WELCOME TO RIVER DAVES PLACE

Spectra 32xs Build

spectracular

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It all started in July 2001, if the date on my digital camera is correct. That is the date that I brought home my current project - Spectra 32.

The previous owner had done the glass work (slid the deck back about 3 feet, ground off all the nonskid, added the little pod above the guages, and filled in the vents along the side (under the rub rail)). After painting it all white, the guy ran out of steam, and I picked it up.

The first few pictures are from when I brought the project home.

Looks good behind the truck!
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Long long deck
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2 TRS outdrives + 4 props were included...also big planes...and even bigger holes for the exhaust :(
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Notice the big cutouts for the docking lights
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Another good looking picture of the boat
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A not so good looking picture of the dash
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Last 2 are of the cabin...previous owner hacked 4 10" holes all the way through the stringers :yikes
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spectracular

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When I got the boat, the trailer had 2 broken springs and the tires NEEDED replacement...so...6 new tires went on and 6 new springs along with a buncha grade 8 hardware went under the trailer.
 

spectracular

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After the trailer was good...I started on cleaning the boat to get an idea of what was to come. I had grand illusions of just slapping it all together and hoping that would do it, but that was not going to be the case. I knew I had something special and no matter how long it was going to take, I was going to do it right.

To start with, the trim pumps were all dead...2 for the drives and 2 for the planes. Ebay was pretty new then, but I was able to rebuild all 4 pumps, I found the mounting plates that they were originally mounted to, and rewired them.

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About the same time I started researching the transmissions...Merctrans II's came with the boat. I opened them up in the boat and found that the oil coolers had leaked into the main housing...everything was rusty. :( :swear:swear:swear I would need new transmissions. Long story short, I have 4 Merctrans II's if anyone needs them.
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In case you are wondering...the tanks under the floor are 104 gallons each...they were about 1/4 full with some very old gas...I think I brought about 15 5 gallon buckets filled with the most vile smelling crap to the hazardous waste place...I tried not to make eye contact with them.

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spectracular

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The boat came with a lot of hardware...it was like a puzzle as all of it was in boxes/bins/totes. Here is a pic of the steel motor mounts.
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It took a few weeks to figure out what I had. With some help from McMaster Carr, I was able to rebuild the 4 lever shifter/throttles and the mechanical indicators.

I grabbed all the hardware and had it all powder coated.

The boat came with some goofy Hardin Marine aluminum exhaust P1000's with tail pipes...at the time I did not know what condition they were in. Just like the transmissions...they were junk...salt had eaten them away from the inside. You could literally push your finger through them in places. :swear

Here is a pic of the make/model...not mine though
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spectracular

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The boat came with a pair of 454's which I ultimately had rebuilt...nothing fancy, just a new cam, lifters, springs, and timing chains. I had a family friend do the work.
While the engine work was being done, I started sanding the :swear horrible orange peel white paint on the boat :swear.

For a period of about 2 months, I had no fingerprints from all the wet-sanding, but the results were worth it! Slowly the big boat was coming round.

Oh, and apparently by this time, I had found all the parts for the docking lights :champagne:

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spectracular

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After the entire hull was wet-sanded, I decided that an all white boat was not what I wanted. I wanted the clean classic lines of the original...but lets face it, with all the surgery the deck went under, there was no way that the woodgrain was an option...not on my budget at least. Sooooo began the journey to transform the big Spectra into something special. From the get go, I wanted understated and classy. I was not going to do tribal flames or swoops or anything modern. The boat was 25 years old...it had to act its age :)

I got busy with a few hundred feet of masking tape and a great painter friend of mine and we laid out all the stripes. I chose to use the silver off of a Jag, adn the blue that I picked was from a 350Z. Oh, yeah...we added ghost flames in the blue. They are pretty subtle, but when the sun hits them...they pop

We ended up using about 6 gallons of clear on the boat. It took about a year to prep/paint/color sand :swear:

Overall, I think it looks amazing...

