Hey guys, I finally finished and got some photos of my newest boat build-this one is a 12'9" sneak boat.
Pump - how did you cut the bottom planks so you got the V hull in the front and the flat hull in the back? Why not get plans to a floating dock?or Be on the look out in Craigslist for a used pontoon boat and build this?
I built this gantry last winter, finally putting it up to install a rebuilt GM 350 in the boat. We started to build a large shed on Gary’s drive to do the construction work, but soon ran into problems with his neighbours.
In the mean time I had built the frames required to form the wooden mock up of our hull mould. Our project stalled for a couple of years due to other commitments, going fishing, lack of finance and going to the pub etc. The desire to carry on however never went away and we were eventually joined in the project by John and Paul. John made room for our project in a corner of his work premises and we set about arranging the hull frames in Xmas week 2005. My-self and John had our trade experience to apply to the construction, but none of us had any experience of working with fibreglass. We were all able to bring individual skills to the table, I would draw our designs and make wooden plugs, John would cut wood and entertain us with stories, Gary would send Paul to brew up and go to the shop, Paul would brew up and go to the shop.
If I were to go into every detail of our construction method you would be reading a book, not this short introduction.
I was able to draw and design the boat using a 2D shareware CAD programme down loaded for free off the internet.
The design of the hull and super structure GRP layup must be matched to the boats intended use and performance.
The laminate design for our project was arrived at by following rules and calculations as laid out in a book by Dave Gerr entitled “The Elements of Boat Strength”. The hull and super structure of our boat is built using 450 gm chopped strand matt and 300gm woven roving bonded with polyester resin and a finishing gell coat in appropriate thickness to the design requirement of each component.
A far cry from our original simple design the boat we built has 37 individual GRP components that come together to form the finished article. Building a mould to produce these components uses the same principle for all, whether you are making a ring deck mould or a simple hatch mould.
Accurate dimensions and angles must first be taken from your design drawings and full size wooden mock ups of the finished unit made.
Sticking to one material is a good rule of thumb to avoid your plug (wooden mock up) from moving or warping. Make sure all external edges are rounded off and use filler on internal edges sanded and smoothed to a quality finish.
It is important to use polyester based paint systems so that you avoid any adverse reaction in the GRP later.
Once you have achieved a first class finish apply at least six coats of wax, polishing in between each coat.


You are now ready to apply the gell coat for the mould followed by between 8 and 10 layers of chopped strand matt. If this is a large mould requiring strengtheners or turning rings, the mould must reach full cure before attaching these.
Make sure to buff the mould surface to a first class finish then apply at least six coats of wax to the mould surface.
They say a picture paints a thousand words so here’s around 110,000 words worth of pictures for your perusal.
Once the mould is at a class A finish apply six coats of wax and a release coat (first moulding out only). Now add the transome board at this stage it’s the same process for inboard and outboard motors. The same process is used to build the internal cabin mould and all other small moulds Like cabin doors, hatch lids, buoyancy tanks etc. Accurate dimensions were critical here, as it was not known if the top would fit the hull correctly until the completion of the plug, the laying up of the mould and the production of the first ring deck moulding. Not only did the top need to match the contour of the hull it also had to marry in to the millimetre with, the under floor matrix, the front and rear bulk heads and the cut out for mounting the outboard engine. On finally releasing the ring deck moulding, fitting backing plates etc it was offered up to the hull for the first time and to huge relief it fitted perfectly!
Wax the plug, apply the release agent and apply the tooling gel coat for the ring deck mould. Release the mould from the plug, inspect for and repair any problems, wax the mould and prepare to lay up the top for the boat. Offer the ring deck to the hull and secure temporarily with bolts, so that the top will always be in the same place as you lift the ring deck on and off while fitting the deck and bulk head positions.
Once all the main bits are bonded together and some basic fitting out done its time to let the nice new motor, see some day light. This boat has been drifting around in my head for some time now and it’s a bit of a surreal moment when she finally hits the water. Hi there, what a cracking looking craft and heavily laid up it looked.Have you still got the moulds and if so would you be interested in selling them or hiring out.
Layout boats and blinds are pure death from below to the mallet's but leaning on a tree is the best deal in the woods! Yes, that's the area I was referring to (your last photo with the circled areas) In the pics with the pump installed, that area appears to be stepped up from the pump.
For all visual purposes, the area you have shown in red indicates the location and shape of the air pocket that is forming as the boat moves across the water.
Looking at your last picture, i think the your spoon isn't big enough or shaped quite right. My 2 cents is still that you need your spoon deeper so it's drawing from undisturbed water. You can see the center strake of the boat in this photo, before the jet unit was installed.
I drew some ideas of a basic cuddy fishing boat with a hull based loosely on Gary’s wooden boat.


First decide what you want to build, we had decided on an 18 foot deep v sports fisher, with enclosed overnight cuddy, self draining un-cluttered deck able to take 220 horsepower in either inboard or outboard engine form. The board is bedded in on two wet layers of chopped strand matt and clamped tight until the resin has cured. The MDF plug was built in nine sections on the bench before being assembled for striking a mould off. I cannot wait to build my own one day, but it’s going to take some saving up, sacraficial time from the pub, and a long delay from marriage for sure! I have a jon boat that i was planning on getting a dixie mud motor but after what happened to my truck tonight (see honey hole post) that idea may have been set back. The concern i have is my jon is a boat ramp launch only and with a layout boat (true layout) its something you can launch anywhere. Also, those areas you have circled could cause turbulence, but if you have the pump flush with the bottom of the boat, it wouldn't be as severe. This is most likely the source of the majority of your cavitation.The area that I was initially referring to, is on the BACK end of that hump, where your pump bolts into the hull. I ran it with this center strake for a year or so, and in conjunction with the top loader grate, there wasn't much of an issue with cavitation.But when I went back to a conventional grate and modified it to be a pivoting weedless grate, the cavitation showed up again. We chose Gary’s flat chine deep v planing hull design because we knew it performed well at sea and would accept inboard or outboard engine variants.
The board had been given three coats of resin before fitting and will be glassed in place with a further six layers of chopped strand. I’ve built dozens of vessels in my working career as a boatbuilder, but its always good to see people do it for their own project and pleasure! So, what I did was to take my sawzall, lay the blade sideways, and cut about 3 feet of that strake off the boat, taking it down flush to the hull in that area forward of the pump. The longitudinal strakes to the outside of the pump would cause turbulence behind the strakes, as well as on the leading edge, but that is not in front of the pump intake, so it would have no effect on the pump's performance. If that's so, then, that step could also cause some issues with cavitation.But after seeing the drawing you did, I would also tend to agree with your assessment about that step on the front side of the hump causing the problem. I built 2 X 4 frames and used fencing material and put camo grass for the area I am hunting. That is a pretty large step, and if it does not transition in some type of smooth taper, it will definitely create an air pocket, a large one in fact, likely enough to cause it to cavitate. I put a half roof and if you build it big enough with the proper styrofoam than it does not move too much.
It's not cavitating on flat water because the hull is flat out, and has displaced the air from underneath, and will continue to run as such until you hit some chop, which allows air to get between the hull and the water. With a flat bottom or a spoon, this isn't an issue, as the air is displaced or dissipated by the time it reaches the pump. But if you have something on the hull that breaks up the smooth transition of the water, the air is going to collect at this point, and 'bleed off" toward the pump intake, causing it to suck up the air and cavitate.



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