close

Privacy guaranteed - Your email is not shared with anyone.

Home made drift boats?

Discussion in 'FlyTyingForums.com, Fly Tying, Trout Fishing' started by STONE FLY, Jan 28, 2015.

  1. STONE FLY

    STONE FLY

    Messages:
    713
    Likes Received:
    199
    Location:
    Traverse City,MI.
    Ha, it might be me going down the river, with the fly rod sticking out over the side, and me with a small pail frantically bailing water ;) naaa...shes pretty well sealed. I hope to get someone to take some pics of me and the boat in the river at the outing, to finish off the thread.

    So another trip to the Sec of state today (and you cant get a fishing license there either) with all my receipts that I had showing taxes, they took a half hour making photo copies of all of them, and I got a assembled trailer registration and my Pure Michigan trailer plate. Stopped and got some stainless bolts and locknuts to mount it...whoo-hoo shes legal.

    I was noticing how poor my paint job looks in the sun when I got home, but It wont keep me up at night. Last pic of the lone trailer.....I got the fly line deck sanded tonight for what I hope is the last coat of varnish so I can put things back together. I`m already over worrying about runs, sags, brush marks, bugs or anything else, that can be next winters touch ups. I`m gonna get this thing together in the next week or so, maybe work on the oars some yet. Its time to be fishing ;)
    IMG_3145.JPG
     
  2. Boardman Brookies

    Boardman Brookies

    Messages:
    6,781
    Likes Received:
    1,464
    Location:
    Traverse City/Glennie
    So where will she take her maiden voyage?
     

  3. Gamechanger

    Gamechanger Premium Member

    Messages:
    611
    Likes Received:
    987
    Location:
    Southern Maryland
    Well done SF! Looking forward to seeing a photo of you holding a trout of a lifetime in the boat you built yourself.
     
    cstroh likes this.
  4. STONE FLY

    STONE FLY

    Messages:
    713
    Likes Received:
    199
    Location:
    Traverse City,MI.
    I dont have any plan. The outing might be the place, unless I can get into the Ausable or somewhere before that. Thanks Gamechanger, that sounds pretty good!!
     
  5. Boardman Brookies

    Boardman Brookies

    Messages:
    6,781
    Likes Received:
    1,464
    Location:
    Traverse City/Glennie
  6. STONE FLY

    STONE FLY

    Messages:
    713
    Likes Received:
    199
    Location:
    Traverse City,MI.
    Checked out the 30lb anchor. Thats is one huge chunk of lead. Pulls decent and the arm seems pretty sturdy, should be good. Ive also got a chain setup, but I know alot of people frown on that even though they do work good.
    IMG_3188.JPG

    Towed the boat into work, and stopped by the scale on the way. Turned out the trailer weighed 340lbs., and the boat weighed exactly 340 lbs. too. What the chance of that? I really was shooting for 275, but the extra hardwood benches, full size floor boards added some weight.I think its still within reason.
    IMG_3176.JPG
    On the way home, I dropped it in Spider lake just down the road to see if it would float. Yup...she floats nice, didnt see any leaks. Sits in a couple inches of water. Very responsive rowing, though the oar shaft seemed really heavy on the blade ends, so I`ll be shaving those down soon. Would also like to be able to pick the oars out of the water a little more, so I`ll play with the oar lock height, and if needed I`ll remove the quick diss connects for the seats and just use swivels to lower the seats a little. I think it will still work as is.
    IMG_3179.JPG
    I already put a scuff in the trailer frame with the boat coming on crooked, so I might make 2 more of those little side guides and put them farther back on the frame. That would keep that from happening again. Dorf offered to make a trip up and is suppose to meet me in Mio tomorrow morning, to try a float on the Ausable trophy water for a first run. So I`m hoping he makes it up, the weather is on our side and to get some pics of the first river run. Should be cool :)
     
    limige and rwenglish1 like this.
  7. Fabner1

    Fabner1

    Messages:
    2,925
    Likes Received:
    1,248
    Location:
    Gregory
    Stonefly,

    Just Beautiful!

