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  1. #1
    Petty Officer 2nd Class
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    Default 1978 Cane Cutter Bass Boat Project

    I've got a project boat...not intentionally meant to be a project, just a "fix up and go fishing" boat. It's and 18 1/2' 1978 Cane Cutter. Nicknamed "The Beast"

    Day 1 spent taking before pics, removing hardware, seats, just stripping her down for the make over.






    Thanks for looking. Any and all advice MORE than welcome!

    Doug
    Midland, TX

  2. #2
    Petty Officer 2nd Class
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    Default Re: 1978 Cane Cutter Bass Boat Project

    Day 2: Noticed some "give" in the floor behind the driver & passenger seats and the back casting deck (where a bench seat used to be I am told). HOLY COW! It's not just "give"...it's a mess.

    Removed carpet and started removing what we found to be poorly "repaired" floor. Some plywood, a little resin, and some Great Stuff foam sprayed from a can.

    Looks like a lot of the floor is gonna have to come out........
    Previous owner said one of the live wells leaked. No kiddin.......

    Here's some pics, more to follow.




  3. #3
    Petty Officer 2nd Class
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    Default Re: 1978 Cane Cutter Bass Boat Project

    Well it looks like "game over" for this project.

    The floor behind the driver and passenger area had some "give" in it so I removed the carpet only to find a 3' x 4' 1/8" layer of fiberglass.....that's all. The wood was rotted out and this was a poor patch job. The previous owner had some spare seats and pedestals there when I looked at it so when I climbed inside, it never crossed my mind......

    I spent the last 2 days stripping her down for a make over and removing that fiberglass in hopes of being able to repair it.

    Foam is soaked and mildewed and all wood under floor is rotted. There's a 1" poly pipe runing from the front well to the bilge that leaks bad. The live wells are also cracked but it's hard to see until there's water in them and they begin to leak.

    But what finally made me toss in the towel this afternoon was finding a stress crack from the transom along the hull toward the front for about 3 feet. It's also moving laterally as well as along the hull and upon further inspection up into the transom area which is completely closed in by the casting deck.

    It became very evident after I put some water in the bilge to test the pump system and it sat all nite. It started coming apart literally in front of us this afternoon as the day got warmer. When I inspected the boat before I bought it it was not visible to me at all. There were scratches and such, but not this. It started coming apart literally in front of us this afternoon as the day got warmer. Pieces of fiberglass hull fell off as the water dripped more and more onto the driveway......

    Have been told any repair from underside is just delaying the inevitable failure and dangerous situation. The inside isn't accesible for repair due to the way the boat is built. There's no way I'd chance safety or lives with this boat.

    The 115HP Mercury with steering and trim is in great shape and the VIP trailer is sound but ugly. It has new tires and needs repainted and new bunks. I'm stripping every usable piece of hardware, wiring harnesses, gauges, etc. off of it.

    At least maybe I can recoup some of my money.





  4. #4
    Admiral
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    Canton Ma, South of Boston
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    Default Re: 1978 Cane Cutter Bass Boat Project

    Theres nothing there that ain't fixable, mine was just as bad.
    Pop the cap, gut it out, redo the transom, stringers etc.
    Thats VERY typical of what we do here.

    I don't blame you if thats not your cuppa tea, we're nuts.

  5. #5
    Lieutenant saumon's Avatar
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    Default Re: 1978 Cane Cutter Bass Boat Project

    Nothing wrong with that!

    If you don't pay it too much and the inline-6 and the Motorguide run fine, you should be able to recuperate your money by parting it out. BTW, did you run the Merc?

  6. #6
    Lieutenant Junior Grade danond's Avatar
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    Default Re: 1978 Cane Cutter Bass Boat Project

    Ugh. What a pain. Join the club, though. I just spent 2 months inside mine, gutting and rebuilding.

    It's not hard. If you're a DIY kindof guy, fiberglass isn't much of a challenge, neither is old boat fixin. Mostly messy and itchy.

    Take a breath and decide whether you feel like junking it and taking chances again, or if you'd be OK spending some time and $ fixing it up to be better than new.

