My Dreamboat: 1979 Sidewinder flats skiff restoration

BacklashBacklash Posts: 880 Officer
Hi ya’ll…

I’ve owned and run my 78/79 Sidewinder skiff since ’97. Many folks familiar with Islamorada flats history probably know the boat. She was owned by Carl Navaree (past Cheeca Lodge owner) and fished by many well known Capts during her tenure, Capt.George Hommel being the most common, I’ve been told.

The boats name was/is “Backlash”. Have been told conflicting stories on who built the cap/deck. Always thought it was Chris Morejohn as I was told when I bought her, but recently learned about a guy up in Homestead by the name of Chris Kreel, who did the majority of the truckload of Sidewinders that were ordered an shipped to Islamorada in '79.
When I bought her, she was pretty simplistic. Transom mount poling platform, with a carpeted top & the two old school trolling motor mounts on it. No running lights, or any lights for that matter. Two Capt chairs in the cockpit, and the sweet little side console. A very poorly plumbed square baitwell that barely kept shrimp alive. On the port gunnel, there are three pop up/ folding push pole holders, which are conncted below the gunnel like a Maverick HPX. On her *** sat a 1992 Evinrude Intruder 150.

I’m no guide, more of an “enthusiest”… per se. So, I spent the first year or two getting to know the boats abilities, drawbacks, limitations, and idiosyncracies. Feel in love with the ride of the hull immediately. The speed, handling, and stability were incredible as well. On my hull, the space between the outermost lifting strake, and the chine had been filled then glassed over- similar to what Dolphin had done to their take of the hull with their Backcountry 18. Apparently, this did make the hull a bit more quiet to pole than the exposed reverse chine, but had the nasty attribute of making her awfully wet.
So to compensate for the wet ride, the previous owner then had large spray rails mounted on the chine, for about three quaters of the hulls length… and of course, these brought the poling noise back. So yeah, she's slap happy in most situations but downwind.

Over the first few years, I removed the two Capt’s chairs from the cockpit to free up some room. I also added a casting platform to the bow, and made new solid teak tops for both the poling, and casting platforms. Added an anchor light below the aft platform, and slapped in an Accon pop up on the bow. Then I proceeded to use and abuse her for the next 12 years. Used for everything from poling Flamingo's flats, bones, tarpon & permit on fly, nightime snooking in the Upper Keys creeks, freediving the reef for hogs and lobster, and even a little "close to the reef" offshore action. It's really great for family camping trips in Biscayne Bay (cannot believe how much gear you can get below those hatches) and for taking friends and family out for sandbar bbqs, etc.
In late 2010 the boat was really starting to show its age, and about 6 years prior, the below deck fuel tank began to leak- I had been using a red Tempo 18gl, stuffed into the bow compartment… which gave me very, very limited range with that OMC 150 2-stroke.

I decided that it was time to cut up the deck to address the tank, do some other minor rebuild stuff, and then repaint her… Little did I know.

Here she is right before goin’ up on blocks..

sidewinder.jpg

I put her on blocks, removed the rubrail, began to sand the hullsides, and strip sand the ablative antifoul off the bottom

stbdbow.jpg

stern.jpg

stbdbow-1.jpg

I took a circular saw with a blade for composites, and cut up the whole perimeter of the klegecell cockpit sole, to access the bad tank. I had to rig up a redneck style contraption by attaching a winch to the platform leg, loop the strap around the tank, and yank that big ol’ beast outta that tiny little space.

inthere.jpg

winch.jpg

boom.jpg

my trophy…

trophy.jpg

Upon sanding the coaming just above the rubrail, I came on several areas that were not true and fair. With further sanding, it became apparent they were little voids and delaminated areas which must have resulted from fitting the one-off cap to the hull, and the glasswork involved. Got rid of the loose glass, scarfed the openings, laid new glass, applied fairing compound, sanded and applied epoxy primer.

sdwdr-delam.jpg

sdwdr-delam2.jpg

coamingfaired3.jpg

coamingfaired2.jpg

Finally got the hullsides and bottom all prepped and ready. Shot one coat of penetrating epoxy pre-primer below the chines. Then shot three coats of epoxy primer on the hullsides and bottom

epoxyport.jpg

epoxybow.jpg

Sanded below the chines down to 220. Then shot 2 coats of Interlux VC Performance epoxy for a finish coat on the bottom- great product btw. Shot three coats of 2 part aliphatic urethane in a close match to Awlgrip Seafoam on the hullsides. Then got her back on the trailer, with only one scratch in the new paint.

