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 Post subject: The old Harris Flote-Bote revival and name search!
PostPosted: Tue Jun 18, 2013 1:40 pm 
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A lot of the info on this old boat is in my intro thread, but I'll touch on the high points:
1976 Harris Flote-Bote, it's been in the family since new, it's been sitting on the trailer for the last two years, and hasn't moved under its own power in at least 3 years (most likely more). My dad passed it on to me, so we're going to do a makeshift revival on the old girl and see what we can make out of her for now.

This is it as it sat beside my dad's shop for two years
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We got it to my house last Saturday
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I pressure washed it in an attempt to get the mud stains off of the pontoons, but only succeeded at removing the mold and mildew from the railing. Pontoons barely changed at all :roll:
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I decided to try a bottle of Toon-Brite from West Marine. I got mixed results from it. It did remove the stains after 2 treatments on the starboard side & 3 treatments on the port side, but I think I should've used it in smaller sections instead of trying to do the whole toon at once. Unfortunately, since the boat sat in the silty mud for at least a year, there is quite a bit of corrosion on the bottoms of them. I'm thinking they are about as clean as they're going to get under my ownership :mrgreen:

After the 1st treatment:
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Port side before cleaning:
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After the 1st treatment:
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After 2nd treatment:
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2nd treatment starboard side:
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3rd treatment port side:
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So then I concentrated on removing the railings. It was much easier than I'd expected! I had all of them off in about an hour and a half by myself!
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Just a little buildup from sitting close to some trees.
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I'm almost willing to bet there's a hornet or wasp nest in there....what are the odds? :scared
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So that's as far as I've gotten with it. I was planning to remove the rub rails this afternoon, but the weather can't make up its mind today. One minute torrential downpours, sunshine the next, then back to rain :censored

And I also need to come up with a name. I was thinking "Titanic" but didn't want to temp fate lol


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 Post subject: Re: The old Harris Flote-Bote revival and name search!
PostPosted: Tue Jun 18, 2013 1:49 pm 
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Looks like a fun project. My first thought of a new name was resurrection. But maybe the revival or re-berth would be better. Hahahahahahahahahahaha . Good luck

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 Post subject: Re: The old Harris Flote-Bote revival and name search!
PostPosted: Tue Jun 18, 2013 1:50 pm 
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Location: Orlando Fla
It's nothing but work, been work on mine since April with work interrupting a month working on it, but we are using it and getting the bugs worked out, so if you get tired of working on it, just sit down in a chair, close your eyes and picture yourself floating on the lake with your favorite beverage

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 Post subject: Re: The old Harris Flote-Bote revival and name search!
PostPosted: Tue Jun 18, 2013 2:39 pm 
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Location: Waco/Hewitt, TX
Good luck on your project! I will have to redo mine at some point.

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My Happy place is on a boat at the lake with my kids!!

current boats:
1983 chaparral 235 XLC (restoration)
1977 playcraft p24 pontoon (parents own now I am the mechanic)
1975 skeeter hawk (on hold)

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 Post subject: Re: The old Harris Flote-Bote revival and name search!
PostPosted: Wed Jun 19, 2013 6:22 am 
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Location: Lake Wawasee, Northern IN
Had one very simmilar a few years ago. Your fence looks like it's in good shape, I had very good luck painting mine with Impliment Enamel. Keep the pics commin!

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 Post subject: Re: The old Harris Flote-Bote revival and name search!
PostPosted: Wed Jun 19, 2013 2:23 pm 
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My dad painted them back when he redid it. The aluminum sheets have a crinkled texture, so he just used exterior paint and a roller. He said you couldn't even tell because of the texture.


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 Post subject: Re: The old Harris Flote-Bote revival and name search!
PostPosted: Wed Jun 19, 2013 2:47 pm 
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Location: Mahopac, NY
That looks like a fun project, especially with the history behind it. Good luck. Keep us updated. :thumbsup

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"If you want to roll with the pigs at night,You have to fly with the eagles in the morning"- My Father
2006 Manitou 18 ft w/ 40 E-tec
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 Post subject: Re: The old Harris Flote-Bote revival and name search!
PostPosted: Wed Jun 19, 2013 5:41 pm 
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Worked on it a little more this afternoon. I got the rub rails off and peeled back the carpet. To my surprise, the wood was still solid with only minor delamination in a few places. Not too bad for being regular old pressure treated plywood put on +/- 20 years ago. We are on an extremely tight budget, so instead of buying all new wood, I'm going to flip it over with the nice side up, and use Restore Deck Armor on it instead of carpet or linoleum. The stuff is very thick and textured, plus it comes in a wide range of colors. I'll be going with a light sand color. I've been debating on whether to try it or not, but I figure what the heck! I can coat the whole deck for ~$120 and if I get another 5 years out of the wood and coating it'll be well worth it. Maybe at that point we'll be in a little better shape financially and can do it up correctly. Till then it's gonna be an el-cheapo 2nd (or 3rd) chance rehash.

I went ahead and pushed the helm over (after beating on it with a hammer to shake out any flying, stinging critters). Only one came out, so I pulled out the axe and chopped out the steering gear.
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While I was poking around underneath seeing how that single seat was mounted, I found a castaway! Wonder how long those have been hanging on under there? :lol3
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That's all for today. Hopefully this weekend I'll dismount the Action Packer trunks and get all the carpet off.