    None of the issues you have listed in your post are unfixable. Plus wouldn't it be cool to have an old boat that was in amazing condition and still didn't cost you an arm and a leg??
    1989 Starcraft 171S Select "Cap'n Crunch" / OMC Cobra 4.3 V6 / 432APRMED

    If you're going to keep that OMC Cobra, please for the love of everything good in the world, get an OMC factory service manual. Not a Clymers, Not a SELOC. You can find them on eBay.

    My boat repair website: http://transomfix.dcpolk.com


  7. #7
    Petty Officer 2nd Class
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    Default Re: 1978 Cane Cutter Bass Boat Project

    Thanks for the replies. After reading them I sat down with my CFO (aka Honey, Darling, The Mrs.) and we decided that it is unlikely we can recoup even 50% of our initial investment. So today I hauled her (the boat....not the Mrs....) to a shop in Odessa, TX (about 15 miles away) that specializes in fiberglass repair. They looked at "The Beast" and said it was all fixable and gave me a quote. I put down half the total job estimate (which was about 75% labor and 25% materials) and left her at their yard.

    They're going to pull her off the trailer, remove the motor, pull the cap, add an additional stringer and cross braces, replace the floor, fix the hull, and check to see if the transom needs redone.

    The estimate was very reasonable and the shop was highly recommended. They're about 2 weeks out before they can get to mine and they said it'll take a week to do the work. When they pull her off the trailer I'll pick it up, replace the bunks, rollers, and repaint her.

    Stay tuned.

    Thanks,
    Doug
    Midland, TX

  8. #8
    Chief Petty Officer CaneCutter79's Avatar
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    Default Re: 1978 Cane Cutter Bass Boat Project

    Quote Originally Posted by dwhite1031 View Post
    Thanks for the replies. After reading them I sat down with my CFO (aka Honey, Darling, The Mrs.) and we decided that it is unlikely we can recoup even 50% of our initial investment. So today I hauled her (the boat....not the Mrs....) to a shop in Odessa, TX (about 15 miles away) that specializes in fiberglass repair. They looked at "The Beast" and said it was all fixable and gave me a quote. I put down half the total job estimate (which was about 75% labor and 25% materials) and left her at their yard.

    They're going to pull her off the trailer, remove the motor, pull the cap, add an additional stringer and cross braces, replace the floor, fix the hull, and check to see if the transom needs redone.

    The estimate was very reasonable and the shop was highly recommended. They're about 2 weeks out before they can get to mine and they said it'll take a week to do the work. When they pull her off the trailer I'll pick it up, replace the bunks, rollers, and repaint her.

    Stay tuned.

    Thanks,
    Doug
    Midland, TX
    So, how did the repairs turn out? I was doing some searching online and found this thread. Did you get the hull fixed? Us Cane Cutter owners have to stick together ya know.
    Last edited by CaneCutter79; June 9th, 2009 at 09:39 PM. Reason: forgot to subcribe for instant notification

  9. #9
    Petty Officer 2nd Class
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    Default Re: 1978 Cane Cutter Bass Boat Project

    Quote Originally Posted by CaneCutter79 View Post
    So, how did the repairs turn out? I was doing some searching online and found this thread. Did you get the hull fixed? Us Cane Cutter owners have to stick together ya know.
    It just got worse and worse as it progressed. The guy that was going to do the repairs took it off my hands. I got some of my cash back and have now picked up a new Tracker Pro 16.

    It was fun for a while, but the old checkbook kept screaming in agony....
    Doug
    Midland, TX
    2009 Tracker Pro 16 Bass Tracker
    Mercury 30HP EFIPT

    GO K-STATE Wildcats!
    Hook 'em HORNS!

  10. #10
    Chief Petty Officer CaneCutter79's Avatar
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    Default Re: 1978 Cane Cutter Bass Boat Project

    That's too bad. I hate to see a Cane Cutter die because there are very few of them left.

    Glad to hear you have a new boat that's worry free. Enjoy it and have fun. That's the most important thing. Catch some fish and enjoy the time on the water.

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