Saving My Old Boat!

Discussion in 'Boat Building' started by JohnnyMax, May 27, 2020.

Is the boat worth trying to save and restore?

Poll closed Friday at 4:39 PM.
  1. Burn It!

    6 vote(s)
    60.0%
  2. Hell No!

    3 vote(s)
    30.0%
  3. Maybe?

    0 vote(s)
    0.0%
  4. Hell Yea?

    1 vote(s)
    10.0%
  1. JohnnyMax

    JohnnyMax Active Member

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    I finally have the money and time to try to tackle this project boat. The best thing is has going for it is the 240 horse 4 cyl Mercruiser in it. I just picked up a trailer for it, now it is Game On!
    I am laying out a hard top to build for it, but that is way down the list!
    Vitamin-Sea.jpg
    Vitamin-Sea3.jpg
    Vitamin-Sea V20.jpg
     
  2. north coast

    north coast Senior Member

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    That IO Is going to require you to remove whatever hair you have left.

    With your Hands, whilst screaming, and praying to god that it catches fire, so that you may finally be released from the bondage of constant failures and repairs this beast will burden you with.:)

    On a lighter note, now that you have the “money and time” search out something that you can enjoy your time on the water with. Something reliable.
    Not something which you’ll be forever repairing and be required to call the coast guard to rescue you every time you go out.

    However, if you were suggesting removing that Monstrosity, doing a little glass work and hanging a nice sparkley, new, reliable four stroke outboard on her, I think you have an interesting Hull there to work with.

    Just my $.02
     
    Last edited: May 28, 2020
    JohnnyMax likes this.

  3. jiggawhat

    jiggawhat Senior Member

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    Nope good bye..... find one that doesn't need 30k in parts
     
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  4. JohnnyMax

    JohnnyMax Active Member

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    I appreciate the brutal honesty..... kinda.
    As far as Coasty rescue, it has a bracket to lower an auxiliary motor. I will not go out without aN extra 10 hp hanging on the back. At this point I will power wash it and go through it and see what all it needs. I am thinking about removing everything that is not essential, fill any holes and paint it. Bare essentials. Money and effort into the Mercruiser and fuel system.
     
    Last edited: May 28, 2020
  5. JohnnyMax

    JohnnyMax Active Member

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    Is an inboard/out Mercruiser a bad thing?
    It will really push this boat. Here is a picture of my year model running with the Mercruiser.

    V20 Step-lift.jpg
     
  6. Gorge

    Gorge Junior member

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    How long has it been sitting? Any cylinder with an open valve has the potential to be full of rust: so seized engine/trashed piston rings if it's been sitting too long. Mercruiser is just the stern drive section. What is the make of the actual engine under the dog house?
     
  7. JohnnyMax

    JohnnyMax Active Member

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    It has been sitting since 2008! Not sure who made the motor. I just assumed it was Mercury?
    I guess I need to remove the plugs and spray WD40 into the cylinders.

    Vitamin-Sea6.jpg
     
    Last edited: May 28, 2020
  8. JohnnyMax

    JohnnyMax Active Member

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    Here is what Google said:

    "The 470 featured a cast aluminum engine block designed by Mercury Marine and the block was mated with an iron cylinder head from the Ford 460 V-8 engine. The same engine block was used in several other MerCruiser engines, including the 170, 190, 485 and 488."
     
  9. KMitchell

    KMitchell Senior Member

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    Check the integrity of the hull - first.
     
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  10. north coast

    north coast Senior Member

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    The engine itself is not the issue. If it was reasonably stored it may very well be fine. That outdrive is the inspiration for my post. They were a poor design from the beginning.
    Riddled with problems even when relativity new. At the age you have mentioned, it would be a miracle if it even works let alone give you any seasons of reliable service.

    Off the top of my head, I can think of 2 friends that I warned. exactly as I’m warning you now. That later told me
    “ I should have listened to you” both experienced many,many issues.

    One of these guys, a good friend,told me ( jokingly)
    That he called the coast guard before each trip to make them aware that he was going out. Just so they’d be ready for the call. :)

    They sell an aftermarket part for those outdrives called a “ shower”
    It’s a device that literally showers the whole outdrive with raw seawater while underway. This helps keep the constant overheating in check. That alone is a flag for me. There were myriad other issues.

    How many old decrepit boats do you see in various marinas with the outdrives missing? There is a reason for this.

    Again, just my $.02 your Milage May vary and maybe you’ll be lucky enough to have a gem among a mountain of coal. :)
     
    JohnnyMax likes this.
  11. day0ne

    day0ne Senior Member

    758
    130
    The 470's had some built in problems, one of which you seem to have taken care of (the alternator and regulator). You appear to have the small heat exchanger which makes it prone to overheating, which is death for that engine. They also had a problem with the cam seal scoring the camshaft, leading to leaks. All fixable but costly. I have a pair of 470's in a boat and am looking to replace them with the Mercruiser 3.0L which uses a GM engine. Parts for the 470 are getting hard to find, as they haven't been made for many, many years.
    The boat appears to be a Wellcraft Step V 20, which was a nice hull. You need to clean it up and take a good inventory of what is needed to get it running before you can make an informed decision. BTW, that isn't a 240 hp. It was rated 170 hp at the crank, about 130 at the prop.
    Look at
    https://www.bdoutdoors.com/forums/forum/check-out-my-boat-customization/
    to see what others have done with old boats. Remember that is a West Coast board with different needs in boats.
    As for replacing it with an outboard, you are looking at at least 3+ times as much money just for the engines, and the hull might not respond well with an outboard. If that is a Step V, it was available in outboard, however.
     
