THE SUPERNOVA 24 RACE BOAT
May 20, 2012
This is how it started,
25th Annual Antique & Classic Boat Festival
June 15-17, 2012
Chesapeake Bay Maritime Museum • St. Michaels, Maryland
Friday 11-5 • Saturday 10-5 • Sunday 10-2
For us classic boat lovers in this area it's a must every year to make the trek to St Michaels to check out some of the nicest boats that have ever graced the water. For the most part in the past the show consisted of a majority of wooden boats. Even though we are fiberglass speed freaks you can definitely appreciate the love and care that goes into some of these works of art. Even if it's not our style we know what it takes to get to where some of these boats are and to get a close up look at some of them is inspiring to say the least.
Slowly over the years they have started to open up to a fiberglass as they have grown older. Every years the field would grow but for the most part it would always seem like a friend that I always go with and myself would say that we should have entered one of our boats. There was a good chance that we would have won.
Last year due to being on vacation at the time I missed the show all together. I was bummed about to. This year I plan on going. Not only going but I'm bringing something along for the ride. The SuperNova24 Race Boat.
I have signed up the 24, paid the entry fee and have been approved as an official entry in the show and will be judged accordingly.
It's time to get this thing out of the shadows and into the public where it can be enjoyed by more then just a select few. That was the plan from the start but like all good plans things didn't work out so good. By the time the boat was finished it was to late in the year (2011) to do anything with it and it was never leaving the yard incomplete. The only thing left was to cover it and wait for spring. Then the 1970 Monza Project and the 1963 Biese Project happened over the winter and most of the spring of 2012 has been eaten up by them also. Not to mention the 19 had to be un-winterized and such and I so want to use it with it's insane sounding motor and brand new everything.
Now though, we have things we need to do and a deadline to so there things have to happen no matter what even if another project has to sit with a cover on it for a while. We're goin to the shoo.
But in all seriousness, our one and only goal about all this is to let people see it, touch it, ask questions, whatever. Nothing else is needed. Remember we are just a backyard outfit and some of these guys trailers cost more then our whole set up.
So like the beginning of any good project it always starts off with a little shopping.
But before we get into this I have to let you all in on our secret.
This is how we get these boats done where others take forever if they ever get done at all. At the time we had a perfectly good working steering wheel (even though it was from the wrong era) and we had a lot of other parts to buy. Instead of not having a steering wheel or the money for the other parts we used the Teleflex one. Now that we have the time and money to do it we can pick up the little things to replace these things if we chose to and the whole time the boat can stay 100% together even if it is with a wrong part. We would rather have a working boat then a 100% original yard ornament. Always keep that in mind when doing projects like this.
Being we have one of the original steering wheels that was an easy pick. Not to mention cheap. I don't think you can buy a cheaper aftermarket steering wheel if you tried. That is one thing I do love about this boat is that everything is as simple and as crude as it gets. They wanted motor mounts they just grabbed a sheet of 1/4 steel and a couple "L" angles and cut and drilled out what they wanted and stuck it in. Rough edges and all. No plasma cut, balanced, X-rayed, titanium, super expensive piece made by monks by hand. Looks like they were partial to the blowtorch for the most part. So the steering wheel shouldn't have surprised me but it did. It's the only part of the dash that I'm sure existed so before the show it had to go back. But as for the rest ... who knows. Every picture is different, none show the dash and the whole thing was made of plywood and not meant to last back then.
Along the way changes have been made. It's just the evolution of the boat. It was the first. Some things worked, some didn't. Like the bow rail that's there one minute and gone the next. I figure it broke apart in the first race and just the deck studs stayed for the next few years that are also gone now. But again the steering wheel was an easy fix.
Over the winter we also found the proper, original oil vent pan for the Casale C1000 V-Drive. We needed one for the HallCraft V-Drive for the Biese Project and there was a special on buying two so now I have it. Good thing to. We found out while working on the HallCraft that this type of oil pan is needed to allow moisture to escape the drive when it gets hot. The plug that's in it now is wrong and it has to be replaced.
The one major project we plan on doing before the show is installing the gas tank fills and hooking them up to the fuel tanks, finally. Something I've been putting off for way to long. Not sure why. Maybe I'm thinking the gas tanks wont be permanent or something. Like it would matter where the fills are if something was changed in the future. We have bought a 25' roll of the 1-1/2" fuel hose, a couple deck fills and the fittings for the tanks. Now I have to figure out how to install new fills into the gas tanks themselves because none of the original stuff worked before.
Just need a couple more things before I get started.
New Found Video.
This video was just discovered in May, 2012.
I love this shot of another race boat's mechanic checking out the 24 as she rolls by.
We have to say we are not looking a trophy or a blue ribbon. Just owning this piece of history is enough for us but we do like to share and maybe get it a little of the respect it deserves along the way.
No it's not the most famous race boat in the world and no it's not the most famous boat line ever made but for some reason they sure did build a lot of them over the years and sold every last one. It's time for it's day in the sun.
May 31, 2012
So I thought this was going to be easy...
Sign it up and drive on down. Pull the cover off and their you are...
Not even close.
A couple things have caught up with me and now we are on a mad dash to get it ready.
One was the trailer for a couple reasons. The first thing is, it wasn't legal. No reason to register it being the water is 500' down the street but now it plans on pulling the boat about 65 miles each way so there is no way I'm slapping another trailers tag on it. Plus this trailer is rated for 10,000 pounds so it would never pass for a ShoreLine. lol. So after what felt like a strip search airport screening of a trailer inspection off I went to DMV for the next 4 hours to get tags. I think Maryland has gotten a little sneaky on their tag numbers for different weight rated trailers. These numbers on my new tag are real different then the other trailer tags I have.
After 43 years the trailer officially belongs to someone else besides Cortes Wesley Randell or the "Bernie Madoff" of the 1970's. I really hated giving up the 1969 title though. They wouldn't let me keep it even though I tried.
This normally doesn't look like this.
With that done and on my way out of DMV (did I say those people cant drive?) I had to squeeze up against a curb due to a car not giving the 20 foot van with the 30 foot trailer any room and it hit me (not the car). I never boxed the second beam. I replaced the bottom "C" beam with a box beam the last time around or the time before, cant remember but the second (middle) beam stayed due to it would have caused more destruction then it was worth to remove it. Plus it was solid. Then we saw a restore of an old car with these types of frame beams and the first thing they wanted to do was box the beam for rigidity. Now that would make since for a trailer I would think. Also we are adding a couple pieces just as a precaution for one of the main carrier beams. All and all about another 100lbs of steel. Before it's all said and done the trailer is going to weigh more then the boat but it will be solid. I've got everything cut out and ready to go. My neighbor is coming over tomorrow to weld everything up. Another new life for a trailer that should have been crushed 30 years ago. I think next I want to look into new axles but these are a bit different then most and we don't have the money or time to do it now anyway.
So ya, ya, ya the boat has to be fixed, the trailer has to be fixed, the boat isn't even been un-winterized yet but....I've got other things to do. Like this,
These are story boards. You cant just stick a boat out there with no history or anything unless you plan on standing there yelling to everyone that walks by like a carnival barker different things as you think of them. Then even though there is two websites full of the history and such I have to condense it down to a couple pages with a 18pt font. If I thought my laptop would last more then a couple hours I would take it hooked up to the website (and a heavy chain) but that cant happen. I did have business cards made up to get people to the website but we'll see how that works out.
They look a lot better but my scanner is messed up.
Again what does this have to do with boats???
Went to the arts and crafts store because no one will look at your story boards if it's laying on the ground. Also one of these pictures belongs on our wall in Shanty Town (our basement). Then I saw the prices they wanted for an art easel. Wow and I needed a couple of the bigger ones. For a couple sticks and a hinge? Off to Home Depot for some 1X2's and 1X3's strapping wood and a couple hinges. Couple hours later I had these and they are stronger and custom made to each picture frame so they lock the picture in place. I can also add weight to them if needed. A lot better then what I could buy and for about 1/4 of what 1 would have cost that I still would have had to put together.
