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12' Valco Project w/ pictures

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  • 12' Valco Project w/ pictures

    hey, just bought my first boat about 3 weeks ago. Its a 1970 12' Valco that came with a trailer and a 1996 15hp Mercury. Paid $750 for everything. My buddy and i went straight to the river after picking the boat up and it ran great and hardly leaked at all, we were on the water for about 6 hours and the grooves in the floor were wet, but there was no standing water at all when we pulled the boat out. I have taken it out a few more times since then and still no problems with the boat or motor. I am extremely happy with my purchase.

    Recently, i began cleaning the boat (trying many different products recommended online) and had no luck with any of them. I then started to lightly sand the boat and then polished it. This cleaning process is very labor intensive, but i am close to being done and it will be worth it when i am.

    The only other things i have done so far are putting new lights on the trailer, replacing bearings, and replacing bolts on the transom (all the bolts were completely rusted through).

    Plans for my Valco:
    [X]1. Finish cleaning outside and polish it
    [X]2. tear out the old wood for the seats and prep interior for paint.
    [X]3. primer interior with Rustoleum primer for aluminum i found at Lowe's yesterday.
    [X]4. paint interior (thinking a gun metal gray color or paint on bed liner)
    [X]5. Replace old wood for transom with new
    [X]6. Replace all wood for benches
    [X]7. make casting platform/storage behind 3rd seat
    [X]8. make storage between bow and front seat to keep life vests, extra anchor, extra rope, etc.
    [ ]9. new hubs and wheels on trailer.
    [ ]10. extend tongue of trailer and put on new coupler
    [ ]11. prepare, prime, and paint trailer

    Sorry for such a long first post, but i am excited to really get going on this project. here are a few pictures of what i got to work with...

    My Valco...notice i had cleaned the top of the boat when i started taking pictures


    Not so clean!
    Last edited by 1970RiverRunner; April 19th, 2010, 02:05 PM.

  • #2
    Re: 12' Valco Project w/ pictures

    hey. got a little more progress done on my boat today. i found a very easy way to clean up the boat...drywall sanding sponges.

    in the picture i am attaching the top of the hull below the gunwale was done with sandpaper by hand and then polished a couple weeks ago. Then middle of the hull was done with a power sander and has not been polished yet. finally, before i started the bottom i decided to try out the drywall sanding sponges and it worked great...even better than the electric sander.

    not gonna be able to work on the boat for a day or two cause there is a big storm coming in, but will get more pictures up as soon as i make more progress...


    • #3
      Re: 12' Valco Project w/ pictures

      Cool looking boat- Looks like it'll be a fun project !


      • #4
        Re: 12' Valco Project w/ pictures

        Good job! Looks like those drywall sponges really do the trick.
        1976 Starcraft Kingfisher Frugal Functional Fix-up
        1976 Starcraft Chieftain 18' OB - restomod
        Garage Project
        There is a fine line between stoic... and stupid.


        • #5
          Re: 12' Valco Project w/ pictures

          yeah these things work like magic. i still cant believe how much better they work than an electric sander even. i have completely given up on the products that supposedly do all the work for you by applying them and rinsing them off.

          I will be recommending these drywall sponges to anyone i see struggling with the same problems i have been having finding something that actually works.

          a big storm moved in today so i will not be working on my boat at all today or tomorrow, but thursday is a state budget closure day for the college i attend so i am hoping i will be able to finish cleaning the outside on on thursday and hopefully begin prepping the inside for primer on friday

          stay tuned...more pics will be coming as i make more progress


          • #6
            Re: 12' Valco Project w/ pictures

            I haven't posted anything in a while cause i have been really busy. i finally finished cleaning my boat last weekend. Probably not as clean as i would have liked to get it, but i am not cleaning anymore...way too much work.

            now that all the hard work is done, i can't wait to start the fun part now...the inside.

            Heres a few pictures

            On the Sacramento River today.


            • #7
              Re: 12' Valco Project w/ pictures

              I am hopefully going to gut the inside of my boat (benches, foam, transom wood) and prep it for paint next weekend. If i get that done early enough in the weekend i am hoping to even get a coat of primer on the inside.

              I am still unsure about the color paint i will use for the top coat. i am leaning towards the rust-oleum smoke gray, but i can only find it in a gloss. i would like to do a flat darker gray, but cant seem to find it....Does anyone know if the gloss will be too reflective when out on the boat??

              been thinking about the storage i am going to build for my boat for a couple weeks now. finally got some of my ideas down on paper today. i am going to build a deck in the stern and the bow at bench height (i have already tested the stability of the boat by standing on the benches while fishing the last few times out).

              the main reason i want to build these deck is because i am sick of having stuff thrown all over the boat while i am fishing...it will hopefully keep things more organized. also, i am a college student living in an apartment and i don't have room to keep my life vests, gas tank, anchors, rope, etc inside my apartment when i am not using them.

              here is a rough idea of what i got so far....any suggestions/ideas are welcome.


              • #8
                Re: 12' Valco Project w/ pictures

                I agree 100% with needing/wanting the storage space.

                Glad to see you already tested stability.

                With the storeage space...

