Bimby is a 26 foot Minet launch that is one of the more challenging restorations I’ve undertaken . The first time I saw her she was an interesting runabout with a sloping windshield and a marinized  flat head Ford V8 for power , but there was something about the boat that prompted me to do a bit of research and investigation  . The boat had started life as a long deck launch in 1916 at Harraby point  on lake Rosseau . Sometime in the 1940’s the boat caught fire and sank . The salvage was purchased and the remains repaired and converted to a runnabout by Norm Strip in Windermere , who used it for several years  .

       Over the years I had worked on a few early Minet launches and the front twelve feet of the hull was pretty much un-changed ,most likely the front of the boat sank while the back was still burning and extinguished the fire , preserving the bow. It was evident from the shape that  a lot of liberties had been taken with the re-creation of the aft section of the hull after the fire  . I had taken the lines off of two Minets that were previously in my shop, so I had the information to re-construct the hull .  With the help of the owners of two other similar launches I was able to get enough information to re-construct the interior and replicate some of the missing hardware . The restoration was completed over about 4 years between other jobs . I still remember looking at the stem and realizing that it was steam bent out of a 2 inch thick piece of white oak . I don’t think there are many Minets left that still have a steam bent stem . —That was the first thing that I did . The rest of the boat grew from there 

This Post Has 6 Comments

  1. This was my grandfather’s boat, and Norm was our neighbor. Bimby stands for Bernice Irene Marquis Byron Yeugene. They used to call my grand father By Marquis. Love to share my grand parents history with you. Just let me know.
    I am over the moon to see Bimby back to her glory.

  2. That was our boat. My great grand father bought it from Norm and they named it Bimby because it was his and his wife’s initials. I was on that boat ever summer since I was six months old until we had to sell it because my grand parents were to old to keep up with it.

  3. Thank you for sharing the restoration journey for this beautiful boat. I have many fond memories as a child riding in her around the lakes near Windermere. My grandparents, Bryon and Bernice Marquis, purchased this beauty from Norm Strip. Bimby is named after them. BIM=Bernice Irene Marquis and BY=Byron. BIMBY. My parents owned it for several years after the Marquis’ I am so happy to see that she has been restored to her old glory.

  4. Michelle is my sister, I also have many memories of BIMBY riding around the lake. WOW what an amazing job you did on this restoration!!!

  5. My great-great Uncle Bert built this Minett (my mother was Nancy Minett), among many others. Congratulations on a beautiful restoration. Thank you for sharing the story of its restoration journey with all of us.

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