smoothwhite.jpg

DSC_0240.jpg

seafoamprt.jpg

seafoamcu.jpg

ontrailer2.jpg

Somewhere in the prep of the hull, I discovered that the transom was soft in areas, so that didn’t get paint, and is next on the list. Stay tuned…
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Replies

  • BColleyBColley Posts: 419 Deckhand
    Wow. Keep em coming!
    JBC

    Chaos Tarpon Bay
    Ocean Master 31
  • BacklashBacklash Posts: 880 Officer
    Thanks BColley... ok, here comes the transom gore.

    Well, I wanted to be able to do the tried and true "remove the inner skin and then the core" routine. But, due to the large baitwell immediately forward, there is not much room in there to work, much less to remove the core. So, I did the dirty deed, and cut the whole 9 yards out like a WWII landing craft.
    transomchopped.jpg

    The plan was to get the core out, while retaining and reusing the outer skin...I ground the skin clean to the kevlar roving on both sides, and scarfed the perimeter on both sides at about 10:1. Then brace and tab the exterior skin back into place, on both sides, then fully glass the scarf.

    clean kevlar skin
    transomskinclean.jpg
    scarfed transom
    transomscarfdetail.jpg
    transomscarf.jpg
    skin braced up...
    transomskinbraced.jpg
    and tabbed in
    transomtabbed.jpg
    then glassed in around the perimeter scarf
    transomglassedoverscarf.jpg
    interior of the exterior skin scarf glassed in
    transomintglassedoverscarf.jpg

    Once the skin was glassed back in, the exterior side was ground clean. Then I laid up 2 full width swaths of 1708 on the exterior side, and 2 full width swaths of 1708 on the interior side. So the exterior skin is now comprised of 4 layers of 1708 in epoxy resin, with the original skin encapsulated in the middle
    transomintofextskin.jpg
    transomextskinint.jpg
    transomextskin.jpg

    I wanted to make the new core out of Coosa bluewater28, but nearest distrib. I could find was Merritt and they're closed on the weekends, which was the only time I can get up north. So good ol fir marine ply it is. I cut out two 3/4" transom sections, sanded them thoroughly, washed with denatured alcohol, then primed all surfaces with alcohol reduced epoxy. After the epoxy kicked, I then applied straight epoxy resin to the mating surfaces, then laid one swath of 1708 between them, put them together, and clamped and screwed the beejezus out of the core. For whatever reason, I lost my pic files of all of this... Mixed up a batch of epoxy, thickened it with collodial silica and strand glass. Spread the thickened epoxy on all mating surfaces with a notched trowel, and fitted the core into the transom. Then again, proceeded to clamp and screw the beejezus out of the whole 9 yards. Once the core was in, I laid two full swaths of 1708 over it for the inner skin.
    newcore.jpg
    Then made a new thorp from a 2x4 of douglas fir, cut and fit and fastened to the transom with thickened epoxy and four 4" stainless lag screws. Also made two miniture knee braces which run from the thorp, to the interior deadrise. Didn't want then to hold water at the transom, so I cut limber holes at the bottom corner, then I bisected a section of an old moonlighter pushpole, abraded both sides, and glassed them onto the limber holes to prevent any water intrusion. The I laid two applications of 1708 over the thorp, and the knees. Sanded the whole deal down, and shot two coats of epoxy primer into the bilge and new transom interior
    newtbrace.jpg
    newknees.jpg
    newkneesandts.jpg
    newepoxybilge.jpg
    newbilge.jpg
    newtransomint.jpg

    Then it was time to glass the splashwell back in
    newsplashwell.jpg
    apply epoxy fairing compound and sand, sand, sand
    newchllng.jpg
    newtransom.jpg

    The transom failed the first time from a brass drain tube which corroded and began letting water into the core. I decided I dont want that to happen again. I have 5 drains in the new transon, 3 splashwell drains, and two garboards. I overdrilled each hole. Then applied reduced epoxy to each. I followed that with silica thickened epoxy, then laid two small swaths of glass over each splashwell drain hole, and they'll be getting capped with stainless GemLux drains after final paint. The garboards got the same epoxy and glass treatment, but in addition I added pvc pipe, and they'll be getting Orca products stainless garboard drains after finish. SHouldn't ever have a water intrusion issue through the drains,
    splashwelldrain2.jpg
    splashwelldrain.jpg
    garboarddrain.jpg
    glasseddrains.jpg