    Last edited: May 28, 2020
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  12. day0ne

    day0ne Senior Member

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    Mercruiser. The 470 was built from the ground up as a marine engine, though it did use a 460 Ford head.
     
  13. day0ne

    day0ne Senior Member

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    Wow! I never had any problems with Mercruiser outdrives, unless they were overpowered, or they hit something. The drive showers were seen mostly on the Bravo outdrives, which I never had. The MCM and especially the Alphas were pretty reliable.
     
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  14. JohnnyMax

    JohnnyMax Active Member

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    Y'all are scaring the hell out of me! LOL
    The hull is solid on my 1982 V20, including the transom.
    I bought another Wellcraft V20 (1975) last week for the trailer. That was my first hurdle.
    After all the concerns voiced, I will remove the plugs and check them out and spray WD40 in the cylinders. Check out the electrical connections then test the starter. I definitely need to disconnect the fuel tank first. Next, drain the gear oil from the lower unit and see it there has been any water intrusion. If not, add new gear oil, if it is white change the seals. Then start cleaning her up and restore her beauty.
    On a side note, I will replace the rusted out axle on my old trailer and put the 1975, V20 on it, build a hard top for it, spray on a nice paint job and flip it.
     
  15. JohnnyMax

    JohnnyMax Active Member

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    I am excited about the Mercruiser, Just sayin'
     
  16. lite-liner

    lite-liner troll enforcement Staff Member

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    No Way.
    if you can invest 3g's and be fishing...... maybe, but probably not.

    not worth the mental anguish and physical pain. been there. done that.
     
  17. JohnnyMax

    JohnnyMax Active Member

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    I don't see it costing that much to get it up and fishing. I have frugal Scottish blood pumping through my veins. Now it will cost to put on GPS, Fish Finder and eventually Radar. I am so thankful to the guy over at the WellCraftV20.com Forum. They are 100% in support of restoring this old boat. But they are official lovers of these boats.
    I guess you guys here are one dimensional. Not meant to be a cut. You guys seem to be 100% fishing and that is why I joined the Forum.
    When you guys say it is a headache and hair pulling to fight with restoring an old boat, well....
    I wholeheartedly disagree.
    I love building and restoring things. I grew up shrimping with my Dad along the Gulf Coast. I was on the deck working since I was 12 years old. I helped my Dad build 6 shrimp boats growing up. At 23 I build a 70' Longliner, named it after my new bride and fished for Tuna and Sword 150 miles offshore. So I look at you guys saying how it will be hard and not worth the effort and smile, because... that my friend is free motivation for me. Now it is a different animal restoring a boat, than building a new one. I love restoring boats. I normally restore sailboats, because you can pick them up for nothing. I currently have three sailboat, last one needs a new interior. I put that on a back burner, for the V20. I wanna reel in a fish and fight it. I used to haul them out of the water with heavy gear. Still a chore!
    I will rely on you guys for help, because commercial tuna fishing is NOTHING like sport fishing.
    I honestly considered running a one mile longline (I ran 18 miles), but that takes a lot of time.
    Here are just a few pics of the boat I build back in '84, the "Little Miss Tammy"
    lmt03.jpg lmt05.jpg lmt12.jpg lmt21.jpg lmt39.jpg
    lmt42.jpg lmt43.jpg lmt46.jpg lmt47.jpg LittleMissTammy.jpg
    This is why after 30 years, I want to catch some tuna....
     
  18. north coast

    north coast Senior Member

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    Cool and good luck to you.
    Curious why your poll didn’t just ask
    For *yes
    *absolutely
    * certainly
    And * he’ll yea !
    Though.
    Seems you already had a predetermined outcome in mind.
    All I ask is honesty, and when you’re bored, on your first tow back to the dock, you post up here on this thread.
    :)
    I honestly hope it goes better for you than I think.
    I’m also Scottish.
     
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  19. lite-liner

    lite-liner troll enforcement Staff Member

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    those are great pictures!
     
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  20. JohnnyMax

    JohnnyMax Active Member

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    I will post a picture of the Coasties smiling faces.
    I posted the post and I was hoping for advice and encouragement....
    I was really surprised when people selected burn it and hell no. I did it in fun...
    BTW, I had a ski boat project in front of this one. I had a mechanic friend look at it today, the motor is frozen and one of the plugs rusted off in the block and broke. That project is now on hold. That is great, now I can focus on the V20. :)
     
    Last edited: May 30, 2020