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66 Starcraft Sunchief re-Build

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  • 66 Starcraft Sunchief re-Build

    This will be my first attempt at restoring an old boat, so I thought Iíd do a build along. That way, in exchange for providing you folks a little humor (inevitable due to my inexperience), I can ask a bunch of redundant silly questions!

    The boat is a 66 Starcraft Sunchief. Itís 21í7Ē long and came with the 110 HP Mercruiser Sterndrive option.

    The motor had a head job in 83 and a full engine rebuild to 040 over in 84. When not in use, it was parked in a carport. She hasnít been in the water since 02 when she was winterized and parked in a garage. I bought her from my brother a couple of months ago and Iím ready to try and bring her back to original condition with exceptions being some small cosmetic upgrades.

    The plan is to re-do the floor and flotation, new paint top & bottom, complete re-wire, re-upholster the seats, new fabric in the cubby hole area on each side (havenít figured out the term for that area) new finished wood side panels and dash in lieu of the fabric covered stuff, and new marine vinyl in lieu of the deck rotting carpet, new gauges & steering wheel.





    My brotherís teenagers piled all sorts of stuff on it, and a few months ago he painted his 71 Harley some sort of red color, resulting in the entire boat being pink from overspray???





    Iíve been really worried about wet flotation and the resultant rust/rot. So today I removed the seats, carpet, fuel tank and one side panel. So far everythingís looking good!




    The sun started going down and the temp started dropping and this stage of the restoration is being done in the carport, so I decided to remove the reinforcement and yank out one sheet of the plywood just to get a peek at the danged flotation Iíve been losing sleep over. Everything looks pretty good here.




    Tomorrow afternoon Iíll remove the other side panel and all of the flooring.
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    Sunchief In Motion!http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IOO34zeE_Vg
    Sunchief Restoration! http://forums.iboats.com/showthread.php?t=286412

  • #2
    Re: 66 Starcraft Sunchief re-Build

    Almost forgot! Here's what the 65 model looks like.

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    Sunchief In Motion!http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IOO34zeE_Vg
    Sunchief Restoration! http://forums.iboats.com/showthread.php?t=286412

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    • #3
      Re: 66 Starcraft Sunchief re-Build

      The foam that is exposed so far is bone dry. Does this look like a STOCK setup? The foam is just loose laid in pieces and the plywood was reinforced with one ply of glass with Resin(?) sloshed all around. In some places it was really thick and I believe that's what was making the cracking sounds when we walked on it.

      I should have the rest of the floor and sides out by sundown this evening.
      sigpic

      Sunchief In Motion!http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IOO34zeE_Vg
      Sunchief Restoration! http://forums.iboats.com/showthread.php?t=286412

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      • #4
        Re: 66 Starcraft Sunchief re-Build

        Sorry guys! I got a case of buck fever and opted to spend the afternoon in a ground blind We'll be back on it tomorrow.

        Tashasdad & Honker, after going back and looking again, looks like the only rivit holes for the decking are the ones in use now. I'm thinkin maybe it did come that way from the factory. Who Knows?

        Gluvit huh? I think I will seal the inside before I put the flooring back in since it's already exposed.

        I've seen a couple of videos of the ole man in this boat and it looks like it moves accross the water pretty good.
        sigpic

        Sunchief In Motion!http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IOO34zeE_Vg
        Sunchief Restoration! http://forums.iboats.com/showthread.php?t=286412

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        • #5
          Re: 66 Starcraft Sunchief re-Build

          Just a little update here.
          Got the starboard sideboard off and most of the plywood flooring out this evening. Everything is still looking good.




          I spoke with my brother and he says my father in law did a little glassing of the floor on the back two thirds when he replaced the carpet years ago. That explains what Iím seeing now. The front third of the floor still had the original vinyl on it with bare plywood.


          Based on what Iím seeing here, I played around with just replacing the worn out aft two thirds of the floor and leave the bow area alone, but after mulling it over, decided to yank it all out, use the gluvit and purchase some new flotation. We have an EPS manufacturing plant just up the road and theyíll cut the stuff however I want. Besides, all the flotation around the engine and under the gas tank is fairly well boogered up with oil and gas. Still canít find any rot/rust. Hard to believe this boat is almost 43 years old!!!



          Next step is to replace everything I just took out, and then my son will come over and help me with the total re-wire.

          I was also informed that the hour meter we found under the stern was installed when the motor was re-built-it shows 150 hours.
          sigpic

          Sunchief In Motion!http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IOO34zeE_Vg
          Sunchief Restoration! http://forums.iboats.com/showthread.php?t=286412

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          • #6
            Re: 66 Starcraft Sunchief re-Build

            Looks like propellers are about the most complicated part of this whole deal.

            I finally contacted Mercruiser and gave them the specs for the boat. They're telling me I should go with a 14" x 19 pitch, standard (right) rotation and that this motor stock should run at 3900 to 4300 RPMs. Their rep also said that the overbore on the engine would not have enough impact on power to justify going to a 21. I have to consider that the last prop placed on the boat could have been the wrong one???? Any thoughts?

