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Thread: Rudy Raymos, More Than Rayson Craft Boats

  1. #11
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    Default sk66

    I was one of the lucky ones to have had the best of all worlds. My dad was a racer and he was selling rayson craft boats on the east coast. Rudy and my dad were really friends even with the West Meets the East!!! I met Rudy when I was 12 yrs old and the race pit brat back in 1961. I would love it when we had to go to the west coast. Rudy was one of the nicest man you could ever have met. There was always candy and lots of laughs when I got there. My dad was Pete Barden and our boat was a gold and white rayson craft called Gaybar S.K. 66 U.S. 1 1961. My dad had the love of racing just like Rudy did. My father would think nothing of jumping on a plane and fly out on Mondays after a weekend of racing to get what ever he needed for boat or motor and of course a few hours of talk with Rudy and Ed. My dad really surprised me when he bought brought home Ed's Cream Puff. My dad raced her for a few yrs. We meant up with Ed at the nationals in Gunersville Ala. with his new Cream Puff. My dad was in a different heat than Ed. My dad placed for the race while Ed had problems with his boat. Well the out come was my dad ran one heat and he had Ed run the other heat. Cream Puff did her thing and was riding high!!!! The boat was on the front of a magazine with all the other boats at the starting line. I wish I could remember the name of the book. Sadly I had it along with all my dads memories and newspaper clippings and they were lost when we moved. My dads next to last race was the President Cup in 1965 . On Sat he won the race with his Gaybar but we lost our other boat Double D to the river with Bill Conklin driving her. It took hrs for the divers to find her but at the trophy dinner we were given the word that they had a line on her and was raised first thing Sun. morning. My dad was racing his Gaybar again on Sun. when all you saw was a big spray and Al Bauer the judge said oh my God its Pete. This was unheard of Gaybar leaving the water she rode like she was on a train track. She went end over end three times and went straight down nose first by the time they got to my dad all he had left was a bucket seat. The divers found her and up she came sides torn off deck half missing motor side ways but those weber carbs. were there in one piece. My dad had finally listen to Rudy and put Webers carb. on the motor and thats what had him more upset than everything else that happened. As he said to Rudy well do you think I can be up and running by next weekend????? Well believe it or not he was up and running again with a new Gaybar. Rudy and my dad pulled it off once again. As my dad was racing he never felt the broken ribs and his eye which came out of the socket. Ice packs and sunglasses hid everything at the drivers meeting. I lost my dad in Nov of 1966 but up till the day he died he was still laughing with Rudy and planning his races for the up and coming season. I will always remember Rudy as a gentlemen caring man and one hell of a racer and be thankful for all his help. Its so true that you become one big family and I couldn't have asked for a better family than all the racers I have met and been with. All I can say is there must be a hell of a race going on up there. Race hard Guys!!!!!!!

  2. #12
    Team Member Master Oil Racing Team's Avatar
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    That's one heck of a story SK66. Thanks for sharing.



  3. #13
    Team Member BJuby's Avatar
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    Sorry for resurrecting an old thread but just ran across this thread at work. We currently own the Gaybar. It's amazing how stories change and get mixed up through time after getting passed on from person to person especially in comparison to someone who was actually there (sk66). We were always under the impression the Gaybar we owned and purchased from Gay Barden (which might be you) was the only one. We thought that the Cream Puff was the one involved in the accident and that Gaybar, other than trial runs, was never raced. That Pete Barden went to bring the Gaybar down to Florida from New Jersey for its first race, had trailer trouble and was forced to turn around, never making the race. He unfortunately died a couple months later. That's the story we were always told. Very very interesting. I would never question a person that was there, but is it possible your father crashed in the SK-89 CreamPuff (obviously he could have crashed both)? Then raced the Gaybar? Just thinking out loud. Interesting the second Gaybar was not named Gaybar 2. Also ours has 6 Stromburg carbs, not Weber.

    I'll have to tell my father about this, thank you!

  4. #14
    Administrator Ron Hill's Avatar
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    Default Best Thread In Months....

    Enjoyed every word here, read them several times. I know nothing here, but I call Billy Olsen, Ed's son, who lives at Parker to see if he has in memories of the GAYBAR.

    I talked to Bill about two years ago, he mind about old races seems "Sharp as a tack". Maybe he can shed some light here....Oh, I called, and left a message, he didn't "PICK UP"....

    ADD:

    I miss Rudy, he was a racer 24-7 til the end.

  5. #15
    Team Member BJuby's Avatar
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    That's great Ron! Sounds like an interesting guy. I talked to my dad about these conflicting stories and he says he was there (which I knew) growing up in Greenwood Lake, and never saw any boats other than the three (Hootinanny, Creampuff, and Gaybar). Also, my uncle (who was 5 years older than my dad) was OBSESSED with these boats and did all the research on them. It's how he actually found the Hootinanny in back of a gas station in '91 (he had a knack for finding anything he set his mind to finding), found the story of the Creampuff.

