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  #1  
Old 07-19-2015, 03:54 PM
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Default Turning the ugliest boat in Costa Rica into a respectable 28' Center Console Diesel

Well, been down here a while and I've redone a couple of boats that I charter, including my favorite the old gamefisherman, but the last year I've been stuck rebuilding other people's boats here. So two weeks back, i saw this ugly boat in the boat yard and decided it's time I do one of my own! This has to be the ugliest boat I've ever seen, but I just really thought it just had a nice looking hull, this takes some serious imagination, but we'll see if I'm right Here's the ugly sucker when i bought her:




Yeah, it was en evil person that put all that ugly on that pretty hull, so right away I (and my best friend Harold) got out the 6 inch disks and put on some trash bags and cut the top off and then flipped her over!




We also sanded her down and found several spots where there was no glass and just bondo. That's what the glass strips are all about. So after all the cutting and sanding, we sprayed some Gel Coat on her to see what she looked like painted up:



And here's another angle:




Not bad Ehh ?? But, it only measured out to 25 feet, and my smallest boat in my fleet is a 28 footer, so we needed an extra 3 foot. I'm not a Naval Ar****ect by any means, but we will just figure it out as we go here.... So we put some Wax and PVA on the last three feet and put a couple of layers of 1708 on her!



And here's another shot:

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Old 07-19-2015, 03:55 PM
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So here's what it looked like after we dismolded the 3 foot extension, cut off the transom and put in on the back. We also added a tunnel while it was on the table after we dis molded it, I forgot to take pictures, but you can see the tunnel there. Then we stuck the thing on the back of the boat and did some Micro Spere's and Gelcoat and came up with this:



And here's another angle:



Now was the time for the big decision. Up to this point I had always thought we were just going to use the boat. But after some thought, I decided that the original hull was just not done very well, and we instead are going to use this creation as a MOLD to build another couple of boats at least. I really like the way this hull is looking, but it was done with all 18 and 24 OZ roven, with thick mat between every layer and it was heavy. Since I'm going to do all the topside with corecell, it would be dumb to have a heavy hull with a light top, so we decided instead of doing too much finish work, we were going to just spray some gelcoat thick, do a little bit of long boarding and then throw on the Wax and PVA and just make sure it's a good finished boat that doesn't weigh 10,000 pounds... So here's the shots of my bud harold throwing some GelCoat getting her ready to be copied:



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Old 07-19-2015, 03:55 PM
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Here's a before and after:





And here is the end of two weeks of Hard Work!

We are going to go with 4 layers of 1708 on the bottom and 3 on the sides. That's kind of thin, but on the inside we are going to use alot of bulkheads all in corecell, and then the corecell floor, and I think with all the tie-in's we'll end up with 5/6 layers on the bottom and then the floor will help support the hull. We are going with a cummins 210B series engine in the center, so we need to make her light if we want a 20+ knot cruise at 5.5 GPH.

The idea is to make a boat that doesn't burn fuel and gets out to the fishing grounds cheap but fast, and the hope is to offer $600-650 full day offshore trips with food drinks included for up to 5 people.




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Old 07-19-2015, 03:56 PM
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Here's some pictures of the very first "Quepos 28" as it sits on the mold. This was 4 layers on the bottom of 1708 and 3 on the sides. It didn't turn out perfect, but I'm sure it'll float. We used a isothalic (that's in Spanish, i don't know the English word for it) Polyester resin, I would have used VinylEster, but there wasn't time to import it and there is none in country. We had a little trouble with the resin from the local supplier, it was really thick so we had to make a big table the same length as the boat and we wet the 1708 down on the table with the inside part up and then went over it with the metal roller to wet it out good from the inside, and then we rolled it back onto the cardboard tubes they sell the glass on and then unrolled the tubes onto the mold. If the resin had been thinner, it would have been a lot less work, but we eventually got it all on there. Once we got started, we just decided to tough it out...





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Old 07-19-2015, 03:56 PM
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Since we did this the wrong way as a Male Mold, we are going to have to fill in all the weave that you can see with Micro Sphere's and a Gel Coat mixture. To put it on kind of thick and try to knock out the big stuff, we decided to mix a big bucket of the stuff and put it on with a brush. Here's Harold painting the microshperes on the boat with the paint brush:






Funny story, I had to drive to the capital to pick up this huge bag of Micro Spheres and I got pulled over on the way home with a huge bag of white powder in the passenger seat of my Tacoma I showed him the receipt, and I guess he figured if it was the "other powder" commonly moved through the area, it would be worth way too much and let me go! Here's the big bag of white powder I drove across the country with:

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Old 07-19-2015, 03:57 PM
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Then comes the best part, a 2 by 4 with some 36 grit. The first one was a picture I shot while I was supposed to be sanding, and the second picture was just too corny so i had to post it as well. I joking asked Harold to pose with the board, I didn't think he'd do it...



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Old 07-19-2015, 03:59 PM
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Here's some pictures of us fairing it out. Didn't turn out too bad, there aren't any places with super thick microspheres, mostly just defects and pinholes and such.



