View Full Version : New float/MAJOR project!

02-19-2015, 07:33 AM
I finally went and picked up my new float that I was alluding to in my introduction post. After seeing it on Craigslist for a few months, the stars all aligned and I was able to go get it. The price dropped from $1000 to $500 and I had Presidents' day off in order to make an insane road trip to go get it.
After getting off work at 9 pm Sunday night my buddy and I got in the truck and headed for Vegas to go see this boat and hopefully bring it home first thing the next day. After an all night drive we made it and it was everything I was expecting.
It's an Eliminator Bubble Deck and it is stripped to the bare hull and trailer. The hull looks to be in good shape and should be a solid platform to start with. The boat has been sitting next to this guys shop for decades and his son was tired of it taking up space so they sold it. Since it was sitting for so long we had to get tires for it, which immediately doubled the price of my initial investment, $500 for the boat $500 for the tires, which I doubt will be the last time this project doubles its expense. Once we got the new tires and greased the hell out of the hubs and got her strapped down we were back on the road.
Since I figured the trailer lighting would be shot I did the smart thing and brought my set of magnetic trailer lights to stick on for the ride home. Unfortunately the boat moved just enough that it knocked my lights off the trailer and some kind motorist let us know that our lights were dragging on the pavement behind the boat. Luckily one light survived and the other one just destroyed the lens, bulb and magnet. So we hit up the first Walmart we could find, in Kingman, AZ and got an amber replacement bulb and some duct tape to make a professional fix of our lights.
While we were fixing the lights a really nice guy came up and offered to buy my boat, and when I turned him down gave me kudos on a solid starting point for a nice build up (relieving some apprehension I had over such a monumental undertaking). Once the lights were fixed we were off and made it back without further incident (luckily). We got back early Tuesday morning with just enough time for a quick nap before heading back to work (thank God for 4 day weeks).
All in all we drove 1700 miles in 31.5 hours and this project is now waiting for lots of TLC and new parts. The gel coat is in decent shape and should look nice after some polishing and possibly some wet sanding, and then the real work (and expense) comes with buying all new parts. I'm sure I will be asking tons of questions and looking for lots of advice as the project goes along, starting most specifically with engine and pump questions. The plan is Berkeley pump and BBF power, but specifics of each will learned in the near future.
Thanks in advance for all your advice and knowledge and I will continue to post photos as I get them and as progress happens.

02-19-2015, 09:58 AM
Looks like a great place to start for sure! I think your investment will double at least 3 more times, probably 4, LOL! Our boats are in similar shape except mine had a frozen 455, the pump needs a rebuild and the paint is meh. Welcome to the addiction!

T8er S.
02-19-2015, 02:44 PM
Great score, and now you have a story to go with it.

02-20-2015, 09:14 AM
That's not bad at all!!! It's pretty clean for a major project. A lot of parts to go find, but they're plentiful!!!

02-23-2015, 06:17 PM
Nice looking Project. Congrats

03-03-2015, 03:22 PM
looks like it should keep you busy for a while. looking forward to pics, as it comes along,

03-04-2015, 07:24 AM
Hopefully this next week I will get enough free time to actually start working and get some pictures. This whole "working" thing really doesn't leave enough time for my projects...

03-07-2015, 11:23 AM
New photos, and hopefully some minor progress this weekend.
One of my first orders of business to to be able to secure the boat to the trailer without the use of ratchet straps (or at least less ratchet straps). My old boat had a bar that ran from a round tubular piece on the trailer under the bow to the hook on the bow of the trailer. This trailer has the adjustable piece on the trailer but not the piece to hook the boat up, so this black rope was tightened securely before driving it back. We also used multiple ratchet straps to keep it from bouncing and as a backup to the ancient rope. I'm hoping a 1" or so piece of square tubing with some brackets on each end should do the trick.
The previous owner decided he was going to set the pump back to he patched a piece of fiberglass in where the intake for the pump goes. It looks like he didn't do a great job. Luckily he didn't cut the hull for the set back so it shouldn't be a huge undertaking. I would rather start with the factory location before doing anything drastic so I will carefully cut out his crappy work when it comes time to install the new pump.
There are some areas with pretty decent stress cracks but it doesn't appear that the fiberglass has any issues from what I can see.
There are some areas (only one or two) that are going to need some fiberglass work done. Hopefully once repaired it can be made to match, otherwise it might be a great spot for some custom graphics :smile:
On one of the stringers it looks like the glass is separating/delaminating. It seems like the stringer is ok, so I guess it need to grind? the glass off and inspect the stringer, then cover the spot with new glass and resin. I'll probably ask lots of questions before I do that so I will hopefully only have to do it once.
The Eliminator logo on the side of my boat is slightly different than the one on my previous Eliminator. I wondered if there is anyone out there that knows the details of when logos changed to help prove the age of the boat? The HIN on the boat appears to put it at a 1980 model, but it has a CFZ, where my previous 1984 had block style letters and an ELB HIN number.
Step one for progress on this project is cleaning not only the paint but the interior. It appears that proof of it sitting for such a long time is the amount of trash and dirt (and probably animals) that have accumulated under the bow.
Hopefully I will get it all cleaned (inside and out) and I will post more photos as it comes along.

03-07-2015, 12:22 PM
A HIN with CFZ is California's home made code. It's definitely a post '73 boat, so Eliminator would have had a HIN on it. Maybe someone used Eliminator's mold or splashed it. Is the CFZ on the registration or actually on the transom? Eliminator used a few different decals on the side throughout the years. I've seen different decals on the same model year. Could be that people replaced them with new/old decals. Hard to tell without asking them

03-07-2015, 01:21 PM
I've tried looking up the HIN but there are too many characters. I've haven't gotten to go try and get the paperwork straightened out yet. Luckily I don't plan on it being on the water for a while so I have time to get this straightened out. The boat didn't come with paperwork (which was the same with my last boat) so that's just one more "project" to get done before I get it together.


03-07-2015, 04:37 PM
Well, looks like it's a boat that Eliminator missed registering... Either way, you have a nice float!!!!

03-07-2015, 06:53 PM
looks like a very solid foundation. Those corner stress cracks in the gel coat, seem to be pretty common on any hull, that has been enjoyed on the water for many years.