SR 1979 Reborn!
(1979 22' Hard Top Sea Ray)
|This article is a journey
into the land of buying a older boat. Trusted contacts I've made over the last
20 some years will guide me thru the rebirth of one helluva fishing boat
when Project SR 1979 is totally reborn at the beginning the 2008
My reasoning leads down the road of not spending 50 to 75 grand on a boat. Especially, a boat that will not see much usage. Most of my time is devoted to my tackle business and a a ton of dough in a new boat is just not wise. Maybe, to put it better, why dump a large sum for something that's might get used 20 days a season?
1. Hire a trusted registered surveyor. In my case I knew John P. Watson (231) 723-2485, former Marine Safety/CO for our DNR for the last 20 years. His integrity is implacable, so I trust what he says! Cost to survey the 1984 22' Sea Ray Hardtop was $280.00. Survey is necessary for insurance on most boats older then 15 years, when you purchase a used vessel
2. Be honest, both the seller and buyer must build bridges about what needs to be done. I was looking for a older Sea Ray, as quality issues are always extremely good. Better then the newer models from what I've seen.
3. Expect motor
problems, as it looks like I'm the 3, maybe fourth owner. Research
on the internet found brand NEW long blocks 350 MerCruisers for a little
over 2 Gs for my particular boat. The original motor will be
replaced eventually. Same goes for the outdrive
replacement, as earlier MerCruiser Type I out-drives with V8s are known
Once the boat is paid for, I will disclose what I paid and negotiated into the sellers end, because of major defects that I consider unsafe. After being thru many, many charter vessel inspections, I demand reliability and safety above all else.
Stick with me, this journey has just begun!
I'll update this page every time a step forward means progress has been made. My total budget, including the purchase price of this boat is 20K for all upgrades like new interior, new teak moldings, canvas, 350 GM V8 motor, riggers, outdrive, 07 electronics, 15 hp 4 stroke kicker motor with steering and helm throttle/shift controls.
This is a working list page
with the stuff that's in need of repair, it's not written a War &
Peace novel, nor is it intended to be.
Brought life into this project by starting the engine and bring
the motor up to temp with the ears/hose to the lower unit. Motor was
sounded good with not even any lifter tappet noise. This is a good
thing! Pulled the outdrive to replace the upper bellows, lower
bellows and rebuild the lower unit water pump. This looks to be
around 2 C notes again to bring this up to snuff 100%. Top U-Joint
was fine, grease was clean in the lower unit, so the prop
5/10/07 Pulled odd the old rigger mounting system that was an complete abortion in my eyes. Toggle bolts and cement anchors are not boat rigging hardware. Changed to a new compass (seller supplied this) and mounted the dinette pedestal.
Finished up the paid for price and got the seller 4 grand for my new
rig. Outdrive has a new lower unit water pump, upper and lower
bellows and is ready to go back on. Got lumber for new trolling
board and 1/2 pressure treated for the new cockpit combing cushions.
Installed new steering system cables with tilt wheel front helm.
Installed new hoses from the trim tab pump to the cylinders that move the
Not much actually accomplished today, other than ordering a new oil
pressure and volt meter to match (on EBay for 60 bucks shipped). Ran
down a 100 quart Igloo fish box for 50 bucks at Kmart's webstore (60 bucks
total w/shipping). There's a wide disparity in pricing, so using the
internet to shop is advised. Especially, if you live in a remote
area 50 miles away from major stores like I do.
5/17/07 Found lost gold today with a expensive Power Winch 912 (350-400 bucks new) that was in need of a new wiring harness, switch and power receptacle. This model has 3500 lb. straight line pull and will make loading the boat a breeze. The 912 is rated for boats weighing up to 10k. Started on the stern rigger board with initial cuts and layout. Measured for access hatches for gas tank. Ordered a new fuel pickup for the 15 hp trolling motor that runs on it's own separate fuel supply. Gonna do something?... might as well do it right the first time around. Cobbled up short cuts always lead to future nightmares!
5/22/07 Re-designed the motor box to gain extra aft deck room. Gained almost a foot and about 4 inches on both sides. Working with an above deck motor presents problems and the smaller the motor hatch, the better off you are. Finished cutting the new combing side cockpit cushions that will be upholstered soon. Installed new oil pressure gauge and still had about 35 pounds at idle speed of 600 rpms, which is a good thing on a motor pushing 30 years old.
5/23/07 Projects for today: Make the gunnels support for a wider trolling board. This Sea Ray only has 3 inch flat spots on the gunnels. This is being widened to 6 inch on both port and starboard sides and 12 inches across the stern. Got a call from Bear Lake Marine and the new 15 hp. 4 stroke Johnson will installed on 5/29/07. Lots to do before then. Remount the fish box holder to the portside to add room for kicker trolling motor system. Install EZ-Steer bracket on the outdrive.