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Boat Project!

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    Opinions Needed Boat Project!

    AN (ArizonaNative) and I plan on restoring our boats this coming winter. There is nothing wrong with them but cosmetics (i.e. scratches, scuffs, paint chips, and some stuff is out dated). The plans are to repaint boat, trailer, redo the floor plans, new carpet, new trailer bunks, and trailer light wiring. We know these are big projects to do. AN has all the tools you could possibly think of to do it, and is very handy when it comes to stuff like this. (Hate to tell you AN

    We both know to make this look good it will have to have an outstanding prep job prior to painting. What kind of paint would be a good paint to use on an aluminum boat, and a place to purchase at, also for fiberglass boat too?

    I think the carpet will most likely come from Bass Boat Carpet. We have heard a lot of good things about this company. Does anyone else know of a reputable place?

    What kind of wiring should a person use for trailer lights and a good place to purchase it at?

    Nate and AN!


    When everything is done I plan on putting close to original logos back on the boat.(not sure what AN is wanting to do) Would you have to have a sign guy make these? Or is a person eligible to buy these straight from the Company?

    Thanks again,

    Nate and AN


      I believe you can buy the decals from a dealer. I have also seen various decals on ebay.

      For trailer wiring I would just pick up a kit from a discount store. Cheaper the better because if you are like me you will bust off a tail light before they are too old and you will have to replace it anyway.

      As I recall from this or other forums, painting aluminum requires a special primer. Consult an auto parts store or a friendly body shop guy.

      I restored a 1980 Lund last year, but I cheated. The only tool I needed was my checkbook. (I paid a guy. He did an excellent job and the boat looks like new.)

      Good Luck, sounds like a fun project. Post some before and after pictures when you are done.


        I just refinished a 16' jon boat a couple months ago. After tons of sand paper and wire brushes, plus a bunch of degreaser and rags, I used a 2 part self-etching primer I purchased from Red Shaw paint Co. Definately not cheap ($90/gal), but from what I learned the best long term way to go. 2 coats of Parkers duck boat paint and it turned out pretty good.


          do you guys have any pictures; before and after?


            For your trailer I'd recommend sand blasting or high pressure power washing them to remove any loose material. Instead of paint either take it in and have the spray on bedliner applied or buy a can of Herculiner and paint it by hand. It is much stronger than paint and will resist rusting and paint chips. I plan to do this to my trailer this summer. This will be the 4th season with my boat trailer and the factory paint finish is really chipped up.

            I can't really recommend anything about repainting aluminum boats. But with fiberglass it isn't really painted. A gel coat is used. The gel coat has some flexibility to it that keeps the finish from cracking when applied properly. If you plan to replace the gel coat on it I can recommend a couple places the do good work.




              Boat wrap

              I have thought about this same project. I will use a boat wrap rather than try and paint it myself. Boat wraps look clean and can be anything you want it to be.


                Here is a website that has great information about redoing boats.

                TinBoats.Net :: View Forum - Jon Boat Conversions

                With your trailer it is going to depend how much you want to spend. Sandblasting and bedliner can be expensive. Wire wheels and rustoleum can do the job also. The most important thing about painting on metal is the prepwork. Good Luck!


                  Hmm.... looks like I got roped into this one somehow. :xIDunno:

                  I think a boating forum would be good to have as well. :boat:

                  Ok so for my boat I know it's gelcoat and "paint" ain't gonna fly so that's all good. I've been reading up on all of this for several months now and know that gelcoat is NOT paint... among other things.

                  For Nate's boat though, we'll sand it down to smooth it up, prime with self-etching primer and put down a few coats of base, do some pins and clear after that, sanding and having some beers between each coat. By the time we're done it'll look real sharp.

                  For carpet, I've heard very good reports about Bass Boat Carpet. Their carpet is backed with rubber-ish stuff that protects your wood floor from moisture, mildew and all that. The carpet is also UV protected so it won't fade as bad or as quickly from the sun. I've also heard excellent reviews about Bass Cat's carpet - High Quality 24 oz. Exterior Carpet - they have many other good products as well at reasonable prices.

                  Boat decals/emblems, you can get these from the boat manufacturer.

                  Floor decking, 1/2" minimum, 3/4" if you don't mind the extra weight or need extra support. Either way, you can get marine grade plywood which is quite pricey or you can get "good" plywood and waterproof it yourself with a diluted fiberglass resin. The wood will soak up the diluted resin and after about two coats, it's sealed and waterproofed.

                  What I plan on doing for wiring is using a 4-wire cord (4 separate, insulated wires wrapped in another tube of insulation - made for trailers) and LED lights. The lights will be flush-mount to avoid knocking them off and them getting whacked by rocks kicked up from the road. All wire connections need to be greased and sealed up as good as possible to prevent moisture from getting in and corroding the connection. There is special grease for this purpose that is thicker than dielectric grease yet still conductive.

                  Will add more later...

                  Hey Admins, how about that boating forum??? :chuck:
                  So much to do, so little time.


                    I'd love a boating forum. I know that Redefining Fate took on a boat project last summer, and have always been very curious to see how it turned out. Any helpful hints/tips would be awesome, as I have has an older fiberglass that I'd like to cosmetically upgrade as well at some point.


                      I used the composite decking for my floor, and I really like it. Cheaper and never needs to be replaced.


                        Originally posted by 1tohuntandfish View Post
                        I used the composite decking for my floor, and I really like it. Cheaper and never needs to be replaced.

                        Can i ask where you picked that up at?


                          A boating forum isn't a bad idea... will chew on it.


                            Originally posted by Mako View Post
                            A boating forum isn't a bad idea... will chew on it.


                              Hey Folks,

                              I am in the planning stages of building a wooden drift boat. I have subscribed to Google Alerts for wooden boat building so I get an email from them whenever something like this is posted, that's how I found you guys. Nice place you have here. I've been through NE a time or two, but never got to fish or hunt there. I have a friend in Ogallala.

                              I was born in New Mexico. Fished for everything we had in the state all over the state and AZ, CO, TX using all kinds of tackle and tactics.

                              I'm what I call semi-retired. Left the business world last year and now I'm a fly fishing guide in Montana during the summers and Tennessee in the winters. I'm a lucky guy.

                              Anyway, like I mentioned, I've decided to build my own drift boat. I've been researching out stuff like this and thought I'd share my source for marine ply. I'll still coat it with epoxy to water proof it. That's what all of the wooden boat builders I've been reading advise.

                              Good luck with your project. I'll be checking in to check on your progress. Sounds like fun.
                              Edensaw Woods- (tried to post a link but don't have 5 posts yet)

                              211 Seton Road, Port Townsend, WA, 98368
                              I couldn't really get the info I needed from their website so I called the 1-800 number and got a very friendly and helpful guy on the phone. He calculated prices for me including shipping to Montana. I'm ordering 7 sheets of different thicknesses of marine ply. Shipping is $130 but I can't find this stuff anywhere around here. Dang it.

                              West System, Gougen Brothers Inc. Same on the link.
                              100 Patterson Ave, PO Box 908, Bay City Michigan, 48707. 989-684-7286-Epoxy, instructions, accessories and tech support.
                              Good folks there too.

                              Hope that helps.