Hewescraft SeaRunner Resto-Mod (AK Summer-time Style)

KneppNasty

Snappin’ necks & cashin’ checks....
Sep 10, 2017
376
262
35
Seal Beach, CA
Name
Jeramy
Boat
Trophy 2509
I live here in SoCal throughout the year, but have spent 3-4 weeks of every summer of my life up in Alaska at my family’s little fishing lodge.

Up in that region (Kenai Peninsula, AK) it seems that everybody prefers aluminum boats to fiberglass, and as such, those are mostly what you’ll find listed for sale. So for a period of time I was looking for an affordable used aluminum boat & trailer that I could pick up locally, maybe put a little work into, and eventually use for halibut fishing in the Cook Inlet (keeping in mind that the boat would be getting at very most about 1 month of use each summer).

So I ended up snagging a 1990 18’ Hewescraft SeaRunner & trailer from a fella on Craigslist for a whopping $1,800.00. (No motor included)

This guy had picked it up with intentions of restoring it, but apparently got a new job and had to relocate before even completing the disassembly of the vessel’s components.

Well what started out as a quick re-assembly project ended up turning into what was basically a full blown restoration from stem to stern that I completed over the course of 3 summers. (Only being able to work on it while I was up there in AK for 3-4 weeks each summer, mind you.)

So I disassembled and stripped it down to the bare aluminum hull. Made everything water tight. Added flotation foam beneath the deck. Eliminated every single trace of that ugly original blue carpet. Installed new marine ply deck & coated with fiberglass mat/cloth & resin. After TONS of prep and a couple coats of epoxy primer, I ended up spraying Zolatone over all exposed surfaces, seeing as that was the factory finish originally applied by Hewescraft.

After an entire year of daily scouring classifieds & craigslist for a motor, I soon discovered that quality used outboards are quite hard to come by up in that region of AK (and are way more expensive around there too). So eventually I found a killer deal on a 2010 Mercury 90hp 4-stroke outboard for sale on Craigslist here in SoCal.....so I purchased it and hauled it up to AK in the back of a u-haul. Couldn’t be any more pleased with how the motor fit & performed with the hull. Super dependable & capable of speeds of 50mph+ on flat calm days.....all while sipping fuel. (No lie - we use 5-8 gallons of gas at very most per trip. Talk about affordable!)

I decided to eliminate the cheesy original seating in the bow area that was basically useless, which then allowed me to move the consoles forward a little bit & provide for more fishing space in the back deck area. (Ended up working out tremendously for the way the boat rides & gets up on plane, etc.)

Instead of going back with carpet for the tops of the gunnels (absolutely HATE that original blue carpet), I decided to cut down, shape, & install sheets of 3/16” thick starboard/HDPE material. Was a pain to get it to fit correctly, but totally worth it in the end.

Ran all new wiring throughout & installed Simrad electronics w/ Mercury Vessel View for gauges instead of analog. New Optima blue top AGM batteries. Added new hydraulic steering. New seats and pedestals, new bench seat cushions. New rod holders, wash down pump, etc etc.

Probably the best decision I made was to purchase & install a LoneStar GX2 drum anchor winch in the bow area, utilizing smaller diameter Amsteel Blue (dyneema) anchor rode for added capacity/depth capability. Absolutely LOVE no longer having to mess with pulling the anchor with a ring/buoy by hand.

The only portion of the restoration that I did not do myself was the fabrication & installation of the soft top. Decided to leave that to the professionals, and Nomar in Homer ended up doing a fantastic job. Cannot rave enough about the ability to sit comfortably warm and perfectly dry to and from the fishing grounds....while still being able to fold down or remove the soft top on those hot & sunny days.

All in all, its been great being able to use the boat each summer, and then come back home to SoCal for the rest of the year and think about all of the little tweaks & changes I’m going to make, collecting all of the parts & components to implement next summer when I get back up to AK.

So far it’s been a fantastic little boat that has been easy to tow & is very little hassle for 3-4 people to make a day trip out to kill some halibut for the freezer.

This coming summer I’m planning to add an aluminum arch in order to be able to add some rod holders overhead, and also to give me a spot to mount my new Simrad 4G radar dome.

Maybe this summer I will finally get around to installing the white vinyl wrap/film & Hewescraft logos that go on the exterior hull above the water line. (Like you see on all of the new Hewescraft boats.) For some reason, now that the boat is fishable it’s always difficult to find the time to install the aesthetic vinyl wrap & logos instead of taking the boat out for another fishing adventure.