We are behind because we never thought of this stuff but we are rolling on it. One way or another we'll be there.
More to come.
June 2, 2012
Alright, going way overboard on this trailer thing.
One thing has lead to another and here we are days later still on the trailer. Leaving it sit on the grass (tires sat on concrete patio pads) over the winter was not the smartest thing to do before a boat show. It's a wonder why the trailer is not a pile of rust dust by now. You look at it wrong and it rusts. But just a slight surface rust. Ferd sandblasted the thing naked then let it sit in the boatyard for maybe decades and the only thing that rotted was two beams they put in later to raise the trailer up for the single prop that hung under the keel instead to the sides like the production Novas are. And only 2 out of the 4 actually rotted and had to be replaced. The other 2 were fine. What ever this kind of steel is it's insane. The only draw back is if you have to drill a hole for some reason. It will kill a drill-bit in a minute.
The welding got called off yesterday. No one wants to hold a charged lightening rod while working on a bigger lightening rod while severe thunder storms are rolling through every 20 minutes. But it didn't rain most of the day so we spent it sanding, wire brushing and painting. Then more sanding, wire brushing and painting. For the most part we got it all except for the areas that need to be welded. Another dirty mess but we were going to do it anyway just not this early in the season.
There's Gary for the third time now, burning on the Thunderbird.
A sunny Saturday and Gary backed up the truck once again. This will be the third time that he has spent hours burning on it. We figure a honest number is somewhere around 11 or 12 solid hours burning so far and hopefully this is the last of it. I remember the first time around putting the trailer back together. He starter in the afternoon and had to finish the next day and the boat wasn't even on the trailer at the time. Today there was not as much welding but it was a little tougher. It's like a maze down there now. You move the right way and you're set. You move wrong and when you wake up and wipe the blood off you wont do it again. Now put on a welders mask and try it.
All and all it went well and there is another 100lbs of metal installed, ground down and painted. We even had Gary put in one peace on one side just because it was needed on the other side. Got to keep it balanced. lol.
And, just because...
We also welded all the eyes closed so now they are solid hoops just to make them that much stronger. I'm sure pulling them out before would have required something very insane to happen. Now something very, very insane has to happen. Lets just hope this is wicked overkill that's never needed.
I also found out on the last trip out that the surge brake damper (shock) was blowing out fluid. 43 years old and it gives up now? Man, it's hard to get good parts. lol. A new one is on order so we may have to come back to the trailer for a few minutes later.
Tomorrow we plan on pulling the tires and painting the hubs and rims again and also make sure everything is alright with the hubs and bearings. It's all a little shaky (in our heads) right now. Everything is new but again everything is very old and none of it's proven, that's for sure.
It's been on a 30 mile round trip and I checked the hubs for heat and they were only about 10 degrees above air temp (it was sunny out), gone through a tuff Maryland state inspection and we have inspected every square inch of it and effected major structural upgrades and improvements. We also changed and upgraded the hitch on the truck to raise the tongue by two inches so the trailer rides more level. Even though the truck came with a tow package and has a new transmission, we upgraded the brakes just because of this boat to slotted disc front brakes so no over heating like Chevys like to do and just days ago we totally rebuilt the rear breaks and added ceramic pads all the way around. We don't know what else to do at this point besides hook it up and pull it.
We do know this trailer likes 55mph and lower. 60mph is pushing it and after 62mph it gets squirley. I know about tongue weight and this one has 460lbs on it now. The thing is, the trailer has always been set up this way and there is no way to change it ... well, not now before the show. But in my best Sammy Hagar voice, I.... have to drive..... 55.....
June 3, 2012
All the way around.
Starting the last wheel (on the left side).
Another all day event. Pulled all four tires, checked the hubs, repainted everything and put it all back together. Glad I did to. Nothing was wrong but I'll sleep better at night. Not only that but I found a tire that seemed to have lost the battle with the curb at the DMV a few days back. It got scuffed up enough that we are buying a new one. Never saw such damage just brushing a curb but we are not taking the risk of running it so it will make a good spare and we needed one anyway. Now just to find a 6 lug rim to put it on.
When you find a bolt on the trailer that looks like its seen better days you would normally don't give it a second look. After everything was bolted together it was all welded together and then we have welded a lot more on it too. But there is one bolt that is critical to the whole trailer and for some reason the nut to the pivot for the tongue (it's almost like a tilt trailer) was almost half gone. So we replaced the nut and bolt with a stainless steel one we had in stock.
Tomorrow we are going to start the gas fills. One of the, if not the biggest project we have planned before the show. Just think though, the trailer was a lot lower on the list of the amount of things we wanted to do with it. Lets just hope it goes a little quicker this time.
June 5, 2012
It took almost 3 years to do but it's done now.
I cant even tell you how I installed the fills into half full gas tanks. If I did you may find out how crazy I get over this stuff.
Lets just say that I got a 1-1/4 thru hull mushroom head to go through a hole that was only as big as the neck. I've had this planned out since I figured how to remove the original fill necks. Now the old fills will become "tank clean outs" and I will never have to hear again how it was wrong even though I knew it was from the start. It would have been a lot simpler if we would have done it before everything was installed in the boat. Overall took about 8 or 9 hours to get done where it would have taken minutes before but it's done, finally.
We had to move the fills up higher on to the deck due to the tanks themselves being four inches higher then the old ones. Up there the fuel line has a nice slope and when it's on the water the slope should be even steeper.
Along with the gas fills install we took a few minutes which turned into an hour making things fit and installed the new/old steering wheel. You would think right out of the box things would fit together proper but noooooooooo.
Here is one for ya. A little hard to see what's in the picture but we had three custom labels made for the Bilge Scupper, Ballast Fill and Ballast Dump handles we made. It kind of went right by us for about a year that the "Bilge Scupper" said "Bilge Scupler". Once something is done and we are happy we move on and don't look back sometimes. lol
And on into the night we go.
This is turning out to be a everything that we wanted to do this summer is happening in a few days thing.
We would hate to leave something in the garage that would be an improvement to the boat and not have it installed before the show. So everything that was bought and though of over the winter is on the list to get done. Lucky enough after the gas tank fills install things have been moving along pretty good.
Dressed up the fill hose to the ballast tank. Had to cover it. Wish we could have just replaced it but it's been fiberglass into place and the only way to get it out is with a saw-zaw so a sleeve to cover it. Replaced all the raw water lines on both motors. Had an issue with one of the lines last winter during winterizing so it all got replaced. Another thing we wish was done before everything was installed.
To finish it off the oil cup was install on the V-drive.
Tomorrow should be setting the floats on a carburetor and then getting the motors woke up from their winter nap.
June 7, 2012
Time is running out but we are on a roll.
Yesterday after spending half the day running errands for this show thing we plugged up the motors, reset the carb floats on the rear motor, hooked everything up and hit the keys. Long story short, it was just like where we left off last fall. Knock on wood, all is good. For that matter everything is better then good. Fingers are crossed.
Today we spent most of the day replacing screws.
I know I cant believe it either.
The screws on the left (in the picture) we bought originally thinking of different hardware but then come to find out some of the original hardware could have been hinges from office doors so we decided to go with something a little better then that but not to much better. lol. Just a simple chrome plated stamp steel. But now the screws didn't fit proper. They didn't look to bad so we went with it thinking we'll need to change that in the future. Well, the future is here. At least a hundred screws needed to come out and be replaced. In all kinds of sucky places. We did get to re-use most of the screws we took out but that meant taking out more screws to replace them with the ones we took out earlier. Just a sickening amount of screwing all day long. But at least they look better.
Another thing we tackled was the side hand rails. Never liked how they fit together but figured that's just the way they looked. Well, we've got a few new drill bits since the last time we fooled with it and one of them is perfect for chamfering the edges of the holes so the screws that hold it fit so flush you almost cant feel them.
As the day was called short by rain as we just started the second handrail there was nothing more to do except get the new rim for the trailer painted that we picked up from eBay the other day. The new tire showed today also so we'll take them and the bad tire and rim on the trailer up to the tire shop tomorrow for an exchange. Didn't like having to buy a new tire but at least we'll get a mounted spare tire out of it.
