Wednesday, April 13, 2011

April 13, 2011: I got lucky and found this...

I lucked out BIG TIME.

A couple of days ago I was driving home from work and saw this on the side of the road, put out for trash day. An original 1960s era boat "sleeper seat".

There were a set of two but one was in bad shape. Brought this one home with me late last night. You have NO IDEA how this is going to help out with rebuilding my Batboat and making the upholstery.

These are called "sleeper seats" because they fold out and you can sunbathe or sleep on them. Some boats came with a canvas top, transforming them into campers. Mine did.

I can't believe I found this in the year 2011 only a block away from here!! Saginaw is an exit town and you'll never see this type of stuff here. Maybe 20 years ago but in 2011?!?!!?

This isn't the correct seat used in the original 1966 Batboat, however, it sits at about the same height. I also can take it apart to reverse engineer its assembly to help upholster a correct pair. :)

The new "Sleeper Seat" in the Batboat before I measured its correct place.

Its in the boat now and sitting in it I can now see how some things are going to look and fit from the inside. :)

February 19, 2011; Surprise find at the Detroit Boat Show!

Almost two months ago I was at a boat show and happened upon a restored Glastron 1968 Jetflite. It is the only model of boat that had the seats I've been looking for. The same used in the original '66 Batboat! This particular year of boat was in red.

Had I known a Jetflite would be at the Detroit Boat Show I would have brought a ruler with me. lol

This is owned by Wilson Marine, a boat dealership here in Michigan. Will contact them later on and see if I take measurements in the future. :)

It is most likely on display in one of their large showrooms along with their other stuff.

They did a great job restoring this boat. This is the first restored Glastron I've ever seen.

The aluminum around the outer windshield measures 3/4 inch. The base is slightly thicker. I suspect the same trim was used on the Batboat. At least it looks like it to me. Will see if they will let me get a measurement later on.

Sorry for the lopsided photos. :/

Tuesday, April 5, 2011

Off topic: Naugahyde Zodiac closeout for hobbyists

JoAnn Fabrics over here is closing out their Naugahyde Zodiac vinyl. Its the metal flake that you'll mostly see upholstered on carnival kiddie rides.

This is also the same stuff I'm using in the Batboat but in blue.

ZD 21

$9 per yard where I am at. The normal price $24 per yard. I assume this close out is nation wide. Find it in the "red tag" area.

I came home with a yard of the Burgundy ZD 24 to recover my bench press and speaker cabinet.

The other color they have here besides Burgundy is Charcoal ZD 27, if I am not mistaken. There may be more in your area.

Please note because of the clear layer where the metal flake resides, there is no UV coating. No such thing exists in metal flake vinyl.

For more information on the Zodiac vinyl --->

Back to work

In February my cowl arrived which got me revved up about working on the Batboat again. All revved up and nowhere to go, however. Still too cold outside.

More parts that I ordered came in and it just got me even more stir crazy. Much worse than last winter!

I got a pair of welded steel fenders from eBay for $72, almost $30 less than they are locally. Really great stuff! 9" wide x 32" long x 15-1/4" tall. I opened the box as soon as they got here, rushed outside and found they fit perfectly on the trailer except the boat was in the way.(!!!)

Here they sit in my stairwell. The economy in my part of Michigan is poor. I can put them on Craigslist but I bet I'll be stuck with them for a very looooong time. :(

I promptly ordered another set. This time PVC plastic from

It warmed up in mid-March and I put them on. Took much longer than I thought but they look great.

Its important that the fenders are on early this year because I'm taking the Batboat to Flint to pick up large sheets of plywood needed to finish the boat.

Another very important thing is the transom tie-downs. These will keep the boat centered on the trailer in case of an accident. I used two bow eyes that are a spitting image of the original that Glastron used in the 1966 Batboat I.

On March 18th it was warm enough outside again to get back to work.

I used the blister card as a template to mark the holes and drill.

Perfect fit.

Now to caulk them in permanetly with 3M 5200 caulk. The next day the temperature dropped below the 40 degree surface temp that the manufacture's application instructions call for so I waited TWO MORE WEEKS to finish this job. :(

March 30th and the snow is finally gone again! Back to work.

This is permanent, below the water-line caulk. The best you can get for marine use.

I caulked them in good on the inside of the transom. Water will never leak in.

It looks like a mess but its under the splash well and after painted over with Bilgecoat no one will ever see it.

Turned out really good on the outside, also. Excess wipes up cleanly with acetone.

Now to wait 7 days for it to cure. No problem there. It snowed again a couple days later.

This is my brand new, never used caulk gun. Paid nearly $2.30 for it last fall and it broke the first time I used it.

Don't buy "cheap" folks. The rivets broke on through. It would not puncture the bottom seal of the caulk tube (that I didn't know I had to take out). A run to the hardware store for the $3 gun saved the day.

What a pain!

The next afternoon while on the way to an all day stay in Royal Oak I stopped by Michigan Lumber in Flint to price the plywood. $24 for a 4' x 8' sheet of 1/4 inch Douglas Fur exterior ply. A bargain!

I'll need 6 sheets but that is for the next post. Until then I am keeping busy working in the yacht yard and with my business.

Stay tuned! The best has yet to come!