass sheer removed from the boat.  Below we see the boat being rolled over.
This boat upside-down and leveled up, we removed the original single batten seamed bottom and assess the bottom structure.  This boat is in above average condition compared to most Centurys, needing some frame replacement and most of the port chine and a new keel and stem.
With the batten reinstalled and everything sealed up and assembled with 3M-5200 adhesive, we have a solid foundation to begin the fit and installation of the 6mm Premium Okoume marine plywood, Lloyd Registered and manufactured in France to British Standard #1088 --a long way of saying the best marine plywood money can buy!
From here we will begin the installation of new solid mahogany outer layer planking, attaching it with new stainless steel fasteners and a continuous layer of 3M-5200 marine adhesive. 
Bottom outer planking now complete, it is time to fair the bottom in with grinding and hand sanding with a long board.  We check for fairness regularly with a straight edge...
When the bottom is faired in it is sealed prior to painting to protect it. 
Here we see the bottom painted in black 
We will remove the original hullsides for refastening and reattachment in 3M-5200 adhesive.  We strip the varnish from the hullsides prior to rolling the boat back over. 
Carefully we roll the hull back over 
Below the hullsides are removed, the hull frames and batons will be cleaned, repaired and sealed 
The original hullside planks have been reinstalled with new stainless steel fasteners and 3M-5200 adhesive 
New mahogany bungs are cut and installed over the new screws
After fairing in the hullsides by thorough longboard sanding, we are ready to stain.  
after the staining comes the first coats of varnish.... 

With the wood bottom and hullsides restored and in several coats of varnish, we are now

to the point of restoration of the fiberglass deck cap. 

Some cracks in the fiberglass will need to be repaired while retaining the leather grain embossed in the gel coat at the factory by Century

Preparing the chrome for replate, some of it is seen here....there is a lot of chrome

on this Century!

The fiberglass in process of repair and restoration, the finished product pictured below
Installing the new PCM 315 horse power 5.7 liter V-8 engine and checking to see if the original motor box can be reused ... it fits!
Installing new vinyl uphostery on the deck and "T-top"
Newly upholstered seats in the correct color and pattern
The finished boat on its new MBBW Classic Trail Custom Inboard trailer with diamond plate steps and a space saving swing tongue 
One of the finishing touches of any premium MBBW Restoration is the application of the name on the transom by hand in real gold leaf.  The name "Lucky Debonair" is after the Kentucky Derby winner of 1965, is applied in white gold leaf with black out line and drop shadow and the font is in keeping with the style of the chrome Century script logo on the transom.
Complete with custom full mooring cover in Sunbrella
To see a video of the final test drive of this 1965 Century Sabre in the water, click here or on the image below !





please contact us today to see how we can help with your project!


Macatawa Bay Boat Works
297 S. Maple Street  Saugatuck, Michigan 49453
Phone:  (269) 857-4556  Fax: (269) 857-4218

Home   Contact Info   Premium Restorations    Marine Grade Leather    Marine Engines & Installation   Custom Trailers   Classic Boat Brokerage    Work in Progress     Company History    Completed Boats & Their Owners  Links