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Old 04-25-2017, 02:00 PM   #1
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Does anyone own or know anything about a 46í Delta Trawler?

I read that a 46' Delta Trawler has a solid fiberglass hull and is not cored, is that correct? Also, what type of hull to they have, full or semi displacement?
Iím still trying to figure out what I want in a Trawler. When I first started, I wanted something that would take me back to Central America I lived there for 8 years and I thought it would be easy to get there in a Trawler, just island hop down there. Now I starting to believe that Iíd better stay on the porch with the pups before I run with the pack. I stick to cruising the coast and the ICW first for as long as it takes to gain enough experience before I even think about doing something like that.

I was deadest about getting a Trawler with a full displacement hull and a single engine. Iím not sure about the hull anymore, but I still about the single engine. Also, when I first started I was thinking that a 38í boat would be large enough. From what Iím reading in this forum, maybe a 40í to 45í Trawler is the way to go.for my wife and I. I saw a 40í Marine Trader with a full displacement hull and a single engine for sale. Getting a Marine Trader is not at the top of my list. Thatís why Iím curious about a Delta Trawler, I canít find any useful information about Delta Trawler on the internet that is in my price range, ($50k to $125k) A search came up with a couple I can afford, but information was really limited. Iíd just like to know more about a Delta Trawler.
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Old 04-25-2017, 03:02 PM   #2
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Look up the boat Zopilote owned by and built for Bruce Kessler. Delta Shipyards, around Seattle, built the Zopilote for him about 1987. A 72', it saw a lot of travel before it hit a rock and sank. It was replaced with Spirit of Zopilote by Northern Marine.

If I remember correctly that hull was NOT cored, about 3" fiberglass at the bottom.

Delta built , I remember, the smallest as a 53'. Most of them were built and used in the Alaska crab fishery. SO there are some around but not many and most of the ones for pleasure use that I was aware of were the bigger ones.

I don't think your budget is going to get one unless it is in truly needs a rebuild condition and that will be expensive.

Beautifull boats even as work boats. But they were built to work and even the original Zopilote needed something like 40,000 lbs. of ballast to sit on her lines without all the work boat gear and ice tanks.

I lost the articles so this is from memory but I was so impressed with the boat I must have read the articles 20 times so a bunch stuck.

I don't know if Delta shipyards are even still active and I believe Northern marine went under a couple years ago.

Keep looking as there are other boats that would work for you but you may have to play the weather waiting game a bit more. Actually quite a few
boats in the 40-45 ft range have made the trip successfully.

Have fun looking.
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Old 04-25-2017, 04:29 PM   #3
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I think there are 2 companies that named their boats Delta

I found a company that makes a 46' trawler and there are a few for sale
there just isn't a lot of information about them in the ads

United Yachts Sales has a 1984 46í Delta Pilot House Trawler for sale for $79,900, I really like the way itís layout and it has a Genset and a single Cat Diesel engine. Iíd rather have a Perkins or Ford Diesel. These Delta Trawlers were built in Cape Canaveral by Canaveral Custom Boats
Also a 1981 41í Delta for $32,000 in Tennessee for sale, but from the looks of it, it needs a lot of work and it has twin Mercís, that alone was enough to stop me.

Then there is a really nice 43í Delta Trawler in Florida with Boats.com. The wording or listing calls it ďTurn KeyĒ for $128,000, Itís a "for real" live aboard boat with plenty of room everywhere and with the engine Iím looking for, a single 135hp Perkins. Nowhere is there any details about the hull type or if itís solid fiberglass or cored. If they are solid, I donít think they went as far as to go 3 inches, now thatís thick for a 46í boat.

I think Iíll have to contact them if I want detailed information.

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Old 04-25-2017, 05:17 PM   #4
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Dunno about Delta Boats. But Marine Traders are generally semi displacement hulls....not full. And while there are some boats that have core below the waterline, most are not cored below the waterline. Common technique is to have solid glass below the waterline and then core above it...including the deckhouse.
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Old 04-25-2017, 06:24 PM   #5
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Delta Marine in Seattle is still certainly in business. I don't believe they've constructed anything less than a hundred feet in the past decade and a half or so. You might Google them and just call and ask about the boat you are​ interested in I'm sure they have drawings etc
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Old 04-25-2017, 07:34 PM   #6
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Of course there would be others, I should have guessed.
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Old 04-27-2017, 06:58 PM   #7
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46' Delta Trawler Solid fiberglass Hull or Cored?

