Boatcraft & Fitting-Out

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Fiberglass Top for the Open Outboard, A (Pub. No. 7011)

With modern plastic materials—Styrofoam, fiberglass and epoxy—you can make your own lightweight top and, by enclosing the sides with polyethylene or plexiglass and the cockpit with vinyl- or neoprene-impregnated nylon, convert your boat for overnight use.

After a season’s cruising with the family aboard, the average skipper has, no doubt, thought of several improvements he’ll want to make in the boat during the winter layover. One good addition for cruising comfort would be to build a cabin top. A top will convert an open boat into an overnight cruiser, provide shelter during a rainstorm and shade passengers from the hot sun during the summer. The cabin top shown here can be built as a single piece or can have the cockpit extension cover; either way it will add immeasurably to the usefulness of an open runabout and its ultimate trade-in value when you decide to go for a larger boat. The drawings do not give dimensions because your particular boat will determine how large the top must be; each skipper will have to make it fit his own boat. General construction and only those dimensions which are standard for certain items are provided.

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Fiberglass Flying Bridge Shelter Top (Pub. No. 7012)

Several new developments in plastics and fabric materials are now available to yachtsmen interested in improving or maintaining conventionally constructed boats.

These products include new polysulfide rubber seam compound and adhesives, new urethane, epoxy, vinyl and polysulfide synthetic rubber coatings and foamed urethane plastic boards; all available in the boating market place. Among the many inquiries I receive are always these two questions: “Are these plastics hard to use?” “Can I do the job?” And my answer is this: If you can handle the paint job on a boat, if you can cover the cabin top with canvas, if you can build a hatch cover, then you can handle plastics. The approach may be a little different but the materials handle in much the same way as those you’ve been using. Liquid plastics are like varnish. They look like varnish, they feel like varnish in the brush and they will run like varnish when applied so that you must handle them in the same way. The difference is that they will not cure (or “dry”) unless you add something to the plastic when you are ready to apply it. You sometimes have to add a little thinner to paint in order to use it, so what is really difficult about adding a little catalyst to cure the plastic? The only refinements are: 1. The correct amount of catalyst to add. 2. Plastic will dry in the pot in about 45 minutes, unlike paint which will dry on the surface of the job in a few hours but will only skin over in the pot. With plastic, you have to use the batch into which you have stirred the catalyst within the dry time and you have to wash out the brush in order to save it from becoming a plastic solid reinforced with brush hairs.

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Building Fiberglass Ruders and Spinnaker Poles (Pub. No. 7013)

The use of fiberglass in boat construction is not limited to hulls and superstructures. Interesting new practical applications are being discovered every day.

The problems of wood construction of yacht rudders have always been well known, but fiberglass-reinforced plastic at last offers the solution.

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Build a Fiberglass Sink for Your Boat (Pub. No. 7014)

The difference between a boat and a yacht is often in her appointments. Why not build a one-piece fiberglass countertop and sink as the show piece of the galley for your boat?

Plan the counter-top and sink combination to fit the space you have in your boat, but remember that the stove can be a pull-out drawer affair, under the counter, which will save room on the Counter-top for drying dishes or mixing salads. The mold is simple to make and should not scare anyone off who can glue boards together and sand and paint same.

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How to Build a Fiberglass Icebox (Pub. No. 7015)

Now that the techniques of fiberglass construction have reached a stage where it is relatively easy for the average boat owner to build some of his interior accommodations of this versatile material.

It’s high time you gave that old, rusty, landlubber ice-box, chopped up to fit the space, the deep six and build a rust-proof, modern job out of fiberglass. Lay down that belaying pin, mate; it won’t cost a fortune. In fact, the cost will surprise you, it’s so little in comparison to what you’d have to pay for almost any other material. It’s cheap, it’s easy to build with, it’s the most efficient of materials and you can tailor it to fit right into that spot where you’d like to have an icebox. And if that’s not enough, it will look better than a professional job and be as modern as tomorrow, besides. All you need is a little plywood, some pieces of Celotex for insulation, a few yards of fiberglass boat cloth and a quart or two of plastic.

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Build Your Own Fiberglass Refrigerator (Pub. No. 7016)

Heres a project for the winter months when the boat is in storage—build a refrigerator.

Modern life being what it is, refrigeration is practically indispensable. There are two essential parts to a good refrigerator: the mechanical cooling system and a perfectly insulated box. There are many electrical refrigeration units on the market especially designed for use on boats, which run from either 6 or 12 volt batteries and there are a few which can be switched over to shoreside current when the boat is at her own berth. Several of these units are offered by manufacturers and they are also being shown in boat shows around the country. The refrigerator box you can build yourself and it will be better insulated than most home refrigerators if you use foam plastic insulation as directed in this piece. More important—you can tailor the box to the space allowable in your own galley and the cost will be small compared to buying a commercial refrigerator.

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Leakproof Cockpit of Fiberglass, A (Pub. No. 7017)

Are you tired of that leaky cockpit? Soggy ropes in a damp lazaret? Water dripping on the quarter berths? If you are, replace the old dog with a fiberglass cockpit.

