Changes to Make  
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Changes

Upcoming and current changes are based on operational needs, finishing the project and products/parts used that did not quite measure up.

 

Re-do the trailer bow rollers

The strap pulls the point of the bow slightly downwards, striking the rollers and loosening the metal trim. I need to rig it so the strap can go over the top and lift the bow slightly as it is winched in.

Re-mount the gas springs

Rather than remount the same size springs, we went with stronger springs (50 lb) which helps considerably. The hatch now stays up in a stiff wind and waves.

Past Changes and Improvements

Cover the stringer tops

The stringers (redwood) had taken quite a beating from skis, ladder, wakeboards, kneeboards, etc. over the first two seasons. If I were to do it over, I would used oak or ash instead. This is not practical now, so the top and sides of the stringers got sanded down and covered with fiberglass. This protected them very well over this past 3 summers and still looks great.

Wakeboard Pylon and Swim Platform

The pylon is mounted just forward of the engine. The pylon is easily removed and the hole covered. We get considerably higher with it and it also makes a great flag pole. We also use a pair of side sacks (ballast) which add 500 lbs of water ballast for a better wake.

A swim platform was added and my wife, Teal, says it is the best change I have made on the boat. See: swim platform

Bottom Paint

The bottom paint on the very bottom still looks good, but the sides which were exposed to sunlight bleached out quite badly. Conventional bottom paint had problems with being trailered - too soft or ineffective in antifouling if left out of the water for a long time. Conversely topside paints are not recommended for use below the water line. We tried Z-spar Miracote which would be great for a trailer or lift kept boat. SInce it is kept in the water all summer, a true bottom paint is now used.

The next step is to switch to a red bottom (spring '06). There are just not many green bottom paints and they fade to a sea foam color (not my favorite).

Cup holders

We got tired of spilled soda and beer. The cup holders were installed in spring '02 and have worked out very well.

Skid fins

Two more fins were added in spring '02 (3 total). The difference in cornering is quire remarkable. In a power turn (full throttle with full rudder) the rear passenger can get thrown about if they are not holding on.

On those days when you want to just fool around and be a little bit wild, throwing a 20' boat around almost like a jet ski is great fun. This is an area of performance where the power to weight ratio of the wood hull coupled with lots power really shines (<2000 lbs complete and 320 HP).

Fin placement is as close to the center of gravity as I can manage. I also compared the placement on various competition ski boats. As measured from the transom to the front of the fin base plate, the fins are at 99, 108, 117".

New Cover

New cover snaps onto the rub rail and is made of Sunbrella fabric. Snaps are placed at every third screw hole. This looks very pretty, but I would most definitely go with alighter color next time to avoid epoxy damage on hot summer days. Need to repair small blisters that have appeared in the epoxy. The cover will be replaced in '06. On our summer vacation to Kentucky, the wather was very hot (>100 degrees most days) and there was more heat damage to the fiberglass. Not sure what to do about the epoxy damage yet.

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