Category Archives: Boat stuff

all my boats & boat projects

1994 Insbruck Trailer Page 3

More things to do before camping:

Let’s see..  the bathroom floor, the pantry, the edging on the countertop, floor vents and my favorite… charging station !

So with a wave of the magic wand…   The bathroom floor is done !  I should have taken a before photo.  Trust me it was bad.  And the vent cover was rusty. It’s a cozy bathroom, but you can close the door.  While I was in a lino gluing mood ….

I replaced the pantry floor too.  Who knows why the laminate did not go in there.  But that’s ok… we fix.  Plus a good size piece of that lino came with the trailer.  I have enough to line the pantry shelves.  Did I say “charging station”  Yes I did and there is the perfect place.

Behind one side of the dinette is a shelf..  Presumably for a TV.  With power and coaxial hook ups. I’m surprised there is no phone jack !   Ah the 90’s..  We don’t need this stuff…we need charging stuff.  So I’ll wave that wand again….

And there Ya have it.   USB and 12v auto plug.. Plus 12volt read out ! The wood frame was needed to make room for the wires.  This brings the trailer into 2023 …  Now let’s have a look at the pantry.

It now has shelves !  Deep ones..  Wow I’m almost done…   now for the elephant in the room.. trailer.  The non working fridge is being replaced. 

Old and new.. It’s impossible ( nearly) to find the same exact size fridge.  But here’s a cheep fix..  Won’t be any problem fitting it into the fridge cavity.  However I’ll have to figure a way to make it stay there.  Again Done !

Looks like it’s always been there..   This should work just fine for us.  It cools down way faster than a RV fridge.  I’m not tossing the RV fridge yet..  If there is a way to fix it I will.  There is just a few little things to do … One of those is the one vent cover I have.  I decided the bedroom needs it most..  So I got that done today..  And we did a good cleaning too..

Packed and off to BC for our Family reunion.  Tows so much better with a new hitch and the air suspension fixed in the Avalanche.  We decided to park the trailer in Grand Forks at my Brother’s place.. Can’t see using it till next summer..

14 FT Vanguard Boat Part 3 Work on Boat

Still don’t know the year !

Here we are in the shop …nice and warm..  all my tools.. Away we go.  As I mentioned in the motor post thing lead to another and I removed all the switches and the stereo, and the speakers.  Cleaned up the rat’s nest that someone else did..  I’ll make my own.  Now I was dying to see if something was hiding under the Government tag.

This tag..  Well there was nothing under it BUT when I removed the padded trim that you see below the tag.. There was the Hull number ! And it matches what is on the tag.  Mystery Solved.. But I still don’t know the age of the boat. Darn..  I’ll probably find out when I register it.  Now I’m making a plan.  And that starts with removing everything from the dash.

What a mess !  This is going to take some planing..  I have a speedometer, steering wheel, tachometer and a switch panel to fit in this space.  But not yet.. The overall plan is to strip the top of the boat of things that are easy to the snap buttons.  This will make the polishing easier.  What the heck..  Let’s strip the interior too.  It needs new carpet and the seat bases are coming apart.  Let’s give it a real good face lift. !

That’s better..  I’m keeping the fold-down seats..  But I will rebuild them..  I found a good deal on gray marine carpet in town, so this will look like new soon.  Also I’m testing my abilities to remove the oxidization from the red gel-coat.

Not bad ..not great either..  Wet sanding then polish then wax.  How fussy should I get ?   I’m using  an eraser wheel on the decals..  works great ! The oxidization is deep.  So it’s hard to get all of it.  Here’s the bow area that I’ve been working on..

The difference you see here is on the right side I used the orbital sander with 220 grit first.  That made quite the difference in the final finish.  Getting rid of more of the oxidization then hand sanding .  I’m working on the bow because the snaps and the bow light will go back on and little to no change.

This is next !  But first an update video..

And the polishing continues…   Also I received the coloring powder to use with resin and filler..  But the best I could do is pink.

Oh well I’m just filling holes like these above.  Snaps and fittings for a top.  Those tops are old school. I want to buy a bimi top .