Here are some in progress and then final pics...you will notice frost on the boat...made it for slow dry times :) And Yes...this was all done outside

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Final pictures as it was being color-sanded :swear: and polished

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spectracular

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Somewhere in there I built all the interior pieces and then had Revo at StichCrafters sew it all up. From the looks of it, the interior was done before the paint.

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spectracular

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Here are some pictures of my uncles 32. These served as inspiration to me!!! These are not my boat!

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spectracular

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Great pics. How long before it hits the water?
Now that the house is done...I am going to work at it all Fall/Winter/Spring to get it on next summer...I have rigging left at this point...that and whatever else comes up :)

Last time something came up it was a wedding / a HUGE fixer-upper house / a cnc machine I built for the boat, and then a child...what a roller coaster!
 

FrznJim

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Wow! Awesome project. Love the lines of the boat with the deck slid back. The flame fade in the blue is way over the top!
 

74 spectra20 v-drive

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Great story Joel, and I love that there is someone on these pages that has been working on their boat longer than me :) good luck and she is very pretty.
 

RiverDave

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Great Thread so far! Tell us about this CNC machine you "built for the boat?" I'm interested in hearing more about it.

RD
 

Forensic

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My all time favorite Spectra. I don't remember what board but I remember following your thread while you were working on it.
Really glad you came to RDP and put it back up. I can't wait to see it finished.
 

spectracular

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My all time favorite Spectra. I don't remember what board but I remember following your thread while you were working on it.
Really glad you came to RDP and put it back up. I can't wait to see it finished.


You and me both! My son is in love with the boat...he has so much driving it around like a captain, even if it is just sitting on the trailer :)

I used to be on hotboat, ISL, and ofshore only. I recognize your screen name...we may have even met at one time.
 

spectracular

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Great Thread so far! Tell us about this CNC machine you "built for the boat?" I'm interested in hearing more about it.

RD
Sure.

When I was drawing up the dashboard, or rear vents, or any of the other pieces that I would need to fabricate, I determined that it would be very difficult to create the shapes that I wanted, or to etch the logos in by hand. In some cases it would be impossible to do by hand. I started getting pricing for custom water jet and custom CNC services...amazing tech is out there but it was always way out of my price range. I had already started making my own pieces out of aluminum using nothing more than a jigsaw and a router. It is a little hairy at first but it works surprisingly well. Basically I would make a template out of MDF and the use that a guide for the router to follow. It was good, but still wasn't able to do what I wanted.

I started researching cnc routers, and for about a year or so, did my homework. I ended up building a big machine that can has a working envelope of 64" x 100" x 5". Basically I can get a full sheet of Baltic birch or any other 4x8 in there. It is powered by stepper motors running through a belt drive gear reduction. Mine machine has home limit switches so that I can re-zero it as needed. It also has a special speed control on the router so I can run way slower speeds (5000 rpm) with up to 12 amps of current. It has an Xbox controller to help with basic jogs. The stock router wold only do about 12,000 rpm. The slower speed are great for plastics and metals as things don't start melting back together on you.

The machine can cut at extremely high speeds - I think about 600 inch/minute was the max I ever ran it at, but it wasn't happy. The steppers started to miss steps. Honestly, it was just too fast, everything was straining, i backed the top end down to about 250 IPM, and things are much happier. While I can cut that fast the quality suffers, so generally about 100-150 are as fast as I will cut. 75 if I need a no-sand finish. Aluminum I am still practicing with, but it seems like 30 IPM at 0.07 seems like a good start. For the purpose of cutting aluminum, I added a oil mister to spray the bit with cutting oil. Seems to work as I am not breaking bits.

Basic construction of the machine is a steel table that I welded up, with a bunch of 8020 extrusions which serve as the beams for the y-rails and the x-gantry. The table is 2 inches of mdf with the top layer spaced out to accommodate t-track for locking parts down to the table.