June 9, 2012
No matter what we are winners already.
Everything that we had on the list and wanted to do is getting done in a mad rush. Lots of aspirin to sleep at night and lots of scratches and digs to heal but there will be time for that later. We have no clue how they ever expected to work on this boat at sea if needed. I weigh half of what Brownie and "Big Dirty" did back in the day and in the driveway a fan belt replacement on the rear motor would take an hour of crawling in out of places no man should go. A hot motor, at sea, boat tossing all over, we'll be waiting on the pit crew for a tow.
Just as we started to see the light at the end of the tunnel....
Look up at the ceiling of "Shanty Town" late the other night and notice a brown spot.
Had to fool with it until we had to put a trash can under it to catch the drips. Find out it's a junction in a pipe. Next morning head to Home Depot for what was needed (and other things for the Nova). Get back and work on boat until dark then turn the water off and fix the pipe. Turn the water back on and make sure it's good and as we are building a scrapbook for the show of different things we have collected over the years, I start patching up the drywall. Gets late again and have to let the liquid nails set up on the drywall anyway so off to bed. Next morning the wife wakes me up saying that water is all over the 1st floor bath floor. Find out that the float in the toilet was stuck in the up position. Shouldn't have been a big deal except the morons who built the house had the over flow drain higher then the handle in the tank. Got it fixed and cleaned up but then we realized that we needed to look downstairs. My little patch was fine. It was just the bigger patch someone else put in and the board seam next to the fan blades. Had to poke holes in the drywall for drains to get the water out. It'll all have to wait and let the dehumidifier do it's job for a few days before closing it back up anyway so it will not be in the way of the boat show but bad timing is understatement.
So back to this boat thing.
Got the new tire mounted and back on the trailer. The eBay rim was perfect for the old tire and when it was off the rim the damage didn't look nearly as bad so it will make a good spare. Now to figure out what to do with it. Not really a place for it on the trailer and I'm not hauling it around in the truck all the time. Going to have to find a place for it in the garage, somewhere??? Better to have then not though so we'll have to find a place for it.
The interior of the boat is about done. Everything was whipped down then all the paint in the bilge was fixed including all the rusty water stains from when we winterized and the bow was to far down for it all to come out (its almost impossible to get it up high enough for it all to drain). Lesson learned not to do that again.
The roll up deck was re-stained top and bottom. Never thought about it before that anyone would see the bottom of the deck but to show off the V-drive set up it will be rolled back and showing its bottom.
Along with that anything that was needed to be touched up was with the color needed. Pipes, mounts, motors, transmissions, driveshafts, etc, etc. Tops of the old gas tanks (now storage boxes) had to be repainted. Just to many trips in and out with dirty feet over the last 2 years of building.
A friend of mine had to point out that the judges would look at every screw and it has stuck in my head from day one. One of the reasons I had to change out all the other screws. They may not be something that would have came with the boat but at least they were uniform not to mention they cost a fortune but one screw type has been an issue from the start. The slotted oval head, Stainless steel 18-8, #10 x 1-1/2 wood screw" or the old screw with the beveled head they used back in the day on everything. Finally found them from a company out of Mass. They wouldn't have worked with what I did before but the rub rail was short a few. Like 28 of them. We kept all the newer screws we installed in order during the original build with plans to replace if we ever found them and now we have just in time, maybe. They should be here Tuesday, should.
Then there is this little bugger.
This is our old Atwood serge brake. With it's Ditco master cylinder and (after three tries) its Toledo shock damper. We don't think Atwood made anything but the name plates. More time on the computer then we care to be over something like this but it's all fixed now.
June 12, 2012
We're not sure if we would ever do this whole boat show thing again. What a lot of work. Maybe next time it would be easier but we'll have to test those waters next year.
We keep our boats nice. In an example most who see comment on how clean the bilge or motor box is. We usually don't give it a second thought being most cases the boat is pretty much restored new so it's easy to keep up with. The race boat has been another issue. Not that we let it go by a long shot but it's been a very, very long build. The Biese Project from start to finish was 6 months and more then half of that was Dec, Jan and February and March or the sucky time of year to do anything outside. But it's a much smaller boat even though we had to go much deeper (down to replacing all the wood and stringers in the boat). The 24 has been three years. So along that some things have aged slightly or picked up a little ware from other work being done. Now we have to get everything back to a 100% all at the same time.
So as of yesterday we have scrubbed so much that our fingers are raw. Things you normally wouldn't give a second look now have hours into making better then it was. Not even sure why we are doing it any longer. The boat is probably in better shape now then it was when it was fresh out of the mold. We know the trailer is re-built better then it was with all the steel we just added not to mention the rebuilt breaks system and new tire (to replace one with 25 miles on it) and that was only in the last couple weeks.
With the inside completely exposed there is no hiding anything that's for sure. So every wire in the boat has been pulled tight and loomed and every loom has been hung with more then enough hangers. We think we have done all we can do as for repairs and cleaning.
The waxing has begun but time is running short. We wish we had time to color sand (ya, we haven't even done that yet), compound and then wax but we are going to have to skip it this time around. Time is to short.
Today was a complete rain out. From morning to almost dark it rained steady with very little let up. So we got a couple things out of the way early that we planned on doing tomorrow just to try to stay caught up.
We went to the metal shop for a piece of aluminum 1X3 box tube to run down the center the front motor box doors. Never even thought about it until today. It's the center support that runs down between the two big doors on the front deck. Kept being put off due to when it's installed it makes it harder if not impossible to get in and out of the bow. We are installing it with wing nuts so in case it needs to go in a hurry it can be easily removed but when walking on the doors to the bow or for water that comes over the deck it has to be there.
We also went up to the scaffolding rental place. Even though they are focused on much, much larger customers they fixed us right up for the show with a baker scaffold and the first four steps off of some sort of high tower rigging equipment. Works perfect for what we need.
Did what we could in the garage and then had to call it a day.
Tomorrow is another day. It also just happens to be the last day to get anything done. Thursday it has to get on the road no matter what.
Last, not any pressure or anything but we were just informed that the Nova 24 was announced as one of the three boats to see on the local news.
Oh hell, what have we got ourselves into?
WBOC-TV shout out about the 24 being at the show.
June 15, 2012
Sorry about that. Things got real busy at the end of the whole thing.
On the 13th we waxed our brains out but something was up with the wax and it didn't turn out as good as we hoped. So we used Windex of all things to get some of it off in places it looked bad but still leave enough wax on the boat for it to look O.K. That took forever. Not to mention that the boat is huge (it's not really but to compared to a little flat bottom V-drive we've been working on lately it's like comparing a skyscraper to a compact car). If the Karate Kid was real with the wax on wax off thing we should be blackbelts by now. As it was getting dark I'm using the buffer on the front hatch doors, get too close to one of the locks and shoot the locking pin and lanyard wire (that was attached) into the yard... somewhere. We looked for hours with million candle power flash lights as it got dark then had to give up. The absolute last thing we had to and I brake something that was perfect.
On the 14th it's time for a road trip. Nothing more to do or could do if we wanted to. Tie it down, check it over five times, hook it up to the truck and check it over again. One last time I check where I think the pin blasted off to from the marks in the deck. Find nothing but a piece of plastic that blew in the yard and it's time to go. Walking the plastic to the recycling bins behind the shed, half way there (at least 40 feet from the spot the pin started from) there it was laying on the ground as plane as day. Picked it up, brushed it off and took it with me.
And off we go......
The trip was uneventful or just the way we like it. Again we found at 55mph it was like driving a Cadillac. 62mph and you were taking your life in your hands. Also we had a dumptruck ride our ass for a while and that sucked. Clean air and you almost didn't know it was there. Dirty air was not good.
Get to the show grounds and they were great. Gave me an awesome spot to set up at next to the featured boats of the show.