Thanks for taking the time to check out my Hewescraft SeaRunner resto-mod!

-Jeramy

319E7269-C61D-48C5-9AAD-17BC8B922AFC.jpeg 6C337C9D-1352-496F-8B04-0951CD341FFE.jpeg B8C293B6-A627-477B-B3CB-33B17FAE8A86.jpeg 505F07C3-1113-4B7C-A839-3E8071AD1514.jpeg 2F38F8AF-A5EE-457B-A980-1C474862818B.jpeg BD7BD605-96B9-43E8-963E-ADC35DD26E4C.jpeg 8986E8A7-883B-4226-8C5B-8584AF5C1F8C.jpeg A381E073-EBDC-4A1D-B12D-E6D13481F75F.jpeg E35C55D9-6D73-4888-89CB-C05D1B8074D7.jpeg E0C19382-E8B2-48D5-82A4-FEEAC62D59BB.jpeg FFA67CD4-333F-45CF-BBAB-D099179A145D.jpeg D53802D3-3BAE-45A0-A36D-E9FB01C0383B.jpeg DF8F3EF0-19AB-4D6D-B3DB-0EA043F445ED.jpeg C6C41755-380C-49AE-9DFF-0A03978F82BD.jpeg 07A54A63-CA7D-4B82-928F-CA7BDF136472.jpeg 4A18EBF7-691C-46AE-99A1-0033048E9603.jpeg B785CE37-9E31-48CD-BFE2-7FDDC2642C34.jpeg 3D0ECDBE-9A6D-4C82-ADCF-0911ED4C7A92.jpeg 940E268F-CA0A-4EBF-934F-3162F2B96FC3.jpeg 8CF51911-32E2-44FF-9739-138B4901E513.jpeg 7B013B07-6ADE-4FB9-B1D1-90F9CFB9B31D.jpeg 3B252AD6-A437-45D8-B417-7F707F167980.jpeg B9E80C76-4736-47C9-8247-EFD96F12CEDD.jpeg 57CDA8EF-8564-42B9-B913-B61AA3449023.jpeg
 
Upvote 0

marlyn

I Post A Lot But I Can't Edit This
  • Dec 18, 2005
    8,799
    5,465
    So Cal
    Name
    mark
    Boat
    21' skiff and 12' portabote recycled from milk jugs
    Very cool boat,good job.I like all the glass windows,great for taking in the sites while staying dry and warm.
     
    • Like
    Reactions: KneppNasty
    Upvote 0

    KneppNasty

    Snappin’ necks & cashin’ checks....
    Sep 10, 2017
    376
    262
    35
    Seal Beach, CA
    Name
    Jeramy
    Boat
    Trophy 2509
    Very cool boat,good job.I like all the glass windows,great for taking in the sites while staying dry and warm.

    Hey thanks much!
    Yah the boat definitely did it’s one and only job this past summer - allow us to get out there swiftly & safely to slay some nice halibut, and then back home again safe and sound regardless of the conditions. For that I am thankful.

    9FAF7A49-F926-4142-9044-D881963B82FE.jpeg 7F1B10D2-5952-4474-98C0-3CFEC8562242.jpeg 609968F5-B771-4AFF-94FD-9EBDC67A175F.jpeg 3612BEA7-D553-4602-A208-DB2EEE3B056A.jpeg 432D7E39-5348-43E7-8357-4B0450831A85.jpeg 7B8794FF-5B47-46C6-8763-B7D66D796585.jpeg
     

    Attachments

    • IMG_8529.mov
      2.9 MB · Views: 41
    • Like
    Reactions: kj6883
    Upvote 0

    rancanfish

    wow, how deep is it here?
    Jul 5, 2004
    633
    297
    Dublin, CA
    Name
    Harold Head
    Boat
    1971 BW Menemsha
    I did a lot of work to a 19' aluminum once. But you did yours like a champ. I had lots of blue carpet too, lol.
     
    Upvote 0

    KneppNasty

    Snappin’ necks & cashin’ checks....
    Sep 10, 2017
    376
    262
    35
    Seal Beach, CA
    Name
    Jeramy
    Boat
    Trophy 2509
    I did a lot of work to a 19' aluminum once. But you did yours like a champ. I had lots of blue carpet too, lol.

    Thanks mate!
    It’s funny because I spent a ton of time removing every bit of that original blue carpet from the boat.....yet still to this day I manage to occasionally find little specks of it turning up here and there. Can’t decide which is worse though.....blue carpet or the red/maroon carpet option they offered back then.
     
