Chrysler 26
Last updated: January 7, 2018
Copyright © 2000-2018 All rights reserved
Avocet
A 1979 Chrysler 26 Sailboat
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Page Index
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Introduction
History
Designer
Characteristics
Racing/Speed
Keel and Hull
Rudder/Tiller
Sail and Rigging
Double Mainsheet
Rigging Notes
Accommodations
Trailer
Wiring
Winterizing
Not on Our Boat
Checklist
Inventory
Links
Contact
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Ship's Log
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2000 | 2001 | 2002
2003 | 2004 | 2005
2006 | 2007 | 2008
2009 | 2010 | 2011
2012 | 2013 | 2014
2015 | 2016 | 2017
2018 | 
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THE SAILBOAT DESIGNER

Karl Friederich Herreshoff came to Bristol, Rhode Island from Germany in 1790. His grandson, John Brown Herreshoff, started a boatyard in 1863, and his younger brother, Nathanael Greene Herreshoff, joined, him in 1878. The following year, the firm became incorporated as the Herreshoff Manufacturing Company. Nathanael Greene designed many famous steam and racing yachts. The Herreshoff Yard produced craft from little sailing dinghies to cruising sailboats and power yachts. The Herreshoff Manufacturing Company was sold at auction to R.F. Haffenreffer in 1924, but operations continued until 1946, when the yard was closed down.

In 1975, Halsey C. Herreshoff, the grandson of Nat Herreshoff, acquired some of the land and opened an office in one of the old buildings. A Herreshoff was again designing sailboats and yachts. Hasley later opened the Herreshoff Marine Museum and America's Cup Hall of Fame. This museum is dedicated to the interpretation of the accomplishments of the Herreshoff Mfg. Co. and the influence of America's Cup competition.

One of the reasons for the astonishing success of the Chrysler sailboat division was the acquisition of Halsey Herreshoff as design engineer for their cruising sailboat line. While many potential owners may have shied away from purchasing a boat from a company better known for building cars, they trusted the Herreshoff name, based on Halsey's reputation.

Halsey Herreshoff designed many sailboat models in the 1970's and 1980's, including the Bristol 22, Caravel, (1968-1978), Bristol 26 (1968-1978), Bristol 27.7 (1976-1980), Bristol 29 (1966-1971), Bristol 29.9 (1977-1986), Bristol 30 (1968-1978), Bristol 34 (1971-1978), Chrysler 26 (1976-1980), and the Ticon 30 (1979-1985).

As part of corporate restructuring at the end of the 1970s, Chrysler had to get out of the sailboat business in return for loan guarantees from the U.S. Government. While the Chrysler Marine Division enjoyed great success, it only lasted until 1980, and the outboard division lasted until 1984. A Canadian company, Ticon Yachts, purchased the molds for a thirty-foot sailboat that Chrysler was planning, and the boat was built as the Ticon 30.

Bob Adair provides A Somewhat Chronological History of the Chrysler Boat Styling/Design Department.