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1988 Alumacraft 14fter Project

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  • 1988 Alumacraft 14fter Project



    When I bought this boat 3 years ago it was in pretty good shape, but was for the most part a generic 14ft aluminum boat with bench seats. It came with a galvanized Shore Land'r trailer which was set up poorly for the boat. I didn't have the money to buy a bigger boat with a floor and pedastal seats, so I decided to make that happen with what I had.

    First I added guide-ons for the trailer. They are made from 1" pipe that we had laying around that was then bolted to the trailer with a flange. I capped the top and had a friend weld a bracket for me to mount my lights to the guide-ons. Not only does this keep them out of the water, it also allows me to have 100% visability of them at night to ensure they are working properly.



    The previous owner added some really cheap bearing buddy knock offs that believe it or not are actually easier to overfill. The back sides of the rims were coated heavily with grease from a rear axel seal that had been blown. The tires were starting to dry rot as well, so I replaced them along with the bearings. I added real bearing buddies as well. In the first picture the red arrow is pointing out the bearing buddy knock offs and the blue one shows how low the boat is on the trailer.


    My 1962 Evinrude Fisherman Restoration
    My 1986 Alumacraft Upgrade and 3-piece Removable Floor System



  • #2
    Re: 1988 Alumacraft 14fter Project

    The next thing on my agenda was adjusting the trailer so that the transom was supported by the bunks and so that the boat would stop rubbing the fenders from sitting so low. I was able to move the boat foreward nearly 8" and up a little over 4". The next two pictures show a before and after of the adjustments. I added reference lines to show how far I moved the boat foreward. It is pretty obvious that it now sits much better on the trailer.




    Now that the trailer was all fixed up and adjusted properly I began work on the floor. I wanted a floor that I could stand on, keep my feet warm in fall, and also remove during the winter (snow and easier storage). I went to the local hardware store and spend $45-50 on parts and material for the whole floor (the later deck addition came from the left overs). I used 2 sheets of 1/2" ply, a 10'x16' indoor outdoor rug, some spray adhesive, and a bunch of 2x4's I had laying around the garage.

    I did a lot of measuring and test fitting with some cardboard sheets before I mapped everything out on plywood. I built the floor frame supports first because I had to test fit them so many times to fit the curve of the hull and the fit over and around the aluminum stringers. Once the platform fit between the seats and was level I cut out ply to fit and upholstered them with cut outs from the rug. I used some loctite spray adhesive to bond the carpet to the wood. It has held up great so far. I used old car floor mats to put the gas tank on and also as a place the anchors. I bought the some real cheap tempo gas tank/battery case staps to affix those items to the new floor.






    I added running lights. I ran all the wiring through flexible pvc pipe that runs underneath the removeable floor. I cut out parts of the floor platforms to run the pvc and allow for drainage of water
    My 1962 Evinrude Fisherman Restoration
    My 1986 Alumacraft Upgrade and 3-piece Removable Floor System


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    • #3
      Re: 1988 Alumacraft 14fter Project

      After about a season of use I realized that the front area was way to cramped for me to fish out of. It was more comfortable with the new floor, but there was still much room for improvement. I decided to add a deck and raise the seat with an adjustable pedastal that could be mounted to my existing seat swivels. I did some research and decided to test out the COG difference with a deck. I took a spare piece of ply and a small dinner chair out with me to see how things would go. Luckily my boat is wide enough and has a deep enough V to accomodate the new COG. I decided to go ahead with the project. (I still never sit there when the boat is underway......or let anyone else for that matter)

      Like before I took a lot of measurements in order to get a good fit. I used metal braced and some 2x4's to create a hatch for storage and provide addition support for the deck.






      My 1962 Evinrude Fisherman Restoration
      My 1986 Alumacraft Upgrade and 3-piece Removable Floor System


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      • #4
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        Re: 1988 Alumacraft 14fter Project

        After this I added a new locator and a bilge pump. There is nothing really fancy about that though





        And Finally......here is the boat in its current state. I really didn't have to invest much in this boat to get something a little closer to what I was originally looking for.

        My 1962 Evinrude Fisherman Restoration
        My 1986 Alumacraft Upgrade and 3-piece Removable Floor System


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