Boat Design Forums  |  Boat Design Directory  |  Boat Design Gallery  |  Boat Design Book Store  |  Thanks to Our Site Sponsors

Go Back   Boat Design Forums > Design > Boat Design
Register FAQ Members List Calendar Search Today's Posts Mark Forums Read Most Recent Posts Gallery Images Search

Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread Display Modes
  #1  
Old 06-27-2012, 09:25 AM
marjamar marjamar is offline
Junior Member
 
Join Date: Jun 2012
Rep: 10 Posts: 5
Location: Loveland, CO
Inflatable Pontoon Boat Redesign

Hello people. Been enjoying my redesigned, cheap inflatable pontoon boat and thought I'd find someplace to post about it as there may be others would would like to make one of their own.

Not selling anything, just like being creative and find this little craft does just what I was hoping it would, and still pretty cheap.

I started with a $208 Cheek Company Sport LT one-man inflatable pontoon boat from Sportsman's Warehouse. Bought it to get back into fishing. It was my son's idea for us to each buy one and go out on some of the lakes around here in Northern Colorado. It's been more then 40 years since I quit fishing to keep up with my businesses and raising a family, and now I'm semi-retired and wanted to go back to some of the fun stuff I did in my youth.

Well, we bought 3 of them (extra one for one of my son-in-laws who's an avid fisherman), a nice fishing pole and some tackle. Went out over the weekend and had some great fun on the water -- Except I sat in water the whole time. That wasn't too fun as it was a rather chilly day and my rear end didn't appreciate being cold and wet for those few hours.

Took mine to my shop Monday and did some considering on what it would take to fix this thing so I wouldn't have to set in water anymore. Came up with a few very simple ideas, but since I tend to kinda go overboard on things generally, I kinda did on this as well.

I decided I wanted to use wood for the deck boards and also wanted to use a trolling motor. I decided to buy a better (softer) seat and also wanted some shade as the sun here really hits hard (above 5000 feet or more) around here. We have a tube bender in the shop, so I decided to make use of it to keep the design somewhat inline with the original bent tube look the boat came in. Wound up finding some wood that is similar (in water resistance) to Teak wood, so bought some 10 x 5/4 x 8 and ripped them into 3/8 x 3-1/2 strips for the decking slats. This wood is very hard, almost like oak in it's toughness and weight, so I didn't need or want too thick of a deck to keep it as light as I could. I bent the 1" tubing for the main deck in a rectangle about 4-1/2' x 32". It takes the place of the stock connecting tubing that ties the 2 pontoons together. Didn't modify those, just make the same connectors on the new deck, so they just slipped in where the original piece use to work.

Next I build the elevated rear tube deck/bench that doubles as a motor mount and can serve as a seat for a grand kid or 2 or a place to set my tackle box and cooler. This also replace the original which just had a netting material covering of the tube. It didn't serve as a motor mount, just a place to set stuff.

The battery box was next. It doubles as a elevated seat stand as well. This works quite nice as I was able to design-in an umbrella holder that rotates along with the seat so it's always overhead no matter the seats rotation.

The front tube design allowed me a place to build a small wooden storage area for misc. stuff, lures and my fish finder. It also doubles as a handrail if I want to stand to fish or stretch my legs.

All in all, it's quite simply a extremely vast improvement over original boat. I have spent about $250 on the wood/tubing and another couple hundred on the motor/battery. The fish finder was a luxury option I chose to buy after I begin to see how nice this was turning out while being constructed. So, not counting this luxury item (a must have for fishing in my opinion, however), I've tripled the price of this boat. But, it is still far better in my opinion then anything close the same dollars would have bought, plus it was very fun to design and build.

Hope it gives some of you ideas of your own.

Thanks for reading.

