Progress Thai trawler

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Veteran Member
Jan 14, 2009
Here is a pic to show finshed paintwork on hull - I have deliberatelt kept the same colours as I want to retain the fishing boat look.* Gotta hurry up and get it in the water now before it all starts to crack with the heat here!

*Rudder, shaft and prop should go on tomorrow and hopefully the engine too.* I got some batteries in today and ran some temporary battery cables hooked up to a BEP dual battery switch cluster with VSR.

On thing I learned is that I should have had the carpenters work first and then not have the cauliking and painting done until engine etc was finished as it is is so important to get the boat back in the water quickly once the hull caulking and painting is done.*

Guess I have a lot more to learn about wooden boats along the way with this project.* I am just lucky to be in a place where carpentry work for local style boats is very cheap and quick.*

Anyway the pressure will be off once the boat is floating again and I can start to think about converting it to a family boat. **


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Don't worry too much about the caulking.
As long as you have applied a decent primer and antifoul it should hold up for at least a few weeks.
I know when I built my boat we caulked her about 2 months before launch.
She still opened up a fair bit but with a big electric bilge pump (240 V0 not a small Rule or Johnston) she took up within 36 hours.
Initially the water rushing in sounded like a flood but we maintained the level low and just keept a watch for the first day or so.
Your local boys will have a good idea what is best and good luck.
By the way I like your traditional look, way to go.

Just a quickie, what did you use as putty over the caulking.
Did you Sika or not.
I used a traditional putty of linseed oil putty , mixed with antifoul and whiting powder.
I later Sika flexed the 2 water line seams and have had no need to do any more over the last 13 years.
Hi Benn,* actually they used a hard type filler over the rope caulking.* Apparently over the last few years all the fishing boats here have started using it.* At first I assumed it was flexible as they described it as a "glue" which in Thai is the same word you use for silicone sealant or epoxy resin so covers a wide range.

It is this hard type filler that they are concerned about cracking.* I followed the advice of a trusted local freind who did the same process to his inboard powered long tail boat a few years ago and reported good results.* Plus it is what I see all the boats doing in the yard which is full with wooden trawlers.* But they all launch very quickly after the work is done below the waterline.

The hull is primed with coal tar epoxy paint then a Jotun anti-foul over that.

I have heard of people talking about Sika and may look at it in the future if the boats turns out to be right for our needs and the local filler does not hold through a full year.*

Time will tell and I will be happy to have the boat back in the water and on a mooring rather than in the yard.* Just means today and tomorrow will be pretty hectic days.* Luckily I own an engineering company so can throw a bunch of staff onto getting the engine and gear box in and hooking up fuel, water and exhaust quickly.*

Cheers, Leon.
A quick update to say my trawler is now floating again and happily swinging on it's regular mooring.* All went smoothly with the launch, the hull is completely dry and will hopefully stay that way........* Only hiccup was in all the rush after the late decision to change engine, gearbox and prop somehow we endedup with the wrong rotation prop!

Engine is a Ford Sabre 80hp turning clockwise when viewed from the front end, so anti-clockwise at the flywheel.* Gearbox is a Velvet Drive 72C 2.9:1 that turns in forward the same direction as the engine.* Prop is right handed and should be left handed!* In the rush I just left the prop up to the machine shop and never checked on engine rotation!

So need to find another prop, luckily local fishing boat style props are cheap here.* Then beach the boat, again luckily have a good spot very close to my mooring, while I swap the props.*

Now I can take my time to start modifying cabin and installing electrics, fuel and water tanks etc etc.* With plenty of local daytrips thrown in to keep the kids happy and interested.


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I like it also. You also have my philosphy where working on boats always includes a boat ride.
Yes I like to go anchor up somewhere so the kids can play or fish or swim.* I can hobby and do some work out and about as well as at a mooring.*

You are right Old Fish boat, we had to go about ten miles with the gearbox in reverse yesterday - better than putting it in forward and driving the boat backwards!*

That is all part of the challenge of boating.
Ya gotta have a sense of humour when it comes to launch time.
At least the problem is solveable and reletatively cheap in your neighbourhood.
It's a terrific feeling getting the boat afloat and it doesn't sink.
Now for the hard but enjoyable task of making it cruising liveable and also keeping the kids and missus interested, it would appear you have the right plan for that.

a bit of moving around to anchorages will give you a great feel for the boat .

I have just come off the hard (3 weeks) pait and rot job will start another post.

Had the family on board over the weekend.* My wife got all the ingredients together for a blessing ceremony on the bow of the boat to bring us and the boat good luck.* I got to hold the firecrackers.....note I took the boat out away from other boats and anchored it from the stern to blow the crackers away from the boat!

This weekend try to organise the right prop and start to lower the wheelhouse floor so we can stand up.*

Cheers, Leon.


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