    Coming up is the new fuel tank and cockpit sole install. Also how I got the sag out of the side console, am making up a teak helm, and a trick cockpit cooler retainer/rocket launcher/seat.
  • BacklashBacklash Posts: 880 Officer
    The little side console was strugglin... Over the years it was getting wore out, and was no longer level with the gunnel and sagging downward. Several peeps suggested I get rid of it and go center console, but I aint buyin that... I love the side console.
    former glory
    helm.jpg
    helmbefore.jpg

    So I wedged a few pieces of ipé wood under it to temporarily hold the terminal end higher. Then i ground it clean below, and took a few chunks of divinycell that had already been laminated and cut them into the shape of two supports. Then glued them in place with thickened resin, and then glassed them in place with a couple layers of biax ( I know,I know- I use biax too much..) and it's solid
    helmreinfrmnt1.jpg
    helmreinfrmnt2.jpg

    The helm area was pretty jacked up, and I was debating on just patching it, but I'm a certifiable teak junky... and I chose to go that route instead.
    I made up a crude template, measured and cut my burmese hardwood, then clamped, screwed, and epoxy glued her up.
    helmtemplt.jpg
    helmclmpd.jpg

    rough fitting of the teak helm 'pod', still need to frame out the rear switch panel and scribe
    helmteak1.jpg
    helmteak2.jpg

    I plan on finishing the teak by applying several base coats of UV stabilized epoxy, then a dozen or so coats of Epifanes gloss or Petit 2015 applied by HVLP... havent got to that yet- will post it up when i do
  • BonecrackerBonecracker Posts: 111 Deckhand
    Great work!! Totally enjoyed your tutorial!! Are you going to re-power with new motor or put the Evinrude back on??
    2006 2200V PATHFINDER / VMAX HPDI 200HP :USA
    2012 MAVERICK 18-HPX / YAMAHA F115
    2001 HELLS BAY WATERMAN / 25 MERC - SOLD
    2014 BEAVERTAIL ELITE / YAMAHA F70 -SOLD
  • cusnookingcusnooking Posts: 10 Greenhorn
    Great rebuild and bad *** teak helm I to love the teak look. My old challenger
  • FS DanFS Dan Posts: 2,353 Moderator
    I second the teak look, Thanks for the pics.
    keep us updated as everyone loves the classic builds.

    CMD
    Formerly Catmandew
  • Liquid TheropyLiquid Theropy Posts: 608 Officer
    Ya nice build! Teak all the way. Hard to tell thats a 78/79 hull. Love it cant wait for the rest:hail
    [SIGPIC][/SIGPIC]AKA Flatheadcat
  • BacklashBacklash Posts: 880 Officer
    Thanks guys. Appreciate the kind words.

    Bonecracker- well... yes.
    When I removed the old 'rude the hope was the financial gods would smile upon me with the means to get a E-tec 150HO... and I was almost there, but now I have a roof that needs total replacement, and a kitchen that suffered a unnoticeable leak until the subfloor was shoot and tile began to crack. Everything had to go- cabinets, tile, counters, the whole 9. Homeowners insurance denied the claim, of course.... So yeah, looks like for now ol' loud & smokey will be going back on her transom... again, for now.

    I've always loved the Challenger hulls cusnooking. Yours looks like a real nice example of one.

    Lemme go ahead & proceed with the fuel tank install, the deck going back in, etc...

    New and old
    fueltank.jpg

    here you can see where the old tank was sandwiched between the factory ply deck on the bottom, and the top klegecell deck. Getting in there, and removing the old fill and vent lines from that foam was one of the hardest things I've ever done... seriously.
    fueltankvoid.jpg

    New fill and vent lines w/ grounding wire in place
    fueltankline.jpg

    Hooked up
    fueltankinstall.jpg

    Tank in place. It's 6' long...
    installed.jpg
    The old one failed because it was bedded in the poly foam which held moisture between the aluminum tank and the foam. I cut back the foam so there is at least 2" of void between it and the tank. I also attached strips of hard neoprene to the bottom of the tank to slightly elevate it and allow passage of any stray water that somehow gets in there.
    The pvc in the rear is a chase for the fuel feed line, it runs to the bulkhead aft, and is tabbed in place in a few spots to prevent movement.
    I really want to do something with all that empty space behind the tank & between the decks, and will most likely make a hatch with a drop in liner there in the future. But that takes time, and I just want to get her done at this point.
    To mount the tank I glassed four wooden blocks to the factory deck, which coincide with the four tabs welded on the tank. Screwed it in tight, and used o-rings between the washers and the aluminum to try and prevent the dissimilar corrosion. Should have used TefGel... didn't have any at the time.
    fueltankmount.jpg

