The boat is moving to a point where the mechanical stuff is basically done.
A few weeks ago I put in the exhaust system. This was a lot of work. The hoses are really stiff and everything has to go together all at once. Here are some photos of the finished product.
Exhaust system installation
Exhaust system installed
Today I finished installing the fuel tank and the ventilation system. I even put in the battery and ran the fan for a few seconds. That also tells me that the dashboard is generally working. Wow….
The blower and ventilation hoses are in
I put in the glove box lid and the ski mirror too.
Mirror and glove box
Next up is preparations for installing the interior. I’m still hopeful that a miracle will happen and somebody will have a teak swim platform I can buy. I need to make a carpet decision and get going on the floor as well.
I told a friend last week that the boat is starting to feel crowded. I am finding less and less room to move around inside. Conversely, there is beginning to be more room in my garage outside the boat!
It has been a while since I have updated the blog. I’ve been working on the boat here and there. It is definitely time for an update.
I put in the dash. It looks great.
The driving spot
I have found a few neat things on the internets recently. I discovered that the throttle that I repaired did not lock out when in neutral. That’s is a safety concern, and I was very excited when I found a new throttle on eBay. They don’t make this model any longer (a Morse MV-2), so finding a new one is rare. “New Old Stock” as they call it. With some savvy bidding, I won it. I’ll get it installed soon.
My brand-new throttle
My son David was home for his spring break from college. We had a GREAT time with him while he was here. The highlight of the week may have been that we attended our first Sounders game of the season together. We played Portland – and they played us to a tie. That was a bummer, but it is it early in the season and the Sounders always seem to take a while to hit their stride.
While David was here he helped me put the through-port in for the rudder. Erik had helped me remove the through-port last summer. Now it is all hooked up and tonight I put in the rudder. It works really smooth and solid. Thank you David and Erik!
Rudder hooked up
Now that the rudder is installed I’m ready to hook up the exhaust system from the engine and once that is complete it is time to put in the fuel tank. Things could go quickly from this point.
One other internets find to close this blog post. This one came via Craigslist. This is an Acme 422 propeller. It is the exact model I wanted to buy and I got it for a good deal. The seller lived in Portland, so I had my friend Darren buy it for me. After Darren got it he sent me this picture:
Ransom note photo
I laughed a lot. It looks like a ransom photo – “Send me the money or the prop looses a blade.” Darren is a great friend and he actually polished the prop. It looked as good as new when I got it (my brother Dan was driving through Portland and brought it up north for me).
All shiny and new
Earlier this week I spent a couple of days working on my dashboard. The dashboard is designed to come out of the boat so I was able to work on it inside my warm house. This seemed much better than shivering in the garage. I did most of the work on the kitchen table. The dashboard I am putting in my boat is actually the dash from the purple tree boat. The dash from the blue boat is quite beat-up and the gauges are really sun-bleached.
Earlier in the restoration process I purchased two NOS (New Old Stock or New Original Stock) speedometers and new dash plaques. I installed those in the dash first. The flash sort of drowns things out, but you can get the idea. The dash plaques are the “Ski Nautique” and “Performance Engineered” pieces.
The next issue to tackle was the lower right-hand portion of the dash. I can’t find a super-good “before” photo, but if you look at this picture you’ll see that there are two rows of switches and what is supposed to be a yellow checklist on the lower-right portion of the dashboard just to the right of the steering wheel. In the middle of that yellow area there is a white control panel for a stereo. I don’t have that stereo in my boat and it wasn’t in the purple boat either. All I have left is the useless control panel. It had to go.
Purple Tree Nautique dashboard
The stereo control was installed by cutting a square hole into the dashboard. For this project I needed to remove the control panel, fix the hole and then apply a new sticker to the panel. I could not just use the blue boat panel because it was cracked. It is also likely that the switches and lights from the purple boat panel are in much better condition than those in the used and abused blue boat.
After removing the stereo control box I had to remove all the switches and lights from the panel. Due to the design of the lights, which are designed to be installed from the front, I unfortunately had to cut the wires for all the lights. I then cut out a matching square piece from the panel in the blue boat and glued it in place with some two-part epoxy made for plastic. It worked great. The epoxy was sanded flat and a new plastic sticker applied to the panel. After cutting out the holes I was able reinstall all the switches and lights. The progress and finished product look like this:
Square cut out
The switches and lights installed
Switches and wires installed
Close up of the new panel
One of the odd/funny things about this boat project has been the unexpected surprises. Last fall I got a trailer. I needed a trailer and the one I purchased was in good shape. It is an “after-market” trailer made by a now-defunct company called DHM trailers. It needed a little work, which I detailed earlier in my blog here and here. The end result is a good-looking trailer with new carpet on the rails.
New bunk rails
I had no way of knowing that I would end up with a second trailer. The purple tree-Nautique was purchased with a year-correct (for my boat) 1993 Ski Nautique trailer. I don’t recall if I have pointed this out in the past, but the purple boat trailer was bent pretty bad. In the photo below note how the trailer turns upwards in front of the bow of the boat. The main rail of the trailer is supposed to be horizontal, that is, parallel with the ground.
No boat on the trailer
The Ski Nautique trailer, unlike the DHM trailer, is small enough to barely fit into my garage. It also cradles the boat a little lower to the ground, for more garage-door clearance. Thus, I started to think about fixing up this trailer. To make a long story shorter, I am now restoring a trailer and a boat. I’m not sure that is progress or if I am just crazy. Don’t ask my wife which answer she thinks is correct…
First step was to see if the trailer could be bent back to straight. I took it to Glenn’s Welding in Lynnwood, WA. In a spirit of openness, my sister-in-law is the daughter of one of the owners of Glenn’s, but I can honestly say they are a great welding/trailer shop. They looked at the trailer and decided it could be “flame-straightened.” If I got the image correct the idea is to use a large torch to heat up the metal to the point where it can be bent back to straight. The price was right so I asked them to do the work. I could NOT be happier with the results. The trailer is dead-straight again.
To straighten the trailer I had to remove the bunk rails and the step-pads on the side. Almost predictably, the step pads are rotten. The step-pads are made of wood wrapped with carpet. I will need to make new plywood pads and cover them with carpet which will then need to be installed onto the trailer. I will need to also reinstall the bunk rails and re-carpet those. Oh, and there is some rust to take care of, and I need to repaint the entire thing. I will post photos of everything in the near future.
So, I want to sell the other trailer. Anybody looking for a 1999 Ski Nautique trailer? Let me know.
Trailer for sale
New bunk rails
Rotating trailer jack
I love seeing homes all decorated with lights for Christmas. I’m always amazed at homes with 1,000′s of lights sparkling from every corner. However, I don’t decorate my home that way… I will freely admit that I’m not at all a fan of getting up on my roof and installing lights. The peak of the roof of our home is a long ways in the air. I am not a fan of heights. Actually, I’m just not a fan of falling…
Thus – I quite enjoy putting up lights in a safe way. Thus – here are the decorations outside our home this year.
Our home decorated for Christmas – If you look close you can see the nose of the boat barely visible in the garage.
A close-up of the lights above the garage.
Tonight I had Chinese food and got a fortune cookie. I opened it up and started to laugh. I showed it to Susie and she said, “You have to post that on your blog.” I could not agree more.
Today while Susie went to see a show, I stayed home and put the engine and transmission into my boat. It took a lot of time (again) but at the end of the day, there it sits. Now I can return the engine stand and engine hoist to their proper owners! HUGE thank you to Robert and Kris.
Ready to go
Sneaking the engine over the edge
Down, down, down
Let’s go skiing!
Kris’ engine stand ready to go