Boston Whaler 13 Pilothouse Build Pic Heavy

knguy022

Newbie
Sep 29, 2009
15
66
Colton
Name
Kevin
Boat
Boston Whaler 13
Hey guys, been a long time BD reader but never contributed anything. This site gave me a lot of motivation and info so I thought I would start my own thread documenting my boat build and share my own experiences. I started this project several years ago after picking up an old beat up 13 runabout in Temecula. Really didn't know what I was getting into as this is my first boat but its been quite a learning experience filled both with joy and headaches. I've 'reconfigured' the boat many times and am finally happy with the end result. I got a lot of inspiration looking at Hobie Powerskiff builds with Anderson Pilothouse mods and wanted to do something similar. I had no fiberglass experience whatsoever but picked up things off the internet to get me going. Lets get started and I hope you enjoy reading this post!

Heres the boat the day I bought it. I was planning on resurrecting this thing as best I could.
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In my driveway. Trailer made the 50 mile trip home safely. What did I get myself into! Even my dog thinks I'm crazy.
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The fun begins. Fixing damaged areas with epoxy and fiberglass.
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Some of the old paint sanded away. The previous owner painted the boat with latex paint which had to be completely stripped off. He had installed a stainless brace that joined the transom to the splashwell which really took a toll on the fiberglass (two large holes in top pic). This would require some extensive repairs.
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When in doubt, sander out!
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Didn't like the notched transom. I decided to raise the transom and repair and strengthen it to make the boat more seaworthy. This boat was going to have a 40 hp 4 stroke on the back and I wanted to make sure the transom could handle the weight.
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No that's not a tub of dirt. Its actually the rotten wood I took out of the transom. Scary to know what you will find in an almost 50 year old boat. I went ahead and repaired the transom with a product called Seacast because I was too afraid to put any wood back in.
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You can see the exposed foam after all the rotten wood was removed.
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I made a fiberglass skin in order to raise the transom to 20 inches and poured the Seacast into the empty void.
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Seacast poured.
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I didn't take any pics but a thick fiberglass cap is made on top of the transom to seal in the Seacast.
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More Boston Whaler blue showing through. I worked on the sad trailer as well. I was planning on selling off the trailer after I refurbished it and get a galvanized one for the boat since it would see a lot of saltwater use.
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Time to get to work on the hull. Sanded away all the blue bottom paint, primed, and painted with Interlux Brightside.
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Now that the exterior was completed, it was time to get to work on the pilothouse. I decided to construct the pilothouse out of high density foam boards sandwiched between 1708 fiberglass cloth and epoxy for strength while keeping weight to a minimal. I made a wood jig that contoured with the bow of the boat and cut foam boards and screwed them in place to get a basic pilothouse shape.
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Cut out some holes for windows.
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Dry fitting the pilothouse to the boat.
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Didn't like the contours of the pilothouse so made some modifications.
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knguy022

Newbie
Sep 29, 2009
15
66
Colton
Name
Kevin
Boat
Boston Whaler 13
I was finally satisfied with the pilothouse and began the process of fairing and priming for paint.
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Bought some rubber liner to hold in the tinted Lexan panels I used for windows. Painted the cab to match the boat.
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I kept the inside of the cab very simple. I made a center console and a bench seat out of starboard. Installed a Honda 25 hp motor that would later be replaced with a 40 hp.
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My buddy and I took the boat out to Puddingstone lake for a test run at dusk. Had the lake to ourselves and enjoyed doing some donuts. It was cold outside but the cab was warm and dry. It was well worth the effort but I saw some things I wanted to improve in terms of the interior layout of the boat.
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knguy022

Newbie
Sep 29, 2009
15
66
Colton
Name
Kevin
Boat
Boston Whaler 13
Couple more pics of the boat interior before it got reworked. I had painted the interior with Tuffcoat nonskid paint that now had to all be sanded out because I wanted a different finish.
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My boat next to a Parker down at Dana Point. Looks like the Parker had a baby.
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So the dip in the center of the whaler floor really annoyed me and I wanted to redo the rigging so it looked as clean as possible. I also wanted to hide all the batteries and the gas tank so I decided to construct some permanent compartments and add a bait tank. The only purpose of this boat was to fish so the layout had to be improved.