            While I've got folks looking again, more silly questions-

            I finally got all the wood removed and I'm able to look under the flotation. Down the center of the boat is a fair amount of sludge. I assume that's a combination of dirt, engine oil, and fuel. Prior to using the gluvit, is there any special cleaning proceedure? I assume I'll have to use some sort of engine de-greaser, but what should I use to make sure I have that off so the gluvit will stick?

            After that, I've decided to just install all new flotation.
            sigpic

            Sunchief In Motion!http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IOO34zeE_Vg
            Sunchief Restoration! http://forums.iboats.com/showthread.php?t=286412

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            • #7
              Re: 66 Starcraft Sunchief re-Build

              We had a nice day here weather wise so while my brother was grinding and welding on the Hillbilly Gantry (see other thread), I decided to yank out the flotation and shop vac all the debris out of the boat bottom.

              Thought i'd post up a shot of what it looks like.


              I know there hasn't been much progress to report, but basically I'm just running around ordering up all the stuff I need for the new floor and waiting for it to arrive.

              As you can see, there's a fair amount of motor goo down the center and I'm still fighting over what I want to use to remove it. I'm thinking at this point I'll just scrub it with engine cleaner and drain it into containers.
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              Sunchief In Motion!http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IOO34zeE_Vg
              Sunchief Restoration! http://forums.iboats.com/showthread.php?t=286412

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              • #8
                Re: 66 Starcraft Sunchief re-Build

                OK. Another nice day temerature wise and the wife decided to do a one day road trip to visit family. So... I decided to go buy a couple gallons of commercial de-greaser and have at it. After scrubbing and a lot of scraping with a plastic putty knife, this is what I've come up with so far.


                I had to run wire thru the bottom of the VEE in the stringers due to build up of engine gunk-the water wouldn't even drain.

                Danged bottom is just about as clean as I can get it. I think I'm gonna let it air out a couple of days and get the new foam in.

                I'm thinking about using the extruded(blue or pink board) instead of expanded so I won't have to deal with the beads in the bottom. Any thoughts?
                sigpic

                Sunchief In Motion!http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IOO34zeE_Vg
                Sunchief Restoration! http://forums.iboats.com/showthread.php?t=286412

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                • #9
                  Re: 66 Starcraft Sunchief re-Build

                  Thought I'd add an update of recent progress.

                  Knowing cold weather was eventially goint to happen I decided to use up some of the materials left over from recent jobs piling up and try to close the carport in. This is what I started with.

                  I took that shot while we were building the Hillbilly Gantry for lifting the front of the boat.

                  Here's what we ended up with about five days later. Days four and five included about an inch and a half of rain. Got it closed in just before the temps started to bottom out. BTW, the date is screwed up on my camera and evidently I'm too danged dumb to fix it.


                  We had an old redeye heater that burns just about anything out in the shop so we filled up a bunch of cans of deisel and started heating it up. Everything was pretty much OK till the temps started getting into the single digits. With no insulation the metal roof started condensating and drops started freezing on the ceiling. No Problem! That is until I overslept this morning and the heater ran out of fuel. Danged inside of the Boatel looked like a rain forest

                  So we experienced a heat wave today. Started at 6 degrees and climbed to 16 so I hitched up the boat and drug it out into the yard. We cant really do any of the floor or gluvit work until we get into some higher temps so I fired up the 89 dollar gravity feed blaster and dumped in a 50 # bag of walnut shells and started working on stripping paint off of the rivits. A lot of them would have required some heavy sanding and I hoped the shells would do the trick. I blasted till I ran out of shells. Did a pretty good job, but it was a tad on the slow side. I figure three more bags and one long day will do the rest.


                  After I ran out of shells, I fired up the orbital sander with some 100 grit pads and started on the paint. I'm really amazed at how quickly this setup takes off the paint. Base on how things went today, I'm thinking one long day to finish everything I can reach before I have to pull the trailer out from under it minus the blasting.




                  If we don't see snow I'll be back on the sander tomorrow.
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                  Sunchief In Motion!http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IOO34zeE_Vg
                  Sunchief Restoration! http://forums.iboats.com/showthread.php?t=286412

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                  • #10
                    Re: 66 Starcraft Sunchief re-Build

                    I have a fresh can of gluvit setting here in my office for just that purpose. We hit 32 degrees today. Maybe later in the week we can get that done.

                    I managed to get the starboard side (minus the rivits) done before it started snowing today.





                    I'm gonna need three more bags of walnut shells to finish off the rivits and they won't be in till later this week, so I guess the next couple of days will be spent sanding the stern and the top side after I remove the last of the bow mounted hardware.
                    sigpic

                    Sunchief In Motion!http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IOO34zeE_Vg
                    Sunchief Restoration! http://forums.iboats.com/showthread.php?t=286412

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Re: 66 Starcraft Sunchief re-Build

                      OK, yesterday evening I fired up the heater in the shop and spent the evening removing the aluminum bow and stern castings, all the bow mounted hardware, the windshield (which was danged fun considering they evidently didnít have phillips head screws in the 60ís), the gunwale rubber and all the top mounted hardware. I also dis-assembled the Mercontrol unit and found 4 broken plastic shaft sleeves.

