My 16' Starcraft Project

Discussion in 'Boat Tips' started by turtle1173, Nov 1, 2005.

  1. turtle1173

    turtle1173 New Member

    Messages:
    611
    State:
    Mayfield, KY
    Well Guys, after the outstanding weekend of fishing that Slimcat and I had, I figured it wouldn't be topped so I might as well start digging into repairs on the boat. Especially in light of having decent weather in the forecast.

    The boat has been sluggish, terrible on gas, and extremely leaky. So I started tearing into it. When I first did some work on this boat a few years ago I just put a new floor over the existing one.

    So I had two layers of flooring on. The screws I put in were rusted, so I got an angle grinder and started in. I got both layers up and finally got to see the styrofoam.

    You can see the layout in the photos. The top syrofoam looked pretty good, nice and light. But when I got deeper, the other pieces were nice and heavy. Just as I suspected :confused:

    I was actually surprised how good the metal looked under this mess. When I got all the foam out, I noticed that the stringers weren't connected to the boat. I guess those are stringers. There are 2 of them that run the length of the boat. What is the name of the part that the "stringers" connect to? They are raised up pieces that are about every 10 inches but run side to side on the boat.

    Anyway, I could tell that the stringers had been connected but somewhere along the way they came undone. There were also two pieces of flat metal that ran across (side-to-side) and connected to the stringers. It looks like they helped to support them.

    On the photo that shows the side of the boat, you will see a lip that runs the length of the boat. The original plywood went under this lip. I am wondering how I will get the new plywood under this lip (on both sides). Anyone know how those pieces come off (or do they)?

    I guess my next step is to find the leaks on the bottom. When I find the leaks what should I use to mark them?

    Any other suggestions anyone has while I'm inside like this?

    Thanks for the help
     

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  2. turtle1173

    turtle1173 New Member

    Messages:
    611
    State:
    Mayfield, KY
    Two more pictures.
     

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  3. davesoutfishing

    davesoutfishing New Member

    Messages:
    479
    State:
    Menominee Michigan
    wow that looks like a messfirst thing I would fill the boat up with water then mark the underside sides or where ever their is a leak as foor the wood floor cut down the middle of the floor this will allow you to slip it under
     
  4. fwmud

    fwmud New Member

    Messages:
    693
    State:
    Wilson's Mills,nc
    I'd suggest replacing with "marine grade" foam.(closed cell) Also, I'd ruff in some electrical PVC pipes to chase your wiring thru.Always run extras.It helps for that 1 little thing that you forget.
    If the boat is aluminum, you can use a product caled dura-fix. It's for welding aluminum with nothing more than a standard propane or Mapp gas torch.
    very good stuff.
     
  5. three_rivers

    three_rivers New Member

    Messages:
    688
    State:
    Tupelo Ar
    Shane, when i'm marking metal i always use a marking crayon. The big yellow ones. Keith gave you some good advice. I used it when the weld around the drain plug gave way on my little fourteen footer. The drain plug fell out! Its been in four years and still as strong as ever.
     
  6. davesoutfishing

    davesoutfishing New Member

    Messages:
    479
    State:
    Menominee Michigan
    where can ya get that weld stuff fw? auto stores?
     
  7. turtle1173

    turtle1173 New Member

    Messages:
    611
    State:
    Mayfield, KY
    Dave, go to durafix.com

    Here's the latest photos. I got the foam cleaned out and everything shop vac'ed.

    In the first photo, you can see the front of the boat. The place where the small puddle is, that's where my main leak is. I poured a little water there to make sure that was the spot. There's some kind of red stuff on top of that spot. It's kind of lumpy on it but I don't know what it is. I'm wondering how I could durafix that with whatever that is on it. Or I could put a torch on it and see if it burns off :eek:

    Is there a way I could seal the rivets from the inside? Something to coat them with? Or is that a reasonable request. Perhaps I could just fill the boat with 5200, LOL.

    I hate to have to fill this big thing up with water and then have to dry it all out but I guess that will be the best way. Is it dangerous to fill the entire bottom up with water? That seems like it will be an awful lot of weight.
     

