I have a vintage fiberglass Eastside that I am going to deck in a manner similar to the layout of the DC10 from boulder boat works with the raised rear hatch and combined passenger seat and storage.  

I'm going to take the boat down the Gates of Lodore next week and am going to have a chance to mess around with weight distribution before I started decking it.  I wanted to know if anyone had any starting points for where to pack things for self support for just 2 people.  Particularly curious where the best location is for a medium cooler and water jerry cans is.

Second question.  I'm very comfortable repairing fiberglass thanks to my work on motorboats and rowing shells.  One thing I have been thinking about doing is leaving a 1-2" gap at the bottoms of the bulkheads and filling that by gluing in dense foam.  My thinking here is that it would allow the bottom to flex slightly over small bumps rather than transmitting that force directly into a bulkhead.  Is it better to have a really stiff hull or one that can flex a little?

Looking forward to learning from all of you and hopefully will know exactly what I want when it comes time to build my own boat from scratch.



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Well, loading is not all that easy.  You will need good size hatches to load coolers so the locations are kind of limited.  I have found that things start getting stuffed and adjusted each day on the river.  After a few days of different configurations it kind of takes shape.  You just have to keep trying to get it trimmed out.  I started with a plan for rocket boxes under the deck, coolers etc.  If just doesn't seem to go as planned.


As for the gap under the bulkhead.  I have done that and other things.  It's not as simple as it would seem.  While it works well under compression, when the floor moves down the filler material tends to separate from the bottom and the compartment seal is then compromised.


One option for my next project will be to take the bulkhead all the way to the floor.  Filet it and epoxy it in place.  Cut a long slot 2 inches above the floor all the way accross.  Cover the slot with hypalon or something glued in place with 5200.  The material below the slot can move up and down while the hypalon flexes.


It's a good idea, just takes the right materials.  I am in Park City if you want to see my 16 foot modified, decked Mckenzie.






I'll be driving through on the 8th with my boat! Would you be around to talk?  P.M. me your phone # and I'll give you a call.  I'm supposed to meet a friend in P.C. for lunch anyway.


I hadn't thought about the floor pulling away from the bulk head!  Would need a foam with enough compression to go both ways while not letting any water through.  I've been thinking about all the black foam that is used in kayak and canoe outfitting called minicell.  I can get it from NRS in 3" thick pieces 12" wide and 4 feet long. perfect for the width of the center bulk heads and maybe cut it in half length wise for use on two.  As for the cooler I was thinking about permanently integrating one of my older coolers under the rowers seat.  I was thinking it would be even better insulated and it wouldn't move around at all, I just wasn't sure about balance.  Guess its smart to do a trip without the decks to have a chance to rearrange things.  I will be bringing a bunch of canoe float bags to displace any water I may take on through the rapidly dropping flows of the green.


Cheers, Paul

I can't send my phone or email until all the "friend" stuff gets hooked up.  I sent a request so if you accept I'll forward my contact info.




The photos of your boat show it to be a standard looking, open fishing setup.  Wondering what you are after?  The low sides and short length of a fishing boat aren't quite the thing for running  big water.  I ran a decked 14 foot boat down the Grand Canyon.  With the short length and low sides it's wasn't really a good boat for the task.  It works, it's just not ideal.


My new boat is still a McKenzie type hull but 16 foot 6 with a 56 inch bottom.  Flatter in the center and just a bit more rocker up front.  The sides are 3 inches higher in the back and  next time I will go higher then that.


As for gear I have done many 1 week trips.  There is more then enough room for 1 weeks worth of stuff.  21 days is another issue but I have done it.


The sides are 24" at the gunwales so it's not a low side.  I understand the lack of big water potential but my goals are to be able to run smaller flows and runs that I could canoe but with the ability to carry my family.  Dinosaur, San Juan, Ruby and Horse Thief and so on.  I'm sure I'll run some bigger stuff with it but I don't see myself running the grand or high water cataract that much...  besides for that I have an 18' Avon.  


Like I said above, as much as I'd like one I just don't have the room or the time to build a briggs style boat.  I was thinking about scaling one down to be more manageable for the smaller stuff I want to row.  With the calculations made from fletchers briggs plans to get a boat with 16' sides I ended up with a boat not too far off from the boat I'm picking up.  I would have liked a boat with a flat portion in the middle for more capacity and sides a little higher but you can't be picky when you have a serious budget and limited time.  I also lack the confidence with wood to build what I want, fiberglass is much more comfortable for me.


I was interested in getting a Clackacraft 16' High side hull.  I called them up and got a quote for a hull and trailer only... $6400!  Twice my total budget for this build!  That and the fancy bottoms don't appeal to me at all.  A vintage high side was perfect for my needs and cheep too!


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