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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi gang,

Been lurking for a few years and have learned a lot by reading the threads here. I thought I'd start a thread on my project. I've been reading up and watching a ton of YouTube as I'm very new to this stuff. Hoping to get some advice from the crowd here. So this is my 1966 13 Whaler named "Flatty". I've caught a million fish on this boat and absolutely love it. But, its time for an overhaul. It is dry, and the gel coat was severely crazed due to prior owners leaving it in the sun, etc. Not an unusual issue for this era Whalers. I decided that rather than put lipstick on a pig, I'd grind off all the gelcoat and build her back up. I've now completed that task inside and out as you can see below.

As you can imagine, the process of removing the gelcoat also necessarily removes a bit of glass and I also made a few goofs along the way. Witness the very back corner where I ground through the glass. My current plan is to patch the goofs and fill holes, then add some fresh glass to the hull, fair, prime and paint with Alexseal (local Charleston company). Planning to use epoxy and paint.

The inside will be fun, because I'm planning to outfit her like a flats boat, with front and back casting decks, rear hatches, fuel up front, etc.

But, first things first. Some questions and feedback requested:

  • Does my plan make sense? Use of epoxy. Make repairs, add glass, fair, prime, paint?
  • For adding glass, I'm new to the types of glass and would appreciate suggestions. Single layer of 1708, or a couple layers of woven mat? Other suggestions?
  • Will the steep contours cause me issues with glassing? Does it affect what type of glass I use?

That's enough for now. Thanks in advance for any input.
- Dave (Summerville, SC)

Wheel Plant Tire Vehicle Motor vehicle
 

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Love these little boats. I would assume it was made with poly resin, so I would use that for any repairs. And besides, gelcoat isn't recommended for use on epoxy. I wouldn't go adding a bunch of weight. Keep it simple.
 

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Opti,
I'm not a professional, but I believe your plan is on the right track. Glass your goofs from grinding, fair, sand, prime, paint. If the foam is still dry, do you really need to add a layer of glass to the entire boat? Unless the glass is really thin? I don't know much about old Whalers, except that everyone in CHS has one. I think adding a layer of 1708 to the entire hull would end up making it heavier than it needs to be and possibly have planing issues after you're done restoring. (A neighbor of mine added a layer of 1708 to the bottom of his 15' Carolina Skiff and it had problems getting on plane when he was done)

Definitely use Alexseal paint! Andy at BoatworksToday (Youtube) did a great job explaining the process and my project came out great for a first timer.

If the Spartina company is still in business, I'd think you could pick their brains on a plan of attack as well. If I remember correctly, they specialized in restoring old Whalers. Maybe @JC Designs could weigh in here too?
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Thanks guys. @Copahee Hound I'm with you, but I really think i'd feel better about adding at least a layer of cloth to the bottom, as there are a few places where the glass is thinner now. I was a little surprised at how thin it is, TBH. But I get your comment about weight. What cloth weight would you recommend in this case? Something like 8oz?

I've been watching Boatworks Today a lot, I feel like I know the guy LOL.

@Sublime do you think I should worry about going with epoxy over the green glass, if it was laid up with poly originally? That is something I didn't consider.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Just a follow up. I dropped by High and Dry boatworks here in Charleston yesterday and they were super nice and helpful and offered up a lot of great advice. Definitely going the epoxy route and will be adding a couple layers of glass to the outer hull. I'll post updates as the project progresses.
 

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Tire Land vehicle Wheel Vehicle Plant community

I built a similar 13’ whaler. Raised the transom for a 20” outboard. Side console moved forward 6” balances weight better. Almost no porpoising. If I add a forward casting deck and trolling motor, I’d go with a 50hp instead of a 40. Good luck with your project!
 

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Wow @108Truck nice build! And to O P a layer of 1708 will not matter a bit for planning purposes. Your hull isnt a flat bottom that tends to suck down. Epoxy is a little more expensive and doesnt stink but you can just use regular boatyard resin with your build. It may be easier to work with if you plan on making your own bonding putty and fairing mix because you can thicken and save it. Then add your mekp when your ready to use it. Just something to think about. Good luck
 

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Optiker, what are your plans with the transom? I’d plan on a 20” motor, both for choice of motor and possible resale. There are a variety of ways that Whaler transom shave been raised to accommodate the bigger motors, from aluminum brackets to bolting on wooden laminate pieces. I chose to screw pieces of 1/4” MDF that were flexible to follow the radiused transom shape. I drilled key holes into the transom plywood then poured Arjay into the void. After sanding and shaping, 1708 and 6oz finished the job. It’s held up well! Good luck with the project.
 

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Agreed that the boat was designed for a 15” motor, but there are more 20” outboard motor options out there, as well as (I believe) more skiffs built around 20” motors. Thus a stronger chance to move a motor when upgrading. Just my .2
I do regret not removing the anchor locker and putting the fuel up front. The 13’s can support a lot of weight, and if balanced well they plane quickly.
 

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A layer of 1708 might be overkill, but a layer of 6oz would be reassuring on a boat w approx 1/8” of glass from the factory. They are actually lightly build(glass wise) from the factory. Couple that with sanding the original gel coat off…
The 1708 would be better used on the transom.
 

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Your plan is legit. I would order RAKA epoxy out of Florida: they are awesome to work with. TOTAL fair is an excellent product that sands so nice. Love the Alex seal. I've done my sons 13' whaler over twice now.
 

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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
Hi guys,
So I'm off and running. Bought some 10oz cloth and got started on the back hull where the two fins are. I learned a lot LOL, and it took me a while to do just that section. I learned that the cloth is difficult to conform to those tight details and spent a lot of time and a little cussing on those fins. As a result, I sourced some CSM with powder (epoxy friendly) and have it on the way for all those sharp corner details. Of course the smooth areas are super easy to work with. I bought enough 1708 for the transom and was fussing with/about those hand holds on the back. When I found a pic of a High and Dry build and those were gone. Epiphany! I filled them in and problem solved. The 1708 over the transom went very smoothly and is looking good. Just need to put the work in to finish up the rest of the bottom. Since I'm doing it solo and using epoxy its a bit of a hassle dealing with removing the blush and sanding between sessions but its fine I'm on no particular timeline - although I am motivated. Thanks for all the comments. Will post up some pics soon. Right now not a lot to look at...
 

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Discussion Starter · #20 ·
Hi guys, I have a question, and looking at Chris Morejohn's pinned post (pure gold, BTW) I think I have my answer but want to confirm. When I lay up my cloth of course you can see the weave. The West System's document talks about barrier coating which is essentially adding 2 or 3 layers of resin on top to help fill in the weave. I don't notice Chris doing that, and I'm concerned about after removing the blush and lightly sanding, that the tiny low areas between the weave are probably not getting fully sanded, so will it hold the fairing compound well enough? From Chris' post, it looks like he lightly sanded and didn't worry about it too much and right onto fairing (frosting!). I did the several coats of resin on the parts I've done so far and you can still see the weave in a lot of it. I don't need to mention that saving resin will save a lot of dollars, that stuff is really expensive! Thanks in advance. I really appreciate the input from those who have been there and done that.
 
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