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Old 07-19-2015, 04:00 PM
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Well, we got her painted. We sprayed on about 3 gallons of Gelcoat mixed with 2 gallons of Estrene to thin it out to go through the gun. We got four coats on the bottom which is good enough, tomorrow we are going to 100 grit the bottom so that when we are ready to bottom paint it we won't have to sand it upside down. I know it'll probably be pretty flimsy when I get it apart, so we are going to have to do a lot of bracing before we put in the bulkheads. I was overall happy with how the hull turned out, the border was a little rough, but we have to sand all that down anyways to put on the top side. I setup the Go Pro and the Nikon to take some video of us pulling this thing apart and I'll post that in a few minutes. The idea was we used a water hose and floated the mold off of the hull while it's right side up. it was easier than I thought, but the video turned out pretty funny so I'll post it in a sec.






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Old 07-19-2015, 04:03 PM
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Well, i think this proves I'm more ghetto than talented...but here's the video of us taking the Hull off of the mold. Keep in mind we are in a fairly remote area of Costa Rica, and there are no cranes or anything that normal SANE people would use to demold boats. All I have are some friends and some homeless people that looked hungry

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eYKb3Pv4XPA

The idea was pretty simple, flipping the boat over demolded a little bit of it, so I stuck a water hose in there between the two and floated the mold inside the new hull. It took a while, but worked great.

The hull didn't hold it's shape 100 percent, so we built a quick cradle with a tape measure and some 2X4's to keep it straight and it did straighten up nicely. Today we fiberglassed in some stringers and the lower motor support area. Really happy with the finished product, but the process was Iffy
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Old 07-19-2015, 04:04 PM
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So we get the molds apart, but we were left with this deformed hull. It took us a while to figure out what was going on, but it ended up being that the floor of the shop was curved and that's why the point of the boat points up. The glass looked good and solid though.








But like everything in construction, it's nothing that a tape measure, a shovel and some 2 by 4's can't fix.
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  #11  
Old 07-19-2015, 04:04 PM
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So we moved the hull out of the cover and dug some holes and partially buried some 2 by 4's. We then made a cradle to put the hull in and everything straightened out nicely!







On the last picture, you can see one of the side projects where we took a 5 inch PVC and wrapped it with 4 layers of 1708 to make the exhaust pipe. We are waiting on the CoreCell to get here, they are saying by the end of next week, so we are trying to build everything that we can in the mean time. I wish I had taken more pictures of the hull with the braces on it, the lines came out nice.
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Old 07-19-2015, 04:05 PM
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With the hull straight, we decided to put the motor mounts / mini stringers. I didn't want to put in some super big stringers because we are going to put in alot of corecell bulkheads, but I wanted something to help the hull out where the motor was going to be mounted. We built the non wood parts by just making a one layer of 1708 on the table and cutting it into 6 inch strips and using some bondo (with extra activator to dry fast) to make boxes attached to the floor. Then we got out the filet knife and made a nice 1 inch filet with Cabosil (which was grey, some offbrand I'm sure?) and then used that as a mold to put on 4 layers of 1708. We still have to put some holes in it so that it doesn't hold water (at the bottom so water will flow to the bilge if any goes down there). Not the prettiest, but it'll work, and it'll give the hull a little more thickness where the motor goes. We are still going to clean this up and close the end, but I figured I'd take some pictures of the process.







I shot this right before we hid this beautiful wood. This is some amazing Iron Wood we are using to mount the motor. This is a purple version of CocoBolo called Nazereno. It's bright purple and has the best grain swirls, like most things that are really cool, the picture doesn't do it justice. We chose it because it is one of the hardest woods here and it doesn't rot. That is where we are going to bolt on the stainless part of the motor support table, I'd explain it, but pretty soon I'll just post pictures of it finished and that will be easier!

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Old 07-19-2015, 04:07 PM
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What a difference loading it on the trailer with the motor stringers in place, it was a lot more stable and didn't want to deform like when we first demolded it. But we still hand loaded it onto the trailer with three guys, so it isn't very heavy.



While I had the boat on the trailer, I took some better pictures of the cradle we made, nothing too complex, we buried some two by fours and then got out some string and a level and the three two by fours that are horizontal are all the same height and level. We measured from the horizontals up to make sure the hull was symetrical. The sides of the cradle we did after the boat was on top using a tape measure on the upper border. The hull wants to "open" so we measured the original hull which was alot thicker and not as flexible. We put a board across in the middle and then lifted the chimes with the small pieces. I am terrible at explaining, but look at the picture



So we get it in the water and it drafted about an inch and a half, with just the hull.



So then we put three drums of water in the boat where the motor will be going. Filled it up with salt water. Three drums weights about 1300ish pounds, the same as the motor. And we are putting in a 40 gallon tank which weighs about 240 pounds full so I put two friends where the tank will be. Here's us putting in the water and then the photo of all the weight where it goes. It floated really level.





