Another Caribbean Reef Runner

 Well, I went and did it. After much soul searching, discussions with the very important other half, seemingly endless net research, and a general evaluation of where I wanted my life to go for what years are left, the money has gone down. Did before Xmas, in fact, but I still had some details to sort re various aspects of the build. Now that it is more or less settled, I can go  public, as it where.

I can probably blame Darren253 for all this, because it was his build thread that really got me thinking. That, and the desire to cover more sea miles than I could reasonably ask the Dominator to do in comfort. So the idea took shape, my impending 65th birthday meant I could dip into a bit of super, and here we are. The boat and trailer is on order, the outboard has been paid for. I was lucky to snag a 150 4s Mercury on the last day of the special which finished in December, at a considerable saving over the RRP. Aftergoing for a run on Darren's, the performance is much more than adequate, I can't find a single person on the net with anything but praise, and the simple low-stressed big block design should keep long-term ownership costs down. The motor will be hung by Midwest Marine, Mercury agents in Geraldton, after I have finished  my instal work on everything else. The bluetooth module to enable you to record and monitor performance figures and codes on your phone was thrown in with the deal.

Currently awaiting a quote on a good electronics setup. I'm looking at Raymarine gear, consisting of a Axiom 9RVX Pro, and an Axiom 7 RV. Reason for the smaller one is that I can't quite get a 9RVX and a 9RV side by side on the dash. This will give me the ability to run a 1kw transducer with no extra modules, and the 7 will be dedicated as a chartplotter, with maybe a sidebar of engine info.

 Transducer looks like being a thru-hull B175M with tilted element, as the RV-100 already has high chirp, as well as the sidescan/downscan/3D functions with the stabilisation built in. These are a transom mount, and will likely be mounted on a sliding bracket to keep it out of the wway when required. I'm also going for an autopilot, probably the Raymarine EV-100.

An electric capstan will be mounted on a removable bracket, with a stainless tipper, and, as I ended up selling my Maxwell HRC-6FF with the old boat, I'll likely go for a Lonestar GX2, as the instal on the drums on these hulls is far easier than it would have been on my old boat.

This will all be powered by a dual battery setup, with VSR and parallelling switch. A good size House electrical feed of 13.2mm2 will run to a main panel to feed all the goodies without voltage drop. The two winches will be powered separately. 

As for the hull,I'm opting for the walkthrough transom, not cheap, but I've had enough of climbing over transoms. One boarding platform with underslung telescopic ladder will be fitted. The no-cost raised hardtop option is being taken up, and it will be fitted with two Bowmar hatches for ventilation. Under the passenger seat, there will be the standard storage box, but, on the helm side, I'm fitting a stainless seat support bracket  to fit an icebox under. My reasoning for fitting it under the helm seat is that when you are trolling for billfish with 3 on board, the two  observers will have a seat each. I'll make the box myself, fitted with a lid that can open without pulling the box out of position. The long 1440mm long underfloor space which can be opened up when you remove the little divider will do for day tripping, and the big madfish bag may become redundant. We'll see how it goes for holding ice.  A large L&R Boatlatch has been scored courtesy of the Fishwrecked economy. On the subject of trailers, I have opted for a larger one than normally supplied,C-channel, as the whole weight thing would be decidedly iffy for going away, IMO--going for a 2400kg Easytow, with breakaway brakes.

All the usual hull fruit will be added, such as washdown, live bait tank, and fresh water with its own pump. LED lighting for under gunwhales has been ordered, and overhead LED worklights and an LED spotlight are being decided on. Rod holders in trolling positions will be heavy duty, with a couple of slimlines added for storage and downrigger duties. I'm sticking with the standard non-skid deck for now--my reasoning is that I'll give it a go, as retrofitting a covering won't be any harder than doing it first up. I will fit a couple of bits of Z-tread or the like on the boarding platform and walkthrough if they look slippery. But certainly no carpet. Full bunk infills for those overnighters, but no built-in toilet. After a lot of thinking, I came to the conclusion that, while they may be a winner for day tripping, they would be bloody useless for overnighting--who wants to pull the bed up to get to the dunny in the middle of the night? Our current porta-potty will continue to do duty, and at least we have a door you can close.