Got the boat parked right, set up the platform and stairs I rented (wish the stairs were a little bigger) and got them ratchet strapped together. We were shocked that we had everything that we needed except for a tiny piece of plywood for the whole set up that we wanted to do. Dumped everything else that had to stay there in the boat. Pulled the straps to the cover tight and there it was, at the St Michael's Boat Show. Never thought it would happen.
Day one of the show or June 15th.
Got a call the night before from the folks that put on the show. They had a few things that needed to be picked up at a shop in the city. I thought no big deal, sure I'll do it. Forgot that all the "Tall Ships" were at the Inner Harbor and the Blue Angels were going to do shows the next couple days in celebration of the bicentennial of the War Of 1812. The place was mobbed. Didn't get to the boat show until an hour late and then took another 30 minutes to set up. All and all though, for a Friday turnout was good and the 24 seems to be getting some attention.
Tomorrow is the big day. It's a Saturday, calling for great weather and most of all it's judgment day.
June 18, 2012
I know it's been a couple days with no updates but lets just say that its been a insane couple days.
We left off with Friday or the first day of the show.
The platform was built, all the poster boards were out, all the doors were left open with the deck pulled back for all to see. Like said before, there was a steady stream of people checking out the boat on Friday as I tried to explain the boat the best way I though people would understand. Some seemed a bit puzzeled but everyone was totaly interested. About mid-day it was time for a drink and a bathroom brake so off I go. Then I wanted to check out a couple boats and see what was going on. Not knowing, I still had not picked up my "entry package" with my name tag and passes in it and no one knew who I was never entering the show before. I looked like anyone other spectator. As I'm crusing around I start hearing things about the 24. Good things and again no one knows who I am and its coming from folks that have some of the nicest boats at the show. I didnt let it go on for to long and introduced myself as the owner.
Before to long I was handed a phone and there I was talking to Brownie standing next to the boat. A friend of his brought a Baby Donzi to the show. He comes over and says that he just got off the phone with Brownie and told him about the boat and then says hold on a second, I turn to talk to someone else for a second, turn back and he hands me a phone and says Brownie wants to talk to you.
How cool is that!
Not a bad start.
Saturday June 16th comes. Judgment day.
This is the day we are worried about. We didn't come for an award. We are there for one reason, acceptance of what we do and how we do it. True backyard (or in our case, front yard) restorations that are able to compete in a major classic boat show and not embarrass the legacy of the boat or ourselves in the process. Every classic we have restored including the race boat has followed the same guide lines that we have always used even though we have herd more then once that we should have left the boat in the weeds instead of doing it our way. Do it as right as possible, as close as possible and there is no "by the book" to be followed. Add in some late night research, hours and hours of hunting parts, etc, etc and we started with a hull, a rusty trailer, boxes of parts and a single picture and with a little help from our friends that most we have never met in person, look what we did in our front yard. Now if it is just accepted we will be the biggest winner of them all.
So I get there early and start to get the boat all unwrapped and the boards up and just like that the judges appear and I already have two guys asking question. So I set up the rest as quick as I could chatting away like I drank to much coffee. When I start to open the doors to the boat the judges were already on the platform and the questions and answers began. Man is it hard to cram in 40 years of history and the boat its self in a few minutes without making things even more confusing.
Then it was all over as quick as it began and I left the boat open as I planned on to for the day and headed out to the parking lot for something out of the truck while they did there thing. Once it was over we never looked back. Our fellow entries had nothing but good things to say about the boat. The judges seem O.K. with it and there were a lot of folks checking it out. So the time has come to have some fun. As much as I wanted to stay all day There was something that we wanted to do even more then the boat show (it was an insane weekend). The Blue Angels were in town for the Bicentennial of the War Of 1812 and we were going with another SuperNova or the reason all this was started, the 19 but that meant going back home.
By the time I got back with the Ocean City traffic the boat show was over for the day but I was told by a couple folks that there was a line to get up on the platform to look inside at some point.
Me and our head of security Abby. Don't let her size fool you. She's a stout little bitch just like the 24.
Sunday June 17th.
This is the day we have been waiting for. No judging, no where to go. Just hang out and enjoy the show.
We are there on time. The boat was opened and ready to go.
The rest of Resurrection Marine (the wife and kids) comes down after an hour or so and it's time to grab the camera and be a tourist again. After couple hours checking out every boat and booth at the show the wife and kids want to check out the town of St Michaels and then they have to go due to family reasons. I pass due to the awards presentations and Father's Day luncheon the ACBS was putting on. Might as well go for the free lunch, find out who the winners are going to be and maybe get a little more gossip about the 24 before the end. We also have our favorites of the show and it will be nice to see if we are even close to what the judges are thinking. So I'm sitting there listening and chowing down on a couple pulled pork sandwiches writing boat names of the winners down so we can find them after to see what it takes to win something like this. Then the wife and kids show back up wanting to see what was going on in the big tent before they left.
They are getting toward the end of the awards and they have had already given out all the local awards (the only ones we thought we had a remote shot at). Now we were just waiting to see what ACBS race boat won and what boat would take the "best of show" and of course, eat more.....what?........... It was a busy 4 days and I was hungry.
As the presenter is talking at the front (we are all the way in the back) and just as I am saying to the wife that none of this matters anyway. We came here to do what we did and that was all we wanted and on top of that all the cool people we met and even got a chance to talk to Brownie what else is needed. Just as finish talking we "this next boat..." and they start going on about things very familuare to our little group. Then they start talking about things that can only be one boat, the 24.
Before we know it they are calling our name as the winner of the Antique & Classic Boat Society 2012, Best Race Boat!
To end up with this little piece of pretty wood with a metal plate on it is nothing about the trophy for us (but we do like it and it is pretty though). Most of all receiving one says that we are doing it right with our restores. They may not be done with the most expensive parts crafted by monks on top of a mountain somewhere and with power plants tha are worth more then some homes but we can get the job done and do it to where the average person can still afford them.
And this is where we keep them all at,
While we we're walking around before the awards we knew we had to have something to take home with us (again we never thought we would win) so we found this old lamp at one of the booths on sale for the last day. 15 bucks and it was all there and worked to a point. I like old kerosene lamps and knowing someone would ask how we did I thought I could use it as a joke and say that this was the trophy they gave us at the show. Planned on getting it a name plate and everything. lol.
But now that we won an award we had to ResurrectionMarine.com our old lamp. It has all the right things needed for a restore. It's unique from the many others I've seen, cool looking and built to last. All the parts were there that are unavailable today like the super heavy, wavy glass chimney and should be worth as least as much as we have in it when done.
Take it apart and get everything working right. Remove all the patina or what we call rust and then gave it a couple coats of flat black paint (its original color). Then put it all back together and fill and fire it up. The first test drive went flawless.
I think we are up to 17 bucks and during the last hurricane I would have gave $50 for one. lol.
But now reality has set in.
We have to fix the ceiling of Shanty Town and there is a couple other boats next to that champion race boat that are just dyeing for some attention behind their steering wheels.
In The News
We made the local paper.
Tuesday, 17 July 2012 13:00
Local Boaters Turn Hobbies
Into Prize-Winning Achievements
Greg Isaac, owner of the GoldFather in Pasadena, poses outside his store with his inboard hydroplane race boat, the BLITZKRIEG. Isaac is a former North American Champion and will compete for the world championship on July 21 in Michigan. Photo by Peter Crispino
By Peter Crispino
While Pasadena plays host to countless boating enthusiasts, few of them hit the water in the unique type of watercraft owned by two local residents. Hydroplane racer Greg Isaac has turned a lifelong passion for speed boats into multiple championships on the national circuit, while Mark Robinson has transformed neglected eyesores into award-winning classic boats.
Over the last 10 years, Robinson estimates he has refurbished 15 boats, restoring them from decades of disrepair and polishing them off to shining symbols of a bygone era. Ever since he was a child, Robinson has tinkered, built, refurbished and tweaked various objects.
"Pretty much everything I've ever owned," Robinson said, "I've made myself."
No project of his required more time than the Super Nova 24, a rare, handmade boat originally built in 1969. Nova Power Boats produced just 124 originals, of which fewer than 10 are still around today. In 2008, when Robinson heard a Nova 24 had been sitting in a nearby carport for the past few decades, he knew he had found his next big project. The boat was basically an empty shell, but the hull was in great shape, and that was all the inspiration he needed.
