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New to Me - MA 18 w/ Questions


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Good looking hull, I have always liked the shear lines of the Master Angler.   As for access to install cleats that you do not have access to reach behind, you have 2 options that I know of.

I decided the next course of action would be to get the hull fully wet sanded and buffed, and all tannin stains acid cleaned. Wanted to see what would detail out and what needed further repair. Much o

So before a final detail, which the boat badly needed, I decided to install the new hull drain. Trying to manage project cost on stuff I can handle. The original bronze garboard drain was in tough sha

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On 3/17/2021 at 6:52 AM, CRD Dawg said:

Getting back to transom work and headed to paint booth. Trim Tab pockets sprayed first, then remaining vertical portion of transom, then top of transom. You may notice in pic 4 that they decided to “re-fair” the transom in the splashwell a second time to better round out the transition from vertical to horizontal one more time. I think the bright lighting in the booth highlighted a few places they wanted to retouch a bit.

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Interesting to me, the coating that was applied to the gelcoat after initial curing. Was a little surprised when I stopped by and saw this at first. I believe this was to help indicate where wet sand and buff had been done once started, so as to not overwork a specific area. Pencil markings used the same way on top of transom.

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Being you did not replace the fuel tank and the boat already had $5000 in fiberglass repairs approximately how much did you spent of fiberglass and paint work on the hull ? I know this is a generic question but the information could help a friend that is starting the same journey that a few of you classic master anglers have made . 

 

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14 hours ago, CRD Dawg said:

Next was port side hatch and the foam there. Specifically the foam that exists on the outside of the stringers. When we cut the access hatch in the release well floor to repair the area of the stringer on the outside of the port transom knee, we really left that foam untouched, so I decided to do a little exploratory. Pic from before clean up and removal.

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Found evidence that the foam had previously been wet. (I assumed due to black moldy color.) Kept cutting slivers away until no more wet foam. I ended fully exposing the pocket that exists on the outside of the stringers.
 

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Once I removed the foam, I exposed this. The trim tab screws pierced the hull and created a channel thru to this pocket that was holding wet foam. Now I know why I was able to wick water out of the trim tab holes with Q-tips during initial prep for glasswork. (See earlier in this thread.) Ensured all was dry (with more Q-tips, ran a blower with hose wedged into this area on and off for several days) and coated with 2 part epoxy. Once this was done, I went back to the starboard side again and repeated this process. Found evidence of same conditions there.

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Yep - bingo.   We found the same issue on mine when we reworked the stringers.   Initially, when those screws were sealed, it was probably fine, but 20 years later, the sealant isn't sealing anymore and you get wet foam.

Exactly how floatable is waterlogged foam, anyway?  ;)

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Hey dabear, to answer your question, with all the pics I took of the glass and gelcoat work (and I’ve probably shared 10% of my pics), it really wasn’t all that intensive or complex - keel repair, transom refinish, basic stringer repair once good access was achieved, bow and helm hatch edge repairs where cord stops were anchored, and some access holes added. I spent about the same on it and 2 rounds of detailing that the previous owner spent on the first round of deck and cap refurbishments. To your question on tank replacement, while the boat has been thoroughly inspected by multiple people, including use of a bore scope in the survey, along with constant inspection for smells or evidence of fuel leaking below deck, I will admit that until the tank is replaced, it will always be a concern in the back of my mind. Doing some very rough math in my head, if you’re thinking in terms of some sort of cap off (I know the prevailing opinion is that this is probably not a good idea), or rotisserie style (I’m a car guy) restoration, one could easily spend $20-30k on a serious hull restore including below deck improvements typical of an intensive restoration, including things like tank replacement. Then you would add electronics, repower and rerigging. Who knows honestly, I’m definitely not a boat expert for sure. I guess it would depend on how deep the restore got. 

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Thanks for sharing this information . I am sure this type of feedback about hull repairs that you and a few others have shared will help a lot of people decide if they want to dive into repairing a old classic hull or not . The pics and real world dollars figures that CRD Dawg, Whichwaysup and Wanaflatsfish have provided everyone is really appreciated by a lot of forum members . The member that I was trying to get all the real world experience for has read everything that you all shared with us and he has decided what he wants to do with his classic Master Angler so I won’t be picking your brains any longer . I thank you all again for your sharing your knowledge and time with us all .   Joe R 

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I get a sneak peak into what CRD has been doing along the way and I have to say - if this boat ever shows up in the classifieds, you will have to fight me over it.   The level of detail that he is going into to make sure this thing is better-than-new is incredible.    

CRD - one piece of advice on that bilge hose through hull I forgot to mention - make sure it has a "reverse drip loop" - i.e. - make sure that the hose goes UP from where it connects to the through hull before going back down to the pump.   Several of us (not just MA owners) have discovered water in our bilges when a big guy is on the back of the boat - we've traced it to back flow through that through hull because it is so easily pushed below the water line.  YOu've got an easy way to access it with that pie hole - I may have to install one in mine too.