    Upvote 0

    KneppNasty

    Snappin’ necks & cashin’ checks....
    Sep 10, 2017
    376
    262
    35
    Seal Beach, CA
    Name
    Jeramy
    Boat
    Trophy 2509
    I was pretty stoked when I came across some original Hewescraft brochures on eBay showing years/models pretty close to mine.
    Interesting to see the options they used to offer.

    B8BFD225-04B9-411D-90AF-0728691A6429.jpeg 47BFBF6A-8439-446F-A53C-BDA45A05AE48.png 671FE725-ACAB-49C4-AD8F-F5CDC8F3532A.png C608DD97-5E48-4FBB-9977-6CEF7F2A53E0.jpeg 6D662636-7C5E-427C-908E-8B40413F0842.jpeg 4B42E323-AA86-4697-8B49-01FC28D97CF5.jpeg 777386E9-39E6-41C8-B059-3B1A0C33F8F9.jpeg 0F452DC0-D299-4D32-83CF-2EAC34C80610.jpeg DE82D9B6-50E5-43ED-9BCD-710867F26D72.jpeg D9E4CADD-7823-47E9-AB8B-0A89D6CEEE3A.jpeg 33E81012-2A3B-4139-98C5-F97FA873E23D.jpeg 359C3205-41DA-4608-B675-33F05A604A05.jpeg 129F196F-53AC-4869-9B4B-240FB651F0F0.jpeg E1B641C7-71A4-4770-ACF7-DAD3C436085F.png
     
    Upvote 0

    rancanfish

    wow, how deep is it here?
    Jul 5, 2004
    633
    297
    Dublin, CA
    Name
    Harold Head
    Boat
    1971 BW Menemsha
    Wow that's a lot of good info. The first pic closely resembles the carpet application mine had. Could never figure out the why of carpeted gunnel tops. Who thought the sun wouldn't eat that up?

    I have good memories of that boat.
     
    • Like
    Reactions: KneppNasty
    Upvote 0

    KneppNasty

    Snappin’ necks & cashin’ checks....
    Sep 10, 2017
    376
    262
    35
    Seal Beach, CA
    Name
    Jeramy
    Boat
    Trophy 2509
    Little update:

    This past summer I did a few more improvements on my Hewescraft SeaRunner located in Alaska. I guess it’s turning out to be one of those forever on-going projects to keep me occupied while I’m up there.

    I had always planned on installing a white vinyl film/wrap stripe at the top of the hull with Hewescraft logos, just like you see on all of the newer factory Hewescraft boats. I even made a valiant attempt at installing the 3M 1080 vinyl film myself a few years back.....but aborted that operation and decided I’d need someone to give me a hand with it, and just moved on to finishing up other more crucial aspects.

    Well just as soon as the vessel became ‘finished enough’ & capable of going out and slaying fish on the salt - the completion of any final remaining “aesthetic” details quickly got put on the back-burner....
    So when I FINALLY was able to get around to installing the 3M white vinyl wrap, black stripe, and Hewescraft logos on both sides of the hull, I ended up being totally stoked with how it all turned out & the major improvement for my boat visually.
    (Sooo glad I didn’t spend the $800 to purchase the vinyl/decal material directly from Hewescraft. I just ordered rolls of high quality white 3M vinyl online and had some Hewescraft logo decals made by someone from eBay for $9.00.)


    1616544652669.jpeg

    1616544687711.jpeg

    1616544703374.jpeg

    1616544791617.jpeg


    Also this past summer I ended up just completely replacing the entire powerhead on my 2010 Mercury 90HP 4-stroke outboard motor, by myself to boot.
    To make a long story short - I was getting low compression from the 3rd cylinder on the old power head, likely corrosion on the head surfaces. (Even though it was always thoroughly winterized - my motor sits in storage un-touched for 9 months out of every year). Due to that particular location and lack of good local boat mechanics, I found it to be much cheaper and faster for me to purchase a good low hour used powerhead with strong even compression in all cylinders on eBay (with 90 day - no questions asked warranty), and swap it out completely myself instead of messing with replacing the head gasket and trying to find someone to hone the head surfaces, etc.