"With all the boats I restore, I get a vision of what they should look like. I try to get them back to their original form, but within reason," said Robinson. "But with the 24, I really had to stick to the rules - I couldn't put my artistic vision on it. I had to find what few pictures and little information existed on it and try to get it back to what it was 40 years ago."
The restoration process was threefold: Researching the look and design of the Nova 24, finding parts that fit properly, and the actual construction of the boat. Robinson scoured the internet and made countless contacts in search of accurate information, a process which took nearly four years to truly take fruition.
"I spent as much time researching the look as I did actually building the look, but the hardest part was finding the right parts," he noted. Many of the parts, Robinson soon discovered, were no longer in production. "It was a long process, like pulling teeth."
Finally, after four years of feeling both frustrated and devoted, Robinson was confident enough in his work to exhibit the 24 in the Antique & Classic Boat Festival in St. Michael's, Maryland, this past June. Despite Robinson's low expectations for any kind of accolades at the show, the Nova 24 drew huge crowds, critical acclaim and ultimately, the award for Best Race Boat.
"To find out I actually won something, it was one of my prouder moments. It gave me validation for everything I put in," said Robinson. "I had a lot of people coming through saying, `Thanks for keeping the Nova 24 alive.'"
"I get emails from people all the time asking, `What kept you going?' My thing is - You gotta finish it. I'm not going to lie, there were many times that wrenches flew across my garage, but then I'd sit back and think, `Rome wasn't built in a day, and neither was this boat,'" he said.
Like Robinson, Greg Isaac has devoted countless hours to building and restoring boats. But while Robinson recreates classics, Isaac builds futuristic-looking inboard hydroplane boats, which he races at contests across the country. The hydroplanes are known for zipping across the water with only the prop and rudder touching the surface.
Isaac, who grew up in Sunset Beach, lived a half-mile from the water and idolized the racers who would blow past at 150mph. By his early 20s, he and his brothers began building their hydroplanes and participating in races. He has been building and, until recently, racing the boats ever since.
In 2009, Isaac won the North American Championship, supplementing his collection of regional championships. He has raced in Michigan, Ohio and all over the East Coast, including Kent Island, where he recently won both days of the "Thunder on the Narrows" annual event. The thrill - and the danger - of the sport come from the inconsistent nature of the surface of the water.
"I've done all different kinds of racing and nothing compares to the boat because you never know the conditions. It changes from lap to lap and you never know what the water is going to be doing," Isaac said.
As owner of the boat, which he also sponsors through his business, GoldFather of Pasadena, Isaac commits enormous amounts of time to off-water issues such as building the engine, preparing the boat for each race, and handling its transportation to nationwide events.
Recently, Isaac brought on national boat racing champion Bobby Kennedy as a driver. Kennedy and Isaac will travel to Waterford, Michigan, on July 21 for the Quake on the Lake Hydroplane Boat Races World Championship. The following weekend, the team will race nearby in Cambridge, Maryland, at an event which often brings out over 100 spectating boats.
For both Isaac and Robinson, living and growing up along Pasadena's shores gave them the opportunity to discover their unique aquatic passions. Whether cruising around in a one-of-a-kind classic gem or blowing by in an ultra-light hydroplane racer, Isaac and Robinson have taken Pasadena's boating culture to unchartered waters.
Mark Robinson, poses with his restored 1968 race boat, the SuperNova 24 at the Antique & Classic Boat Society Silver Anniversary Boat Festival held at St Michaels . Winning the 2012 "BEST RACE BOAT" award. Photo by Maureen Robinson
After almost four decades of sitting and three years of us restoring it, it's finally back where it belongs.
For an occasion such as this a video is in order.
Have a lot of bugs to work out and only seemed to get some of the slower runs on film but WTH!
Just keep in mind when watching that "The Law" is that old race boats are meant to rot away behind abandon warehouses.
Sept 12, 2012
Cost about five grand today but WTF!
The gear box is full of water and the rear motor developed a bad knock but like I said, I don't care. I did something today that hasn't been done in 2, 3, close to 4 decades and with my buddy Mike there with his Go Pro camera I have proof. lol
The best part is when I told the wife I would have a few things to do this winter she said, as long as it don't cost anything, what the hell.
I have a lot of things I want to do and now is the time. I'm as shocked as you are. One ride and it has to come apart but there is a very bright side to it all.
As for the V Drive, after talking to the Casales (yelling at when it came to these guys), Minkens and a few others they all said to put the drive together with white axle grease on the gaskets. I think they either didn't remember this box or never seeing one before they thought it should be done like a split case V-drive so it could be taken apart to change gears and still be able to reuse the case gasket. I don't think I will be changing the gears anytime ..... ever being these gears don't exist. I should have used RTV on the gasket. I'm almost positive it would have never leaked water if I did.
Sadly all this cant wait until winter. I have to pull the motor no matter what. It could wait but leaving water in the V drive cant and to drain and flushing it while still installed is pretty tough. With the rear motor out it would only take a couple hours to pull the Drive from the plate. With the rear motor still in the boat it may take all day and be a total pain to get out. Sooooooo..... I might as well get them out in order to make it easier to do but now the clock is ticking cause salt water is not my V Drive's friend.
So after some investigating today I have a long list of stuff to redo, fix or replace.
Having to rebuild the reverse rotation motor and rebuild the V drive just seems like fate. The last time around I was told that the drive line was set up a certain way just to find out it was wrong after everything was built and installed. My set up would work but the whole time I was building it I was stuck with the one and only reverse rotation camshaft available and it sucked. Also when finished I was left with a very tame set up and it was totally wrong for the boat. I pretty much thought I was stuck with it like this because of the money and everything involved to change it until this. It was like the boat was telling me this was wrong and that was wrong and it was not going to work right until it was back the way it should be.
So this time we are going back to two standard rotation motors and switching the V drive back around to the way Brownie had it set up originally.
It turns out the only work that I am doing that is not needed when I started this is replacing the cam in the front motor to match the new upgraded cam in the rear motor.
The key to it all is finding a LH prop that don't break the bank first and then maybe it will be all worth it. I have to do something though because 3500rpm's WOT is not good enough but I did have a gimping motor so I really don't have a good base line to work with.
Thought I had all this all figured out. lol
The Big Fix
Sept 15, 2012
Man, I'm hooked.
It's been a while but I'm hooked on a boat again. A lot of boats are cool but some just grab you and the 24 has done it. The bad thing, there's stuff broken and has to be fixed before I can go again.
After a day of wonderment and trying to figure out a plan I think I got enough together to start making some major moves. For a lot of reasons (besides me being crazy) now is the time to make those changes.
First is the rear motor. It is the reverse rotation motor and something is broken inside. Still has good oil pressure but something is rattling like a hammer. So Friday I got everything off of it I could and by the end of the day it was sitting on a motor stand in the garage. No easy feat but things just moved along until they were done. Haven't taken it apart yet. I did notice a tiny bit of water in the exhaust. Something will have to be done about it but more on that later. I did get the transmission and bellhousing off the back of the motor and made sure nothing was causing the rattle just to be sure.
Today, the V drive. Even with the one motor out it was a total monster. Everything is so tight that after you pull the prop shaft you have to unscrew the stuffing box and slide it off before you can get the coupler to the prop shaft off the V Drive. You have to do it all in a certain order and hope the stupid keys will stay in place because if not (as I found out many times) everything will just jam in place.
So I guess it's time to start making this happen.
The first thing is to drop the tail of the front motor down so its more in line (12 degrees) with the prop shaft. The boat has 4 way universals so it don't have to perfect but it did have to go lower. So while the gantry crane was still set up I spent a few hours moving stringer mounts to get the tail down as much as I could without redesigning the boat. Its close but more will have to be done when the exhaust manifolds are off so I can get to the front motor mounts.