-Rodger

Edit- Added 2 pics. Me on boat to show scale (I'm 6'-3" 240 lbs.) and the original boat (product photo).
Attached Thumbnails
Inflatable Pontoon Boat Redesign-_igp9530.jpg  Inflatable Pontoon Boat Redesign-_igp9550.jpg  Inflatable Pontoon Boat Redesign-sport_lt.jpg  


Last edited by marjamar : 06-27-2012 at 10:21 PM. Reason: Fixed a spelling error
Reply With Quote


  #2  
Old 06-27-2012, 03:30 PM
portacruise portacruise is offline
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jun 2009
Rep: 218 Posts: 866
Location: USA
Mar:

There is US national small fishing pontoon forum where members trade ideas on redesigns like yours:

http://www.bigfishtackle.com/forum/F...g_General_F81/

The archives are full of ideas on customizing these type of craft, so they make for interesting reading. Just about every type of alteration has been done, some of which are quite unusual/extensive and useful. There have been some with power/shade/holders/finders/livewells/ etc.

Thanks for some great ideas, but most seat/motor redesigns try to keep the center of gravity as low as possible for safety reasons....

Hope this helps.

Porta

Quote:
Originally Posted by marjamar View Post
Hello people. Been enjoying my redesigned, cheap inflatable pontoon boat and thought I'd find someplace to post about it as there may be others would would like to make one of their own.

Not selling anything, just like being creative and find this little craft does just what I was hoping it would, and still pretty cheap.

I started with a $208 Cheek Company Sport LT one-man inflatable pontoon boat from Sportsman's Warehouse. Bought it to get back into fishing. It was my son's idea for us to each buy one and go out on some of the lakes around here in Northern Colorado. It's been more then 40 years since I quit fishing to keep up with my businesses and raising a family, and now I'm semi-retired and wanted to go back to some of the fun stuff I did in my youth.

Well, we bought 3 of them (extra one for one of my son-in-laws who's an avid fisherman), a nice fishing pole and some tackle. Went out over the weekend and had some great fun on the water -- Except I sat in water the whole time. That wasn't too fun as it was a rather chilly day and my rear end didn't appreciate being cold and wet for those few hours.

Took mine to my shop Monday and did some considering on what it would take to fix this thing so I wouldn't have to set in water anymore. Came up with a few very simple ideas, but since I tend to kinda go overboard on things generally, I kinda did on this as well.

I decided I wanted to use wood for the deck boards and also wanted to use a troweling motor. I decided to buy a better (softer) seat and also wanted some shade as the sun here really hits hard (above 5000 feet or more) around here. We have a tube bender in the shop, so I decided to make use of it to keep the design somewhat inline with the original bent tube look the boat came in. Wound up finding some wood that is similar (in water resistance) to Teak wood, so bought some 10 x 5/4 x 8 and ripped them into 3/8 x 3-1/2 strips for the decking slats. This wood is very hard, almost like oak in it's toughness and weight, so I didn't need or want too thick of a deck to keep it as light as I could. I bent the 1" tubing for the main deck in a rectangle about 4-1/2' x 32". It takes the place of the stock connecting tubing that ties the 2 pontoons together. Didn't modify those, just make the same connectors on the new deck, so they just slipped in where the original piece use to work.

Next I build the elevated rear tube deck/bench that doubles as a motor mount and can serve as a seat for a grand kid or 2 or a place to set my tackle box and cooler. This also replace the original which just had a netting material covering of the tube. It didn't serve as a motor mount, just a place to set stuff.

The battery box was next. It doubles as a elevated seat stand as well. This works quite nice as I was able to design-in an umbrella holder that rotates along with the seat so it's always overhead no matter the seats rotation.

The front tube design allowed me a place to build a small wooden storage area for misc. stuff, lures and my fish finder. It also doubles as a handrail if I want to stand to fish or stretch my legs.