For the boat I am re-designing the seat bases and dash panels now...I hope to start cutting in a week or so. The great part with the cnc is that I can draw just about anything and the have it cut out over and over. It is like having an extra set of hands. One project needed 100 of the exact same part...I told the cnc to make 110...it did and I was happy. I still had to sand the parts, but there was no way I could have done it by hand that many times.

Hear are some of the machine as well as some of the things that I have created with it:

The machine table is hinged so I can "just" flip it up so save a little shop space. It is pretty scary to do because the top is a little top-heavy...reality is that it can be done, and was done once or twice...but never again. The machine is on wheels...but it is around 1300 pounds....again it meets the definition of mobile...but it really isnt.
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Close up of the head...notice the plain jane router thats been modified with the speed control. Everything is wired up through the computer...so I start/stop the router and adjust speed though the pc. There are some safety disconet switches here and there to kill power when needed.
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Side view of one of the rails. Dust collector hose, Boat exhaust in the background.
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An $8,500 cabinet my wife wanted...I figured it out...and was able to cut the doors in about 2 hours (each).
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spectracular

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Dude, You're Amazing. Looks Awesome, keep up the excellent work.:thumbup:
Thanks Alen...I don't really think that any of this is that out of reach from anyone that wants it. I have a lot of patience and a lot of failures that I have learned from...I just keep trying and eventually I get it right :) I'd love to win the lotto, have the boat sent to Racey's along with a blank check...that dude has skills...but that hasn't happened yet :)

Again...thank you!:thumbup:
 

spectracular

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Last weekend when I moved the boat from my parents house to mine, I noticed that the surge breaks on the trailer were not working at all. I wouldn't recommend doing it often, but the boat/truck never felt out of control. I did leave a huge gap between me and the cars around me though...and lots of downshifting when slowing down so as not to heat up the trucks brakes.

This weekend I filled the master cylinder which was dry...I swear it wasnt when the boat got put away. I tried to bleed the brakes on the trailer, but I could not get any fluid to come through the lines...using a harbor freight pneumatic bleeder. It did not help that my dad's compressor kept failing to run. Regardless, I talked to some experts that said if the MC went dry, that it is more than likely "toast." :swear:

Okay...grab a bunch of photos and hit the interweb. Turns out that when Fotographics built the trailer in 1978 (37 years ag0 :yikes ) that they used a DICO Titan Model 10 surge actuator, and then modified the hell out it. Depending where you look the model 10 is rated for 12,500# and what FG did was to add a weight distribution setup to it...but not a normal WD setup...no...this one puts the weight back on to the trailer at about 5 feet behind the coupler. Never seen it on anything else other than a Spectra 32 trailer (uncle has one).

Regardless, I pulled the MC out of the coupler, as well as a shock absorber from within there. New parts are on their way. I hope to get it back together and bled next week.
 

SPECTRALEN

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::
Last weekend when I moved the boat from my parents house to mine, I noticed that the surge breaks on the trailer were not working at all. I wouldn't recommend doing it often, but the boat/truck never felt out of control. I did leave a huge gap between me and the cars around me though...and lots of downshifting when slowing down so as not to heat up the trucks brakes.

This weekend I filled the master cylinder which was dry...I swear it wasnt when the boat got put away. I tried to bleed the brakes on the trailer, but I could not get any fluid to come through the lines...using a harbor freight pneumatic bleeder. It did not help that my dad's compressor kept failing to run. Regardless, I talked to some experts that said if the MC went dry, that it is more than likely "toast." :swear:

Okay...grab a bunch of photos and hit the interweb. Turns out that when Fotographics built the trailer in 1978 (37 years ag0 :yikes ) that they used a DICO Titan Model 10 surge actuator, and then modified the hell out it. Depending where you look the model 10 is rated for 12,500# and what FG did was to add a weight distribution setup to it...but not a normal WD setup...no...this one puts the weight back on to the trailer at about 5 feet behind the coupler. Never seen it on anything else other than a Spectra 32 trailer (uncle has one).

