Miscellaneous Keaton Pictures


The picture below is of two boats that were being loaded on a transport trailer being sent to Michigan. These boats are 1962 Utilities. At least one of the boats had a 312 Interceptor. This boat is now owned by a fellow in Michigan who is restoring the boat. The Hull ID is KH6225

These pictures are provided by of Dan and Sharon Irwin
They were taken back when Dan's parents were members of the
original Keaton Boat Club back in the 1970's. Their 18-J is
still in the family and is owned by Dan and Sharon



The following pictures are courtesy of Brian Tillman. Brian is currently restoring what was  Jack's second boat, a 1952 Rowley. Brian found this boat sitting in the condition shown in the first two pictures. 

According to Brian, "It was built in Stockton, CA in the 1950ís. This was one of the fastest ski boats on the delta in its day (55+ MPH). It originally ran a flathead Ford with 2 carbs on alcohol. Currently this boat is being restored in my garage and now has a 1949 Olds 303 Rocket. After completing the boat I will change out the Olds for a Cadillac engine. This boat was set up before velvet drives and runs an early ford 3 speed trans converted to run high gear only (forward & reverse). I have attached pictures of the boat in the 50ís."

Ski racing in the early
50's at Cal Expo. Powered at this time by the flathead Ford.

Jack at the wheel

Ski Races at Stockton, CA
mid 50's. Powered by a 331 Cadillac and 4 carbs

Believed to be Jack's 1st boat. Made of wood and
sunk in Sacramento


Below are pictures of the Blackboard Jack used to track the buyer and hull ID numbers of the boats he made and sold between 1973 and 1992.  I have written down all the information from this board.
There are some interesting items that became apparent while doing this.
Between the time he started using the board in 1973 until he stopped in May of 1992 I counted a total of 226 entries.  Of that 198 appear to be 18J's, 14 Tri-hulls and 14 Tournament boats.

Some interesting tidbits:
1. The very first 18J logged in 1973 was numbered 1001173. What is interesting about how this was logged on the board is that I believe based on numbers further down in 1973 that the actual number would have been
KEA010010173, which means he left off the zero between the 1001 and 173.

The number KEA0110010173 would have followed what the USCG convention for hull id's would have been at that time.  So, this would have been the first 18J made in Jan(01) of 1973(73).

2. The very first Tournament boat made had a number of KEAU10000282.
What's interesting here is that this boat didn't begin with 1001, but 1000.
BTW, this is the Red Tournament boat in the Tournament Boat gallery

3. There appears to be the numbers of two Tournament boats missing from the board.  They are KEAU1006 and KEAU1007.  Boat KEAU10050882 was built in Aug of 1982 and KEAU10080383 was built in March of 1983.  I can't find 1006 or 1007 anywhere on the board. I wonder what happened to them?  The last Tournament boat on the board is KEAU1015D888 - which if you start from boat 1000 would have made it the 16th Tournament boat (except for the mystery of 1006-1007) and was made in April of 88.  Another interesting tidbit about this number is that next to the number it appears the word "hull" is written. According to another member he believes Jack only provided the boat and not a trailer.

4.  All the Tri-hull boats begin with KEA0T and they, too, are sequenced in order beginning with KEA0T0010376.  The last one I can barely decipher on the board is KEA0T0160179, although this is a guess as it's really hard to tell.  When I was at the shop Jack and Al did mention that the tri-hulls were a real pain to build especially when mating the deck to the hull.

5. Some boats were sold on consignment to a place in the South Bay called Northern California Boats. I have heard from a few folks who bought their boats from a dealer in the Bay Area.  According to Jack he would consign boats to them to sell.  There are also a few listings for United Boats and one for  "Boat House".  Any help here would be great.


Below are pictures of the Herb Jones Perpetual Trophy won by Jack Keaton in 1954.  This was awarded at the Clear Lake Marathon Races held July 4th weekend and sponsored by the Lakeport July 4th Committee. What's interesting about this is that Jack was the last winner of this trophy.  According to Jack he returned in 1955, but the 4th of July Committee decided to let the Chico Water Ski Club do all of the water festivities. They did not want to have a race. No one wanted to take the trophy. They all told him he may as well keep it. So Jack has had it for 54 years. 

However, now after 54 years the Clear Lake Museum at Lakeport has accepted the trophy.  The last picture is of Jack presenting the trophy to Linda Lake, curator of the Lake County Museum. At some point in the future the trophy will be placed on display with other water related artifacts.

BTW, the boat he was driving was the 52 Rowley pictured up above that is currently undergoing restoration by Brian Tillman.

Below are pictures of a Keaton Dune Buggy.  Jack made a few
dune buggies from 1965 until around 1970. He made about 200 bodies,
although he did finish a few of them.  The one below may be one of those he
completed. It has a 1600cc engine
The two pictures on the bottom row are from Jack. The one
on the left is when he entered one in Autorama.