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16 hours ago, whichwaysup said:

I get a sneak peak into what CRD has been doing along the way and I have to say - if this boat ever shows up in the classifieds, you will have to fight me over it.   The level of detail that he is going into to make sure this thing is better-than-new is incredible.    

CRD - one piece of advice on that bilge hose through hull I forgot to mention - make sure it has a "reverse drip loop" - i.e. - make sure that the hose goes UP from where it connects to the through hull before going back down to the pump.   Several of us (not just MA owners) have discovered water in our bilges when a big guy is on the back of the boat - we've traced it to back flow through that through hull because it is so easily pushed below the water line.  YOu've got an easy way to access it with that pie hole - I may have to install one in mine too.

Hey thanks for the heads up. Will investigate that option. Appreciate the willingness to let me bounce ideas off you as this progresses. This has been a fun project so far, and somehow, once I came to grips with the probable cost of a relatively thorough refurb of a boat, it’s basically stayed on budget. I will say, once it’s done, assuming (and praying) the fuel tank doesn’t go belly up in the near future, it will have been worth the effort and expense. For what I’ll have in it, I truly don’t think there is another hull out there this size as capable of managing light to moderate chop with the fishability of a smaller hull as this is in its price range. Good grief, some flats boats now cross $70-80k and beyond. I’ll have a fraction of that in this.

Quick story. Was running around my local waters last summer learning the boat and following a friend who is a very experienced waterman. We were running to a local spot where folks go to beach it for the day. Was a bit choppy that day as we entered a local sound. He told me later he was a bit concerned I could manage it. He looked back over and over and said every time the boat looked like a knife cutting thru the wake. He couldn’t believe it. I’m not planning on challenging 2-3ft seas in this thing, but within reason, it really is an impressive hull. That is assuming you’re not needing a hull for poling in 6 inches of water for bonefish. 

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So before a final detail, which the boat badly needed, I decided to install the new hull drain. Trying to manage project cost on stuff I can handle. The original bronze garboard drain was in tough shape, so I ordered a replacement stainless from Gemlux. Fit perfect, but the 3 countersinks for the screws were about an 1/8” closer to the centerline of the drain hole than the old one, so they didn’t match up with the existing holes. Really. Was not looking for another step in the project. Oh well. 

So I cleaned out the original holes with a drill bit, blew out with a compressed air can, cleaned with Q-tips dipped in acetone, let dry and applied 2 part epoxy with Q-tips in the holes to protect the core. Waited for a week to cure. Then fully filled old holes with 5200, let cure again. Then rotated the drain basically 90 degrees. Drilled new holes, blew out again, cleaned with Q-tips dipped in acetone, then coated inside of new holes with Q-tips dipped in 2 part epoxy again to coat and protect the core. Let cure. Then installed new drain with 5200. Read a bunch on this. Most opinions seem to suggest 4200 so it’s less permanent. I’ve found 5200 can be removed without gelcoat damage. Came out pretty well. Cleaned inside of hull with acetone around the opening so I could spread a good bead of 5200 around the perimeter of the drain lip. I think it should be water tight...

Side note #1 - if you zoom in on the pic, you can see some of the scars and abrasions we decided to leave. Not bad, all superficial, my glass guy and detailer didn’t feel they were worth repairing. They were thoroughly cleaned and ceramic coated over.

Side note #2 - you’ll also notice the sea chest screen / cheesegrater visible. Decided not to remove it. Cleaned out the silicone or whatever sealant was there around the perimeter with a knife, wiped clean and placed a clean bead of 4200. Also found the screws used there completely pierced the hull and the tips were visible inside the bilge. Repeated the same process from above on all holes, cleaning them out, sealing, curing, and used 4200 there. Reinstalled new 1/2” stainless screws there.

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So I got to work cleaning the filthy deck, inside all hatches, console and bilge, gave the hull a quick wipe down and put all decals back on the boat before turning over to the next shop for rerigging. Did as much stuff as I could handle. 

Starboard hatch-I had told my glass guy to not worry too much about cosmetics matching the gelcoat he rolled on the floor once the battery tray repairs were made. Not a big priority frankly and time is money. Focusing the dollars where it really matters. Next phase of the project will be the most costly. Got some rigging to clean up seen here.

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Port hatch

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Helm seating hatch-this gives me great access to bilge and a good view to the fuel tank. I can guess what the hull number markings mean. After having the bow and stern hatch edge openings repaired where the cord stops were anchored and frayed the fiberglass, I decided to not have the cords reinstalled. Until I can figure out the geometry of gas shocks, bamboo prop rods with rubber feet will have to suffice.

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Stringer repair inside transom knee

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Stringer repair outside transom knee

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Hoping to get pics up this weekend of how things are going with rerigging the boat. Moving slowly but steadily. Been in work for about 3 weeks. Probably 3 more to go or so.