14 ft Vanguard boat part 2 The Motor

1981-82 Mercury 70 hp 3 cylinder Outboard.

This is going to be drawn out till spring.  Because it’s too late in the year to run the motor other than briefly.  And I’ll be working on the boat at the same time..  

I did get most of the cowling off..  Can’t figure out the front piece.  All I know is …it’s not seized. turns freely . No sign of anyone messing with it..  This is good… so far..  So I just wanted to see if the starter would work with the key.  Nope.  The key switch is broken. The wires are messy.

That got me removing the control from the side wall… which got me under the dash.. which got me ripping out all the wiring .  I’ve ordered a new key switch cause there’s no fixing this one..  So without the key switch I tried to get the starter to kick over.. Nope.. Even with direct power.. !  now got to think about this. I ordered a new starter… They are not expensive so why mess with the old one..

Plus there is a lot of stuff to remove just to get to the starter..  Don’t want to be doing that too often.  And then I can’t get the starter apart to clean it ..

It’s very seized up..  Sure hope I can remember how to put things back..


14 FT Vanguard Tristar Boat

Here we go..  again !

Great project for the cold months..

I couldn’t resist the price..  $550.  Basically I bought a trailer and it came with a free boat and motor.  And if you follow my blog and the posts you know I’ve seen and had a lot of free or cheap boats. And in most cases there isn’t much left that’s any good.  Plus if your lucky and a motor comes with it’s old and hasn’t run for a very long time.  The  motor we have here is not new.. It’s a bit more than 30 years young. However I’m optimistic ..  And even though I don’t know much about it and neither did the guy selling it.  It should run.  There’s a story for him.. But that’s not mine to tell.  Let’s just say he’s only had the boat for a few weeks …and that’s cause he wanted the trailer.  Changed his mind and put it up for sale just to get the money back.

As for the boat… way to good to throw away.  It must have been stored with a cover.  Anytime you get an old fiberglass anything’s covered with mold spots and needs a bath.. Not this boat.. Oh sure it’s sun faded.. but it’s 40+ years old.. Original gel coat finish.. a few chips ..but should polish up nicely.

The controls seem to work fine.. Even have the key !
The seats have been re covered.. Nice

The carpet has seen better days, there’s a bit of green. However you can walk around without falling through the floor..  I like the red and gray theme..  But I don’t like the old cassette deck.. I’m doubting it still works. And I don’t care cause I don’t want a stereo.. would rather have a fish finder.  Which brings me to the general wiring in the boat … Big  thumbs down.. Typical rat’s nest of patched and taped up wires. That will need sorting out.  I will make a video once the boat is in the shop.

And here it is…  And I’m thinking a new post for each of the three parts of the project…  Part 2 The Motor

Making a Boat Trailer

Hey it’s Spring , warm and I’m busy…

A couple years back I bought a “sea slipper” tri- hull boat.   And it’s a heavy beast..  It came with us on our move to Drumheller … and now it needs a trailer.

Cool hull design.. Should be very stable.

In very good shape. It was a rental boat at a popular fishing lake near Vernon.  It made the trip here on one of my trailers that I picked up also a few years back.

That’s all good …but the boat is upside down..  I need a proper boat trailer not a flat deck.  Solution !  build one by modifying the flat deck frame.

When I got the trailer it looked like this.. I took the sides off and below is what it looks like now..

Has new 12 ” wheels , the lights work..  BUT I will be making some changes!  And that’s what I got up to today..  First I ripped the deck off and tossed it.  then I parked it on stands in front of the garage so I have access to tools.

And this is what we have..  Too much metal !   Nothing a zip cut  can’t fix.  I only need the middle part.

There !  I believe I removed 100 lbs of steel.  don’t need it .  Now I’m planning how to extend the tongue an extra 2 ft out front. As well I would like to keep the tilt feature. So I moved the hinge point for the tilt 24 inches forward.  this was the way to extend the tongue so that the boat would not be too close to the hitch and keep the tilt.

You can see where it was over the axle..  A good place for tilt balance…  But a boat trailer works different.  I’m re- using some the the  channel steel from the extra pieces to add a vee nose out  front.