    old
     
  8. STONE FLY

    STONE FLY

    Messages:
    713
    Likes Received:
    199
    Location:
    Traverse City,MI.
    The "shakedown cruise",,,,,
    Phil was waiting for me at the launch on the Ausable in Mio when I got there. The canoe place there was also there lining the shoreline with aluminum and rafts.
    Due to the excitement and trying to get out of there afap didnt get any pics. The current was fast and the wind was really kicking. How windy? My windproof zippo wouldnt light. Made keeping our hats on, rowing and casting a challenge. The rain predicted held off to mostly cloud cover and the temp was very warm, 80`s. Water was warm too, in the 60`s
    IMG_3194.JPG
    Thats Phil trying to load that custom Sage 5 wt. he made. We caught a few small fish, but there were so many canoes and party rafts it s a wonder. Had a chick run right into the back of my boat with a alum canoe, and a couple rafts hit us too, it got kinda a little out of control. Best advise is go super early and later in the evening, or fish a different stretch. We saw a couple real nice fish bolt out of cover and grab something, but werent able to get one. Phil caught this bruiser pretty fast ;)
    IMG_3198.JPG Heres my trophy fish!!
    IMG_3201.JPG
    The float didnt go without mishaps...
    So the wind caught me and I ran us right into a big tree hanging out into the river, we smashed through the branches, and I thought we would be ok until I looked back and saw my fly rod hanging in the branches. In 2 seconds we were 100 yards past and there was no rowing back. So we got to the other side, got out and walked the boat back upstream just past the tree. I tried to walk across but it got too deep and the current was too strong. I`m really lucky it got hung up and didnt end up in the current. It was a Thomas and Thomas 5wt with a Hydros reel. Phil took the oars with me leaning on the deck and tried to shoot me hard into that tree, which he did a fine job of. The first branch i tried to grab broke off, with my right hand I grabbed for another branch and it almost pulled me out of the boat, with my left hand I managed to grab the rod and in a 3 second panic we were out of the tree with the rod. Close call :) There was no time for pictures...
    We found a nice spot to stop and take a break.
    IMG_3203.JPG
    As for boat issues and the purpose of the float:
    The 30 lb. anchor that I thought might be too much, wouldnt even hold us in a few spots, but worked well in most places. I think its about a perfect weight. I pulled real hard on the rope at one point and the bolt ripped out of the jam cleat pulley....We got lucky and without the lock washer had enough threads to bolt it back on using my little folding pliers and it made it the rest of the trip. I`ll be fixing that. Note to self: pack a few small tools and a first aid kit in the boat.

    Rowing was really hard. The oars are too end heavy, I`ll start thinning them this weekend. Might be nice to add a few more inches of rope wrap too just to pull them in farther. My oarlocks need to come up higher, and or the seat needs to go down, so first I`ll try some extended oarlocks that will be 2 inches taller. Being tall, just not enough leg clearance to lift the oars up much out of the water and being end heavy a real workout holding them up. I`ll have the new oarlocks by next weekend if I get them ordered by Tues. I`ll try that first, and if needed I`ll ditch the plastic seat release swivels and go to just metal swivels bolted to the benches. That will give me 1 1/2 in lower on the seats.

    The other issue was with the size of the boat and the frames, I spread the benches as far apart as I could, but with long arms I scraped my knuckles on the back of the frt seat trying to get some power in the stroke. I think thats a easy fix by mounting the frt seat farther forward on the bench. I mounted it way back just for more room in the frt. I can get 3 inches farther forward, should work out better.
    I heard a little noise when Phil sat on the flyline deck, hes no little guy, nothing cracked just the plywood squeaking on the dash cleat, so I might just go ahead and epoxy a cross brace under the deck for good measure.
    So Ive got a little tweaking to do, not too bad, and the reason for the run.