And then we got a piece of fiberglass and marked out 7 inches and put the bottom mark in the water and then marked the hull all the way around with the other and we have our waterline.





After these pictures, we spend a ton of time getting it back on the cradle and back level again. Next we are going to start doing birdcages for the bulkheads!

Last edited by GringoJohn; 07-19-2015 at 04:20 PM.
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Old 07-19-2015, 04:08 PM
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Still waiting on the corecell to get in, but I managed to find enough scraps to make the border around the edge where the floor will sit. This is also what i'm going to use to make my birdcages which we start next. The boat is going to live on a mooring, so I made the floor a hair higher than I would have if it was going in the marina so that water doesn't come in through the back scuppers at night when there are waves, and then I also put quite a bit of fall from the front to the back so that if a bunch of people go up front, I won't have a little pond up there. We also roughly put the floor to the bathroom in. Still have to clean that up, but I found a 1 inch divinycell that a friend had so we glassed it and stuck it where the bathroom floor will be.





And then with a little time on our hands and now knowing where the floor goes, we put the tube in the muffler that will go out the back and we are going to finish the muffler next. The floor will sit on the top of the muffler and it will be the same height as the bulkheads on top.

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Old 07-19-2015, 04:10 PM
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Here's an inside view of the muffler. This was before we finished up the glass on the tubes, they are just stuck on there with cabosil and resin in the picture. We got those glassed in and the middle wall glassed in after the photo. On the top, we are going to do the top half at a time, like the left half and then the right half, so in the middle we can tie the top to the partition with at least one layer of 1708. We got it cut down to floor height though so it fits right under the floor nicely. I did make a mistake, I wasn't there when they stuck the tubes in to the sides (where the air enters and leaves the muffler), I would have liked to see them about 3-4 inches deeper, but it didn't happen and I don't think it makes that much difference. If I get some noise on the transom, that's why, but it's kind of fun to experiment, I know it'll knock down 90 percent of the noise either way.



Here's my Engineering plans which I made with Paint!




And then spent the rest of the morning building birdcages! Birdcages are 2 inches strips of 5/16 plywood that we use to make a pattern so we can cut out the corecell when it gets here. We are sticking it together with a nail gun, which is not OSHA friendly, but you can also use a staple gun, and I've seen some people use hot glue, although that would be painfully slow. Hopefully by the end of the day we will have the rest of the birdcages done and the muffler stuck to the floor, and I'll stick up some more pictures later!







We are going to do bulkheads at 24 inch centers, that's what we did on the gamefisherman and my other 28 footer, and those floors are very stout, so I'm sticking with it! Here is the strength of 1/2 inch corecell with 1 layer of 1708 on each side. This was placed perfectly between the bulkheads on top of a hatch opening on my other 28 foot boat, and I didn't know the floor could hold this up but it did nicely:



The motor weighs about 1300 pounds plus the transmission, so if it'll hold that, we should be alright walking around on it!

Last edited by GringoJohn; 07-19-2015 at 04:23 PM.
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Old 07-19-2015, 04:12 PM
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Next we finished the birdcages and took them out. This was a lot of work, but we knocked it out in a day and a couple of hours.



And then we went ahead and finished the muffler and stuck it down to the hull and cut the hole in the back. i like solid exhausts because the hoses always scare me We stil have to flush the tile pipe up to the transom, but he have it glassed in from the inside with a double 1708. We are going to grind it flush with a 36 grit 4.5 grinder and then put some cabosil and put a 1708 on the outside.



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Old 07-19-2015, 04:14 PM
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And then that brings me up to date, and this is where I am now. Today is the day my box of 24 sheets of corecell was supposed to come in, but not to my surprise, it's not here yet. I shipped it from Florida about 2 months ago, and it should be here anyday. So we are kind of stuck with nothing to do, the next thing on the list are the bulkheads, and the birdcages are ready to go, we just need the foam

SO, to try to get ahead a bit, we decided to do the worst job imaginable! My big friend Harold, and another guy in the shop, went ahead and sanded the whole inside of the hull with 36 grit sandpaper on the 4.5 grinder. That way we can just stick in the bulkheads and glass them to the floor quickly and everything will be sanded and ready to go. So today, i took the day OFF! and the guys spent 10 hours with grinders in hand making fine white powder!!!! The hull cleaned up well though, these will probably be the last photos for a while, when my foam gets out of storage we'll have these bulkheads in quick though!

This photo is deceptive, the motor stringers actually run 65 percent of the hull length, here they look short and small ??? It was the wide angle on the camera, but even with that in mind, you can kind of see where we ended up.







Sorry for the million posts, I kept telling myself I was going to start the thread and then i was worn out. I'll try to keep it up to date from here on out!

Last edited by GringoJohn; 07-19-2015 at 04:25 PM.
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Old 07-19-2015, 05:00 PM
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Nice job
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Old 07-19-2015, 05:50 PM
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I've been following your build on the other site. I always look forward to your updates.
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Old 07-19-2015, 11:36 PM
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Awesome stuff man, please send updates.

Build a boat- On my to do list one day.
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