Next on the list of rooms to renovate - the living room! Or salon if you prefer. One of the design goals of the salon was to ensure the couch converted into a full queen bed. Since we often have an extra family on board, we wanted to ensure the other adults could sleep very comfortably. For me, this means a queen bed - a double is certainly usable, but a queen adds that little bit of extra room.

This is what the salon looked like when we purchased the boat, more of the awesome green shag carpet, a comfortable but tired sectional couch and a CRT TV with a built in very 90's!

Here you can see the steps that have a very dangerous curve at the bottom, so if guests are not familiar with them, they can miss that last two steps. The top step is also 14"! My mother with a double knee replacement is not going to be able to make that very well. The last issue with the steps are the square tubes that hold the railing - all of them are bolted into the ceiling and then the side of the stairs - so if you want to open the floor covering the starboard engine, which is under the steps, you need to unbolt the railing first, and then unbolt the stairs from the wall; not so practical.

You can also see the velour window covers that stand about 6" off the windows, it really results in visually reducing the beam of the salon by 12".

This shows you the starboard side, and shows the details of the stairs with the shag carpet removed.

Remove all the cupboards to see what's under there.

See that grey electrical box behind the broom? That was the transformer to drive the heat lamps (pot lights). There were three of these on the boat!

It always seemed like there was a bit too much spring in the floor at the bottom of the stairs...turns out there was a crack in the main support that runs from side to side.

That's not good! My good friends from Pleasurecraft Outfitters helped us with this issue by installing a 3" painted steel channel between the forward to aft bulkhead with a couple of other supports. In all, they lifted the floor in this area ~1 - 1.25". You don't feel like you are walking downhill anymore!

I should mention that if anyone is looking to have custom work completed in the Bay City, MI area - I can't recommend these guys enough. Randy and his team actually collaborate with you to create a solution to any challenge. Rather than just do what I ask, Randy will offer other, usually better ways to attack a problem. While I completed a lot of the work in our boat by myself (sometimes with family and friends), Randy completed a lot of work during the week when I couldn't be there.

Here is the type of work they did for us:

- custom stainless

- custom upholstery and upholstery repair

- canvas repair (they created the current canvas on the boat for the previous owner)

- adding screens to the existing canvas (there were none previously)

- carpet cleaning, headliner cleaning

- custom couch, new stairs

- new custom screens on all portholes and helm windows

- custom boarding ladder

I'm sure there is more I'm not remembering. Safe to say we spent many 10's of thousands with them and I feel we got great value for our money and the work was all top notch!

New steps that hang on a cleat, so they are easy to remove. We also added a step so the rise is even all the way up. Some of the new wiring going in there as well.

Here is the couch being made for us, first test fit. I mentioned the queen bed in the salon - it's a tight fit as it is exactly 60" from the steps going to the aft bed rooms, to the port side. This means you need to remove the back cushions to get the full width. And of course, every part needed to fit through the 22" door.

All of the space under the couch is accessible for storage.

Here is the new TV unit going in (I built this one...)

On the left is a new wiring closet for the new 12V bank I've added (6x 6V golf cart batteries, 690Ah total). The top panel is the new inverter control panel and the bottom is the battery bank main switch.

Removing the material from the living room wall surfaces was fun...

After a lot of staple removal and filling, we continue the horizontal trim from under the salon windows, across the aft bulkhead. First coat of paint has been applied and the light pocket has been created. At the moment we've just put a grey stained board there to match the light in the galley. Wiring is all in place for lights when we decide to mount them. They really are not required here, but we don't want to replace the head liner, so we do what we can with the existing head liner.

Also in this picture are the new floor to ceiling, thick wall stainless steel square tubing to hold the railing. No need to unbolt anything to get at the starboard engine, and much more sturdy than the thin aluminum that was there.

New couch being tested by my daughter

And then the folded out version of the couch that becomes a full queen size bed. Tested of course by my son.

High quality blow up mattress - I've slept on it and never had any complaints from our guests.

A better look at the new carpet that runs from the salon through the aft bedrooms.

We did keep the table that came with the boat - might be the only furniture we kept. It pops up and becomes a desk or place to eat if you sit at the couch - neat idea, but I haven't used it yet.

Looking forward, you can see some doors that still need to be created for the port side electrical.

Some finishing touches, we now have a mirror over the couch.

I don't watch much TV, but in limited amounts the kids certainly enjoy the 55" 4k screen! We've had upwards of 8 kids down there entertained while the adults eat dinner.

I don't have a proper side-by-side comparison, but here is a partial view.

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Comment by Chris Wickersham on February 10, 2018 at 9:18pm

I went through the same damn thing on my boat, twice. It’s caused by mechanics letting the engine hatches slam down instead of lowering them gently by hand. I am fixing to make a sign to tape on the wall above the hatches for when it’s getting worked on saying SLAM MY HATCHES UNDER PENALTY OF DEATH. 

Club News

2019 Regional Rendezvous Hosts Wanted

Are you yearning for a little fix for Commander-itis?

Would you like to meet other Commander owners in your area?

Do you have a great idea for a Commander gathering on or off the water?

If you answered yes to any of these questions, then we have just the remedy for you: We encourage you to think about hosting, or, indicating your interest in hosting a Regional Rendezvous in your area in 2019.

For more information about hosting - click here:

Hosting A Rendezvous

Char Pike has volunteered to be the EC “Point Person” for 2019 Regional Rendezvous. Please contact Char if you are interested in organizing & holding a Regional Rendezvous in your area. Char’s e-mail address is


2018 Photo Contest Winner

The 4th Annual Chris-Craft Commander Club Photo Contest had more than 50 entries and selecting the winners was not an easy task. 

First place: submitted by Pat Chaps

Second place: submitted by Martin Krall;

Third place: submitted by Jeff Pacy.

To view all entries to this year's contest,         Click Here


The 2018 Chris-Craft Commander Club National Rendezvous is in the books and it was a great time!!

City of Mentor, Ohio

The city of Mentor, Ohio and the Lawnfield Inn & Suites were wonderful hosts.  A special Thanks to Rob Kneen, the local member sponsor, and Char Pike for the hours of hard work put in organizing and coordinating an amazing weekend. 

The Rendezvous Photo Albums can be accessed through the links below, as well as, under Library, Photo Albums.  We will continue to add links to other albums as they become available. Also below, you will find links to a couple articles written for the local newspaper.

Photo Album 1                 Photo Album 2  

Photo Album 3


Chris-Craft Commander Club Celebrates Anniversary in Mentor

Chris-Craft Commander connoisseurs congregate at Mentor Lagoons Marina



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