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  8. Koda

    Koda New Member

    Messages:
    39
    State:
    Tombstone,AZ
    Good Morning Turtle1173,
    I bought a 16' open bow starcraft and fell thru the floor while checking it out
    so knew right away that I had a problem, removed all wood, styrofoam and assorted stuff cleaned inside as you have done then put one son outside with a 8# sledge to back up and took a 2# ball peen hammer and reset every rivit in the boat, be advised that you will have a few that break and a few that will not reset, after resetting and replaceing all of the bad rivits replaced floatation foam, soaked exterior plywood with polyurethane had transom brace rewelded replaced transom and reassembed floor, leaked 5 gallons per hour prior and after a year would leak about 5 gallons first trip of the season then a couple gallons per day after that so was well worth the expence, you can buy rivits oversized to install from the outside, you drill up one size then set the rivit it has a soft pin that expands the rivit to seal it plus I always used a sealant on the rivit, other option was to have all seams welded at a weld shop but that would have been way out of my price range.
    used the boat for eight years with no further problems and sold it to buy a pontoon a couple of years ago.If I can help you with more info just E-Mail me at dspahn@localnet.com.
    Luck David
     
  9. turtle1173

    turtle1173 New Member

    Messages:
    611
    State:
    Mayfield, KY
    After I made my last post, I decided that I probably needed to go ahead and fill it up with water. So I did. I filled it up until the water covered all of the bottom. Anyway, the leak in the front is real bad. Aside from that I've got about 7 rivets that had a bead of water on it and 1 that had a very slow drip. So I don't think I'm too bad off. I've got to get that front patched though.

    Do you think I should put a wire wheel on my angle grinder and go about it that way? I was thinking about doing that and then I could see what the metal looks like above that leak.

    I also got the side panels off. That's the part I was worried about trying to get the plywood under. Looks like that won't be a problem now.

    I weighed the foam that I took out. It was hard to get an accurate weight but 200-300 lbs would be a close estimate.

    I appreciate all the great comments. Thank you and keep them coming.
     
  10. slimcat

    slimcat New Member

    Messages:
    952
    State:
    marion kentucky
    Shane, Have you found a good place to buy foam yet. I have heard Lowe's is a good shot but didn't know if there were any other places around.
     
  11. turtle1173

    turtle1173 New Member

    Messages:
    611
    State:
    Mayfield, KY
    Demetrius,

    Lowe's carries styrofoam and some expandable spray-in a can foam (says "waterproof" on the can). Other than that, they have some of that foam that they put on the outside of houses before the exterior boards or siding. I don't know how that would be though.

    The 2 part pourable foam will have to be bought online. I'm not sure what route I'm going to take yet.
     
  12. davesoutfishing

    davesoutfishing New Member

    Messages:
    479
    State:
    Menominee Michigan
    I wouldnt wire brush to much ali. is not a realy strong metal on my boat Im gonna try the rhino do it yourself kit (for truck beds I have read alot of good things about it)
     
  13. davesoutfishing

    davesoutfishing New Member

    Messages:
    479
    State:
    Menominee Michigan
    the red stuff looks like it had been patched before try to add a lil strenght to that area be it wood or ali.(cant spell that word) seems like that is the weak spot
     
  14. turtle1173

    turtle1173 New Member

    Messages:
    611
    State:
    Mayfield, KY
    Here's the latest update:

    After some more patching on my leak in the front, I decided to give it the water test again. Not filling up the hull but just putting some water in the very front and seeing if it leaked. After doing this, I ended up (after a few minutes) with just a couple of drops. I decided to try a different test this afternoon. I took the boat to the ramp and let her float. Then I got inside. I was then able to tell where the leak was coming from. That was very helpful. Found 2 other spots with very minor leaks. So I took her home and got to work.

    Meanwhile, I went and got some plywood. I was going to buy it at lowe's but lowe's wanted almost $21 for a sheet of 1/2". I went to a local lumber yard and it was $18.69 per sheet. Let me tell you though, the quality was a huge improvement over what Lowe's was selling! It is going to take 3 pieces to do the floor. My floor width is 62", so it is a little wasteful but I'll be able to use the other pieces elsewhere. I got an extra piece to do my raised deck (whenever I figure out how to do that). Also, originally there were 2 sideboards, covered with vinyl. I figured I will replace them as well, although that's not priority #1 right now.

    I got the first two pieces cut today and started doing some prep work on it. The 3rd piece will be tough to cut but I think I'll get a piece of cardboard and make a pattern.

    So anyway, that's where I'm at right now. I'm still undecided about what to coat my new floors with when I get them put down.
     
  15. Little Mac

    Little Mac Active Member

    Messages:
    1,828
    State:
    NW Arkansa
    Shane, If you only want to do this one time I would suggest getting some epoxy resin and coating the underside of the plywood (after its cut to fit) then put it in, coat the top side then cover with what ever you decide to use. Its messy, time consuming, but will last a long, long time. The 2 part foam isnt that bad to deal with, I wouldnt use that stuff they use at lowes that fills gaps, its not closed cell. I learned all this stuff from Mark J. he gave me pointers while i was doing all this to my boat. USComposites is where i got my stuff they seemed to have the cheapest i could find. and had fast shipping. Hope I dont get in trouble for saying that, Just trying to help. Mac
     
  16. turtle1173

    turtle1173 New Member

    Messages:
    611
    State:
    Mayfield, KY
    I too have learned much from Mark J. However, my project certainly isn't following all the good things I've read from him. I'm on a strict budget with this, otherwise it wouldn't be getting done at all. As an example, I've coated my floors with Polyester Resin, instead of Epoxy. I know this isn't as good as epoxy nor will it hold up as well BUT it will last longer than nothing at all.