The plan is to fix the 454 that likes my garage more then it likes the boat. Like I said, this time I'm not going to be constrained by this reverse rotation crap. I've already bought cams and lifters like I had in the 19's 454ci before I stroked it to a 496ci that I really liked for both motors and other works in order.
Sept 16, 2012
When I built the exhaust piece by piece I didn't realize how heavy the spacers are when you get them all together. When taking out the rear motor I took the risers off in one piece and they are a lot heavier then the aluminum manifolds themselves. The GLM aluminum manifolds are not made to have all this weight on top of them and if not already it will become an issue with the studs not to mention the leaking issue I already have.
So I figured out all my options and the best I could come up with is to take 496 exhaust manifolds and stock risers and extend the risers. Lots of reasons I want to do this. The main thing is the 496 exhaust risers are just stainless steel tube and not cast like the others and to me it seems like the easiest to extend for someone who knows what they are doing. But my skills run out when it comes to welding so I am in touch with a guy that says he can extend the risers and after talking to him he either is a con artist or knows what he is talking about. Now to get all the pieces together and off to the right people to make it happen.
Sept 19, 2012
The purest should all be happy to see this.
This was not as easy as I hoped for. Just take the top shaft and swap it with the bottom shaft .... not so easy. Everything had to be taken apart all the way down to the last shim. Then cleaned and dried. From there I had to start all over again on the rebuild. Just changing the two shafts made everything out of line so I had to spend hours "stacking" everything up to find out where it came out. Get one gear in line just to take it all apart again because the other gear was to far out now.
Got everything together yesterday afternoon checking all the way just to find when I got the last cap on that something inside was "clicking". Had to take it all apart again to find a shim that was cocked just a tiny bit. Cut another new gasket for it (this time I expanded the water holes between sides in the gasket so there will be no restrictions) and put it all back together with even more shim changes. This time I think I got it right all the way down to finding the original marks on the case so the bolt holes in the caps go in there original holes just like it was back in the day. One thing is for sure, there is no turning back now on this big change.
Sept 20, 2012
I also thought installing the V Drive was going to be easy. I was wrong again.
Not saying it was a nightmare but there was a lot of adjusting this and moving that. This has to go on before that and then a couple of the driveshaft couplers didn't want to go on for some reason even though this is where they were suppose to have come from originally. A little bit of sanding and heating got everything where it should. Found that the front motor was perfect in its up and down angle which was a great thing after just guessing. Side to side it was a bit cocked though. The U-joints took care of it but more attention will have to be given to it before this is all over.
With the V drive out of the way I had to fix one of the driveshaft cages with a aluminum loop and then got it put back together so a driveshaft wouldn't find its way through the front deck in an emergency.
Just to get it out of the garage I replaced the winch cable that broke on its first go around at the ramp. The winch seemed to work fine but about 3 feet from the bow stop the cable snapped. I figure it was a cheap cable that rusted or corroded after three years in the same spot. This time even though the winch is rated a 2 ton I got a stainless steel cable that is rated for 10,500lbs. A little over kill but I have no desire for a cable to come whipping back at me while the boat is rolling off the other end of the trailer.
Last I got the front motor ready for the cam change. Got rid of all the exhaust risers. Then spent hours getting the exhaust manifolds off. Dropping the rear of the motor made them a lot tighter to get out from behind the stringers. I would be a bit concerned but now that I am in with both feet with the new exhaust I'm not really sure how its going to work out until I get a manifold or header in my hands.
After the manifolds were out I was able get to and loosen up the 10 nuts and bolts per side that hold the front motor mounts together. Then used a big pry-bar I moved the motor over the half inch that was needed. Re-adjusted the rear feet and then tightened down the front mounts in an order so it would stay in place without any pre-torque on them.
Next up is installing a cam in the front motor and rebuilding the rear motor.
Sept 23, 2012
The last couple days its been just steady work.
This is the part that I hate and there is no reason to do besides to match the motor that's in the garage. Well, and to make it a much better motor. I know they are not going to be anything special but they do already having roller rockers, good air gap intake, Edelbrock 750, MSD ignition, the cam I just installed (296/306 - 540/540 lift, 114 l/s) and with the new exhaust I plan on using there is no reason I should not see 375hp each out of these motors.
It turned out to be a typical cam replacement. Remove intake, dist, carb, water cooling stuff, everything off the front of the motor down to the timing chain cover. Replaced the old cam and lifters with the new set and then get the timing set on and the rockers adjusted. Then put the rest of the motor together.
I still haven't got all the exhaust done and home yet and I still plan on installing a new accelerator pump and clean the carb up a little before I put it back on but to have the V drive done and the front motor moved and lined up for the lower shaft on the V drive and the new cam installed this soon is very cool.
As for the exhaust. Plans are already in motion to get it built. We decided to use the 496 Mercruiser exhaust because besides custom made there isn't much that's not cast metal. With the 496 the tube stainless steel risers can be cut and extended so there will be no breaks in it like with the use of riser spacers. Not to mention the big weight difference, no chance of leaking water in the motor being they are dry jointed and they should look a lot better then the stack of big spacers. I would think they will look like something that came out of Stainless Marine from back in the day.
Once some parts show up I also plan on moving some of the 4" exhaust hose for the front motor. It kind of dawned on me that there is no reason it goes down for three feet and then makes a 90 degree turn. Why not make it a couple smooth 45 degree turns but I guess this all will have to wait for a picture to understand.
Sept 25, 2012
Just got a picture by email.
Sept 27, 2012
Good news, bad news, more bad news...
Got the rear motor tore down and it is a total wreck. The crank, rods and pistons are all junk. Already have a new Scat crank on the way. Also trying to work a deal on a set of rods and pistons but I've got back up plans if the dealing gets to be to much of a pain in the ass like it is starting off to be. For some reason people put things up for sale and then don't answer their email or phone for days. Been trying for a week to get a shipping quote for some manifolds that I am trying to buy from a guy who is supposedley trying to sell them.
Besides the things that are wrong with the motor everything else seemed to come out of it all unhurt. Not sure what happened but what ever it was it sure is going to cost a lot of money. Even though there was reverse rotation Mark IV 454 as far as I know there never was a reverse rotation Gen V 454. Maybe there is a reason for that and that's why it didn't work. All I know is that it had good oil pressure the whole time and when it was put together everything measured like it should have. I guess crap happens. I just wish it would it would quit happening to me.
On a positive note.
Today I took a break from the motor stuff and got something else out of the way. I got the five foot fiberglass tube in the mail the other day and it was a nice change to make the elbows I wanted for the front exhaust instead of all this motor work I've been doing latley. An elbow like this costs about $65 each in this special fiberglass stuff. Got the tube and made four of them for about $68.00 total.
After this picture I sanded off all the drips and then painted them black. They will make the exhaust shorter and cleaner to the outlets and be more supportive then the old setup. Also less of a chance after it gets hot of it flopping around.
Sept 30, 2012
Not sure if I'm going to make it this year or not but we are trying.
After all the damage in the motor and all the money I have spent trying to get everything I needed to put it back together it may be a little to much for it to happen.
Just finishing up some stuff while I am waiting on motor parts to show up. Like turning the transmission pump over so it will work with a normal rotation motor. The same with the raw water pump hoses that needed to be flipped around now that the pump will be turning the other way to.
Spent a lot of time cleaning up the block, heads and such being the motor imploded but one thing has puzzled me was where all the metal went. Not so much as a flake anywhere. I did find a tiny little bit of grit in the oil pan but nothing like what I should have. Then I took apart the oil cooler, filter and hoses. The filter just poured out liquid glitter. The oil almost looked like mercury it had so much metal in it. All the lines and cooler need to be replaced anyway but wow. I guess the filter did its job and least saved the rest of the motor from being showered in the liquid metal.
Oct 3, 2012
Got another picture today.
I love it when a plan comes together. Another one of my hair brained ideas that I just didn't have the ability to do. At this stage he is just getting everything tacked up and still has not put the water inlets in yet but wow! I remember sitting in the garage looking at an extra of set risers left over from the 19 thinking how simple of an idea this is and why no one has done it before instead of buying those 496 spacers for over $600 a set.