It will be light and will provide more room below, yet be roomier on deck because it can be molded in one piece and suspended from the deck. A fiberglass cockpit is fairly easy to build and install; if you follow the plan outlined by the accompanying drawings you can channel the water through the built-in gutters into-the scuppers-in the cockpit well.

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How to Build a Boat Landing on a Muddy Shore (Pub. No. 7018)

Rot-proof fiberglass sandbags and logs of Styrofoam provide a solution.

Many boatmen do their boating in areas where facilities for landing are sometimes no more than a muddy marsh or a crumbling sand bank washed away by the river day by day. Most of these waterways never saw anything more than a canoe until the boat trailer came into general use. Alongside facilities for the new crop of boats are non-existent; they are generally too expensive for an individual to build if he uses conventional means to improve his waterfront area. I became literally bogged down in this problem not long ago when I spent a weekend with a friend at his hidden retreat. He had frontage on a lake, but we had to wade hip-deep in mud to get to the boat he anchored there. After we got aboard, carrying our clothes, we had to take a swim in deep water to clean up. And we bad to repeat this performance when we landed back at camp. Well, this was all right when I was a young lad of 30 or so, but now. . . We decided to try to find a solution. What we came up with was effective and cheap, so I think it fruitful to pass along to you.

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Plywood for Interiors (Pub. No. 7028)

When the planking is finished the boat is only one-third finished.

The other two-thirds is finishing the cabin and interior and other miscellaneous items. So if your design is such that you cannot use waterproof marine plywood for the hull you certainly can take advantage of it for interiors. It seems that most of the articles recently written cover its application to hulls omitting almost entirely the interior. Therefore this question is certainly a timely one and it is hoped that these few notes may guide others building or remodeling the interior. You don’t need special designs to use waterproof plywood for the inside. Every boat can use it profitably and almost to the exclusion of old fashioned methods because almost everything is a flat surface or simple curve. It certainly isn’t like trying to bend compound curves.

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Building a Plywood Cabin (Pub. No. 7029)

The sides of a light plywood cabin can be built without any separate frame as the different plies running at right angles hold it together and support the top much as a frame would be expected to do where a single thickness of wood is used. However, where the design calls for very large windows so that the cabin sides are mostly cut away, leaving little support to the top, it would seem to be a good plan to provide a framing piece of oak between windows or where ever there is room for it. This could be an oak batten about 1/2 inch thick by 2 inches or more wide, securely fastened with screws or bolts.

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Ramp Docking for Your Boat (Pub. No. 7032)

by Mel Berg

Here’s an inexpensive way to keep your expensive boat high and dry and out of trouble when your back is turned.

A ramp dock for your expensive fiber-glass or metal boat will keep the craft in good condition, protecting it from the hazards of dockside mooring, from damage caused by floating debris, and from the pounding, rubbing and scraping of high waves. The ramp mooring has additional advantages: your boat will be cleaner, there will be less waterline scum, and your boat will always be dry and ready to go. When the boat is parked on the ramp dock, its rear drain plug can be opened to let rain water run out instead of bailing or pumping the hulldry, an annoying procedure which is necessary when you use floating moorings. The ramp dock is a boxlike, two-section, angle-iron frame 18’ long and 4’ wide, supported at each end and in the middle by 2” pipe standards. The two 9’ wooden top deck sections are built into the angl-eiron frame and the dock is complete. This type of dock construction allows the entire dock to be removed from the water for winter storage or in case of high water, or for any other reason.

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Build a Table for Your Boat (Pub. No. 7034)

by Gordon P. Manning

Eating aboard a small boat is just as much fun as eating ashore when you have a table like this one that’s stable and stowable
.

Picnicking, as most everyone knows, is one of the numerous pleasures which your small boat can afford you. But sometimes, when you have reached your favorite spot, you decide you’d rather eat aboard; maybe because the area is crowded or perhaps it looks like rain. Eating aboard a small boat can be just as much fun as eating ashore, if you have a decent table on which to set up the food and drinks. Unfortunately, however, most outboards have no adequate flat space for this purpose. Lugging along a folding table is a nuisance, and in many cases is impossible to use. A year ago I designed and built this little folding table for our outboard, and it has paid back its modest cost many times over in pleasure and satisfaction. Essentially, it is a hinged affair which hangs from the lower edge of the cockpit gunwale and is entirely out of the way when not in use. To set it up, you merely lift it up, slip a leg into sockets on the floor and table bottom, and you have as stable a table as you can find. A hook and eye keep the table from banging against the hull when it is in the folded position. A hole drilled in the leg provides the means of hanging it up.

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Double-Duty Cruise Tank (Pub. No. 7036)

by Gordon P. Manning

Expand your effective cruising range with this gasoline-storage unit that also acts as helmsman’s seat.