    Laminated chunks of divinycell I'll be using for deck supports.
    deckspprt.jpg

    Abraded under the deck edges, applied epoxy thickened with glass strand to the supports, and under the deck. Clamped and screwed supports. Removed clamps and screws once epoxy kicked, filled holes with mo 'poxy...
    decksupport.jpg

    Placed the deck back in, epoxied and screwed it to the braces. Screws removed once kicked, patched the holes, then ground down the old cut line. Filled the cut line with epoxy thickened with strand and collodial silica
    deckbackin.jpg
    deckjoint.jpg

    I glassed it all back in with 1 layer of 1708 biax, and a little cloth
    deckglassed.jpg

    Then I did a few drags of microsphere thickened epoxy
    deckdrag.jpg

    ...and then sanded, and sanded, and sanded some mo'....
  • sharkatak1089sharkatak1089 Posts: 6,407 Officer
    **** Mark, nothing makes me happier than seeing that [email protected] rig made even more [email protected] knew by the thread title that this would be your rig. i'd kill to fish on that boat again, such a sick ride. potentially dragging a 22 sabalo down early 2013, i'll give ya a shout and hopefully i can get you some bowtime on your "new" rig. keep the pics coming and best of luck to you. merry xmas to you and the rest of the TCFC fam...

    -Jaron
    I am choice.
    Please don't try to interject with reason, it only further confuses the matter.
  • BacklashBacklash Posts: 880 Officer
    Bruddah J!... figured that was you when you mentioned your Lagoon on the Ankona thread.
    No need to kill anything, just come down and we'll do it... well, once I'm finished with the restore that is. And thanks for the compliment.
    I've admired the Sabalo 22 for quite some time, pretty good choice for a multi-purpose-do-all Keys ride.
    I think we need to put the pressure on Capt. Robert to bring the Benchmark down for sails like we did a few years back... that was a good time, except for when you had a shouting match with that bucket :grin ... but at least you won.
    Heyman, if you happen to come across Grey around town up there, put a little heat on him in regards to the 25 merc thats on the j16 carolina skiff at A-stream. He had started to poke at it, and I beleive he knew what it needed. I recently made a poling platform (old sidewinder platform- new top) and a bow casting platform for it. Once they're installed, and that lil merc gets goin, that skiff would be a really ideal in-house TCFC HQ redfish slayer... economical, shallow, light, and simple to maintain.
    photo4.jpg
    ya heard?...
    call anytime 305-394-2842 (my old # still has my voicemail message, but I have no access to it- I'm sure a lot of folks have left me messages and are pissed at me):shrug
  • mastercastermastercaster Posts: 1,259 Officer
    Holy sheet @ that gas tank.

    Awesome rebuild, isn't that the hull that Dolphin, Maverick and Hewes built off?
  • BacklashBacklash Posts: 880 Officer
    Thx m.c...
    The Sidewinder hull was cloned by Shipoke and Dolphin, and a few lesser known builders.
    Maverick and Hewes did their own thing... although, like the Sidewinder, they all evolved from speedboats/ skiboats/ raceboats.

    Here is what the original Sidewinders were:
    blackbeauty.jpg
    sidewinder001.jpg
    They started up in the late 60's in California, and changed hands several times until production ceased in Toronto in the late 80's. They also made a model called the LoPro without a windsheild. They were available in OB, IO, and big block jets. The boats were wildly successful and several (20-ish) speedboat builders outright cloned the hull and cap identical, and slapped their name on it and sold them. Lawsuits followed, and Sidewinder appearently prevailed. Heres a nice summerized write up on it with some ads from the time: http://www.fiberglassics.com/library/Sidewinder