    These boats were put together in Greenwood Lake, NY at the GayBar Marina on the north end of the lake. Barden was a Rayson Craft dealer as well so you can see the connection with Rayson craft hulls out in California. However, we think that Pete Barden got some shells (my dad saw them) and built the hulls up from the shell. This is something he always knew about, that Pete Barden had modified the hulls in some way. The mahogany decking is not seen on any Rayson crafts I've ever seen, but was a feature on these 3 hulls (correct me if I'm wrong of course). This is another point that's not for certain, but my dad DID see the shells. My uncle also got our 1962 Rayson craft "Temptation" through Pete Barden. That boat is also somewhat famous in Greenwood Lake history. Many people there still know about her. Anyway, my uncle knew Gay and she knew how badly my uncle wanted the GayBar. We got it in 1991, it was purchased 3 ways between my uncle, father, and grandfather. My uncle passed away in '94, but not before gathering all of this info (or knowing it already) about the boat. We know a lot more, including who took the parts off the GayBar before it was put into the crawlspace it sat in for decades. I won't name names, but this individual and Pete had a falling out because he was owed money by Pete (allegedly) and took the parts (both driveshafts, gauges, rudder, and propeller). Through research to see what these new parts would cost (and if they were available) I found it comes to around $5-6k (the custom driveshafts and the material required are the killer). Anyway, once we have that kind of money lying around we will start the restoration.

    One last thing. There are pictures around on the web of the Creampuff being raced and THAT one has US-1 on it with Pete Barden driving. There are no pictures of the GayBar being raced, because as we believe to be the case, it never was. Certainly it would also have US-1 on the GayBar if that was the boat that US-1 was achieved in, no? Correct me if I'm wrong but US-1 is a pretty big deal. I've seen people hand paint it on a backup boat at a race, it's that important. I say this about a "backup" boat because if there was a 2nd GayBar and GayBar was the boat that US-1 was achieved it, would it not also be on our GayBar? My dad never heard the story of Creampuff being owned by someone else, but it could be possible, but he is also certain all 3 boats were always there together, he saw them. His favorite was always the Creampuff because of the beautiful pearl white paint. He used to watch Creampuff do trial runs on the north end of the lake in front of Pete Barden's marina. Nevertheless, would love to know what happened to her after the crash, probably scrapped. Hootinanny was already a lost cause in 1991 sadly enough....

  6. #16
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    Default Did you know

    Alot of Chuck Stearns ski race victories were behind the #3 Rayson Craft driven by Bill. including several of his Catalina race victories. I think it was a 20 footer and I know it was powered by a FORD

  7. #17
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    Default RUDY RAMOS page 2

    Rudy's first boat was the first plywood flat bottom v-drive ski boat built by Joe Mandella. Rudy got it in 1950. The engine was from Rudy's roadster on the cover of Hot Rod Magazine. Rudy got several boats from Joe. One was on the cover of Speed and Spray. Joe died in June '56. My uncle Ernie bought the Mandella Boat Co. from Joe's widow, Mary. I started building wood Mandellas in Jan '57. We built several boats for Rudy. One was the drag race flat bottom RUMRUNNER. It was the third drag boat to run over 100 mph in a 1/4 mile. After we built the plugs for the glass Mandellas, wood Mandella production stopped. I went to work for Rayson Craft building wood decks and plugs. Later I built plugs and wood decks for Rudy at my shop, in the mid '60s.
    A few months before Rudy got his last checkered flag, he sent me pics of his first Joe Mandella boat. It was 16' flat bottom, Hallcraft v-drive, F H Ford from his roadster. I would like to build a clone of this boat. I have drawn pland and have a Hallcraft v-drive. I need a 24 stud F H Ford engine.
    HARLAN ORRIN

  8. #18
    Team Member BJuby's Avatar
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    Another thread resurrection.

    Well. We have to eat our own words so to speak. We found a photo of the "first" Gaybar in a box stored away that was my uncle's. It is of Gaybar with a US 1 emblem on the bow. Obviously destroyed from the crash told by the original poster. Well, we have a Gaybar as well, indicating that the story of "another" Gaybar being up and running for the following weekend after the crash is correct. Our belief now is that our Gaybar engine was salvaged or taken from one of the other boats or US 1 Gaybar. It could be the Gaybar US 1 engine, we are not sure. We were also told that Keith Black may have built these engines, but are not sure about that either. Also of interest is that our Gaybar is not called "Gaybar II" it also has the same racing numbers. It does not have the US-1 shield either.

    We additionally found two photos of Hootenanny, the boat that was found rotting in the back of a gas station in 1991. Photos of all the boats (except for our boats) are taken at Greenwood Lake, NY, right in front of Gaybar Marina, Pete Barden's place. Please enjoy the photos

    Untitled-13_zps2b5e83d4.jpg

    Untitled-12_zps6673ca06.jpg

    Untitled-1_zps033bcb8b.jpg

    Untitled-22_zps4c408151.jpg

    IMG_5907.jpg

  9. #19
    Team Member smittythewelder's Avatar
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    Bob Gilliam told me that he sold Ramos the Allison engine, which Al Thorsen had built. Instead of retaining the centrifugal blower and aircraft injector/carburetor that the fighter planes and U-boats used, Ramos equipped the engine with Webers. The supercharger drive, famously known by Seattle Unlimited fans as the "quill-shaft," was prone to breaking, and certainly would have failed during one of those rough marathons.

  10. #20
    Administrator Ron Hill's Avatar
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    Default 9/01/2018 Rudy Will Have Been Gone 12 Years

    Rudy was a good man, true to boat racing always!
    Thanks crewman060 thanked for this post

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