    I've got the back 2/3rds of the boat done. I spent some time this afternoon cutting the 3rd piece. It was tough, as it is tapering to the front. But it's cut and I'll be laying it down tomorrow. After that, I've got to figure out what I'm going to do for a raised deck in the front.

    There are two aluminum framing pieces that are still rivited to the front area (1 on each side). This was to secure the orignial seating that was on the boat. I know I'm going to use this somehow to secure my raised floor but I haven't figured out yet how it is going to come together. I imagine I'll have to run some boards across to be used in supporting the floor. Then put the plywood piece in place. After that, finish out the backside that will be viewed when looking toward the front. I'll have to put some thought into this, LOL.
     
  17. whichrod

    whichrod New Member

    Messages:
    102
    State:
    columbia sc
    vert intersting thread , i have a little story id like to share, i have a 15ft skeeter bass boat and last year the floor finally rotted about a 2 ft area right where the drain is on the floor, anyway i stripped the carpet out and looked and went pfffft this is gonna be easy well about 150 hours later i was puling my hair out , how on earth could replacing a 4ft by 8ft area be so hard?? trust me it is if you have never messed with replacing a boats floor its a lessen you will never forget , there isnt nuttin easy about it, one thing i did learn is marine plywood isnt all that its cracked up to be, if you look at articals on flooring they say to use bc plywood and coat it with resin if you use any treated ply wood it will not suck in the resin the biggest problem with boats floors failing is dry rot from heat not from getting wet , anyway after many many hours of work it pretty much looked like a 3 year old did the floor it was all uneven and lumpy i was at my wits end , this is where my story gets a tad funny, i was whinning to some friends on how terrible my boats floor looked , well one of them said hey my father inlaw messes with fiberglass lets go up there and get some pointers , i was like okay and me and him hauled my boat up to his place , well when we got off the highway i seen this huge building like 20,000 sq foot one i was like this is his shop??????
    i walked in there and the place looked like a hospital ward everything was shiney and clean i began to look around and seen race car bodies everywhere i was like exactly what does he do?? turns out he makes nascar bodies anyway he went and got his father inlaw i shook his hand and asked if i could take a tour of the place, it was a amazing place seeing how they make the bodies and how the use those fiberglass chop guns to spray the molds anyway i came back about a hour later very impressed with the tour , when i walked back up my boat was in there shop with about 4 guys standing around my boat they began to introduce themselves each one had titles that were like a foot long!!! all engineers so some sort measuring and doing all sorts of stuff i heard one say we can try out that new ( some name of a process that was like 4 foot long ) sounded like it was some weird deasase , anyway i was like whoaaa whoaaaaaa now i need advice but i dont wanna spend a ton of money, the engineers said ohhh we wont charge you hardly nuttin then i was like hummmmmmmmmmmmm this could be good!
    i was like have at it boys, i was pretty happy on the ride home till a little voice in my brain says hey george your idea of not much and not much to people that get hundred thousand bucks making a design on a car body could be a disaster to me, i began to worry something awful i tell you what , i wanted to call them back up and find out exactly what the cost would be but my friend did not have there number and by the time we turned around and went back they would be closed i would have to wait till monday to get back up there , i told him that he needed to call his father inlaw and find out what it was gonna cost, i tell all ya what i didnt sleep at all worrying , well monday came around and i called my friend and asked if he called or not he said yeah just a minute ago i was like just now!! why didnt you call when you got home he shruged and said ohh i forgot. then the next words out his mouth about made me faint, he said they said your boat is done they worked the weekend to get it out, i pictured my retirement fund being wiped out paying for it, asked did he say how much it would be??? he said yeah not much , i was like how much is not much??? he was like i dunno , iam like not much to me is not the same as not much to a guy that maked a zillion a year , he paused then said hummmmmm buh ha ha ha you could be right! i tell you what i wanted to reach through the phone and strangle him
    , anyway i drove over got him for the death ride to the shop , all i could think of is him saying well its 5000 or some unreal price man i was worried , when i arrived my boat was sitting in the parking lot the floor looked like glass it was perfectly flat not a blemish anywhere it was so perfect it was almost a shame to stick the carpet on, i thought this cant be cheap iam in bigggggggg trouble well by then the 4 guys and the owner came out said how you like it??? i was like uhh errr humm well its perfect, but iam wondering how much is this gonna cost,well the 5 of them sorta huddled whispering back and forth it was the longest 2 minutes in my life then they came back and said gimmie 150.00, i was so happy i coulda kissed them , turns out they knew already that i didnt have much money and were just messing with me the whole time , they just had me pay for materals , sooo to make this long story short i got a floor made out of the same stuff as a nascar body most like worth more than what my whole boat is worth! whew!
     