Now the hunt is on for another set of manifolds. I have one set on the way from Mike (former Nova 24 owner) and I thought I had another but the guy just turned into to much of a pain in the ass. After 10 days without a shipping quote is extreme. If I wasn't as busy as I am I would have moved on long ago but he was just on the back burner so it really didn't become an issue until now.
Here is the beginning of something that may be an issue to the purest. This is a 1/4" aluminum plate that I cut out and then heated and bent to be a bilge pump base. I know there was never a bilge pump in the boat, just a scupper and a drain plug. I have a hand pump but who wants to use that? The scupper only works when the boat is moving and would be great for dumping large amounts of water but until everything is all worked out I don't think I will be using it. There is a couple more reasons also. One is I never thought about putting it in a slip at the boat show (besides being unproven) and left it on the trailer because I was afraid it would sink when I was not there. Another thing is during the first test drive I was only out for 90 minutes and ended up with a couple gallons of water in the boat. Maybe it was from the V drive over flow or the stuffing box or maybe the rudder. I didn't have time to really give it a check over and didn't really notice it until I got home. No matter what though, its a safety feature that with the rear motor out is to easy not to install. Also being able to leave it in a slip overnight or something is a great pease of mind.
And then there is this. I thought it was over the last time around. For the most part they are just for show being the boat has to be in the water (stern down angle) for the front fills to work and I get gas at the corner gas station.
So the last time around I bought these 1-1/2" thru hulls with 90 degree elbows and then heated the tank with a heat gun and slipped the mushroom head into the tank and used it as a fill. I guess the elbow had a reaction with the gas going through it for some reason. When I bought them I though they were chrome plated tin or some metal. Then I got them and found them to be plastic. Having boat show fever I went with them. When I was taking the motor out I leaned on one and it snapped off like a twig.
So I did the same thing on installing the new ones but first I had to get the old ones out including the broken one. That was a pain. Then right after the old one was out and the plastic tank was still hot I did a little more heating and then had to get the new ones in. This time they are 1-1/2" brass thru hulls. They will not break....ever. Then to connect them to the fill hose I used a rubber elbow. First I inserted a metal sleeve in the fill hose. Coated the hose end with a little RTV and then slipped on the elbow and clamped down the hose clamp. Let it set up for a couple hours then attached it to the tank fill. I did this before on another hose on a home made cooling system for a motor I built. You still cant get the two apart many years later so I know it works.
Oct 5, 2012
There is still a lot of stuff that needs to show up and there's also one or two things that still need to be bought but there is one thing that is holding up the whole works, connecting rods. Everything else for the motor is here.
While inspecting the block I came to the conclusion that the cam bearings were not in good shape so I had to order them later then the rest of the stuff and thought they would be the hold up but they showed in two days. I don't have a cam bearing tool and hate trying to get them in right anyway along with if I screw them up it will be days before I can get another set so I let the machine shop do that. Also mounting the pistons on the rods is something I do not do at home. So I have to wait on the rods before I can get anything done.
One of the last things I did was to get the control for the bilge pump into the dash the best way / place I could. Being that it was never thought about during the first lay-out of the dash. I don't think it turned out to bad and kind of fits.
Oct 8, 2012
The rods finally showed up on Friday afternoon. Already had everything loaded up in the truck and when they came I took them from the UPS truck and tossed them in my truck and we both drove away. I knew that there was no chance that I would have it back for the weekend but at least it will be there on Monday morning for them to do.
From there I made a trip to the recycling center to drop off all the big metal parts from the 454 that they wont pick up at the curb.
Then off for an oil change on the tow vehicle. These boats get to the water some how. lol
From there it was to Home Depot for fittings to make the new oil cooler work. I've got 2 of my new oil lines from eBay. Not sure if either will work and I may have to have them made at the local hydraulic shop anyway.
Last it took about an hour with a puller and a touch to get the prop of doom off. It is the only reason the boat was set up like it was. If there was no prop with the boat when I got it I'm sure we would have come up with the current set up and never thought of a reverse rotation motor. Also it would have saved me a fortune and I would have never got mixed up in the whole motor buying nightmare with these motors, etc, etc...
Oct 10, 2012
Must have been a new guy for UPS because they left everything over at my neighbors house yesterday and I didn't get it until today. I order so much stuff that I know my UPS guy by name and he knows me so ....
Oh well, block, pistons and rods are still at the shop. Should get them back tomorrow but we'll see. So I'm just chugging away on anything I can get done including putting the crab boat away for the winter. The crab boat is important to this whole deal, trust me. We will never crab out of one of the Nova's.
I found a prop on eBay and it came in late yesterday. To be honest it's just a shot in the dark but I had to have something to start a baseline with. The original (or was it ?) was a 15X20 RH prop. Even though the boat was having issues and not set up right to start with, the motors still only could turn it 3600rpm's at WOT. Way to low to get the motors wound up to where they need to be. Add in that I think the V drive was spinning backwards (shouldn't make a difference but who knows with this Casale drive), one of the motors was lame and the other motor had the sucky cam in it who knows what the right numbers are but I had to make a stab at it being that a right hand prop was not going to work anymore unless I wanted to back up everywhere I go. And you cant run the transmissions in reverse and use it as forward because things will quickly break so don't even think of it.
Its a 17X18 LH with a little history apparently.
Even though it's not going to make it perform any better, on these old bronze props I always try to clean them up before installing them for a couple reason. First is they always look so bad after sitting around for decades in someone's shop or garage. Next is to find out everything I can about them. How the blades feel front and back, dents, gouges, nicks, bends some things you never see but can feel will make a good looking prop junk. After cleaning I'm usually disappointed with what I find. Most of these props are ancient like this one is (made in Sept of 1978 stamped on the hub) and after 35 years there had to be something wrong with it. But it looks like for some reason this prop was reworked at some time and not used much afterwards. It was originally a 18X20 (X'ed out on the hub) and then made into a 17X18. After I got most of the tarnish off you could still see the machine / polishing marks from the prop shop and no damage but little tiny stuff that may have happened when it was shipped.
I tried to buy just the left prop of a set and the guy sent me both of them for what I paid for the one and the right prop looks as good as the left. After a little cleaning I'm sure I will find something to do with it, maybe make my money back.
I also added fuel filters coming out of the fuel tanks. I had to. Its amazing how much crap falls into a tank. Along with having the fuel fill issues I didn't want to fuel pumps picking up the crap. They are secured to the aluminum plates that protect the fuel tanks and are not going anywhere. They are also super easy to get to and clean out if necessary.
The first section of the exhaust showed up today also. Being the front motor is in already I'm going to install these on it. Maybe tomorrow.
Oct 11-14, 2012
Besides battling the Flu the last few days things are still moving along even though time is getting short.
Like I thought I would I got the manifolds on the front motor just to get them out of the way and to make sure there was not going to be any issues. They fit better then the GLM's but still are tight to work with between the stringers like the front motor is.
I did get everything back from the machine shop. Come to find out the cam bearings I got from Summit were wrong. Instead of being 1 through 5 we had two #2's. That held things up for another day.
Got everything home and started to work on it after the sun would go down each night. A few things did come up that I never thought of. Changing the reverse rotation motor around to a standard rotation would seem simple enough but then you realized that the R/R motor didn't use this or that and then the hunt was on to find it so the build could keep going and then it was on to the next road block.
By today everything was done and it was time to set up the gantry crane again and the motor out of the garage and back where it belongs. The first time I did this I was scared to death to have a motor and transmission 12 feet off the ground and then having to back the boat up underneath it with only a couple inches to spare was insane. Now sadly it almost seems to be routine.
Before the end of the day I got the motor off the stand, the bellhousing and transmission on and a few other things buttoned up and then it was time for the big lift. Up and over and then down in. I think my set up for motor mounts has worked out pretty good. It didn't take but a few minutes to get everything lined up and locked down. Add a few more things done before it got dark and all that is left is a couple hours of wiring and such to finish up. After that all is left is the exhaust. Sadly though we are running out of time.