    Otherwise, the boat worked out good. Thanks Phil for making the 2 hour drive north and taking the test float, saving my rod, and taking this great pic of me and the DB !! Next time we`ll focus more on some fishing.
    IMG_3211.JPG
     
    Last edited: May 29, 2016
  9. STONE FLY

    STONE FLY

    Messages:
    713
    Likes Received:
    199
    Location:
    Traverse City,MI.
    Come on Mike, try to hold the boat a little more steady and keep us out of those trees!
    IMG_3196.JPG
    Oh crap, what did I get myself into?
    IMG_3204.JPG
    Little hard to get Phil to concentrate with all that bikini eye candy around the launch ;) I have to admit, that part wasnt all that bad :)
    IMG_3214.JPG
     
  10. STONE FLY

    STONE FLY

    Messages:
    713
    Likes Received:
    199
    Location:
    Traverse City,MI.
    ok ok, he caught me looking too ;)
    IMG_3205.JPG
    So today I added 3" more rope wrap. If I get the oars working better I might re wrap them so its all one pc. I hit them with the planer and sander. Took them down close to 1 5/8" -1 3/4" thick. Not sure if its gonna make the difference I`m looking for, but it sure seems thinner compared to the solid 2" thick shaft. Tomorrow I`ll slap some varnish on them and get back to the punch list. I`ll be ready for the outing.
    IMG_3218.JPG
    IMG_3219.JPG
     
  11. Gamechanger

    Gamechanger Premium Member

    Messages:
    611
    Likes Received:
    987
    Location:
    Southern Maryland
    Well, the boat floated, fish were caught, and nobody did the ol' "split shot sinker", so that makes it a very good outing in my book. Thanks for posting the photos allowing us to go along. Looking good SF!
     
  12. STONE FLY

    STONE FLY

    Messages:
    713
    Likes Received:
    199
    Location:
    Traverse City,MI.
    lol good points!!! All in all, no one got hurt. We might have got scraped up from those branches a little, I drew little blood hitting the back of the frt seat with my hand trying to row, but it was what I needed to see what to tweak. I will say, it took alot of guts for Phil to offer to do it with me, not knowing how it would go. My hats off to the big guy :) He`ll be happy to get back in his bigger boat I`m sure. So I`m working on some things to get it ready. Should be much better to row this next time around, and the pulley will be solid. Got a good pic of him by the boat too.
    IMG_0357.JPG haha, this is a good one...
    IMG_0355.JPG
     
  13. STONE FLY

    STONE FLY

    Messages:
    713
    Likes Received:
    199
    Location:
    Traverse City,MI.
    This week, made a few changes to the boat from the punch list. I added a brace under the frt deck so it will hold up better to sit on. I should have done that from the start. I replaced that pulley bolt that pulled out with a longer one and added a nut inside so that should be rock solid now.

    I removed the plastic swivel/ dis connects and replaced them with 2 standard swivels. Lowered the seats about 1 1/2", which should feel more into the boat vs. on the boat, and should provide more get the oars out of the water height, and moved the frt seat forward on the bench a few inches which should add some knuckle room for rowing. I should get the new oarlocks Monday that have longer shafts with spacers that the height of the oars can be adjusted with.
    IMG_3250.JPG
    Lowering the rear seat created a new issue though, now I cant open my side storage compartments without turning the seat sideways, oophs. I might have to tear that rear bench apart and make some changes.I had it planned out with the higher swivels. It also made the center storage under the seat door not open as much, but still enough to slip stuff in there. The frt bench is all good.
    IMG_3248.JPG

    IMG_3249.JPG
    I picked up a little dry box for a few small tools and a little first aid kit to keep in the boat. I`m kinda prone to needing a bandaid now and then
    IMG_3240.JPG
    Got a little varnish on the oars that I thinned out some. Hopefully they will feel little lighter, but I already think I should have went thinner. Maybe those counter weights would be a good idea.
    IMG_3251.JPG
    So I`m ready for another shot at the outing, and I`m sure I`ll come up with another punch list but its coming together ok. I still want to make and add some rubstrips along the lower sides. In the old days they were put on to protect the boat from the trailer tires rubbing on the sides cause of no fenders. I wont have that issue but I think they have a cool vintage look and might help take a little abuse hitting stuff, which I`m sure is gonna happen alot after that first trip experience. So though its float ready, still some things to work on and some changes to make.
     
  14. twowack

    twowack

    Messages:
    386
    Likes Received:
    2
    Location:
    SW MICH
    The picture of you two smiling say,s it all.
    And Thanks for all you shared with us.
     
  15. STONE FLY

    STONE FLY

    Messages:
    713
    Likes Received:
    199
    Location:
    Traverse City,MI.
    Your welcome and thanks to Steve for having this website so I could post all this and share the pics!!