In the meantime, anyone have any images of the red “Master Angler” logo I’ve seen before on the side of some consoles? I know I’ve seen it before but can’t track down any images. Thanks in advance.

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I love the idea of leaving the trim tab pockets open. That may be the thing I dislike most about my 18. (That and the pie hole) Anytime you need to service or even look at the tabs you have to back all of those screws out and reseal. The bottom 2 holes drip water out every time I remove them even with the 4200 I use. Boat looks amazing man. Great work! 

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11 hours ago, CRD Dawg said:

Hoping to get pics up this weekend of how things are going with rerigging the boat. Moving slowly but steadily. Been in work for about 3 weeks. Probably 3 more to go or so.

In the meantime, anyone have any images of the red “Master Angler” logo I’ve seen before on the side of some consoles? I know I’ve seen it before but can’t track down any images. Thanks in advance.

CRD, I think I have one on mine.  will check

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13 hours ago, CRD Dawg said:

Hoping to get pics up this weekend of how things are going with rerigging the boat. Moving slowly but steadily. Been in work for about 3 weeks. Probably 3 more to go or so.

In the meantime, anyone have any images of the red “Master Angler” logo I’ve seen before on the side of some consoles? I know I’ve seen it before but can’t track down any images. Thanks in advance.

Your boat looks amazing... great work ! 

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So the boat’s been in the shop about 3 weeks and been working thru a lot of items. After a handful of combinations of livewell drain plumbing, we’ve decided to go with bronze thru hulls, bronze elbows, glass reinforced plastic seacocks (don’t water backing up into the livewells, especially the release well which is out of commission for a year while I monitor the stringer repair), back to bronze barbs, then on to livewell drain tubes. Have decided to eliminate the 90 degree elbows in the last pics coming off of the bilge and release well pumps. 90 degree on the release well drain has to stay. Release well will double as saltwater wash down for now hopefully. Used the plastic seacocks solely to save weight at the stern. Every pound counts but the original plastic thru hulls had to go and I wanted seacocks on both drains.

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After a good bit of discussion around battery placement, we decided space was available to move all 3 batteries to the bow. Hope it doesn’t make the boat bow heavy. It sat very bow proud in the condition I bought it. We had originally planned to move the cranking battery to the console, but the shop and I agreed that the way the trolling motor battery tray was supported was sloppy - a warped and stressed piece of fiberglass and some crudely installed rubber strips, so we decided to fabricate a new battery tray below the bow storage. First pass was done with balsa and then perfected and fabricated from 1/2” starboard. 

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Trim tabs have been reinstalled. Fortunately the tab actuators were able to be mounted slightly below and outward of the original mounting locations. Even though I’m confident the transom repairs were done very well, this should ensure they are anchored in strong glass. The trim tabs had the same hole configurations as the originals, so they went back in the same place, but all screw holes were tapped and installed with similar methodology as the hull drain, so I’m confident they will be strong and water tight. May look a bit odd with the actuators mounted off center and without covers, but the trim tab covers will remain in the attic. In my mind, that’s 12 less holes in the transom to worry about.

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Bilge exhaust has been completed. Hey “Which Way”, I was not able to get your feedback to the shop regarding the concept of a “reverse drip loop” before they reinstalled it, but that makes complete sense. I will watch that closely, and if I find it is an issue, that should not be too hard to correct with the access I now have.

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Fabricated a new console switch panel. The existing one just wasn’t working for me. Trim tabs will be controlled from a new Lenco panel mounted on top of console. We moved ignition and kill switch to port, so the keys and lanyard aren’t as in the way when the console door is opened. Due to interference inside, the ignition and 12 volt plug could not be the same distance from the edge of the panel. Also had an issue with the relationship of the 4 center switches and the 4 centermost screws. We debated whether to evenly space the switches between the kill switch and charging port, or to center them on the 4 center screws. We decided to evenly space the 4 switches between the kill switch and 12 volt plug. Being off center to the 4 center screws on the panel and the single center screw at the top of the door frame right below kinda bugs me. Oh well, still looks pretty good.

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8 hours ago, CRD Dawg said:

we’ve decided to go with bronze thru hulls

I did the same....good move...my buddy COTO notice some deterioration on his plastic  thru hulls and soon after mine were leaking...I replaced it with the same.

 

dc

 

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CRD, she is looking really really good.  I'd like more info on the battery tray you built, I have to address mine.   She will not ride bow heavy, and I think this is the perfect solution.   Yesterday, we had the release well full of water (and redfish) and I had to use a lot of tabs to keep the bow down at low speeds.   More on that trio in the "catch of the day section shortly).

Everything you are doing looks great and makes sense.  Nice work.   That bilge hose is going to bug you, but it looks like an easy fix if it does become problematic!

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