    It all ended up working out tremendously:
    I built a come-along lift, pulled off the old powerhead, popped on the new one, got all
    of the components and accessories swapped over and the new powerhead dressed up....filled it with fluids, turned the key and it fired right up.
    After that the motor worked flawlessly all season long without a single hiccup to speak of. Fingers crossed for this coming season 🤞🏼🤞🏼🤞🏼

    1616545569435.jpeg

    1616545589308.jpeg

    1616545695327.jpeg


    1616545671879.jpeg

    1616545722777.jpeg


    Welp, this summer is quickly approaching and already planning a few little projects/upgrades.

    1. Going to be installing an aluminum radar arch unit to be able to gain some rod holders overhead to get rods out of the way and clear the deck when fighting fish.

    1616545930144.jpeg

    2. I picked up a used 2010 Mercury 115HP 4-stroke ECM computer module on eBay for $100.00 that I’m going to use to swap out my existing 90HP ECM and gain another 25 horse power.

    1616546114655.jpeg


    3. Thinking about adding a new self-launching bow roller for my LoneStar GX-2 drum anchor winch setup. Just will make deploying that much more hands/hassle-free.

    1616546231308.jpeg


    4. Contemplating closing up the transom and adding an outboard flotation bracket with platform. So far this is just a pipe dream though. 🤔 We shall see.....

    1616546325556.jpeg

    1616546365818.jpeg

    1616546388697.jpeg


    Thinking that those projects above should be plenty to keep me busy this summer whenever I’m not fishing.

    Thanks for checking out my never ending Hewescraft SeaRunner restoration project!

    1616544954356.jpeg


    1616545529806.jpeg


    1616545614893.jpeg
     
    • Like
    Reactions: airslot
    May 17, 2019
    62
    60
    32
    Eagle River
    Name
    Joe
    Boat
    Salmonella
    nice job on the boat! do you normally head out of homer, or do you go out of deep creek or anchor point using the tractor launches? If you see a black raider named salmonella throw us a wave!
     
    • Like
    Reactions: KneppNasty

    URN

    Almost A Member
  • Feb 20, 2018
    210
    183
    41
    Anchorage
    Name
    URN
    Boat
    Whaler 25
    Sweet project. Its good you spend enough time up here to pick your days to go out. Boats are never "done" but its a labor of love. I'm modifying the pilothouse on my whaler currently and run out of Homer a couple times a year. Sometimes it's Whittier, mostly Seward, and sometimes Homer. Good luck this season and say hello if you see a whaler frontier 25 with twin evinrudes on the back.
     
    • Like
    Reactions: KneppNasty

    KneppNasty

    Snappin’ necks & cashin’ checks....
    Sep 10, 2017
    376
    262
    35
    Seal Beach, CA
    Name
    Jeramy
    Boat
    Trophy 2509
    nice job on the boat! do you normally head out of homer, or do you go out of deep creek or anchor point using the tractor launches? If you see a black raider named salmonella throw us a wave!

    Hey, thank you kindly! Definitely will keep an eye out for a black Raider with the name Salmonella!

    I’m located in Ninilchik on the river and the Deep Creek tractor launch is literally a 5 minute or less drive from our lodge....So that’s typically where I launch/fish out of.

    But when the conditions get a bit sporty and the people at the Deep Creek launch refuse to accept my $$ and launch my small boat, I’ll typically tow it down to the Anchor Point tractor launch - That dude is a champ and will launch you basically no matter what.....as long as you are crazy enough to want to go out in such nasty conditions.

    Occasionally I will tow my boat down to Homer if we just want to mess around in the back bay for a few hours, or wanna head across the bay to snag reds, or go eat at Halibut Cove etc.

    But typically I will launch out of Deep Creek since it is the closest and most convenient for my location. (Although rather expensive too!)

    Honestly, why go anywhere else when I can catch halibut like this within 4-5 miles of the DC launch??!! 🤷🏽‍♂️😂
    1616618137230.jpeg

    1616618160385.jpeg

    View attachment 1266445View attachment 1266446
     
    Last edited:

    KneppNasty

    Snappin’ necks & cashin’ checks....
    Sep 10, 2017
    376
    262
    35
    Seal Beach, CA
    Name
    Jeramy
    Boat
    Trophy 2509
    Sweet project. Its good you spend enough time up here to pick your days to go out. Boats are never "done" but its a labor of love. I'm modifying the pilothouse on my whaler currently and run out of Homer a couple times a year. Sometimes it's Whittier, mostly Seward, and sometimes Homer. Good luck this season and say hello if you see a whaler frontier 25 with twin evinrudes on the back.

    Right on! Can’t wait to see some pics of how your Whaler pilothouse build ends up turning out.