This brings the saddle for the tilt lock pin closer to where you can reach it.  I’m having problems with my welder … It’s not hot enough to really penetrate the thicker steel..  So I’ll be bolting everything.  A bit of extra work but I don’t want trouble later.   In fact it did not hold at all.   So I will have to think of a way to bolt these two parts together.

And here’s something to fix..  The angle pieces must be different lengths.. Cause things are not meeting in the middle.  I measure from the hubs to the hitch from both sides.  This is how you get a trailer that tracks straight.. I will fix this.

Here’s some more bolts for extra insurance. This is one of two places that take the weight of the pull going down the road.  I’m have to say that’s important !  Yup it’s important.  So at this point I want to put the boat on the trailer and fit the bunks and the winch stand.

Yup it’s a good fit..  Now I need to do some fitting ..  I started with the bunks..  Easy to make. Three foot 2 x 4 covered with boat carpeting.

And large angle brackets too.  Getting the right height was tricky.  I’ll mount them after painting.  Then I need a winch mount .. Lot’s of work getting this right.  And finding metal that would work.

But I got it.. !  Sturdy and the winch strap passes through straight to the bow fitting.  Now to re work the tilt lock so only bolts are used.

Well because we are moving ..with no place to park extra stuff..  I have sold the boat on the unfinished trailer with the 3.5 Merc motor.

12 ft Kencraft Boat

Well I don’t need any more projects..  But this isn’t one..  ready to go and kinda special.

And I have to admit it was the bimi top that sold me..  Also i prefer Fiberglass boats to aluminum..   They don’t leak when they get old.  But this boat isn’t old …. as boat go 1995 Kencraft made in Port Coquitlam.  Very sturdy, with good free board ( height of sides), so if the lake gets a bit choppy no worries.  The motor is a 15 hp Tohatsu (Nissan) 2 stroke outboard.  Runs great…also from 1995.  Lots of goodies came with the boat …  fish finder with GPS,  down riggers, rod holders, Storage cover, anchor, and a few more small things.  The trailer is great …new axle & wheels, LED lights ..

Even a spare (new) 6 gallon fuel tank.  The whole package is good to go… but not perfect.  Here’s a short video .. We took the boat out to Christina Lake for a shake down cruise.

Beautiful day on the lake …  And we are finding some things that could be improved.

Trailer :  I don’t like the 1-7/8 coupler …  I like 2 “..  everything else is 2 ”  so that needs to be changed.  The wiring & 4 pin plug are wrapped with tape..  I like to use loom.  Need a 12″ spare tire too.

Motor:  Just a bit of tuning.. maybe new plugs.  maybe touch up the scratches..

Boat:   Needs more weight up front.  So move the fuel tank , could use a polish…  maybe a nice blue stripe…  Hmmm.

And those seats are very comfy..



Performer Seven Seas Restore Page 1

March 2013..

This is the new post for the restoration of the Performer.. And this is page 1 dedicated to the work done in 2013. Page 2 is for work in 2014  I decided to start this new post and the pages cause I thought the old post would grow too big.. A fresh  I had been determined to complete the boat by the summer of 2013.. but that did not happen.. But look at what I did get done..


She’s a good looking boat !  And I’m naming her after our much loved and sadly departed Kitty “Bessy”  We had Bess in the family for a long time… Boats should have names and this seems fitting.

Today I made some support blocks up and dropped the boat onto them.. It’s easier to work on the boat when it’s low and not tipsy.  This weekend I’ll set up the garage over her.. and put some lighting in there. 



Look I can just step over the stern to access the When I went to Kelowna to get the garage I also picked up some fiberglass supplies ..including white Gel-coat for the hull.  I’m getting a price on solid teak hardwood flooring too. And I decided to completely strip the boat’s inside down to the fiberglass.  Yes that means new cabin walls and rebuilding the berths too. There’s just too many holes in stuff..  And the rear bulkhead for the motor well will be raised higher and moved back a bit for more room.


Just once more I thought I’d show the plans for the boat.. I haven’t changed anything except give myself a bit more room at the stern..