4.5 m outriggers are planned, still deciding on the form they will take, but a kiwi-made set by Reel Rods, hardtop mounted , has taken my fancy. I'll just need to confirm the hardtop will be strong enough.

Bennet trim tabs are being fitted by Mansfields, as is the rocket launcher ,the walk-through transom, the boat latch, and the s/sbait board. All the rest will be my work. Our place will start looking like xmas at the post office over the next month as all the orders start arriving.

I intend to do it once, and do it right. 


Posts: 51

Date Joined: 27/05/14

Very nice

Fri, 2018-01-19 15:13

 What made you go for the Reefy instead of the 2300 was it purely cost? Still looking at boats myself.

Dale's picture

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Date Joined: 13/09/05

Fri, 2018-01-19 15:50

 Be watching this with interest.

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ranmar850's picture

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Date Joined: 12/08/12

Cost was a small factor

Fri, 2018-01-19 15:58

 but the 2300 is getting up there in sheer size and weight, needs a much bigger and more expensive motor--and I still want the option of beach launching it at Winderabandi ( add more sandtracks to the shopping list) and towing it into Tamala without dramas. Also still relatively manageable for single handed operation with a drive-on trailer if I so desire.

rob90's picture

Posts: 772

Date Joined: 06/02/13

 Wow! Sounds epic. They are

Fri, 2018-01-19 16:27

 Wow! Sounds epic. They are an awsome boat those reefies and it definately sounds like your doing it rite. Cant wait to see another awsome build thread. Congrats

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 Hi my name is rob............. and I'm a........... fishaholic

Posts: 141

Date Joined: 19/08/13

great build

Fri, 2018-01-19 16:36

 great build and I doesn't sound like you have missed anything out. Just curious with the raised hardtop do they make the windscreen taller as well or do you just put some clears in to fill the gap. Is the underfloor storage area insulated as i know the old ones weren't and wouldn't hold ice well    cheers Ace 

Faulkner Family's picture

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 sounds like a dream come

Fri, 2018-01-19 16:46

 sounds like a dream come true. hope with all this you can still catch the fish like the dominator. 

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ranmar850's picture

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Date Joined: 12/08/12

Sure hope so

Fri, 2018-01-19 16:59

 it was a good fish catching machine.

With the raised hardtop they angle the windscreen forward, less slope , taller rear support and obviously taller clears at the side--but no clear infill. They have actually done that, before Caribbean started offerring the raised hardtop from the factory. I certainly don't mind having a more vertical windscreen, less sun comes in when you have the sun overhead. I did enquire about having the area around the underfloor pocket insulated from the factory, said they couldnt do it. I've done similar in another glass boat, no insulation underneath, and it was fine for day trips. I'll probably put 25mm of insulation under the lids to help a bit.

Darren253's picture

Posts: 312

Date Joined: 23/07/16

 Congratulations, apologies &

Fri, 2018-01-19 17:16

 

Congratulations, apologies & congratulation again! 

I don’t foresee any regrets 

Boyce's picture

Posts: 211

Date Joined: 04/02/17

 Sounds amazing

Fri, 2018-01-19 17:39

 Sounds amazing mate

Congratulations

A true dream boat

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Date Joined: 17/06/10

Let the build begin

Fri, 2018-01-19 22:03

And the progress photos flow, well done, you are here only once make the most of it.

Jackalchub's picture

Posts: 352

Date Joined: 10/03/12

 Awesome, sounds like a

Sat, 2018-01-20 10:01

 Awesome, sounds like a beast.. curious if the caribbean’s are wood free? 

ranmar850's picture

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Date Joined: 12/08/12

Not entirely, unfortunately

Mon, 2018-01-22 12:49

 The deck, stringers and frames are all synthetic. The transom is still laminated. I'd rather it not be, but the simple fact is, that if the process of drilling holes and mounting stuff is done correctly, that transom will outlast me by a long way. if you look at failures, it is always attrributable to either A) very poor build practices which were rife until the ealiy noughties, and some big names were guilty--looking at you, Haines Signature, among others..--and B) numpties drilling new holes and thinking it was fine to "seal" them with silcon or sikaflex. Your transom starts rotting, right there. Holes must be drilled oversize, expoxy forced into the woodgrain thoroughly. Allow to set, then use some kind of sealant just to stop water getting through into the boat. 

gruntre69's picture

Posts: 385

Date Joined: 15/10/16

 Way to go mate! looking

Sat, 2018-01-20 11:12

 Way to go mate! looking forward to reading the build thread.