  18. Mark J

    Mark J New Member

    Messages:
    9,407
    State:
    Four Oaks, NC
    There is a simple way to figure out how to cut those curving shapes in a boat floor.
    If you have ever seen how a cabinet maker measures for counter tops its easy.
    you take thin battens like 3 or 4 inch wide paneling or something thin like paneling.
    Lay a pice along the floor next to each side. take a scribe and scribe the shape into your batten and cut it accordingly.
    Lay it back in the boat in place. Continue to cut these pieces for the entire perimeter of the floor. It doesnt matter if the pieces overlap. You want them to.
    When you have all of them cut start hot glueing them together and when done you have one fullsize template.
    IUwould avoid using any type of paper product or cardboard unless I was using the template immediately.
    Paper is not stable, it grows and shrinks with moisture which is why any good set of boat plans will NOT offer them in fullsized patterns unless they are patterned on Mylar which would make boat plans ultra expensive.

    To replace the floor in a 2 hull boat like a bass boat, the only way to effectively replace it is to take the motor off, take the controls loose, disconnect the wiring, pull the rub rail, drill out the rivets and pop the hull apart.
    You'll come out way ahead in time and effort if you spend a day unrigging and rerigging.

    Turtle, I wish I had known your dilemma. There is also a product called Gluvit. Although I wouldnt use it for my stuff I would use it in place of epoxy as a waterproofing method if thats all I could afford.

    Boats arent cheap in any form or shape and it is costly to repair or rebuild boats using methods that will correct it's inherent flaws.
    Thats why there is some "free boats" I have been offered but kindly declined.
    Once you start using the right materials to repair these things its not a free boat anymore.
    Just ask Keith Sword, His boat is in need of extensive repairs but he wants the boat and is willing to spend what it takes to do it right. Maybe by spring he'll have enough saved to refloor it and rebuild the transom. My rough estimate on that boat withut sitting odwn with paper and pen or shopping is around 1400. And that's not including the beer he is going to have to supply my itching ass to lay the fiberglass.

    Marine plywood and BC plywood.
    Marine plywood typically the foreign types and most expensive types like Meranti and Gaboon are not rot resistant species. What they are is glued together plies with the right glue that doesnt delaminate with moisture and there are no voids between plies that will collect water through the condensation of heat and cooling cycles or humidity. Their strength is higher then BC. Their weight is lower then BC. There is 5-7 pounds difference in weight from BC to Meranti In 1/4" plywood! If you are building a boat this can can quickly add up to hundreds of pounds in weight in something as small as an 18 footer.

    BC plywood on the other hand is full of voids and patches (the footballs).
    The glue is suspect in some cases and will wind up costing you more in the long run because you are going to use twice the epoxy on this type of "rough" lumber. These domestic woods like pine or fir will also check no matter what sealant you use including epoxy. The only way to prevent checking is to glass it.

    I would build a boat or repair a boat out of the cheapest grade of marine ply before I used any grade of BC plywood.
    Marine plywood has not increased in price in the last 3 years or so in leiu of domestic plies doubling in price.
    A beautiful piece of sanded 2 sides Meranti marine grade plywood in 1/4" can be had for 27 bucks a sheet. Find me BC sanded 2 sides with no voids in 1/4" for that price. It cant be done. And remember, double the epoxy.

    Treated ply is the wrong way to go UNLESS you are willing to bring it home put it out of the weather, and rack it up for drying over a period of months and then use epoxy like a religion.

    If you ever lay your eyes on or have the pleasure to machine a piece of Meranti or Gaboon you'll never want to buy BC for anything again.
    2 things this country sucks at is beer making and plywood manufacturing.
    Those two things I'll pick foreign over domestic any time.
     
  19. turtle1173

    turtle1173 New Member

    Messages:
    611
    State:
    Mayfield, KY
    Well guys I'm going to be taking the boat out tomorrow. I finished the floor and also finished building my raised deck. Turned out good and I'm looking forward to trying her out.

    These pics were taken this evening. The sun was going down, so the quality isn't near as good as usual. It will, however, give you a general idea of how it looks.
     

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  20. slimcat

    slimcat New Member

    Messages:
    952
    State:
    marion kentucky
    Shane, man that is looking great. Can't wait to see it tomorrow.