    Def will keep an eye out for your Frontier 25 with twin ‘Rudes this summer too.

    If you ever swing by the weir on the Ninilchik River to see the penned up King salmon then don’t forget to toss a holler!
     

    URN

    Almost A Member
  • Feb 20, 2018
    210
    183
    41
    Anchorage
    Name
    URN
    Boat
    Whaler 25
    Sounds like a plan. One thing we did was get the motorguide Xi5 trolling motor. The 36V version can push this whaler 3.5mph with the engines trimmed down. It'll hold us on currents in PWS and currents in Seward. Cook Inlet currents would be a bit fast for it but if you timed the tides right then you should be able to spot lock before and after tide swing. The TM makes snagging those reds across the bay easier too. That's some good fun there. We also snag some pinks and use the bellies as bait. We're hoping to start doing more vertical jigging for kings, ling and rockfish. Your boat size would handle an electric TM just fine and is even easier to use than the anchor winches. Just one more thing to add to the list :)
     
    • Like
    Reactions: KneppNasty

    KneppNasty

    Snappin’ necks & cashin’ checks....
    Sep 10, 2017
    376
    262
    35
    Seal Beach, CA
    Name
    Jeramy
    Boat
    Trophy 2509
    Sounds like a plan. One thing we did was get the motorguide Xi5 trolling motor. The 36V version can push this whaler 3.5mph with the engines trimmed down. It'll hold us on currents in PWS and currents in Seward. Cook Inlet currents would be a bit fast for it but if you timed the tides right then you should be able to spot lock before and after tide swing. The TM makes snagging those reds across the bay easier too. That's some good fun there. We also snag some pinks and use the bellies as bait. We're hoping to start doing more vertical jigging for kings, ling and rockfish. Your boat size would handle an electric TM just fine and is even easier to use than the anchor winches. Just one more thing to add to the list :)

    Now that is some tremendous advice! Definitely will have to look into acquiring one of those as well.....thanks much. 🙏🏽
     

    jondavies

    Newbie
    Jan 30, 2012
    31
    11
    Pasadena
    Name
    jon
    Boat
    Sea Ox
    I remember Ninilchik from a trip a few years back. I saw a pair of moose calves by the road. Fantastic area and i look forward to going back.

    Great job on the boat! Enjoy the fruit of all your hard work (as if i have to tell you lol).
     
    • Like
    Reactions: KneppNasty

    KneppNasty

    Snappin’ necks & cashin’ checks....
    Sep 10, 2017
    376
    262
    35
    Seal Beach, CA
    Name
    Jeramy
    Boat
    Trophy 2509
    I remember Ninilchik from a trip a few years back. I saw a pair of moose calves by the road. Fantastic area and i look forward to going back.

    Great job on the boat! Enjoy the fruit of all your hard work (as if i have to tell you lol).

    Many people recognize Ninilchik as the podunk little town located about mid-way on the drive between Kenai/Soldotna and Homer, where they stopped off to check out all of the huge king salmon trapped & milling around aimlessly in the Ninilchik River weir. (The weir has almost become like a well known hillbilly landmark for everybody and their mother to stop by at one point or another and take a gander at the confined salmon. 😂)

    And there are definitely tons of moose calves & their scary protective mothers roaming around the area!

    If you ever do make a trip back up that way in the summer time, then you should def holler at me.....who knows, maybe I’ll have an open seat or two on my boat so you could come hop on for a halibut slaying adventure. 🤷🏽‍♂️

    Cheers mate! 🤙🏽
     
    • Like
    Reactions: jondavies

    jondavies

    Newbie
    Jan 30, 2012
    31
    11
    Pasadena
    Name
    jon
    Boat
    Sea Ox
    Many people recognize Ninilchik as the podunk little town located about mid-way on the drive between Kenai/Soldotna and Homer, where they stopped off to check out all of the huge king salmon trapped & milling around aimlessly in the Ninilchik River weir. (The weir has almost become like a well known hillbilly landmark for everybody and their mother to stop by at one point or another and take a gander at the confined salmon. 😂)

    And there are definitely tons of moose calves & their scary protective mothers roaming around the area!

    If you ever do make a trip back up that way in the summer time, then you should def holler at me.....who knows, maybe I’ll have an open seat or two on my boat so you could come hop on for a halibut slaying adventure. 🤷🏽‍♂️

    Cheers mate! 🤙🏽
    Wow, that's very generous. I will let you know when i head that way. 👌