Now I can’t wait to sail it in a breeze where it will hop up on plane.
Before and after shots:
Late last summer I saw an ad on Craigslist. This can be dangerous, depending on the ad, and this one mentioned a fiberglass Simmons Sea Skiff for sale up in the Richmond area. This rare creature deserved a look, so I called the owner on the phone, heard about the boat, and set up a viewing. I came with cash in hand.
And I brought it home, bundled it up, and stored it in the backyard while I worked on Jack’s Longshot 18. Occasionally I would look at its shape out the back window and salivate.
January brought me time to build the center console and install it. Then Don at Sports Marine had an appropriate 40 hp Mercury at a fair price. That gets us through to March, with me installing the remote throttle and the steering in my driveway.
As soon as it was use-able, out we went to the James River. Gunk in the carburetor provided a delay (my fault, it came from my fuel line), but soon Sam Deering and I were gunning it around Jamestown Island, enjoying the smooth ride and grinning.
Now it’s finally ready for market. Don’t hesitate, as I could probably count on two hands the number of fiberglass Simmons hulls on the eastern seaboard (or anywhere else, I suspect.) This is a special boat, and it has been an honor to bring it back to full use.
For full information, visit http://www.tidewatersmallcraft.com/20-ft-simmons-style-sea-skiff/
Jack got in the first paddle on the Long Shot kayak this week, and then we rigged out the deck and he took it home. It tracks well, and he thought it would be a very fast boat. Edging on the turns will be mandatory.
This is the first boat where I have installed perimeter lines, per Jack’s request, and I think they will be a big safety boost. When you are in the water and need to control the boat for re-entry, they become critical. They also look great on the finished boat.
The frame is almost finished on the new Long Shot 18 I am building for Jack here in Williamsburg. It’s a sleek, fast boat from Jeff Horton at www.kudzucraft.com, my favorite designer for skin-on-frame boats. We used cedar and marine fir as usual, and the tung oil Jack used to seal the wood gives it a silky feel.
The foot pegs go in today, and then the 3-layer plywood combing gets some shaping at the sander. Jack takes a look this afternoon, and then tomorrow we start skinnning!
The Moth is back in the shop after a lag of almost 10 months. It was in sailing condition late last summer, but still looked awful. Now I am fairing, sanding, filling, and repeat repeat repeat. This is the “Before” picture on the deck and cockpit, and the “After” picture is coming soon. Already, since this picture was taken I have covered all with System Three 2 part epoxy primer, and the WP-LPU topcoat from System Three is coming next.
I hope to sail this boat in the Hampton Roads Sunfish Race on Sept. 22, in the open class or–if there are enough boats–in the Moth class. Should be fun!
A friend of mine let me paddle his high-end fiberglass kayak (an excellent boat) and I discovered the joys of a good, fiberglass seat as well. He had an extra, and I asked if I could borrow it.
The pictures below show my attempts at taking a mold from it. There is much work left to do: grinding the edges, plussmoothing the surface with more epoxy mixed with fairing filler. But soon enough I hope to have a mold I can use to make new seats for the TSC boats.
Well, I should have charged a lot more for this little boat, as it sold in less than 24 hours. Juan Carlos from Woodbridge, VA, I hope you and your family have a great time fishing on the Occoquan and Potomac Rivers!
Shapely boats like this are a great relief to the stone-ugly jonboats that seem to have replaced them these days. The semi-dory shape possessed magical qualities: you could stand on the rail and it would dip down to 3 inches or so above the water line for hauling pots and nets. But no lower! It just wouldn’t go down any more. My family didn’t need a ladder to get back in the boat, since you could haul yourself in.
Wish I had taken the lines off it before it sold, as I would love to build another one in plywood/fiberglass.
For Sale: 16 ft crab skiff, built in Mathews County in 198_ by Geary in fiberglass. This flat bottom skiff is well-mannered and good-looking, just restored by Tidewater Small Craft, ready for another two decades. Powered by a 25 hp Johnson rebuilt this year by Tomahund Marine in Charles City: new fuel pump, new carburetor, new powerhead, new impeller. Runs great and reliable. Comes with a stainless steel bunk trailer that is road ready.