Vessels Built by the Hourston Glascraft Ltd.

compiled by John M. MacFarlane 2017

Hourston Glascraft

Hourston Glascraft at Port Hardy Government Dock in 2017 (Photo courtesy of the John MacFarlane collection.)

The name is pronounced as ‘Herston’.

Charles ‘Chuck’ Hourston was born in Vancouver BC in 1923. He attended Vancouver Terchnical School before serving in the Canadian Army during the Second World War. He was an avid hockey player and played for the Army. After the War, in 1948, he worked for Hamish Davidson (Davidson Manufacturing Ltd.) building Sabot sailboats. Davidson experimented early with the new technology of fibreglass in boat construction, and Hourston taught himself the art of building hulls with this material. His first boat was a dinghy.

The company was established in 1950 in North Vancouver BC. Hourston started building boats in his basement – mainly tenders. As his name and product became better known he moved into a rented shop at Lonsdale in north Vancouver. About 1962 this building burned down and he used this event as the impetus to build a small plant. He took three dinghies that had been damaged in the fire and placed them on the rook with a company sign. Business boomed in the 1960s and 1970s. Besides the family market they built rental boats for Soules Marina. He also built boats for the Canadian Hydrographic Service and the Canadian Coast Guard.

The boats started at 17’, and then developed newer models of 23’ to 26’ (the largest with a command bridge position). The Island Runner 26’ was the last model he designed. The boats were all of Hourston’ own design. They were versatile family boats, excellent for fishing and general recreation – all stable and solidly constructed to last for years. Hourston used his own extensive experience using boats to create the designs. He kept all of his designs in production as they were so popular that they never went out of fashion.

The company at its height of activity required two full shifts of workers to produce the boats. The whole family was involved at one time or another. The company claims to be the world’s oldest continuously operating fibreglass boat building company.

Charles Hourston used one of his own boats, the 26’ Hour Glass, for personal use. It is still afloat and owned by a family member. The Tern, a 20’ model, was the first of the models to sport a hard top.

Hourston exhibited in boat shows but relied mostly on the word of mouth recommendations from previous customers to generate orders. He was inducted in 2005 into the Canadian Boating Hall of Fame. He never considered himself to have been retired, such was his passion for the company. He passed away in 2005 in Vancouver BC.

39 matches. 1 page. Max 50 records per page.
Page # 1
Name Registration Vessel Type Year Built
Allante (III) 837125 Yacht, power-cruiser 2006
C05908BC C05908BC Yacht, power-cruiser (nk)
C07466ON C07466ON Yacht, power-cruiser 2014
C07736ON C07736ON Yacht, power-cruiser 2014
C11552ON C11552ON Work Boat 2015
C11810BC C11810BC Passenger Vessel 2017
C12777BC C12777BC Passenger Vessel 2013
C13447BC C13447BC Yacht, power-cruiser 2014
C13920BC C13920BC Yacht, power-cruiser 2014
C15277BC C15277BC Yacht, power-cruiser 2014
C15686BC C15686BC Passenger Vessel 2014
C15879BC C15879BC Yacht, power-cruiser 2014
C16555BC C16555BC Yacht, power-cruiser 2015
C17614ON C17614ON Yacht, power-cruiser 2015
C18356BC C18356BC Yacht, power-cruiser 2016
C18657ON C18657ON Yacht, power-cruiser 2016
Canton Belle 392748 Work Boat 1978
Cowichan Forest (nk) Work Boat 1976
Cumshewa (II) 348892 Work Boat 1974
For Play C01233BC Fishboat, general (nk)
Hecate Belle 371922 Work Boat 1977
Hour Glass (nk) Yacht, power-cruiser (nk)
Hourston Glascraft 30K5981 Yacht, speedboat (nk)
Jayanell 370312 Yacht 1975
Jo-Ann III 345128 Passenger vessel 1968
Juniper IV (nk) Work Boat 1970
Kyuquot Forest (nk) Work Boat 1976
La Vita Bella 837125 Yacht, power-cruiser 2006
Lani 331881 Passenger vessel 1969
Lily Rae (Licenced vessel) Yacht, speedboat 1986
Lisa 329484 Passenger vessel 1968
Miss Enid 330815 Work Boat 1969
Pan Pacific (II) C25633BC Passenger Vessel 2016
Quadra Belle 372688 Work Boat 1977
Redstart (II) 392748 Work Boat 1978
Sherry Ann II 345126 Passenger vessel 1968
Skiff (I) C25633BC Passenger Vessel 2016
Tern (I) (nk) Yacht, power-cruiser (nk)
Wild Duck (III) 345963 Patrol vessel 1972

Author’s Note: This is a partial list (work in progress).

Vessel Images: Can you help us fill gaps in the vessel images in the database? If you have pictures of missing vessels that you have taken and would be willing to contribute to the database to make it more complete all our users would be very grateful. Please send them to admin(at)

Note to Reader: Vessel names containing Roman numerals in parentheses (e.g. Floater (II)) indicates more than one vessel in the database with the same name. The numerals in parentheses are NOT part of the vessel name but are used to distinguish one vessel from another in the database.

To quote from this article please cite:

MacFarlane, John M. (2017) Vessels Built by the Hourston Glascraft Ltd. 2017.

The Nauticapedia


Site News: March2nd, 2019

Databases have been updated and are now holding 56,584 vessel histories (with 5,550 images) and 58,184 mariner biographies (with 3,673 images).

© 2002-2019