Inflatable Boats Specialists repower and first trip out after DIY renovation

steelhead88

Marriage is not a word; it is a sentence!
Aug 18, 2008
805
466
Ventura
Name
Scott
Boat
GRAYLIGHT- Custom 23' Aluminum Pilothouse
After many months of research, sweat equity, and patience, we officially launched "GRAYLIGHT" on her maiden voyage/shake down trip this weekend out of Channel Island Harbor. This post is more of a "thank you" to those involved and a synopsis of her overhaul, rather than a fishing report. But alas, we did fish (see bottom for details) so I'm posting in this forum.

GRAYLIGHT (newly named) is a custom, double hulled 23' aluminum pilothouse that was originally born in the Pacific Northwest as a harbor patrol boat back in 1989. Naturally she came to us pretty used and abused but we fell in love with her immediately and knew this was the investment we were looking for.

I would like to first give a shot out to Inflatable Boat Specialists (IBS) in Ventura - inflatableboats.net (805-644-6290). I worked with IBS for many months finding just the right outboard for a repower, spent many hours on the phone and in person at their shop (which is really clean and state of the art by the way), and must say that my experience with them was great from start to finish. Their sales staff is very professional and their outboard mechanics definitely know their stuff. If any of you are thinking of a repower or servicing an existing engine, IBS gets my vote.

I first came to IBS with a rather serious corrosion issue in the bottom (back portion) of the hull. A little bit of saltwater intrusion in the foamed in hull = bad news after 25 years. Jared (IBS) president, recommended his "go to" welder (Keith) for tough jobs like this and he was there at the shop in 10 minutes flat.

Keith (805-844-6373), who has over 30 years of welding experience, was definitely the guy to tackle my corrosion issues. I felt very confident in his work after seeing the custom work in his shop. He was able cut out a perfect top deck hole (now a hatch) in order to put several heavy duty, seamless welds in some tough to reach places. If you need custom work done right, the first time, I highly recommend Keith.

My last (but certainly not least) thank you goes to Mom (who's an excellent graphic artist). She designed our custom boat name decal and then I sent it to the graphics department at BoatUS (of which you're already a member and get a discount if you have Vessel Assist). BoatUS made a high resolution, crisper image of the original and it came out fantastic!

The DIY part of this restore was countless hours of sanding, grinding, and painting her inside and out. Painting this girl just about killed my partner and I and I'm not sure I would recommend taking on a project like this unless you're 100% committed from start to finish.

We also added new trim tabs (nautilus smart tabs sx), custom kicker mount and Nissan kicker motor, racor 60 gph fuel separator/filter, fuel sender, 2 new bilges (auto and manual), 3 way bilge switch, hasp lock, door magnets, fans for pilothouse, powder coated the bench seat, deck hatch, new batteries, and a life ring (among other safety items).

Fish report:

Launched late out of CI for a quick shake down trip this Saturday. Conditions were so so with mixed seas at a relatively short interval. Not a problem with the new powerhouse as we did 25 knots at only 3400 rpm's on the way to a local reef. This boat is flat out scary fast and topped out at 40 knots at a mere 5000 rpm's during the sea trial. I have no need to find out what WOT will bring, at least not anytime soon.

Playing around with all the new stuff and getting use to the new rig was a priority, but we did manage some quality calicos (released) and my Dad stuck a 9.5 lb (25") cabezon (CDFW verified at ramp). The current was absolutely screaming which made it tough to hold a spot for more than a few seconds. My GPS said we were doing 1.5 knots with the motor off, yikes! Water temps ranged from 62-63.4, just crazy for where we were in March. Visibility was excellent with whales everywhere, and just a hand full of small bait balls.

It's going to be an epic year! Great start to enjoying our new ride!


Looking forward to sharing many fishing reports with the BD community in the years to come.

See you on the big pond!

Scott (and Dane)

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J Woodman

I know nothing
Dec 8, 2006
1,015
562
Ventura
Name
Jeff
Boat
15' Gregor "Silver Bullet", Parker 2310 "Deep Color"
Thanks for the report Scott. Your pics are not visible. I would really like to see your boat.
 
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steelhead88

Marriage is not a word; it is a sentence!
Aug 18, 2008
805
466
Ventura
Name
Scott
Boat
GRAYLIGHT- Custom 23' Aluminum Pilothouse
Jeff,

I think I fixed the problem as I had to resize the photos. Hopefully they stick this time.

When I have more time I will probably post a more thorough restore thread in one of the boating forums. I just wanted to give a shot out in this forum to a few folks who helped make this project a reality, considering I was working with a tighter than normal budget (compared to some of the other pilothouse boat owners around here).

Scott
 
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steelhead88

Marriage is not a word; it is a sentence!
Aug 18, 2008
805
466
Ventura
Name
Scott
Boat
GRAYLIGHT- Custom 23' Aluminum Pilothouse
Those guys at inflatable boats are great guys, im sure, but they might want to think about using the acronyms for their name haha, people might get confused lol

YellowFever858,

That's too damn funny.

Yes, not the best acronym but they may have been around before IBS became an official medical term.
 
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brokeass boater

I Should Upgrade My Account
Feb 23, 2010
1,058
447
Norcal's Brentwood
Name
Gregg
Boat
24' Skipjack w/Pilothouse, 21' Marada, 15' Boston Whaler
So clean looking and great lines. Pilothouse's are the way to go, getting out of the elements, be it wind and spray or the sun. Enjoy it,,,gregg
 
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