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Who had the first (production) stepped hull?

Who had the first (production) stepped hull?

Old 09-15-2008, 03:08 PM
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Originally Posted by daredevil View Post
I am with you on this Jim, i believe it was 1984 when Chriscat had the first stepp in theyre hull ?!
This is correct, however, I think the earlier Shadow Cats had steps. They came out in 1980. i could be wrong, but I don't think so.
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Old 09-15-2008, 03:10 PM
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WWW II.. PT boats.. then there were a bunch of "experiments' in Europe.. then trickled to US. I saw a stepped hull from the 70's. (almost bought it) but I think the first "production" steps were in the late 80's early 90's/ Most major builders start doing it around the same time. Early 90's.
My dad had a steped wood boat in the late 60's.
Challanger Offshore Hull No. 1 in 1994 had blackhawks and Harry's step. (later the AT step)
A good question would be who has the "Best step" ???
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Old 09-15-2008, 03:18 PM
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The Unlimited/Offshore genesis began around 1910. That's when the first "step" hydroplanes appeared. The "fast-steppers" skimmed over the surface of the water with a notch or "step" located approximately amidships on the underside of the hull. The "step" allowed the boat to plane over the water with much less friction than was possible with the old-style displacement craft. (The latter subscribed to the only known theory of water speed at the time--plowing through the water rather than planing over it.)
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Old 09-15-2008, 03:21 PM
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Offshorer in the 50/s/60's. Bob Hobbs/Cal Connell. Rybo Runner, same guys. Italcraft in Italy, Sonny Levi, early 70's. Steps come around every 17 years, just like the f**king locusts.
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Old 09-15-2008, 03:33 PM
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Originally Posted by Top Banana View Post
This is really going to upset the US Patent Office.

They issued a patent for a "Stepped" hull in 1904.

Shows you what I know I thought it was 1918..

What significant thing happened in 1923 regarding stepped hulls and race boats?
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Old 09-15-2008, 03:43 PM
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Viking ships had steps
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Old 09-15-2008, 03:53 PM
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We made some 21 Shadow vees with steps starting in 1980. Of course the Shadow Cat, from which the Chris Cat was made, also had steps starting in 1980.

However, for the record, Cougar Cats had steps a few years before that and OPC tunnel hulls had them going back to the early 70's. In addition Switzer Wings had steps, as did some other molded fibreglass and wooden in line 6 outboard cats and hydros going back to the mid 50's. Of course Stock Outboard, Inboard and Gold Cup "hydros" had them from the earliest part of the 20th Century ( A "Hydroplane" by definition is a stepped, 2, 3 or 4 point hull).

The bottom line is that steps in Offshore at any era after that division started (1959) were in no way "new" technology...and have been used more as a fictional marketing ploy rather than a real innovation regardless of who claimed "ownership". Reggie probably learned about them when Mercury and Billy Seebold put them on his Seebold tunnel hulls in 1973 or so, and I know the steps on our Shadows got a lot of attention on Long Island where the Hustlers were later built.

Steps were recognized as a speed advantage (for boats in the 40-60 mph range) to the point that the APBA had specifically made them illegal in the "stock", monohull classes of Outboard Performance Craft(OPC) racing from 1961 on....and many Offshore events were run in conjunction with OPC classes.... (Chicago-Milwaukee Race, Around Long Island Marathon, etc......)

The bottom line is there is little true significance in debating who the first guy(s) were to put steps on Offshore type hulls since they had been around for many decades prior to the first application in that genre.......and most of the designer/ builders knew all about them.

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Old 09-15-2008, 03:55 PM
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Originally Posted by DENNYB View Post
Harry Scholl was the original daddy of step bottom hulls.
Prove that I am wrong..Where talking 1970"s
You're wrong. Harry wasn't born when the first stepped hulls hit the water.


Last edited by T2x; 09-15-2008 at 03:58 PM.
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Old 09-15-2008, 03:56 PM
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All Ocean Express cats from the mid 80's on had stepped hulls.
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Old 09-15-2008, 03:57 PM
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38' stepped hull, 8000 hp 124.9 mph 1932.... and the rudder was under the bow..
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