If a sucker is born every minute, I must have been born more than once...
I picked this boat up over the weekend. It was rougher in person than I expected (hoped) from the pictures, but I liked the size and its history -- it was built 35 years ago to run the Grand to support a bunch of kayakers. I can't imagine taking it down there with no compartments and about 10 scuppers (covered now by the small pieces of wood on the gunwales) cut-in at floor level to encourage self bailing. It swamped a number of times and hit a rock that required tearing up the floor and patching, but it survived. The guy who has owned it since his friends built it doesn't know the plan it was based on -- it's 19' long and 7' wide at the oarlocks. I haven't measured the floor width yet. No ribs.
The seller added framing on the bottom and spray-in foam under the floor panel, which I intend to remove to increase storage space and the ability to identify water leaks and other trouble. There is also a motor well that I'll remove.
I decided not to deck over the drift boat (Don Hill 16HS) I previously restored and plan to sell it to some friends who like to fish. I ultimately decided I wanted a bigger boat for gear and people for the rivers we typically run: Cat, Main Salmon, and hopefully a Grand trip someday. I plan to also get it out on the Moab Daily, Labyrinth and some fishing trips.
Feel free to make comments, but telling me the faults of decking it over will fall on deaf ears. If it doesn't work out to be everything I want, then I'll chalk it up to practice, just like the last boat.
I plan to work on the exterior first. The sides are 3/8" plywood and are fairly rough. It's been glassed and epoxied inside and out. One thought was to skin it with (3mm?) marine plywood -- does anyone have thoughts/advice about doing that? I figure it will save me from doing as much faring, and I like the idea of being able to do a natural finish. The pictures make it look like it has a natural finish, but in person it's not very pristine.