                Make sure your entrances are sized right. I hate not being able to get somethig in or out of a full cubby hole worse than having it roll around on the deck....

                do you feel confident about having your seats located that far to the side in the middle? There is not alot of boat under you at that point. However, if your stability tested passed your requirements, looks like a good lay out...

                Nice looking boat BTW
                My restoration - 1968 Starcraft Mariner V


                • #9
                  Re: 12' Valco Project w/ pictures

                  Azonic, thanks for your concerns/opinions. I will probably move the seat bases towards the middle of the boat more than shown in my drawing. I need to wait until I actually get the seats and there measurements to figure out the exact location.

                  I am planning on 12" x 12" hatches. Possibly bigger if I have the room. Do you think that if 12" x 12" hatches is all I can fit, that they would be big enough to avoid any hassle?


                  • #10
                    Re: 12' Valco Project w/ pictures

                    On a first guess, I would say "you bet" 12x12 is a great size.

                    However, I would take some of your items you take all the time, and see if they would fit in a 12x12 without having to tilt them on their sides, shimmy them around, etc.

                    The big one I would look at are tackle boxes, anchors, and your gas cans.

                    I am of the opinion that you can make the entire deck a an access hatch if it made life easier on your tasks.

                    That said, I bet the 12x12 would work great up front, and in the rear just depends on how big your tanks are...

                    It is a super cool boat, and if you like the way she fishes when your done, then you did better than some of us have!!

                    Really like the shape of that one...

                    Keep us posted!
                    My restoration - 1968 Starcraft Mariner V


                    • #11
                      Re: 12' Valco Project w/ pictures

                      Originally posted by Azonic View Post
                      It is a super cool boat, and if you like the way she fishes when your done, then you did better than some of us have!!
                      thanks azonic. what do you mean by that statement? have you seen a lot of decks built that completely changed the way the boat fished???


                      • #12
                        Re: 12' Valco Project w/ pictures

                        Yeah it is not un common for a great enthusiastic redo turn in to a great looking very nice, pain in the butt fishing boat.

                        My current boat is a good example.

                        To look at it, it looks very nice, seems functional just does not fish the way I like it.

                        The previous owner built a very nice set of dual consoles, little drawer for storage, top lids, a nice bench with storage under, etc...
                        As it turns out, the storage in the consoles is usable but makes it so you can not mount a single thing ontop of the console. The little drawer is cute, but is always slid open after I trailer it anywhere and the under bench storage he made does nothing but create a mess of my stuff after I trailer it, and even worse when out with the kids and I can't find something, so I am on my hands and knees, upside down under the bench...
                        The rod holders may be the best thing about the boat, however, I do not use them as they were installed or intended, they will just not work that way...


                        That being said.

                        You think through "your" boat, the way "you" fish, test some things with "your" gear, and "you" do a good job building it, and "you" will have a great rig.

                        I think the wood workers moto is dead on here...

                        "Measure twice, cut once"

                        Again. Really like your little boat! Good luck!
                        My restoration - 1968 Starcraft Mariner V


                        • #13
                          Re: 12' Valco Project w/ pictures

                          Hey RiverRunner congrats on the boat my little brother has one just like it that we are going to set up for bass fishing also. Take a look at my thread http://forums.iboats.com/showthread.php?t=350642 I also have a 12 tinny a Mirocraft not a valco but 12 footer none the less. Before you go designing and building a deck do a couple of tests of its buoyancy. Thats what I did as you can see in my thread. Put the boat in the water and stand on the seats see how much she lists, if its too tippy you may want to consider a lower deck or simply a floor. The bench seats on the Valco are kind of nice because all you have to do is cut a new bench top for them, cut in some door panels and you have automatic storage. I did this on my old boat, and really liked it. That is the reason I ended up building my current boat in that manner. I had to rebuild the entire bench because the Mirocraft seats did not seal with the hull like the Valco. Good luck on the build. I still have to mount the front seat to finish mine, but I just have no time to do that right now.


                          • #14
                            Re: 12' Valco Project w/ pictures

                            Made a little bit of progress on my project today. Stripped out the old bench seats and foam. Also got some sealant on the seams. I filled the boat with water a couple days ago and found 3 small leaks, but once I sealed those spots I figured I might as well seal all the seams while I was at it.

                            Ok question...the following pictures are of the foam i found to be under my benches. i was happy to see that the foam was in a lot better shape than i was expecting (might end up just reusing it since i am on a college student budget haha)...do you guys think it would be a problem to reuse this foam?

                            Bow Seat Foam

                            Middle Seat Foam

                            Stern Seat Foam

                            Plan for tomorrow is to scuff up all the paint that is still sticking to the inside of the boat, clean it out, and hopefully get a coat of primer down.


                            • #15
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                              Re: 12' Valco Project w/ pictures

                              RiverRunner I really like the lines on that little rig I have one very similar with lower sides that I've been working on.

                              Your pitch on the bow is a bit sharper and the lapstrake mold is more pronounced on your Valco which should add some strength and stability.

                              I like your plans and I agree that you may want the seats balanced a bit more to the middle. I've had some issues with my tiller seat being too close to the starboard. A full tank of gas on the port side balances it out easily though

                              Good luck with the project!
                              '79 16' Starcraft SuperSport
                              12' AeroCraft '55 Johnson 5.5hp
                              Starcraft brochures thread