    Capt. Steve Huff was the first to make one into a skiff. He bought one brand new from a dealer in Miami, complete with the metal-flake gelcoat, upholstered seats, and wrap around windsheild. He then towed it to his home in Marathon, and proceeded to cut the cap off, and throw all that crap away. He then built his own skiff style cap, and used the boat for guiding for some years. Fred Archibald was one of Steve's clients, and after fishing and riding in it he decided he was going to start building skiffs on that hull- and the infamous Shipoke was born. I'm not sure how Dolphin got into it, but they ended up filling in the flat between the chine and the outermost strake at some point. The earliest Dolphin's based on the Sidewinder hull were direct clones, right down to the 'embossed swish' design on the aft part of the hullsides (which you can see on the old Sidewinder ads on the Fiberglassics link), and Dolphin originally made the hull in a 16' and the 18'. Later on Dolphin got rid of the 16, and continued to make the 18, later refering to it as the backcountry 18 model.
    Sidewinder got wind of the hull enjoying great success in the S FL flats arena, and made a a few prototype flats skiffs, but never went into production - proper with them.
    In 1978, several guys in Islamorada got together and placed an order with Sidewinder to have 12 (i've been told) 18' hulls made out of solid kevlar. These were just the empty hulls, and they were staked up on a flatbed semi trailer, and shipped down to the Keys. Billy Pate had one, Lee Baker, Steve Huff got another, Carl Navaree (my boat) and several others. They all got custom built caps, so they're all similar- but far from identical.
    I do not know how many survive today, Dustin Huff (steve's son) has his dad's old one and it's restored. I know of a guy near me who just picked up one of them from up at Ocean Reef and intends to restore it, and then there's mine....
    And thats the extent of what I know
  • tandtand Posts: 52 Greenhorn
    Neat history, stellar work, and awesome rebuild!


    A++ thread!
  • sharkatak1089sharkatak1089 Posts: 6,407 Officer
    Backlash wrote: »
    Bruddah J!... figured that was you when you mentioned your Lagoon on the Ankona thread.
    No need to kill anything, just come down and we'll do it... well, once I'm finished with the restore that is. And thanks for the compliment.
    I've admired the Sabalo 22 for quite some time, pretty good choice for a multi-purpose-do-all Keys ride.
    I think we need to put the pressure on Capt. Robert to bring the Benchmark down for sails like we did a few years back... that was a good time, except for when you had a shouting match with that bucket :grin ... but at least you won.
    Heyman, if you happen to come across Grey around town up there, put a little heat on him in regards to the 25 merc thats on the j16 carolina skiff at A-stream. He had started to poke at it, and I beleive he knew what it needed. I recently made a poling platform (old sidewinder platform- new top) and a bow casting platform for it. Once they're installed, and that lil merc gets goin, that skiff would be a really ideal in-house TCFC HQ redfish slayer... economical, shallow, light, and simple to maintain.
    photo4.jpg
    ya heard?...
    call anytime 305-394-2842 (my old # still has my voicemail message, but I have no access to it- I'm sure a lot of folks have left me messages and are pissed at me):shrug

    Haha no doubt I won that shouting match. Travis was talkin a lot smack the whole time and giving me his grape juice box things so I could puke something that "tasted good". What a nice kid haha. Not that I've asked, but I'm pretty sure Kelsey will have a new dude down this year, if she makes it to the keys. While she was in New Zealand, I moved home from Gainesville and got to fish and surf in the same day for the first time in almost a year. I have no clue how i made it out of Gainesville alive..... She came back and kicked me to the curb.....again. Miss her every **** day but it's not up to me haha. Haven't seen or talked to any Heustess in 6 months, but that's more than likely because I tend to stay out of Smyrna nowadays haha. No need to derail your thread any further.....

    How's Travis' little boat doing? He should be dominating that area! The rig is lookin slick dude, nice work indeed. Give me a shout when your in the area, we can chase some redfish in the lagoon. 386 290-3196

    -jaron
    I am choice.
    Please don't try to interject with reason, it only further confuses the matter.
  • BacklashBacklash Posts: 880 Officer
    Yeah J... thats tough stuff. You're both young though, and she's got a whole world opening up of brand new op's and experiences.
    But, I don't see why you think you need her to accompany you to come down...Just come down man- lets rip it up.
    You always got a spot on my couch if need be...as far as the rest of the group, I think you've probably earned your welcome with the whole family unless stuff got ugly between ya'll.

    Travis' little boat is just sittin. Has been for over a year. Grey was seein what was wrong with that lil merc- and I'm ready to put platforms all over it. It'd be a really ideal to dial it in.
    More updates on mine soon to come...