Regardless, I pulled the MC out of the coupler, as well as a shock absorber from within there. New parts are on their way. I hope to get it back together and bled next week.
I switched mine over to an electric set up and love it. Things work great. You might want to check into it.:thumbup:
Just get a new coupler welded on that doesn't have the actuator for the M.C., electric backing plates that fit your size and weight obviously, and drums, if yours aren't already set up with the smooth surface for the magnets on the backing plates.
I had the same issues you were talking about with surge brakes. The swapped worked nice and as I researched doing this, I found nothing but great experiences. For mine, I bought a kit on ebay 2 backings w/ drums and new bearings shipped $160.
 

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RiverDave

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Ok... Stop telling us about the CNC machine you built from scratch and all the bad ass shit you are making with it.. You are making us normal mere mortals look kinda bad over here. :D

RD
 

spectracular

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::

I switched mine over to an electric set up and love it. Things work great. You might want to check into it.:thumbup:
Just get a new coupler welded on that doesn't have the actuator for the M.C., electric backing plates that fit your size and weight obviously, and drums, if yours aren't already set up with the smooth surface for the magnets on the backing plates.
I had the same issues you were talking about with surge brakes. The swapped worked nice and as I researched doing this, I found nothing but great experiences. For mine, I bought a kit on ebay 2 backings w/ drums and new bearings shipped $160.
I will look into this. Thank you.
 

spectracular

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Ok... Stop telling us about the CNC machine you built from scratch and all the bad ass shit you are making with it.. You are making us normal mere mortals look kinda bad over here. :D

RD
Yeah...but right now I still don't have a boat that runs!
 

spectracular

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Since I am starting with less than nothing in terms of a dash, I wanted to try something new. I'll probably regret doing this, but I only want a single key to run the boat. I came up with the idea to use a Harley Davidson key/ignition switch as my starting point. It has the basics, accessory/off/run. From there, I will send power through a NOS aircraft switch to select motor 1, motor 2 or both. Out of the swithch I will power up each ignition and then Poe up the punch button starter buttons. Each button is rated at 50amps. Not surre I believe the labeling, but I'll probably use a couple of relays to handle any current.

Here is a pic of the raw parts...the switch is pretty cool...you have to pull up on the tip to get the switch to move from one position to the other...it has detents in it. I'm not sure if I want the kill lanyard in it or not. I don't think I need it due to the boats age. Thoughts?

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rivrrts429

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This forum never ceases to amaze me with the talent of individuals on this board...

This thread is a great example of this. Great job!
 

ChevelleSB406

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dude, amazing build and building your own machine, this is crazy. I love the lines of your boat, in my mind, its like an adult sized version of my 85 nordic, I love the styling how its modern and clean, but not out of place. Great stuff. :thumbup:
 

SPECTRALEN

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I also eliminated the keyed ignition switch.:thumbup: Keys are just something else to get lost. Those push buttons look great. I put in a rip cord type safety switch next to the ignition switch just so anyone could pull it in case of an emergency.
 

spectracular

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I also eliminated the keyed ignition switch.:thumbup: Keys are just something else to get lost. Those push buttons look great. I put in a rip cord type safety switch next to the ignition switch just so anyone could pull it in case of an emergency.
I will still have a key, but once that HD ignition is unlocked, you can just rotate that knob..then at the end of the day you can lock it up again. It also gives a nice easy way to kill both motors. Those push buttons for the starters light up. Pretty cool way to see that the ignition is active.

