|Hi every one, been meaning to do this blog on the rebuild of my 15ft bowrider.
Some background first, this boat should be called school fees. It was my first boat and a certain boat shop in centurion took me for a ride. I will not mention them by name in my blog. Ill refer to them s the boat guy in Centurion. I initially brought the boat, outboard and trailer for R6000 on Facebook. It was a little 15ft semi bowrider with a 1982 Chrysler 45hp. I thought I had got a bargain. Little did I now.
On her maiden voyage at Loskop dam she ran horribly. I got back and called many boat shops to try and get her serviced, but all refused to work on a Chrysler saying it was too old until one of them eventually referred me to the place in Centurion. When I called the place in centurion I was told that they stock all parts for Chryslers and would gladly work on my boat.
I was so happy I had finally found a person to work on it that I took it through to them the following weekend. When I arrived, they were very friendly and helpful and I gave them a few things that were wrong and also asked for a swivel base on one of the chairs and COF and new buoyancy certificate to issued. The boat had an old COF and buoyancy certificate, so it was already filled with foam. (More on this later).
The first quote came in for the chair, COF/Buoyancy Certificates and stickers R4385. Was a lot but I paid it still waiting for the engine and other stuff quote. Eventually the quote for the Engine and everything arrived, and it was almost R19000!! I didn’t want to get it done but was assured that the motor was worth R17500 and would get my money back if I ever sold one day and it would run great. I didn’t have the R19000, so I went through the quote and removed a few nice things to have and it cam down to R11829 this was for the following a good used carburettor, a steering cable bracket, connecting the shift linkages correctly, engine service (was still charged for every separate like spark plugs and gear oil), a choke solenoid and fitting the kill switch.
A begrudgingly paid the R11829 now in R16214 into boat repairs, I reassured and given a right up that the boat was worth R30k, so I was still ok and thought I hadn’t over capitalised.
When I picked up the boat on a Sunday after all this work was done I took her straight to Bon Acccord dam to enjoy it. Guess what? It still ran like a donkey and wouldn’t plane and kept stalling and wouldn’t idle.
I took it right back to the boat shop in Centurion that Sunday evening as the guy operates from his house and refused to take it home after paying so much money and it still running so badly. During the week I called him and said I need the boat urgently as I had booked and paid to fish in the Loskop Kurper competition. He said he was doing tests. He eventually called me and said that the cylinder head gasket was gone and need replacing. I threw my toys at him and wrote an email stating everything he had told me before I invested into fixing up the motor only to be told it had such a major issue. I said I still wanted my boat back in 2 weeks, so I could fish the Kurper Bonanza.
The guy somehow managed to get the cylinder head done and installed within a week. Guess what? With the new gasket and skimmed cylinder head the boat still had the same problems while he was testing it. He then diagnosed it with a crack in the block its self that was letting in water that was killing the spark. Only choice for me. A complete new used block, so he put a power head on from a ’72 Chrysler 45hp he had. In the end this cost me another R4000. So now I was R20214 in with the boat guy in Centurion.
I got my boat on the Friday and left straight for Loskop, We got there that evening and only took the boat out on the actual completion day. What a disappointment the boat still wouldn’t plane, and we had to fish the whole comp idling around at trawling speed.
When we got pack I put a new fuel line on the motor and marked the prop inner bush to the outer shaft because I thought it was slipping. I took it to Bon Accord for a test and it ran slightly better but determined the prop was slipping.
I took the boat back to the guy in centurion and this time was told I needed a new lower pitched prop and Hydrofoils that’s why it wouldn’t get onto the plane. I said he needed to take it for a water test before I took delivery again. I was even charged for this despite everything and never getting my boat correct. Eventually I got sent a video with the boat on the plane and another invoice for R5000.
Total spent with the boat guy in centurion R25214
So I fetched the boat and headed for Roodeplaat, it actually ran very well. So, I was happy and enjoyed my little boat for a year and a bit until I discovered that all the foam had absorbed water. The foam wasn’t two-part closed cell foam but building foam instead, so it literally absorbed water like a sponge
So here is the catch and how it went undetected, the boat guy in Centurion when doing the new buoyancy had clearly picked this up and had dug out some of the old water logged foam through the inspection holes and filled them with a little bit of the correct foam to pass the test with the SAMSA inspection officer. Leaving the old foam inside to gather water. If I had known this back then as it was the first amount paid I would have cut my losses then. I also wonder now if this is why it wouldn’t plane due to the extra weight in water it was holding.
Getting the old foam out led me to doing the face lift and rebuild. I also wanted to put a different motor on so need to convert transom from a long shaft to short shaft. When I opened the deck I saw that the transom was completely rotten as well adding to the list of what needed fixing.
During the process I’ve also decided to convert her into a centre console to suit my fishing needs better. Pictures and descriptions of my progress to follow