Boat Projects Forum

Fletcher 178 Cruisette restoration... eeek

by 10mpg » 12 Jan 2015, 00:40

Right i finally made it onto here from the old forum(s)

Quick intro My names Ed I live in berkshire, I have a small engineering company (just me) that does all sorts but my main work is restoring classic cars, ex science teacher, 3 small kids, porky, hairy and hopelessly optimistic....

Anyway i bought this 'ere Fletcher Cruisette off the bay of E for a mere few hundred quid, the chap i bought it off kindly delivered it from Southampton for freeeee as he wanted the trailer it was on back to collect another boat, which worked out well for me..

Luckily I had acess to some decent lifting gear

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After dicking about for a few months and buying another with it's own set of problems (and an old trailer which i refurbed) i finally cleared a space for it in the workshop

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The inital plan was to clean it up do a few minor repars and get it on the water for summer despite the ghastly paint, just out of curiosity i just thought I'd pull the capping of the transom to have a check on the condition....... it was not good....

so this:

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became this:

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Not so good, so i dug a little further..

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And all cleaned out...

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By this stage I'd kinda commited to strip down and i HATED the red and the scabby antifoul so i didnt need much persuasion to crack out the razorblade scraper and sanding discs. Some West system epoxy and white flowcoat was bought and I got stuck in every day after work hoping to strip it all back and get it all shiny and white asap.

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Now i was starting to uncover several repairs and previous damage, this old boats had a hard life it seems.

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This patch 'interested' me..

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So i gave a whizz with the DA and found that thre was a patch ontop of a patch and pretty badly done as well :cry:

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The other worrying thing i found was when i removed the rubbing stips i found that the two halves of the boat were held together with what i can only imagine were the poorest quality stainless or mild steel screws which have rotted into nothing taking quite a bit of GRP with it, being a novice boat repairer I'm not sure how best to deal with this, any ideas VERY welcome..

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Ive also found a split in the floor under the seat unit..

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And some dodgy repairs on the internal side pods

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Now I'm in a sticking point, I'm debating switching the repairs to my other hull, which needs a transom as well but has had a lot of repairs especially on the inside but it appears to be much better quality work, though it's missing a lot of the origional fittings and would need the roof from the red boat fitting as it only has a screen at present, on the plus side it's already white but it's been filled with foam underfloor which i dont like at all as it's just going to absorb water as the ends have been left open....

Any advice would be very welcome as I'm just not sure what's the best course of action, is it worth continuing with this hull?..

Next time on 'fail with Ed' the exciting world of Outboards...
10mpg
 
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by ColinR » 12 Jan 2015, 09:19

Hi Ed and firstly well done for finding us. Good to have you back on board.

I'm sure the other rebuild fans will be along soon with loads of, probably conflicting, advice :D
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by _Ed_ » 12 Jan 2015, 22:46

Hi Ed, did you read my post I pointed you towards on the post you put on Facebook? It answers lots of your questions.

As for this boat, all the lower wood will most likely be rotten/wet. Not just the transom.

The screws rotted on mine too, but they only hold the rubbing strip on. Its glassed around the whole inside. Just drill and put in new self tappers.

IMHO however, that boat is definitely not a viable project (are they ever?!) I'd pick the one with the least rot/best external finish and go from there.
www.aboardmyboat.co.uk - boat projects and stuff!
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by 10mpg » 13 Jan 2015, 00:52

yeah i did read through the post, it actaully made me get stuck in rather than put me off, i figured compared to some of the basket cases i take on it doesnt look that bad! I think there are quite a few differences between the boats though, the scres on mine hold the entire top of the boat on, theres definatley no glass behind, I can get my finger through into the inside! i guess i will drill out all the screws as you did but by my rough maths there's something like 120-140 screws to remove, then glass from behind with epoxy... what did you use to fill the holes...?

On this one the stringers dont go through into the transom and from poking around under the floor it feels dry and solid (well i think so anyway) the central floor has been replaced before and is still solid so I'm hopefull about no going there right now, though i plan to cut a few holes to invetigate next weekend...

As for viable, I'm just worried about saftey and getting the work right as I'm a novice with composites, I've rebuilt vintage cars from boxes of bits and completely rusted wrecks without a sound panel on them so i'm happy working with my hands i just want to get it solid and safe for the summer..

cheers for the advice
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by _Ed_ » 13 Jan 2015, 16:22

You'll be fine, I shall be interested to follow and see how you get on. Surprised that the top and lower halves are only screwed together! have fun drilling those screws out. You saw what I ended up doing!! If I did it again, I think I'd weld onto them and pull them out. I've not tried that idea but I think it could work if there is anything left of yours.
www.aboardmyboat.co.uk - boat projects and stuff!
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by 10mpg » 13 Jan 2015, 20:19

Now THAT'S a good idea, I'll give it a go and report back...
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by _Ed_ » 14 Jan 2015, 01:15

Please do, there is a chance I might be onto something there!!
www.aboardmyboat.co.uk - boat projects and stuff!
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