For what its worth; I found out the 46' Delta Trawlers does have a solid fiberglass hull. Also, the hull is semi displacement hull, not the full displacement I was hoping it would be. A semi displacement isn't that bad for what I want to do. So far my search, the 46' Delta Trawler comes the closest to what I'm looking. I think it would be kind of hard to find another single engine Trawler that size and with a solid fiberglass hull to boot! Not to mention, the ones I've seen are within my price range. But, the leader of the pack has changed several time in my search for "my" boat.
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Old 04-27-2017, 07:34 PM   #8
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I see the ad on boats.com but it doesn't look like a semi displacement hull to me. Additionally, with a single 135HP Perkins it is essentially a full displacement boat because it could not semi plane if it had to. 8 knots is probably max speed. Our old 38' Fu Hwa burned 1.5 gallons per hour at 7 knots (well 1650 RPMs) so the 2GPH at 7 knots for a 46' looks reasonable.
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Old 04-27-2017, 09:14 PM   #9
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Damn good point, how in the hell is that single 135 hp. Perkin engine going to get the power to get a 46’ Delta to plane?

I didn’t see semi displacement hull mentioned in the information when I first read the ad, I assume it was full displacement. After I made some inquiries I noticed at the top of the photo in the ad was a banner that stated "Semi Displacement" I think what you’ve picked up on is worth a question to get some clarification about her hull. I think you are right. And by the way, 7 or 8 knots is just fine by me, that’s what I’m looking for.

I took a look at some 38’ Fu Hwa online, beautiful boat and I like the way they are laid out. If you don’t mind I’d like to ask you about Taiwanese boats and all the negative comments that are being made about them. To tell you the truth, I’ve seen some really nice affordable Marine Traders, one that I really like was a 42’ with full displacement hull and a single Perkins engine. (I think that’s rare for Marine Traders, most of the ones I’ve seen have twin engines) I’m looking for something to live on with my wife that’s in the $50,000 to $125,000 range. Of course I’m hoping to finance, but I’ll have well over the 20% to make a down payment. The less I finance the better it is. If you wouldn't mind sharing, how is the maintenance on the older boats built in Taiwan? Like the one you have.
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Old 04-28-2017, 05:10 AM   #10
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Originally Posted by butchcondor View Post
If you wouldn't mind sharing, how is the maintenance on the older boats built in Taiwan? Like the one you have.
I can't really give you a completely fair answer because our boat was a Great Lakes boat that spent 7 months per year in heated storage. Also, there was a great variation in quality on these Taiwanese boat builds. With that said, I thought the Fu Hwa was well built with an exceptional hull.

Just about all of the Taiwanese boats came with teak decks and just about any boat with 30 year old teak decks needs to have them rebedded and caulked. Some owners have removed the teak or had it removed removed and replaced with non skid. The quality of some of these jobs isn't so great. Some just covered over wet, soft and rotten balsa core. Most TTs will have at least a few soft spots on the decks.

The fuel tanks in our Fu Hwa were almost impossible to see. I thought ours were in decent shape and saw no signs of any rust, however, if salt water dripped onto them via deck leaks or improperly sealed filler caps, well, you eventually will have a big problem. Most TTs also have much larger tanks than really needed for coastal cruisers. We had 400 gallons. I bring this up because if you have to remove them, they don't come out easily. Many salt water TTs are a fuel tank disaster waiting to happen if they haven't already been replaced.

As you probably have read, TTs have a bad reputation for leaky windows. Mine had been fixed, at least temporarily. I had more problems with the sliding doors not providing a water proof seal. You can kinda sorta fix that with weather stripping but really, why were doors put on that don't seal? The result is some veneer rot around the door steps.

The design of the flybridge is another head scratcher. My first issue with it is the lack of a slight slope so water will drain off the back of the bridge instead of pooling on the side of the upper helm. There are water drain holes under the flybridge helm that drain directly over the shore power outlets. Duh. There were originally pieces of wood attached to guide the water to the hole. Well, the wood rots real fast and rotten wood might even plug up the hole. Part of the problem with the FB might have been our boat was bow heavy. Not sure why. It might have been due to 300' of chain for the 45 lb anchor.