    Thanks for the praises tand...
  • BacklashBacklash Posts: 880 Officer
    Alright, so the new tank is in, and the sole glassed back in place over it. Now to do a few simple little mods to the sole...
    Anyone that has a boat with composite core construction knows that the cores do not hold a fastener. You can kinda make it hold by drilling a hole, and shootin a little epoxy in there, then adding the fastener, but not really... it's a matter of time before that fails.
    So this post will cover what I did to make my deck/sole able to hold fasteners in the near future, here goes:
    Using a hole saw, cut through the top skin and the core- DO NOT cut through the bottom skin
    phenolic1.jpg

    remove the core, small chisels work great for klegecell, divinycell, corecell, etc. Then sand the exposed bottom skin clean. Then grind away any paint/gel around the holes for future glass.
    phenolic2.jpg
    phenolic3.jpg
    phenolic4.jpg

    Using the same hole saw, I then cut several plugs out of phenolic board. I mixed up a little epoxy, and thickened it with silica and strand and applied it to the holes, and the backs of the plugs, and bedded the plugs in place.
    phenolic5.jpg
    then filled any gaps flush with the thickened epoxy, and laid two layers of glass over each group of plugs.
    phenolic6.jpg
    After that, I did a quick drag of fairing compound on each, sanded flush, and drilled small pilot holes for where the fasteners will be- don't want to loose the locations after primer and paint.

    Anyone wanna guess why I did that... whats going in there?
  • FS DanFS Dan Posts: 2,353 Moderator
    I'm stumped.
    you did the helm with teak, so its not a raised helm.
    The spacing is wrong for a coffin box, i would of assumed an equal spacing fore and aft.
    The spacing is wrong for twin pedestal seats, like the old school guide boats use to have. besides you did four locations.

    Maybe they are gonna be tie down straps for your dog when you run 40mph thru 4 ft sea's. :)

    CMD
    Formerly Catmandew
  • SnookslangerSnookslanger Posts: 1,320 Officer
    Ski Pylon
    Removable Cobia Tower
    Stripper Pole mount
    Base for a Spoiler
    Deep Drop Rod Anchors
    Trap Winch

    What do i win?


    I really like the build BTW.
    images?q=tbn:ANd9GcSbaaKhJZWMOL6wbI1uz1gMkBQR94dtr2Dn__x8NwzcVDRiVW5Gb-cOL-oj
  • sharkatak1089sharkatak1089 Posts: 6,407 Officer
    Backlash wrote: »
    Yeah J... thats tough stuff. You're both young though, and she's got a whole world opening up of brand new op's and experiences.
    But, I don't see why you think you need her to accompany you to come down...Just come down man- lets rip it up.
    You always got a spot on my couch if need be...as far as the rest of the group, I think you've probably earned your welcome with the whole family unless stuff got ugly between ya'll.

    Travis' little boat is just sittin. Has been for over a year. Grey was seein what was wrong with that lil merc- and I'm ready to put platforms all over it. It'd be a really ideal to dial it in.
    More updates on mine soon to come...

    Thanks for the praises tand...

    Thanks Mark, thanks big time for the never ending welcome. Means a lot!!! Hopefully everything works out in a month or two and we can get some serious fishing in. You've got it made down there, fell in love with that area! Thankfully, as far as I know, nothing got ugly. I do miss my second family, I know that. Hate to hear that about Travis' ride, I love that little merc. Had the same one on my Lagoon. So reliable! What was it you told me a long time ago about selling my skiff to buy something better?! "The only enemy of good is better" ? Something like that. Kick myself every single day for getting rid of it.
    Oh. By the way, you've stumped me too......
    I am choice.
    Please don't try to interject with reason, it only further confuses the matter.
  • BacklashBacklash Posts: 880 Officer
    " the enemy of good, is better"... Kinda similar to "if it aint broke, dont fix it".
    Yeah that was a sweet little micro skiff. I really wanted to take it to my "secret" bonefish flat behind the house here.

    Gotta admit that snookslanger had me crackin up. Combine the stripper pole idea with CMD's going 40 in 4' chop and we've got something there for sure.
    I dunno how the stripper will feel about it, but what a visual :Rockon

    Hints, it will have something to do with this poling platform off a Maverick HPX, this big ol' chunk of local mahogany, about $600 of glorious chrome over brass, and the need to keep stuff cold on the skiff.
    mav.jpg
    mahogany.jpg
    :huh
  • FS DanFS Dan Posts: 2,353 Moderator
    Now having lived in Key Largo, I know that we didnt get a big cobia run, so my new guess is the combination Seat/cooler/bonefish tower.

