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'78 16'4" Fiberglass Fleetline Sapphire Restoration

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  • '78 16'4" Fiberglass Fleetline Sapphire Restoration

    Hi everyone,

    Long time lurker, recent registered user.

    As a young dad it's now my turn to provide a family boating experience and so recently begun my foray after plenty of research online, and purchased a 1978 Fleetline Sapphire to kick things off in a low-cost low-risk-of-my-stupid-mistakes-costing-me-too-much fashion. This is a relatively common boat on our side of the world in New Zealand and Australia - designed for coastal cruising, particularly in the Hauraki Gulf in Auckland.

    Beyond the knowledge and wise advice here about these boats I struggled to find much more on these boats, and indeed even the outboard that came with it. So I've decided to share what (little) I've learned about buying a boat, this one in particular, and also hope to share videos of the little bits and pieces I will do to get the boat back into better order.

    Here are a couple of vids of me sizing up what I bought, and what I've learnt is good to look for in a fiberglass boat of this age and style.

    Dead keen for any further advice, corrections or even recognition of where I do and don't have a clue. Comments here or on the videos themselves are welcome.


  • #2
    welcome aboard.

    if you have not done it yet, read thru the stickies at the top of the forum. most of the information and answers to questions you may have or didnt know you wanted to ask yet are in there.

    for the few questions you may have that are not answered in the stickies, simply ask.
    Cheesehead boating the Gulf Coast of FLA 27.51° N, 82.53° W

    1988 Cruisers Rogue 2420 -VP 290 DP now powered by custom 468 - https://forums.iboats.com/forum/owner...988-rogue-2420

    Past Boats
    1970 Wooster Hellion - Merc 9.8
    2002 SeaRay 190BR - 5.0 - A1G2 - "Cheeseheads in Paradise"
    1984 Avanti 170DLI -3.0 stringer- "Ship Happens"

    What’s behind you doesn’t matter.Enzo Ferrari


    • #3

      A quick update - the original three-stripe vinyl decals had perished, become brittle and in some parts have rubbed completely off. I decided on try a Caramel Wheel to remove them. The wheel I eventually settled one is available at https://amzn.to/2PZqUHA - it worked pretty well.


      • #4
        The original vinyl seats had dark staining on them. I had tried cleaning, but with little success. So I decided to repaint with black and white vinyl paint (https://amzn.to/2oxScYQ) came out like new!


        • #5
          neet lil boat , tagging along
          Previous project https://forums.iboats.com/forum/boat...rint-bass-boat
          Previous previous project/conversion https://forums.iboats.com/forum/boat...rsion-splashed


          • #6
            The interior has 40 years of scrapes, marks and dirt. I did some research and found a three step processes for painting fibreglass interiors.


            • #7
              The boat looks amazing! My husband and I are thinking about doind some work on ours to improve it and you inspired us! Looking forward to see next steps!


              • #8
                Decided to lay some marine carpet (https://amzn.to/2NIAA7B) for comfort. Here's the process and results - I'm pretty happy!


                • #9
                  Was sick of having to second-guess the battery when starting the outboard, during a fishing or day trip. So I decided to buy a cheap voltmeter (From Amazon - https://amzn.to/2wAzbtu) to keep tabs on the battery condition. Here is my installing into an OMC Evinrude Control unit, and how it performs.


                  • #10
                    Sign up today
                    Another update - I'd been running without a speedo for years, but after getting some 'feedback' from the Coastguard after returning to the ramp that I was probably over the 5 knot limit I decided it was time to get a GPS speedo (From Amazon - https://amzn.to/2RKN8AL) to keep tabs on my speed. Here is my installing into a fibreglass runabout with OMC Evinrude Control unit, and how it performed in the water.