Without an ignition key at all, how do you operate the ignition/accessories?
 

spectracular

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::

I switched mine over to an electric set up and love it. Things work great. You might want to check into it.:thumbup:
Just get a new coupler welded on that doesn't have the actuator for the M.C., electric backing plates that fit your size and weight obviously, and drums, if yours aren't already set up with the smooth surface for the magnets on the backing plates.
I had the same issues you were talking about with surge brakes. The swapped worked nice and as I researched doing this, I found nothing but great experiences. For mine, I bought a kit on ebay 2 backings w/ drums and new bearings shipped $160.

i looked on eBay for these kits. Lots of good reviews but I am nervous about the weight ratings. The boat on the trailer is close to 12k fully loaded and the brakes I saw were all 3500#. I don't think I'd have enough weight capacity. The 6000# setups might be too big to fit in the wheel. I'll look at it a bit more...the old trailer has some funky stuff going on that they did to deal with the weight, I'm inclined to leave it as is, and put the money towards distributors and carb's.

Still electric brakes would be a worthy upgrade when the time is right.

I like the ignition setup you did!!! What do you do to secure the boat over night and how do you kill the motor quickly without fumbling around a bit?
 

SPECTRALEN

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I know what you mean about priorities and parts to buy. I'd like to see that switch in more detail, with the lanyard too. I'd probably use it. How does the joystick work into the ignition? Maybe I'm just not familiar with some of these parts.

My boat is on the trailer every night. The electric cable hook up I have is a removable piece. So when I leave my boat or trailer even, I disconnect and take the wire cable, now there will be no lights and maybe an opportunity for the person stealing my rig to get pulled over by the fuzz.:rolleyes If you think about it, and I'm sure the boat thief can figure this out easy enough, a jumper wire with alligator clips, you probably could do it by feeling under the dash, and a hot wired boat couldn't be easier.

I have a red pull cord that attaches to the kill switch that sits just left to the ignition switch. Just didn't have it connected in that picture. A quick pull and shuts engine right down.

I love your CNC. Keep making your own parts when possible, it's great.:thumbup:
 

spectracular

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I know what you mean about priorities and parts to buy. I'd like to see that switch in more detail, with the lanyard too. I'd probably use it. How does the joystick work into the ignition? Maybe I'm just not familiar with some of these parts.

My boat is on the trailer every night. The electric cable hook up I have is a removable piece. So when I leave my boat or trailer even, I disconnect and take the wire cable, now there will be no lights and maybe an opportunity for the person stealing my rig to get pulled over by the fuzz.:rolleyes If you think about it, and I'm sure the boat thief can figure this out easy enough, a jumper wire with alligator clips, you probably could do it by feeling under the dash, and a hot wired boat couldn't be easier.

I have a red pull cord that attaches to the kill switch that sits just left to the ignition switch. Just didn't have it connected in that picture. A quick pull and shuts engine right down.

I love your CNC. Keep making your own parts when possible, it's great.:thumbup:

Thanks Alen. I wasn't thinking about someone trying to steal the boat as much as I was thinking about how to keep someone from leaving the ignition or accessories on. I know I can shut that batteries off with the bigger battery switches. I was also wanting a way to kill both motors at once...easily. I will attach a few pictures of the ignition switch. It is a 3 position...ACC/OFF/IGN+ACC with center being OFF. It has a flip top that exposes a round security key...you can use it without a key or you can lock it into any of the 3 positions. I have not seen it done before on a boat...and figured why the hell not. It looks good...its big enough, and its stainless. Best of all it was only $26.

Basic wiring is going to be from the battery switches to the dash with 4ga...then I will run that into a fuse box >>> kill switch >>> ignition switch/knob >>> the ignition will then feed into the engine selector switch (1, 2, all) which will be mounted right next to the ignition switch. The basic idea is that I can use the single ignition to hot up both engine circuits...or if needed can shut either one off.

I think I am going to add that kill lanyard as well. I don't want to have a hassle on the water AND more importantly, if someone (wife/kid) was driving and needed to stop the boat...you pretty much can't miss the thing.