All in all, it's quite simply a extremely vast improvidence over original boat. I have spent about $250 on the wood/tubing and another couple hundred on the motor/battery. The fish finder was a luxury option I chose to buy after I begin to see how nice this was turning out while being constructed. So, not counting this luxury item (a must have for fishing in my opinion, however), I've tripled the price of this boat. But, it is still far better in my opinion then anything close the same dollars would have bought, plus it was very fun to design and build.

Hope it gives some of you ideas of your own.

Thanks for reading.

-Rodger
Reply With Quote
  #3  
Old 06-27-2012, 06:33 PM
Petros Petros is offline
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Oct 2007
Rep: 1507 Posts: 2,563
Location: Arlington, WA-USA
so, you get out on the lake...and than the wind came...

There is a reason the maker keeps the seat low, these are used around here to float down rivers, sometimes with swift choke points. So you actually altered the original design to suit your intended purpose, something far I suspect from the original design intent.

Nice work, btw. What kind of wood did you use on the deck?
Reply With Quote
  #4  
Old 06-27-2012, 07:09 PM
marjamar marjamar is offline
Junior Member
 
Join Date: Jun 2012
Rep: 10 Posts: 5
Location: Loveland, CO
Portacruise - Thanks for the link. As to seat height, I'm real comfortable with this design for lake use. Already weathered a pretty nice bit of wind a couple days back. About 20 MPH gusts, which was enough to twist me a bit on the seat, but not enough to lower the umbrella. If I were going down a river or even quite large lakes, I'd be concerned most likely, but for what I'm using it for, it's just what I want.

Interesting you mentioned a live bait well, as it is coming to this boat shortly. Already have it in the design (the center 1/3 of the elevated rear deck lifts up), just have to break some aluminum and tig it up. Small 12v. circulating pump fits next to the battery box inside the framework -- Which BTW will also have some decking added to the sides with a control panel added for charging, DC output connectors, pump switch, lighter socket, etc.

Petros- The wood is Mangaris. It comes from Indonesia/Thailand and is very nice to work with. I've not used it before this, but in many applications, I've heard it can duplicate what you would get using Teak -- At far less cost.

Thanks for the nice replies.

-Rodger
Reply With Quote
  #5  
Old 06-27-2012, 08:25 PM
portacruise portacruise is offline
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jun 2009
Rep: 218 Posts: 866
Location: USA
Rodger:

You're welcome. Tube Dude on that site is a master at redesign, and even has compiled an extensive book of pictures on his creations. Most of these are also available in the archives as well.

Hope it's Ok to ask what lake that is. Looks to be glassy calm in the pic and is probably well protected. Are registration tags needed for a troll motor, unless it is a private lake....

I have redesigned the Creek Co. ODC 420L (7#) myself for air transportation/hiking/ pack in. Flew into Denver and did the St. Vrain near Lyons in the Summer of '09- caught a few rainbow...

Hope they get those fires under control soon...

Porta

Quote:
Originally Posted by marjamar View Post
Portacruise - Thanks for the link. As to seat height, I'm real comfortable with this design for lake use. Already weathered a pretty nice bit of wind a couple days back. About 20 MPH gusts, which was enough to twist me a bit on the seat, but not enough to lower the umbrella. If I were going down a river or even quite large lakes, I'd be concerned most likely, but for what I'm using it for, it's just what I want.

Interesting you mentioned a live bait well, as it is coming to this boat shortly. Already have it in the design (the center 1/3 of the elevated rear deck lifts up), just have to break some aluminum and tig it up. Small 12v. circulating pump fits next to the battery box inside the framework -- Which BTW will also have some decking added to the sides with a control panel added for charging, DC output connectors, pump switch, lighter socket, etc.

Petros- The wood is Mangaris. It comes from Indonesia/Thailand and is very nice to work with. I've not used it before this, but in many applications, I've heard it can duplicate what you would get using Teak -- At far less cost.

Thanks for the nice replies.