Most outboards today are still struggling along with the 6gal. gas tank that came with the motor. This allows you little over an hour’s cruising time—obviously not enough if any cruising distances are involved. As a result, the average outboarder gets himself one or two 5-gal. cans to hold a reserve supply, to permit him to increase his operating range. These cans, loose in a small boat, present a definite safety hazard. And transferring gasoline from can to tank is a risky business, even in calm water. So risky, in fact, that boating authorities insist that all cans and portable tanks be removed from the boat before refueling. Larger, built-in tanks are the only safe answer to this gas-supply problem for outboards of 15’ to 21’. Cruising or long-range tanks are now available in styles and sizes to fit any boat. With one of these as a basis, you have a good start toward-worryfree bqating. This article tells you how you can solve the gasoline-storage problem safely and at the same time make a useful helmsman’s seat with lockers. The tank goes below and the seat above, The seat itself may even be an adaptation of the existing one, to hold expenses down.

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Floating Dock (Pub. No. 7037)

by Hi Sibley

Styrofoam blocks are the key to this snug offshore slip. There sure won’t be any more snooping around your boat if you make this.

By locating your dock a few yards offshore, you put your boat out of reach of inquisitive kids and meddlers. Four 2”-pipe posts driven into the bottom hold it in position better than mooring lines, and the iron brackets permit it to rise and fall with change in water levels.

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Auxiliary Motor Mounts (Pub. No. 7039)

Three different types of outboard motor mounts to add to your sailboat.

A sailboat that is drifting helplessly may present a picturesque scene; but, to its occupants, it's of scant comfort to know that a becalmed wind might eventually stir again to return their craft speedily to home port. On the other hand, if a sudden gale forces a captain to drop his sails, it is most comforting to be able to rely on auxiliary power in order to navigate through the blast. By means of one of these special transom mounts, an outboard motor can be adapted to any 12- to 30-ft. cruiser or sailboat to serve as auxiliary power in case of a breakdown in the weather or the main power plant. Even if you have excellent sailing weather, you ll find it much easier to moor in crowded anchorage or to navigate through a twisting channel with the aid of a small outboard motor. The article illustrates three types of mounts, which adapt different-sized outboard motors to various transoms. The mounts can be quickly built from scrap materials usually found in the basement or junkyard. In case the shaft of your outboard motor is too short, motor manufacturers are prepared to supply motors with longer shafts just for this purpose.

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Table and Companionway Steps (Pub. No. 7040)

by William D. Jackson

Want to dress up your cruiser? Here are two accessories you can build adapted to both cruisers and sailers.

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Installing Built-in Fuel Tanks (Pub. No. 7041)

Here's how to extend the range of your power boat.

If you aleady own or are thinking of building one of the popular large outboard boats, powered with one of the new big engines, you may want to consider the advantages of built-in tanks. Extra capacity tanks will give you increased range and much more independence from gas docks. They are also considerably easier to fill. But even more important is the safety factor, since the larger tanks eliminate the need to transfer gas from one can to another during a long run. Any time gas is poured from one can to another in a boat there is an excellent chance that some of the explosive gas fumes will be trapped in the boat's bilge. If these ever ignite, you are liable to make unhappy headlines. For really good remote tank operation, outboard engines should be equipped with suction-type fuel pumps. The pressure system used on many engines works very successfully with 6-gal. portable cans, but has serious drawbacks when larger tanks are pressurized. If the fuel level is low in a 20-gal. tank, it may take half an hour to build enough pressure to get the boat in operation. So if your engine has a pressure fuel system, change it to a fuel pump, for reliable, trouble-free large tank operation. The changeover is simple to make and relatively inexpensive.

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Up-Date Your Boat Trailer (Pub. No. 7042)

by Fred W. Goette III

There's no need to part with a tried-and-true boat trailer just because you've bought a new boat not even if it's a cat or trimaron. Here's how you can modify it to suit your boat and do away with wet-foot launchings at the same time

It's easy to envy the owner of a modern low-slung boat trailer as he launches his boat in minutes with hardly a splash. But the advantages of older trailers, such as good road clearance and tires that interchange with those on your car, can hardly be denied. You can have all of these features working for you at once by outfitting your trailer with up-to-date equipment that costs only $24 for a single-keel, 14-ft. boat. Or, if you ve bought a new multi-hull boat, you can custom fit your present trailer to it with a similar setup for each keel.

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All Weather Boat Shed (Pub. No. 7043)

Build and store your boat in this dual-use structure.

Here is a boat storage shed that will not only provide a weatherproof place in which to build your boat, but will also serve as a floating or stationary boat house after you have completed that dream vessl. If you own waterfront property, the shed can be pulled ashore and your boat stored in it safe and dry during the inactive winter season. for this use it might be well to cover the side walls with inexpensive polyethylene film obtainable at lumber yards.

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How to Make a Marine Railway (Pub. No. 7045)

by Hi Sibley

Here’s an effective and easily-constructed project for hauling that big boat out of the water for bottom repairs or cleaning. And it’s no chore to dismantle the setup since the track is made in 10-foot sections bolted together.

In Fig. A is the layout. The dotted lines show the craft approaching the car in shallow water. In fact the car is drawn in simultaneously with the boat until it rests firmly in the cradle. Two men at the winch can draw the boat up completely out of the water.

3 page(s)

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