The electrical system on a 30 year old boat is going to be an issue. My boat had many owners and each one did something different with the wiring. Nothing was labelled and there were many dead end wires. I caused some of them when removed a useless LORAN-C. The boat even came with a spare LORAN-C. They both went right to the dump. Truthfully, the boat needed a complete rewiring job and modernization of all the electronics including the autopilot. I suspect most TTs will need the same if not already done.

Despite my comments, we loved the boat and sold it because of relocation issues.

Fu Hwa and every other Taiwanese boat builder built Marine Traders with again, much variation in quality. Any 30 year old TT will need a good survey and even then will need a lot of work.

The Delta 46' looks real nice but the pics showed up grainy on my PC. There is a 44' Thompson in FL that just came on the market but it has a DD 4-53. The price is right and Thompson boats were built in Titusville FL based on shrimp boat hulls. You can find it on YW. It looks fairly comparable to the Delta.
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Old 04-28-2017, 12:26 PM   #11
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The 44' Thompson in FL looks really nice and I like the upgrades that come with it. Good size generator 12kw Onan. Bow thruster is a must for me, and with me being 5’6”, I can almost walk in the engine room. The large fuel tank must give it one hell of a range, it has a lot of the things needed for a live aboard that would make life comfortable. Maybe a dťcor update, but that’s nothing. I’d consider doing something about the kitchen sink, either a larger one or a double sink. I’ve done that before. Just one thing, what do you mean with “but it has a DD 4-53”? There is a lot about boating that I don’t know.
The Great Lakes huh?, I’m originally from Chicago and spent a little time on Lake Michigan and the rivers running into it. I want to thank you for your time and comments. I would have never thought to look for the shoddy deck work covering up a Teak deck. Like all things it depends on who is doing the job and the quality of their work. I’ve always been Old School because my old man drummed into my head “Do it right or not at all” when I was a kid. (“Sure pop, screw it, I ain’t going to do it”) That never happened.
As far as working on a boat I think some of the skills I’ve picked up along the way might easily transfer over to working on a boat. I started out as an electrician and worked in various fields at one time or another, I’ve been, an Industrial, Residential, Locomotive and Marine electrician until finally one day I got smart and went to a university. I got a degree and became an Electrical Engineer. Intel picked me up before I graduated and put in charge of a design team. Later, I went to work for the Department of Defense (DOD) and worked on bunch of secret “golly gee wiz” projects at White Sands Missile Range here in New Mexico. Passenger Trains and boats have a lot of similar systems, also they packed into hard to get places where you have to remove a lot of things to even get it what you want to work on. I hate following some lazy slob who doesn’t bother to mark his wires or break them into cables and if you open an electrical locker it looks like a bunch of spaghetti. I break my wiring into cables and leave a 6” or 7” service loop when I terminate, placing tie wraps every 6 inches. (I use up a lot of tie wraps) I’ve always done my own home remodeling without hiring a carpenter, plumber or painter, drywall or electrician. I used to do all the work on my car until the complicated newer cars made that impossible. If I do the job, I know it’s done right the first time. I don’t buy cheap when I buy. I learned a long time ago when replacing a faucet. I bought the cheapest they had and 3 months later it was dripping again. Now, I buy at least Kohler quality
I think I can do almost whatever needs to be done on a boat, but at my age getting into tight quarter and doing hard work is something I’m getting too old to do anymore. I think it’s best to avoid as many problems or things that need to be fixed before I buy. To do that I will have to rely on someone else’s knowledge and experience to do a real complete and honest survey. Just picking up things from guys like you who have some experience and are willing to pass on what they know is worth its weight in Gold to me. Buying a boat that unknown to me needs a gas tank replaced scares me. Drain holes over the electrical shore supply? You need to get the guy who designed that and have him unplug it while running a heavy load during a down pour.

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Old 04-28-2017, 12:55 PM   #12
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Just one thing, what do you mean with “but it has a DD 4-53”? There is a lot about boating that I don’t know.
The Thompson has a Detroit Diesel 4-53 engine. It is an inline 4 cylinder engine. It is about 140HP and is an older (late 50's) design. I mentioned it since you seemed to have a preference for the Perkins 6-354.
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