I got a hold of some high density pour in foam so I could fill in the floor dip and make it completely flat with a slight decline towards the stern to drain water. I cut a channel along the starboard side running from the rear of the boat to the front and foamed in a 2" PVC pipe for all the rigging to go through.
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I made 3 compartments at the stern. One compartment was big enough to house 3 batteries, a second for storage, and the 3rd to hold a 12 gal built in Moeller plastic gas tank.
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Top view of compartments
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Battery compartment showing rigging
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Top being put on compartments and dry fitting hatches.
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Gas tank in its new home.
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I cut out a channel in the floor and glassed it in so that excess water could drain out the back more efficiently.
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Nearing completion. The splashwell was sanded down and repainted along with everything else using Interlux Brightside. You can see the channel I made for the gas to run out the port side of the boat if it every overflowed while filling.
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I also laid up a fiberglass side console from a mold I made. Had some extra carbon fiber laying around so I added it in so the console wouldn't look so plain. Also dry fitted some Honda gauges and a compass along with the steering wheel.
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Console glassed in.
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Bought a 20 gal fiberglass bait tank, some railings, and a couple more rod holders.
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Transom drilled for a 40 hp Honda outboard as well as drains and a bait pump intake. Reinforced the rear cab roof with aluminum to add rigidity to support the rocket launchers. A 2x4 encased in fiberglass runs across the rear of the cab to give it extra strength.
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Installing all the console gauges and Honda remote control. Captains chair in place. I decided to line some of the cab with a foam backed vinyl liner for some soft comfort.
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Hand operated windshield wiper ready for action.
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Waterproof case on cab roof for dry storage.
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New to me 40 ready to go on.
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Motor installed and added a cooler seat.
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Lil Choppy ready to kill some fish.
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Mission accomplished! Got a couple of 20+ lb YFT to go at the 14.
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knguy022

Newbie
Sep 29, 2009
15
66
Colton
Name
Kevin
Boat
Boston Whaler 13
After chasing tuna around as far out as the 277 in the little 13 footer, I decided I wanted to take some safety precautions. The freeboard on the boat was a bit lacking so I took some time in the winter of 2016 to again redo Lil Choppy to suit my needs.

More foam boards, more fiberglass, and more beer...


I cut large foam boards to shape and size and screwed them into the side of the boat until they were glassed in place
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Tabbing and a cap being glassed in
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Doing some minor repairs on the hull while I'm at it
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Raising the splashwell
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Theres a small notched hole on the port side that allows the gas overflow to pass outside the boat and not into the splashwell
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I fiberglassed some fiberglass sides inside of the gunwales so I could have a place to mount some rails and coaming pads
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Bow pulpit on a 13 footer? What the heck...
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Ready for battle
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Killing babies in a baby size boat :D
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And some bigger ones too... Here you can see the coaming pads I added as well as some extra storage areas that puts tackle in easy reach while fishing although everything might get a little bloody...
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Heres the boat as it is now
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compared to as it was...
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Hard to kill a little Boston Whaler... the unsinkable legend
 
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marlyn

I Post A Lot But I Can't Edit This
  • Dec 18, 2005
    8,805
    5,479
    So Cal
    Name
    mark
    Boat
    21' skiff and 12' portabote recycled from milk jugs
    Great job!
    @skiff,not for the ranch but worthy!
     
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    knguy022

    Newbie
    Sep 29, 2009
    15
    66
    Colton
    Name
    Kevin
    Boat
    Boston Whaler 13
    Happy Labor Day everyone! Thanks for all your kind comments. Such a great community to share my passion for boating and fishing.
     
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    knguy022

    Newbie
    Sep 29, 2009
    15
    66
    Colton
    Name
    Kevin
    Boat
    Boston Whaler 13
    I own a 13, and I can't believe my eyes!!! You are one hell of a boat builder. I'm curious how that 40 pushes her. Very impressive!
    The boats no speed demon but I can get about 28 mph in flat calm conditions based on my GPS. This is fully loaded with gas, 2 batteries, a full bait tank, and two guys. I have not played around with different props yet, it just has a standard aluminum one and a hydrofoil. With a lightweight trihull the boat has a tendency to pound in chop so I usually cruise at about 12-14. Can fish all day on 12 gallons which is great, and the boat can get me safely across the channel to Catalina on calmer days completely warm and dry.
     
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    knguy022

    Newbie
    Sep 29, 2009
    15
    66
    Colton
    Name
    Kevin
    Boat
    Boston Whaler 13
    Crazy cool.....How does it ride?
    RA, boat rides great when its calm. Tends to pound in chop because the boats so light and with a trihull design but cab keeps you warm and dry. Boat is great for drifting because its super stable and can get into some real tight spots. Towing the boat is like its not even there with my Tacoma. Its been an awesome little rig.
     
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