I'm wondering why the can't spray some foam around the kill tank before putting the deck and hull together. It must be a space thing, I'd be asking them twice about this one. Hopefully Raymarine gets the NMEA2K data sorted soon, currently it is only available in the dashboard screens... The only data I really would like available if I had the 2nd Raymarine screen is engine trim... Possibly RPM. The sounder seems to be pretty good though...

I love the auto pilot addition.... Luxury!

Darren253's picture

Posts: 312

Date Joined: 23/07/16

I use the autopilot on my

Sat, 2018-01-20 11:35

I use the autopilot on my simrad (Lowrance kit) 85% of the time out currently. Not actually as autopilot but in heading hold mode. It’s so nice to be able to set a course and only worry about keeping a lookout for objects/other boats than have to focus on holding your course too. Even in some funky weather it holds it own.

Just adjust it by 1 or 10deg intervals on the sidebar. Also great for setting trawling patterns/zig zags up North.

I’ll probably save more than the $1200 in fuel by driving in straight lines 

 

Videos like the one from earlier in the week show how dangerous it could be if mis-used without keeping watch.

ranmar850's picture

Posts: 1641

Date Joined: 12/08/12

Used correctly, they are a godsend.

Sat, 2018-01-20 12:05

 You just need to keep a lookout. My primary goal is for setting up trolling patterns, and heading out to places over the horizon. Very easy to wander all over the place on a long run if you don't have a visual reference point to head for. Not cheap, but I think it just finishes it off-it was the last thing I decided on.

I did push for some two-pack foam, surely it can't be that hard? But apparently the glass moulding for the underdeck  is bogged in between the two main stringers, with only a very small space below to allow water from further forward through, and there just isn't any room for the amount of  foam which would make a difference. They have a low deck, in the interests of stability, which means that there is actually no useable depth below the deck either side of the fuel tank to fit anything  in. Most of the aft half under the deck is taken up with the 225l fuel tank.

Chinbald's picture

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Date Joined: 21/02/09

Love the Reefy

Sat, 2018-01-20 12:13

 Look forward to the coming reports and seeing her on the water.

Jackfrost80's picture

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Date Joined: 07/05/12

Sounds like a dream coming

Sun, 2018-01-21 19:51

Sounds like a dream coming true. Can't wait to see the pics

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ranmar850's picture

Posts: 1641

Date Joined: 12/08/12

Ebay has copped a flogging

Tue, 2018-01-23 08:03

 or has ebay given me a flogging? Either way, I've been assembling all the little bits and pieces that add up, particularly if you have to keep raiding the stainless section at the local hardware.  I did a fair bit of research on deckwash pumps, and the only one that seems to have any longevity is Shurflow. Pretty expensive over here. Looked in the US, usual story, postage makes up most of the difference. Until I kept looking and found a better deal. Went back today to buy it, $30 cheaper than yesterday. Win. Liitle bits add up.

No little bits in the electronics. I have accepted a quote which has blown out  the original overall project price, more or less as I detailed above, just with the addition of an external GPS aerial, as the hardtop will probably interfere with flush-mounted units. When you look at the overall cost of the project, only maybe 2  grand is being spent on overseas vendors, the bulk of it is still being spent locally. I'm putting in a shopping list with John at Max Marine in Geraldton for some items, as they need to be right.

I decided to go with a Tuffwinch 240HC. They are the equivilent size to a Lonestar GX3, with 300mm drum and 1500W motor. I did a lot of research yesterday, found pics of a Reefrunner instal on Lonestars website of the older G3 1000D, found dimension drawings,compared sizes, it should fit OK.There is a really  good deal on ATM, $1600 complete with 120m of nylon double braid, chain, all control gear, backing plate,  and a heavy wiring harness. I'll likely put a short, heavier topshot on the business end for abrasion resistance, and maybe some dyneema underneath to see if I can get to 150m overall.