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 Post subject: Re: The old Harris Flote-Bote revival and name search!
PostPosted: Thu Jun 20, 2013 11:37 am 
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Overboard! wrote:
I'm almost willing to bet there's a hornet or wasp nest in there....what are the odds? l


100 percent, lol. I was stung 13 times when I first started my Starcraft restoration. Boat was sitting 12 years.

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 Post subject: Re: The old Harris Flote-Bote revival and name search!
PostPosted: Thu Jun 20, 2013 1:27 pm 
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Joined: Tue Feb 08, 2011 9:34 am
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Location: Lake Wawasee, Northern IN
[quote="Overboard!"] so I pulled out the axe and chopped out the steering gear.
quote]


Gotta admit...I've been around a long time but I've never heard that one before :lol3 :lol3 :lol3

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 Post subject: Re: The old Harris Flote-Bote revival and name search!
PostPosted: Sat Jun 22, 2013 1:05 pm 
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:lol3 Well I wasn't too sure about sticking my hand up inside there in a blind hole. I was pretty sure any wasps or hornets were gone from the beating I gave it before starting, but Black Widows & the Brown Recluse spiders are prevalent in my area, so i wasn't taking any chances!

I got all the carpet and junk off the deck today!
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All I need to do now is dismount the seat base, and figure out how to take the cable out of the steering gear. I asked my dad how to take it out, and he said he couldn't really remember much about it other than when he took it apart a lot of parts came out and he had a hard time putting it back together.


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 Post subject: Re: The old Harris Flote-Bote revival and name search!
PostPosted: Mon Jun 24, 2013 5:18 am 
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Location: Lake Wawasee, Northern IN
There's either going to be a lock bolt/spring pin combo or a cotter pin in it. The first you loosen the lock bolt, pull the pin up and feed the cabel out. The second you pull the pin, and instert the straight end into the small hole to release the safety while you turn the cable out...

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 Post subject: Re: The old Harris Flote-Bote revival and name search!
PostPosted: Tue Jun 25, 2013 6:07 pm 
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Yeah I got it out Sunday evening. Removed two bolts (one on either side) of where the cable sheath enters the gear, pulled it out, then I was able to turn the column to push the cable out. :nana


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 Post subject: Re: The old Harris Flote-Bote revival and name search!
PostPosted: Sun Jun 30, 2013 7:16 pm 
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I got all of the plywood off the boat today. I will need to replace one piece due to the fact that at some point a fuel tank either leaked on the wood, or someone spilled a huge amount onto it. It's oil-soaked from the two stroke fuel mix, so I'm pretty sure the deck paint will never adhere to it. Better safe than sorry.

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I was quite surprised in the fact that I only had trouble with three bolts on the whole deck and they were all right together in a row. I guess my dad must have ran out of galvanized fasteners and used what he had on hand. I had to use a nut splitter to get them out without damaging the wood or cross rails.

I did find a bit of damage that concerns me. Apparently when they put the huge Merc Black Max 150 on there it was way too much weight for the transom. The rearmost cross rail has a small downward bow and is also tilted back a few degrees. The uprights that are welded to the toons are also cracked on all four top corners where that rail bolts to them. It's times like this that I'm fortunate enough to work in a machine shop and have access to a lot of good weldors that are willing to lend a hand. I'll get it welded correctly, and I'll straighten out the bow in that rail. It's just a small set back that I wasn't expecting.

Hard to see, but the weld is cracked
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Crack in upright
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Bow in the rear rail
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Rear rail tilted back
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That's all for now. Progress will certainly slow down a bit because anything I do now, other than make the rear rail repairs, will cost money, which I don't have a whole lot of at the moment :|

And also to note, I think I've settled on a name for it. "Carolina Daydreamin'" I'm originally from the Myrtle Beach, South Carolina area. I now live in North Georgia, but constantly daydream of the time I can retire and we can move back into the beach life, so the name fits for us.


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 Post subject: Re: The old Harris Flote-Bote revival and name search!
PostPosted: Sun Mar 02, 2014 9:37 am 
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It's been a while since I've posted, and I don't have much in the way of updates other than I got one of my friends from work to come do some welding for me to repair some of the damage on the aluminum parts. He repaired the cracks in the uprights and welded in a support bar for the rearmost crossmember. It still has a slight bow in it, but I think I can live with it. It's much better than it was before and it now sits upright instead of canted rearward as it was before. I may add another support plate to tie that crossmember to the next one adjacent to it to further strengthen it and keep the same damage from happening again over time.

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And I also picked up some floor coating that I wanted to try. I didn't see much out there in the way of people trying it other than a few mentions here and there. I never saw a definite "yes or no" answer to using it, or any long-term reviews on it for boat use so I figured what the heck, I'll give it a shot and see how it turns out. I chose the Restore brand coating over the Behr brand because looking at (and feeling) the sample boards they have at Home Depot, the Restore brand is probably twice as thick. The Behr brand just looked like regular old paint, maybe a hair thicker. That didn't instill much confidence. The only thing that concerns me with the thicker stuff is that it may crack over time from the floors flexing. Time will tell, and I'll be sure to give an honest review either way.

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I just wanted to let everyone know that I haven't given up. This old boat carries a lot of memories, so I'll get it back on the water no matter how long it takes!
:alright


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