    CMD
    Formerly Catmandew
  • BacklashBacklash Posts: 880 Officer
    Alright, so I used to hook a 94qt igloo to the forward bulkhead with a couple of latches to keep it in place.
    This would block off my access to the bow storage, but at that time I had the big red Tempo gas tank taking up the majority of the bow storage, so it didn't really matter.
    Now that I have my new tank installed below the sole, I have regained the use of my bow storage, and the cooler latched to the bulkhead had to go.
    I contemplated making a large coffin box in the cockpit, but decided I'd like for the cooler to be removable. I also liked the idea of extra seating that a coffin box would supply, but wanted something a little more multi function.
    So I cut the HPX platform down to two separate bases. Then had two pads welded onto the tops. The chunk of mahogany was cut down to a rocket launcher top, five holes sawed into it, and five Rupp rodholders installed, then attached to the base.
    Idea is for a cooler retainer, seat/seat back , rocket launcher.... I know, rocket launcher on a flats skiff?
    Let's be honest for a minute- this Sidewinder aint no technical poling skiff- it's a beast of a hull with a great rough water ride. It does not get super skinny by any means.
    I use the boat almost as much for reef fishing as flats fishing, and do quite a bit of drifting and trolling in the creeks after dark. Most importantly, I wanted to keep the vertical profile of the launcher low enough, so that it wouldn't interfere with flyfishing, and the width down so it wouldn't impede movement in the cockpit.
    In the pics, the mahogany top only has the base coat of epoxy- so it's a little rough, its gonna get 3 more coats of epoxy, then gonna shoot several coats of gloss poly over the epoxy- so it'll have the same finish as the teak helm.
    launch1.jpg
    launch2.jpg
    launch3.jpg
    helm2-1.jpg
    helm-2.jpg
    finalfairtranz.jpg
    launch5.jpg
    launch4.jpg

    I think it's gonna work out nice... what ya'll think?
  • FS DanFS Dan Posts: 2,353 Moderator
    Man thats gonna be a sweat custom ride, when you finished. Could you go into more detail with the finish your using on the mahogany. Im doing some work with some and have only every just done varnish work on teak. Would love to know the how and why's.

    Keep us updated as this promises to be a very popular thread.

    CMD
    Formerly Catmandew
  • fish_stixfish_stix Posts: 1,319 Officer
    Backlash: no such thing as "using too much biax!" Your boat will still be fishing when the mat and woven cloth boats are in the landfill. :wink
  • Liquid TheropyLiquid Theropy Posts: 608 Officer
    Backlash wrote: »
    Alright, so I used to hook a 94qt igloo to the forward bulkhead with a couple of latches to keep it in place.
    This would block off my access to the bow storage, but at that time I had the big red Tempo gas tank taking up the majority of the bow storage, so it didn't really matter.
    Now that I have my new tank installed below the sole, I have regained the use of my bow storage, and the cooler latched to the bulkhead had to go.
    I contemplated making a large coffin box in the cockpit, but decided I'd like for the cooler to be removable. I also liked the idea of extra seating that a coffin box would supply, but wanted something a little more multi function.
    So I cut the HPX platform down to two separate bases. Then had two pads welded onto the tops. The chunk of mahogany was cut down to a rocket launcher top, five holes sawed into it, and five Rupp rodholders installed, then attached to the base.
    Idea is for a cooler retainer, seat/seat back , rocket launcher.... I know, rocket launcher on a flats skiff?
    Let's be honest for a minute- this Sidewinder aint no technical poling skiff- it's a beast of a hull with a great rough water ride. It does not get super skinny by any means.
    I use the boat almost as much for reef fishing as flats fishing, and do quite a bit of drifting and trolling in the creeks after dark. Most importantly, I wanted to keep the vertical profile of the launcher low enough, so that it wouldn't interfere with flyfishing, and the width down so it wouldn't impede movement in the cockpit.
    In the pics, the mahogany top only has the base coat of epoxy- so it's a little rough, its gonna get 3 more coats of epoxy, then gonna shoot several coats of gloss poly over the epoxy- so it'll have the same finish as the teak helm.
    launch1.jpg
    launch2.jpg
    launch3.jpg
    helm2-1.jpg
    helm-2.jpg
    finalfairtranz.jpg
    launch5.jpg
    launch4.jpg

    I think it's gonna work out nice... what ya'll think?