Talking to Mansfields, the hardtop is strong enough to walk on, and mount a rack on, but the point I was thinking of mounting the riggers is the thinnnest bit, and the point loading of outriggers being quite high, it will need some reinforcing. Not a big deal, or too expensive.

Posts: 585

Date Joined: 20/04/09

Outriggers

Wed, 2018-01-24 07:12

congrats on joining the reefie club. I wish the raised hardtop was an option when we got ours. Def get your riggers mounted on the roof if you can. I have some wishbones mounted on the sides of our cab but you lose a bit of spread with the angle that they run at. If you can get them on the roof it will allow you to run the outriggers flatter and get full use of the pole length.

If you want any info on how ours is fitted out send me a PM. Coby fitted ours out. 

ranmar850's picture

Posts: 1641

Date Joined: 12/08/12

Cheers for that

Wed, 2018-01-24 08:10

 There is a good video on Youtube about these particular riggers. can't post a link on this work computer, I'll fire mine up and post it later.

PM sent

ranmar850's picture

Posts: 1641

Date Joined: 12/08/12

Here is a link to it

Wed, 2018-01-24 10:58

 www.youtube.com/watch

 

it's on a Fuglycraft, but you get the idea

ranmar850's picture

Posts: 1641

Date Joined: 12/08/12

Custom switch panel ordered

Sun, 2018-01-28 20:36

 This has been doing my head in, standard panel only has 6. With all the stuff I want switched, i came up with the need for 12. Looked at a lot of options, and decided to build my own. I have access to s/s sheet--tried buffing it, came up a mirror finish. So i spent a couple of hours today marking it and drilling carefully to avoid distortion. Settled on the type of switch, was just about to order the components. Did another check, and realised I had missed the wipers! and really had wanted one more than 12 anyway, and that settled it. So back to the US site I had been looking at before. newwiremarine.com/custom-marine-switch-panels/  And ordered a 16 hole panel, carbon fibre look, and switches. It was going to cost me about $100 to build my own anyway. so the two spares can be these two

newwiremarine.com/product/low-beer-alarm-rocker-switch-contura-ii/

 

newwiremarine.com/product/deploy-gatling-rocker-switch-contura-ii/

 

gruntre69's picture

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Date Joined: 15/10/16

 Great web site!

Mon, 2018-01-29 09:27

 Great web site!

ranmar850's picture

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Date Joined: 12/08/12

Remote control spotlight ordered

Wed, 2018-01-31 11:35

 Something else to agonise over. Budget is not unlimited, but I feel you have to be very selective about how you save money. I wouldn't trust an ebay cheapie chinese job--this is something which has to be reliable. For the same reason, won't have a wireless remote controlled one. Thought about a couple of fixed LED's, just not comfortable with the idea. Lights need to work on the plane AND at rest, so fixed is difficult and you will always have the glare off the bow issue as you have with any hardtop.  Juggling handhelds is impossible , and I usually end up yelling at deckies who won't keep it pointed WHERE I F***G WANT IT ! So after much online research, settled on a make and model, and actually found someone in the US who will ship at a good rate. Golight G-2020. Hard wired remote with dash mounted panel. so if I want it on, I can adjust for different bow attitudes.

The goodies are building up, the tuffwinch arrived today. 

the package also includes chain and all the necessary controls.

The goodies tub is starting to fill, the bloke at the post office probably thinks I'm dealing drugs.

ranmar850's picture

Posts: 1641

Date Joined: 12/08/12

How to fasten stuff to the insides of boats

Wed, 2018-02-07 11:46

 The perennial question. People drill holes, loop cable ties, use double sided tape cable mounts--if you are lucky, you have something to drill into for a screw, but this is usually only behind a dash somewhere. What if you have the underside of gunwhales with nothing to mount to? I know the reefie has some conduit sections glassed in on one side, don't know about the other. and what about mounting a panel to put you battery switches/VSR/circuit breakers on?i've seen reefies done in aa number of ways, none of them very flash, there isn't really provision for it. Not to mention running battery cable across under the well from side to side. I've bought s/s P clips with rubber inserts in different sizes, but had no obvious way to fix them in some spots

So I saw this on THT. I actually questioned someone on the use of cable tie mounts used extensively on this big job, stuck to raw fibreglass, thinking they were double sided tape type which always eventually fall off. Not so, they are a different product, called Weld Mount, and they also have s/s studs. Looks the goods, and will solve a lot of problems in doing a really neat job. 

www.weldmountsystems.com/how-it-works.php

I'm working on getting some out of the states, no local distributor nowadays.