I am planning more for the CNC in a week or so...have to get some side projects done first.

here are a few pics of the switch...it measures almost 2" diameter

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spectracular

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What are you doing for the red green nav lights?
I did one of the flip up bow lights...simple! The rear white light it a electric telescoping deal...Sort of like a car antenna but with a light at the end.

Since I have the morse docking lights in the bow...I want to convert them to HID. I found a PAR36 reflector housing which accepts an H3 bulb. should be a drop in replacement and require half the amperage at the bow. The stock morse lights are 100w halogens...I figure 55w HID will run 1/2 the amperage at startup and a 1/4 of that when running.

Hope you are having a good weekend!!
 

funkcity

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I see over at OO the "other" long deck S32 is also now back to restoring.
John "getrdunn" Reed in Michigan is back at modifying and restoring his also.
The long 32 decks look really good. Yours is done. His still has a hole in it! :)
 

PuraVida Victory

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Just stumbled on this thread and i have to say i love your boat. The ghost flames are cool. Its funny coincidence though we actually own the house next door to your uncle Allen. I knew once i saw the name In Focus. I tell him all the time if he ever sells that boat he better tell me first, lol. I've always like the lines of these boats and want one so bad. It pains me though to see Allens condition and that boat just sitting there not getting used. He's been such a good neighbor. Anything i need help with he's always got the tool or a way to figure it out. I'm hoping to head out there in a couple weeks and hope to see him doing better then the last time i saw him.
Anyways Keep it up. I can't wait to see some running pics of this boat, Looks good:thumbs
 

spectracular

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Started work on the 32

Compass cover - did this on my cnc router
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spectracular

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Over the past few weeks I
  • replaced the wood floors with 3/4 PVC...shouldn’t ever rot
  • Installed battery trays
  • Installed oil coolers - horrible job
  • Installed all the braided water, fuel and oil lines
  • mountrd the fuel filters
  • Mounted the bilge pumps - horrible job
  • Mounted the starters - another horrible job
  • Rebuilt the carbs - 850’s
  • Mounted all the pumps and alternators and fuel pumps (mechanical) on the engines
  • Installed the fuel filler hoses and vents
  • Installed oil drains with valves and through hull drains
  • Polished some things
  • Cut my finger
  • Sweared a lot
  • Sweated even more...it’s tennessee and it summer
  • Bought new distributors (DUI) + plugs + wires
  • Mounted power steering pump
  • Bought battery switch setup with dual voltage sense relays
All in all when I type that up, I’ve done a lot over the past 4 weeks and just Saturday’s Shit!
 
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alohajeff

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Nice to see the project is moving forward!

Aloha
 

spectra3279

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I wish I could have found some replacements for my trim tabs. They were cracked at the hinge on the transom plate. And they had way to much magnesium to weld up. Ended up getting some kiekofher 280s. Much smaller and had to fill holes and drill new ones

Sent from my SM-G973U using Tapatalk
 

spectracular

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Today I made what felt like is a ton of progress on the boat today. We had a cooler/overcast day which helped out a lot.

Today the holes for the bilge blowers were cut, and the bilge blowers were mounted...ducting too.
Next the rear plates that cover the above holes were finally bolted in...I built them ages ago so it was great to see them finally get secured to the boat. Ran the wires and tested them out. 2 blowers draw about 4.5 amps combined if you were curious.

Next we mounted the oil filter brackets, and put a few plugs in them from where the senders used to live.

Lastly, we pulled all of the wires (14ga) from the stern light, bilge pumps, bilge blowers, starter solenoid, distributor power in (10ga), tach sense, water temp, trim solenoids (4 pumps), fuel senders, and hatch actuator wiring. I also ran the larger 8ga to each set of trim pumps, and another 8ga (+/-) from the battery switch location up to the dash. I got to play with my new wire crimpers for the bigger battery wires...very happy.

It felt like a huge accomplishment to finally get this part done. I still have to wire up the dash...after I build the dash, but still...she’s coming along. You’ll notice the white floors...PVC (3/4 thick). FU wood rot!!

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