    Holly SHEET!! That is a sweeeet setup. The pipe work is one off and works perfect with the boat. Not to mention the wood work! Cant wait for the rest!!:cool
    [SIGPIC][/SIGPIC]AKA Flatheadcat
  • BacklashBacklash Posts: 880 Officer
    Thanks guys.

    CMD, the finish schedule on the launcher and the helm will be as follows:

    1) Block sand the wood down to 220, vacuum clean, wash with denatured alcohol
    2) Mix up a small container of West System 105 epoxy resin & 207 special coatings hardener, reduce approx 20% with denatured alcohol and apply to wood with a throw away brush.
    3) Mix up another batch of 105/207, not reduced, and apply before the reduced base coat has fully kicked. On the bottom of both the helm & launcher, I added glass at this point (biax on the helm- 6oz cloth on the launcher)
    4) Block it with 220, alcohol wash, and brush on another coat of 105/207.
    5) Block it with 220, alcohol wash, and brush on another coat of 105/207.
    6) Block it with 220, alcohol wash, then wash with soap and water to remove any trace amines and prevent amine blush
    7) Wash with VM&P Naphtha, then spray a coat of Epifanes Rapidclear by HVLP
    8) Spray an additional coat of Epifanes Rapidclear every three hours, until there is 6 coats
    9) Block sand with 220, vacuum, and naphtha wash
    10) Spray a coat of Epifanes high gloss clear varnish
    11) Block sand with 220, vacuum, and naphtha wash
    12) Spray a coat of Epifanes high gloss clear varnish
    13) Block sand with 220, vacuum, and naphtha wash
    14) Spray a coat of Epifanes high gloss clear varnish
    15) stick a fork in it and chug a beer

    The epoxy is used because of it's superior adhesion, and encapsulation. It also gives the film build of 20+ coats of poly in just a few applications. The 207 hardener is UV resistant, so it wont go yellow like normal UV exposed epoxy resin. The first coat of epoxy gets reduced so that it will better penetrate/creep into the open grain of the wood.

    The Epifanes Rapidclear is used because it can be re-coated very quickly, and no sanding between coats.

    The Epifanes high gloss clear (or Petit 2012) varnish for it's deep gloss, UV resistance, and abrasion resistance.

    Keep in mind, this is "top of the shelf" "ultimate finish" type stuff. Only doing this on the helm and launcher, because they're going to kinda be the focal point of the boat.
    If I had other mahogany or teak brightwork, I would just be using the varnish and skip the epoxy and Rapidclear.
    Are you working on mahogany for the boat, or what?
  • DudeDude Posts: 1,789 Officer
    Great thread and I like your out of the box thinking for your rocket launcher, cooler brace / frame. Paint looks great too!
    DUDE!
    2meanfish1.gif
  • FS DanFS Dan Posts: 2,353 Moderator
    Thank Backlash great description. To answer your question, yes. I got some 3/8 brazilian Mahagony from craigslist and have cut out a toe rail for the bow and am planning on steam bending a strip for the inside perimeter of the deck cutout for the cockpit. Im creating a flatsboat from a 1970 Super Hawiian SHX hull that i found on craigslist with title for $25. Its coming along very slowly as funds are tight.
    PC291204.jpg
    PC291202.jpg
    I'm doing it on the cheap and thought the mahagony would add a little class to a very humble project. I'll post a thread when i get a little further along. These pics were from awhile ago, ive since changed the transom to 20" and added a 20" round livewell centered on the aft deck.

    CMD
    Formerly Catmandew
  • BacklashBacklash Posts: 880 Officer
    I see a good amount of potential in that hull CMD, nice blank canvas. Super Hawaiian is a speedboat too yeah?
    Too bad you couldn't score some divinycell for the decks instead of the ply to lighten her up.

    I'm doing similar on mine with the toe rails and interior cockpit coaming. Used to have teak toe rails on it before the restore.
    Either I'll bite the bullet and get more teak, or I'll utilize a gigantic pile of reclaimed ipé that I've got on hand here. Ipé is just so **** heavy- adds up quick...
  • FS DanFS Dan Posts: 2,353 Moderator
    let me know, I have a few 10' x 11" x 3/8" boards of mahogany, left if you would rather stay with mahagony. I couldnt really find much info on the hull but someone told me that the company was related to Intrepid, I just couldnt confirm that.

    CMD
    Formerly Catmandew
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