Posts: 4740

Date Joined: 17/06/10

Certainly looks the goods

Wed, 2018-02-07 20:53

From the videos it certainly looks the goods for securing stuff via a very strongly bonded stud to boats.

ranmar850's picture

Posts: 1641

Date Joined: 12/08/12

Switch panel arrived

Wed, 2018-02-14 16:50

 New switch panel from New Wire marine in the US. 

 

 

This will most likely be mounted in portrait mode. That tub is full, now, and it is still coming in. Electronics likely here Friday/Saturday.

sea-kem's picture

Posts: 10179

Date Joined: 30/11/09

 That's a very sexy panel,

Thu, 2018-02-15 17:29

 That's a very sexy panel, I'll look at that website as I'll be looking for similar items soon with my little project. Where are you finding the hosing etc Ranmar? 

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Love the West!

ranmar850's picture

Posts: 1641

Date Joined: 12/08/12

If you mean the hose you can see in the pic

Fri, 2018-02-16 06:35

 That's 1 1/8" for Rule bilge pumps. I got that from ebay, Whitworths also sell it. Look for metreage length lots, most places want to sell you a fixed length. It certainly pays to look around for this stuff, and I have learnt that the "ebay price" is not necessarily the cheapest. With some of these fittings, Whitworths are actually cheaper for the identical part if you can go in and pick it up yorself, and not have them mail it. I keep a lot of stuff on my watch list, and sometimes you get that notification that that item, or one like it, is on sale. So, if you are not in a hurry, it can pay off. I've picked up some really good little deals like that.

Posts: 4740

Date Joined: 17/06/10

Very nice

Wed, 2018-02-14 17:38

That's a nice looking switch panel.

Dale's picture

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Date Joined: 13/09/05

Wed, 2018-02-14 17:41

 Deploying gattling, yikes

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"Just because you are a Character, Doesn't mean you have Character."

Mr Wolf

 

 

ranmar850's picture

Posts: 1641

Date Joined: 12/08/12

look out, pingers!

Wed, 2018-02-14 18:14

  I really only needed 14 switches, but panels ( unless going full custom) only were in 12 or 16. "Spare"  is boring, I just couldn't resist it.

Stevo81's picture

Posts: 971

Date Joined: 16/04/12

Nice Work! Busy times coming

Wed, 2018-02-14 17:41

Nice Work! Busy times coming up for you mate! 

Not sure how your hard top is set up or if you able to flush mount anytyhing on/in it? If so, might be worth getting some extra cables pulled up the tubes at the factory if thats an option?

On seperate occasions over the last year or so Ive pulled up an extra light/pwr circuits, a NMEA backbone fro GPS antenna & VHF and am now in the processing of installing a new battery/solar setup so another decent cable to get up there for the panel. 

Im sure your on to it but....

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                                   ••••••••  Electrical Contractor NOR  ••••••••

ranmar850's picture

Posts: 1641

Date Joined: 12/08/12

I do need to get some wiring up top

Wed, 2018-02-14 18:21

 There is an LED deck light each side of the canopy, and a GPS aerial to fit. Without seeing the boat, I reckon I can drill through the feet of the hardtop supports from underneath  and thread some stuff up, coming out the top of the tube in a grommet. Maybe not the GPS aerial, as it will likely have a plug on it. Although  I am comfortable cutting and rejoining that sort of stuff if I have to. They already have wiring for wipers, cab light and anchor light going up the front somehow, and I need to get the wiring for the remote spotlight up there somehow too. And yes, a feed for some removable solar, most likely.

Stevo81's picture

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Date Joined: 16/04/12

 

Wed, 2018-02-14 18:46

 

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                                   ••••••••  Electrical Contractor NOR  ••••••••

Francis's picture

Posts: 181

Date Joined: 17/06/08

 Haha love that switch panel!

Wed, 2018-02-14 19:06

 Haha love that switch panel! Look forward to seeing this, good luck with the fit out and enjoy !