This photo is my inspiration for the color scheme I like.. it’s a 50’s car color and the boat is also 50’s so it just works for me. It’s going to look great with the teak interior too.  We’ll see if this all comes together. 


You can see in this photo that the floor under the cabin is in bad shape.. at least the part you can see.. The 1/2″ ply bulkhead walls are in good condition..  But they need to be firmly attached to the floor.. so maybe instead of removing them I’ll cut them up an inch or so and then add a piece back on the bottom after the floor is in.


The roof of the cabin will get some Finnish as well. To make it look nice and to hide some wires.  The wood beams are in perfect condition so I will probably just paint them..

Day 1 

Got the garage up today.. so the boat is safe & dry. Dave & I removed all the windows ,fittings… and stuff from the boat.


I Bought my own oscillating multi tool today and gave it a try.. going to make short work out of removing all the wood. It flush cuts very nice.

The plan is to clean out most of the interior of it’s wood parts.  Then rebuild the stringers , ribs and the floor.  Also replace the rear bulkhead and some of the transom.  Everything will be glued and fiber glassed into place.  This puts the strength back into the boat.  Then I plan to roll the boat 45 degrees to one side and re-gel-coat that side of the bottom..  Then do the other side. After that the top of the boat will get its fresh blue paint.  And then it’s time to start putting things back together.. and finishing the interior.. Wow all before July.  


I Had Help for the day… it takes two to undo the bolts holding things on.  Now it’s stripped down.


Here’s the pile of parts. They will need cleaning up.. 



In two days I’ve got a lot done.. All the floor right to the front is gone..  I’m not touching that chamber in the bow.. there’s no floor there, there’s no ribs or stringers .. The bow doesn’t need support.  You can see I cut the cabin walls about a half an inch above the floor. There’s no rot on them.. but there was lots under the floor in the cabin.. bad !  All that’s left is to grind it all flat. And I need to remove the inside layer of the transom..  


Today I scrubbed in inside of the boat.. You can see a stick I’ll use to locate the floor level.  I also cut out a new transom piece from 3/4 ply. 



 Here you can see one of the many ribs I removed ..  not much left.. and just bands of fiberglass holding them down..  I’ll do better.. 


Here’s the new 3/4 inch inner transom.. Glued..screwed.. and clamped.  This has hopefully taken the bow out of the transom too. I don’t want to remove the clamps for 24 hrs.  I’m using Polyester construction sub floor adhesive..  Waterproof and strong..  I’m gluing the four stringers into place with it as well.. using big concrete blocks for weight.


 So far so good.. The glue is holding good.  The resin and mat with be the real strength in the end.  The bottom of the boat takes a real beating with the water & waves.  So the only thing that is strong enough will be multiple layers of fiberglass.  Here it’s all in.. ready for the mat & resin..  Using foam to fill gaps.  Today I got the resin & mat out and was determined to get that part done..  4 Litres of resin and a lot of mat.  Got it done.. after it’s all cured I’ll put a 1×4 down the middle for the floor to join on.. I’ll need to get the 1/2 ” ply for the floor..  


The floor is now in and very solid. It turned out good..  I used lots of PL Premium glue and coated deck screws. Today I glassed in the outer edges to the hull.  I’m also taking the time to plan the cabinets and seats.. and so I’ve made a few adjustments to some measurements on the  plans.  Nothing to much just a tweak here and there..


Nice place for the tank & battery box.  The aluminum tank is 18 gallons.. lots for a long day. We tested the fuel gauge too. Works great.  Next is the inner wall for the motor well.


My Friend Dave had a great Idea !  Two braces are better than one .. So I made these up and fit them so the fuel tank fits nicely in there.. Glassed them in and now a much stronger transom..  I like.  And before I install the motor well wall I’m going to rebuild the berths & lockers in the cabin.  Much easier when you can just step over the stern. 

But Summer is coming and other stuff to do …  so the Boat got put back on it’s trailer and moved to the franknport.. I’ll bring it back out in the spring and continue then. In the mean time I’ve added goodies from older campers to my pile of parts.. I have more stoves and sinks and pumps …. etc to choose from.

Continued on Page 2…