                      We got weather in the 40ís today so I wheeled the boat out of the shop and spent the entire evening blasting the rest of the rivets. Now the only thing left is sanding the stern, the top, and everything I couldnít reach on the bottom while trailered.


                      Looks like weíll be suspending the boat and getting it off the trailer this weekend. Once that happens, weíll be working on the trailer and the boat.

                      So Iím basically working my tail off here and the wife is standing on the porch shaking her head EVERY DAY when the UPS guy shows up. Yesterday we received 3 boxes of walnut shells and today theyíre gone!

                      BTW, the 89 dollar blaster works great! You have to stop periodically and remove what looks like mud from the tip, but overall, Iím happy with itís performance. Iím blasting all the rivets in an attempt to make the fresh paint look crisper. Plus, I really didnít want to sand all three million rivets!!!

                      Tomorrow, Iíll be in DC talking with the folks at West Marine about paint.
                      sigpic

                      Sunchief In Motion!http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IOO34zeE_Vg
                      Sunchief Restoration! http://forums.iboats.com/showthread.php?t=286412

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Re: 66 Starcraft Sunchief re-Build

                        Here's the info on the 90# Clarke Gravity feed Blaster at Tractor supply

                        http://www.tractorsupply.com/webapp/...g=true&cFlag=1

                        It's listed on thier site for 99 bucks now. We used a small to medium shop sized Craftsman compressor-I think it puts out something like 9.4 cfm-nothing special.

                        The fine grade walnut shells came from Kramer Industries. Here's the link

                        http://www.kramerindustriesonline.co...nut-shells.htm

                        This danged 22 footer is presenting a few problems-Like I'd really love to be able to flip it to work on the bottom prep and paint but there's absolutely nothing wrong with the drive train or the stern so i'm not taking it out.
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                        Sunchief In Motion!http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IOO34zeE_Vg
                        Sunchief Restoration! http://forums.iboats.com/showthread.php?t=286412

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                        • #13
                          Re: 66 Starcraft Sunchief re-Build

                          In the midst of all this grunt work, we want to remember all the little stuff that must keep moving forward also. Weíre removing a lot of hardware and signage from the boat and some of this stuff takes a while to duplicate/restore. With this in mind, I contacted a friend of my son who owns a metal fabrication shop here locally and he got all excited about the OLD BOAT as everyone refers to it. He took my old busted up vinyl Starcraft emblems, scanned them, did some tweeking on the computer, and waterjetted me a new set. This is the prototype


                          The other two sets are off to be powdercoated black. I know theyíre not exact repros, but theyíll have to do. Finding 43 year old vinyl emblems so far has been impossible.

                          The Powered By Mercruiser Drive foil backed emblems on the stern are also not available. So I took a photo, emailed them to my sister who is a graphic artist. She sent them to a guy she knows and for 10 bucks I got back an electronic file that I can take to the cheapo sign folks and have a couple of decals made. Much simpler that I thought it would be. Hereís the photo I sent them and a print out of what they sent me back. Close enough for me.



                          I ordered a tube of 240 and 120 grit greaseless polishing compound like the British guy uses on Youtube for polishing aluminum, put some Ryobi Home Depot polishing wheels on my cheapo grinder out in the shop, and did a test on the bow and stern castings. Hereís a before and after shot.



                          They still need a little work, but I think I just saved myself a ton of cash and even better, I wonít have to wait three months to get them back. I also bought a bunch of small wheels for the air Dremel and we should be able to polish some of the miles of aluminum trim on the boat without removing it.

                          Now if I could just do my own chroming, Iíd be set!!!
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                          Sunchief In Motion!http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IOO34zeE_Vg
                          Sunchief Restoration! http://forums.iboats.com/showthread.php?t=286412

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                          • #14
                            Re: 66 Starcraft Sunchief re-Build

                            My meeting in DC was re-scheduled for tomorrow, so I'll be talking with the folks at West Marine about paint then.

                            The sanding and blasting is making such a mess, I think I'll try and get that phase finished or close to finished before I apply the Gluvit. The deck wood has been in the shop air drying for about three weeks and I still need to cut and seal it. Another week or so of tearing things up, ordering stuff, and general prep and we should make the turn to actually putting things back together
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                            Sunchief In Motion!http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IOO34zeE_Vg
                            Sunchief Restoration! http://forums.iboats.com/showthread.php?t=286412

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                            • #15
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                              Re: 66 Starcraft Sunchief re-Build

                              I got these back today from the powdercoater. I couldn't be happier with how they turned out.

                              And it looks like my son's stuff will be out of the shop early next week so I can begin cutting and coating the deck and installing it. Can't wait! It's too danged cold to do any liquid stuff in the Boatel
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                              Sunchief In Motion!http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IOO34zeE_Vg
                              Sunchief Restoration! http://forums.iboats.com/showthread.php?t=286412

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