Pictures Page 2
So far no one has shared any low cost variations of duck boats. Thought
I'd change that, as I'm proud of my creation. I purchased a 1959 Wolverine
14 ft V-hull a number of years ago as a general-purpose fishing, etc. boat.
I was told that it had started its life as a rental boat for the state of
Mass, on the Quabbin Reservoir. It is a very stable, high freeboard heavy
aluminum riveted hull. Powered by a 7.5 Evenrude, I used it for sheltered
coastal hunting into February the last five years. Well I caught the itch
to play with sea ducks and add to the safety margin when running around in
Step one, I wanted to get the boat up on plane, which a borrowed 15hp
Johnson accomplished but it didn't seem to have much margin for rough
weather or heavy loads. After consulting my homeowner's insurance co. I
found out they covered boats with up to 25hp motors. So I selected that
size (note: there is no capacity nameplate on the boat, gone long before I
got it), as it seemed to be within the maximum limits of other heavy 14
foot v-hulls. Due to cost, word of mouth, and the high usage of Nissans as
rental engines along our New England Coast, I ordered a 25hp-pull start
There was no way the transom of the old boat was going to be able to handle
the 103 lb motor due to the deterioration of both pieces of wood
sandwiching the aluminum hull. To remedy this I replaced the rather skimpy
inner transom plywood with true 1" thick mahogany creatively cut to provide
maximum coverage. Original wood was 6" high; replacement was 11" with
cutouts for the aluminum ribs. The outer wood was replaced with a
slightly larger 3/4" plywood board. The outboard is both clamped and bolted
to the new transom. Now the motor no longer bounces along the highway like
the old 7.5 did.
Another major safety issue was the floatation, at thirty years old I was
concerned. I was able to locate a Styrofoam dealer locally who sold me a
4x8x4" sheet for roughly 35$. When I removed the seat covers I found three
mice nests one mummified mouse and a snakeskin. Additionally the center
seat had some chunks of foam thrown in but not much more then half full.
Over all I would estimate that the boat had 60% of the design floatation.
The seats are now packed with the new foam.
The last step was to deck the hull over with 3/8" encapsulated marine
plywood deck. The deck sits on the rails of the boat overlapping them by
an inch. I fabricated aluminum clamps out of 1" square stock and 1.5"
angle x 6" long. Two carriage bolts draw the clamps against the underside
of the rail (outside of hull). I used six clamps down each side of the
boat. Brackets were used to fasten the stern end of the deck to the
transom wood. 1"x 6" pine was used as the coaming. 2x2s down to the seats
are used to provide added support. The same 3/8" plywood was used to make
flip boards to provide a low blind.
The cockpit is 32" W x 10' lg. The flip boards provide shoulder high
concealment and windbreak. Paint scheme was just being creative, not being
too concerned because the boat will be draped with netting or fastgrass
mats if concealment is serious. For sea ducks, I expect to get away with
the paint job. I need to come up with a good way to attach the fastgrass
mats, probably will sew in to strips on the back of each mat with
attachment loops. One attachment band each, for the top and bottom of the
flip boards. Mats will be attached after setting decoys. Still have to add
bolt on / removable oarlock sockets just in case. Also need to get the
boat welded up in the off season, it is not very water tight, but leaks
less then what the dog brings in.
Boards up - Birds Eye view
Ready to roll
The deck turned upside down