1987 Boston Whaler 13' Super Sport Restoration

Restoring this Boston Whaler is something that my dad and I worked on while I was in high school. A lot of time and work was put into this and I am not only proud of the results but also grateful of the memories created with my dad.

Above is what the boat looked like when we first bought it after cleaning

The boat was purchased from someone who had not used it for a few years so when we bought it it had a lot of leaves and other debris inside of it since it sat in the previous owners backyard for a while. The boat was in usable condition when purchased but it definitely had seen better days. The previous owner used it as a tender so it did a lot of sitting in the water which aged it a lot. Despite its old age the hull was still in great condition which is what Boston Whaler's are known for, their great hull construction. They say you can saw a Whaler in half and it will still float.

Here is what the interior looked like prior to restoration, a lot of the wood was sunbeaten and varnish was thin in a lot of areas  

The next thing done after a good cleaning was the interior was gutted

Here are the gunnel boards (left) and seat boards and trunk lid (right) after being finished with fresh varnish

A lot of the wood was reusable such as the gunnel boards and a majority of drivers console which was a good things since the interior is solid mahogany which is pretty expensive. Most of the boards that were replaced were ones that laid flat like the seat boards and the trunk lid.  
The old driver console for reference

Mock up of new driver console with an added electronics box on top

New driver console with most of the new electronics fitted into place 

Speakers added onto the underside of the console
The pieces that make up the new driver console after varnishing

Final mock-up of the driver console before installation back into the boat

The next thing tackled in this restoration was making a new driver console. The goal with this update was to not only update the electronics included to make it more modern, but to also keep its old fashioned look. To do this, all original materials were used such as solid mahogany and the same style screws used on the rest of the boat. The new console features an electronics box on top of it to house a vhf radio and a Bluetooth radio along with switches and usb charging ports mounted to the front panel. A new compass and cup holder were also installed.

Installing the refurbished and new interior pieces

The seats and gunnel boards after installation

Installing the new driver console and routing all the wires for the new electronics

Re-routing the throttle cables, steering cables, and engine wiring harness

The interior after installing all the refurbished and new pieces

One of the best parts of this restoration was directly after installing all the new interior pieces. It was rewarding seeing all of the separate pieces coming together to make such a nice looking interior.

Example of what the old bumper trim looked like

Removal process of the old bumper trim

New and original style bumper trim fully installed

One of the only modifications the previous owner had done to the boat was they added their own custom, wood bumper trim. Although this may have looked nice when first installed, just like the rest of the wood, it had seen better days. We could have tried to refurbish this wood trim but made the decision to install and original styled bumper trim which consists of a firm and soft rubber. Not only would this do better at absorbing any impacts, but it will be more durable throughout the following years of use.
Rope lighting installed for night-time use

Blue rope lighting was also installed to light the interior in the dark. This is something that turned out well, however, if I had the chance I would redo it. The mistake of using blue lights was made which I later found out attracts bugs which can be a killer at night. If I had the chance, I would install red lights next time so that way it attracts a lot less bugs.

A picture of the Boston Whaler being towed behind my Golf after fully restoring it

A before (left) and after (right) comparison of the interior

Overall the restoration of this whaler is one that I am truly proud of. Some things that were done that was not shown was the installation of a bimini top, a new bilge pump, removal of the black bottom paint, small patches applied to the hull, and minor engine repairs. I also learned a little bit about how to patch fiberglass and how to wire electronics into wires. It also familiarized me with many different hand tools.