Oct 15, 2012
2013 St. Michael's, MD 3 day Classic Boat Festival Ad.
Just got this email with next years ACBS television advertising in it and wouldn't you know the 24 made the cut.
Oct 22, 2012
The big wait is on.
Everything is all done as far as I can go. Electric and fuel is back on the motor.
Found the last set of manifolds out of California. Should be here by the end of the week. The price was right, from fresh water and they are aluminum. Even though the original GLM manifolds are aluminum, with all the risers extensions weight and with the cast stainless steel risers too there has to be 150lbs (maybe more) difference between the two motors with the new set up. Or basically its like I'm not riding in the boat.
The risers are finished and on the way tomorrow. I've seen pictures and they turned out just like I thought they should. They look like something that would have came out of Stainless Marine from back in the day and I'm sure they will make the whole drive package set up look a lot better and more professional with out all the pieces stacked and bolted together.
A couple coats of paint and they will be perfect.
Nov 6, 2012
Everything is in and everything is on hold.
All the parts to finish this couple month long project came in. All four risers and the last set of manifolds from California showed up a matter of hours before we were due to go away for 10 days. Already had all the mounting hardware, gaskets and built the bracket for the oil filter mount. then the last thing I got to do was give everything a couple coats of paint until I had to put everything on hold for the next 10 days.
Everything always looks better with a new coat of paint.
Went away to Florida for the next few days so everything had time to harden up some. Not that it needed it but it makes them a tougher for banging around. While there they had a couple record setting cold days and there was a hurricane that hit the east coast. Didn't make for the greatest trip thinking the house may not be here when we got home but beside a few trees getting tore up we made out OK and a lot better then they did up north. But the hurricane screwed up or weather for this fall and seems to have sent us right into winter. Below freezing for the next few nights with the possibility of a north-easter hitting us later in the week. The last thing we need is more cold, a chance of snow and a lot of wind but its coming and the season of "winter" is not even close yet. At the same time it meant emergency winterizing had to be done on the 19 and what was left of the 24. Lucky it was not much with the 24 being both motors had already been drained and just one set of hoses and the strainers still had water in them. The strainers concerned me the most. They are 45 year old originals and are basically a brass top and bottom with a Plexiglas center. Water enclosed in Plexiglas with no room to expand cant be good so even though its going to warm up some in a few days I was not taking the risk of them breaking and costing a fortune to replace if they could be at all.
Thought you all would like to see one almost all together. Had to fit it together so I knew how high the oil filter bracket needed to be and while at it I snapped a picture. As I said many times before it looks like something Stainless Marine would have made years ago. I had a set of manifolds from them a while back for a Mopar that were built just like these risers are.
Having the time I also did some math and the best I can figure, comparing one complete exhaust system to the other this is what I came up with. For the tall risers (front motor) they lost a total of 25.33lbs per side and the shorter riser set up (rear motor) lost 21.5lbs per side. Not the 160 lbs I was hoping for but a loss of 93.66lbs (plus another pound of hardware that didn't get reinstalled) is nothing to sneeze at. Not to mention making everything out of solid tubes instead pieces stacked on top of one another and bolted together with the chance of anyone of them leaking. Even the riser to manifold is dry jointed now.
I also got some good news when we were away thanks to the Internet. I sold most of the old exhaust and made back a good chunk of the money we invested in the whole exhaust upgrade deal. I'll never get it all back but some is better then nothing and the money that we have in it after the sale is well worth it and we still have the extensions/spacers to sell for half price and we may almost break even on the deal.
That's where things stand until the weather warms a little and then I will get the rest of the exhaust installed.
As for starting the motors... that may have to wait until next spring.
Nov 10, 2012
Put on a couple sweatshirts and went out to braved the brisk Fall air.
I went for front motor first being I already had the manifolds installed. I also knew they would be a bit of a challenge to get done in an afternoon. It was mostly trying to figure out how to install them in just the right order. Just like everything if you do it in the right order you are not taking things back off to put something on that you need to before you moved on to the next thing. Once I got it down it worked out pretty easy and if needed they should come off a lot easier and not in so many pieces.
After that it was making all the compound angles for the exhaust tubes to the tips. This one down and that one up. This hose goes in this far, that hose goes in that far. Tighten this clamp down and twist this one and then start all over again. Before it was all said and done I dropped out about a foot of the length of exhaust hose per side. Not what I was hoping for originally but that's what it worked out to in the real world. Being it was shorter then I thought the 45 degree elbows I built were a little long and even though I had to cut one end down the fiberglass tubes were long enough that they ran most of the way to both tips. I even though about glassing the two 45's together but the angles were insane and not the same on both sides and I also thought it would be better to have some sort of damper joint for vibration or if it has some sort of expansion or something.
I have to say it looks a whole lot better and not so half-ass. Even if we used the 496 exhaust spacers that are dry jointed it still would have looked like a Christmas tree with all the hoses going in and out from spacer to spacer.
We are hoping to get the rest on tomorrow so at least the motors will be closed up for the winter.
Nov 18, 2012
The best made plans ...
After the front motors manifolds install with them being squeezed in between the stringers and the motor block the manifolds went on the rear motor pretty painless. Then came the risers.
Everything was measured and re-measured and then measured again. Then everything was compared to the motors mounting holes and the old exhaust system too. Some how the rear risers are a little to tall. Not sure how it happened. Even after I got it all together in the garage it still worked out but for some reason it didn't work when installed without major modifications tot he hood. Lucky enough the risers would be able to be used without being sent back and shortened. It will just take two days in sub 50 degree weather to get it done.
Before that though I had to get the installed risers hooked up to the exhaust tips. The nice thing about them being a little to tall is they have nice down angle so no reversion issues. The bad thing is the four inch exhaust connections are not what I hoped. The issue is, the 90 degree angels have 6" legs (the hose is 6 inches long going both ways). The 45 degree hose legs (the ones I need ) are only 4 inches long. I cut a bunch of hoses to make it work but I'm on the hunt for a longer set before spring.
The hood had just enough core that I could dish out where the riser made contact. Had to take it all the way down to the outer skin but that shouldn't hurt anything. I then added a couple layers of fiberglass just to seal everything back up.
While I had the hood off I also had a chance to do a little fixing on the rear hinges. They are at their weight limit to start with and the hood as been pushed and pulled a time or two by a motor swinging above it until I learned how to install a motor the easy way.
Now you can see light over each of the risers when the hood is closed. Not saying there is a whole lot of room but at least the hood will not be sitting on the risers when it's closed. And again it's kind off in the same tradition as the original set up. If you notice in the picture above, in the long hatch that is open (what Brownie call the "fish press") you can see an oval in the back side of it. That's where Brownie dished them out for his risers. Not sure how they were that far back but it's the same thing as I did.
Jan 3, 2013
Winter has set in and everything has been put away for a couple more months. Things has moved inside.
After a major garage clean out I did find a couple things that got hidden away for one reason or another and never were installed. So a little mini stack of stuff is starting for when the weather gets better.
One thing I'm on a daily hunt for is cheap props. For some reason people want stupid money for them. And then you find one that someone actually wants to sell at a reasonable price and you have to be ready to grab it. These props are just shots in the dark anyway so I'm cant spend much money on them. So far (it came with a 15X20R WOT@ 3600rpm's) I have a 17X18L on it now I picked up awhile back and just picked up another 15X15L the other day for $35. If I can find a couple more of these I will have a good start.
Another little project was this.
The wheel has been kicking around the shop for a couple years now. It came in one of the boxes that came with the boat. Didn't know what to do with it being some of the chrome was not as good as it should be and to replace it cost almost nothing. They are some of the cheapest steering wheels on the market.
So I bought a center cap and an install kit for it. Then went to the metal shop and found these rings of aluminum pipe about an inch thick. Also a 1/2" X 1" bar that I cold rolled with my press and an old motor mount and last a 4" round stock for the mounting of the wheel. Drilled it all out, painted everything black and then sanded off the edges that I wanted the aluminum to show and then clear coated everything. Got a little plaque saying what it was and now its a pretty cool piece of history.
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