-Rodger
Reply With Quote
  #6  
Old 06-27-2012, 09:20 PM
marjamar marjamar is offline
Junior Member
 
Join Date: Jun 2012
Rep: 10 Posts: 5
Location: Loveland, CO
I'll take a look at "Tube Dude's" stuff. I'm thinking about building another one from scratch using a couple of 10' pontoons I've found for cheap. This would be a 2 or 3 person flat deck pontoon boat with side rails and fold up canopy. Been thinking of designing it to use the Suzuki 2.5 outboard. The wife would come along if I had room for her, so I'm giving it some serious consideration. Looking at some others along these lines might not hurt.

That's Lon Hagler Resesvior. It's about 4 miles from the house, south of CR 402, off South CR 21 in Loveland. Been on it about 4 times now and caught half dozen trout so far. Better lake is Boyd Lake. Caught 4 nice Walleye in 3 outings so far. Love them walleyes, mmm.

Yes, anywhere in Colorado, if you have a motor on it, you need to register it.

Fires are unbelievable right now. Latest is Colorado Springs. That whole town looks to be in trouble. Many, many house up in smoke. Very sorry to see this... Very sad for those loosing so much of their possessions and memories lost to these fires.

-Rodger

Quote:
Originally Posted by portacruise View Post
Rodger:

You're welcome. Tube Dude on that site is a master at redesign, and even has compiled an extensive book of pictures on his creations. Most of these are also available in the archives as well.

Hope it's Ok to ask what lake that is. Looks to be glassy calm in the pic and is probably well protected. Are registration tags needed for a troll motor, unless it is a private lake....

I have redesigned the Creek Co. ODC 420L (7#) myself for air transportation/hiking/ pack in. Flew into Denver and did the St. Vrain near Lyons in the Summer of '09- caught a few rainbow...

Hope they get those fires under control soon...

Porta
Reply With Quote
  #7  
Old 07-01-2012, 02:03 PM
Wavewacker Wavewacker is offline
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2010
Rep: 220 Posts: 613
Location: Springfield, Mo.
Jack's Plastic Welding site is all about inflatable poontoons from small 6' seats to I believe 30' or so for the Big Daddys.

This also reminds me of an inflatable boat my uncle and I made when I was a kid in the 60s. One sheet of ply with the front corners rounded off. Drilled 6 holes, on the deck about 8" in from the sides. Used conduit bending the ends of the pipe so that they provided posts under the decking and ran across the top of the deck, ] shaped with the short ends down. Went to the tire shop and bought two large innertubes, stretched them front to rear on each side and sraped them into shape. He built a small seat and motor mount framed out of the conduit and ply. Oars made with metal fabed oar locks. The battery sat behind the seat straped with nylon straps. Painted it. Inflated the tubes and hit the water, it was a blast in the river. He tossed it in the truck and went fishing and later added other stuff, boxes, etc. Very simple, but I have not seen another one since....

Now, it seems you could make a nicer one and cover the bottom say with hypalon material and fasten it to the deck, better oars, etc.
Reply With Quote
  #8  
Old 07-05-2012, 03:03 PM
marjamar marjamar is offline
Junior Member
 
Join Date: Jun 2012
Rep: 10 Posts: 5
Location: Loveland, CO
Happy 4th!

Hope everyone had a happy 4th of July (US of course). Came back to northern Minnesota for a week to visit family. Nice to get out of the smoke as well.

Wavewacker - I built a houseboat back about 1960 (when the adventures of huckleberry finn came out). Never went into the water, just a land fort to play in with my little brother and some friends. Let me dream of what it would be like to live and float down the Mississippi. Must have been an adventure for you as well.

-Rodger
Reply With Quote


  #9  
Old 07-11-2012, 01:54 PM
Wavewacker Wavewacker is offline
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2010
Rep: 220 Posts: 613
Location: Springfield, Mo.
Well, it's still a dream, I gotta get something going! I was in the James River here in town and a small lake, still an adventure for the young!
Reply With Quote
Reply



Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search
Display Modes


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Please Help Me I Need More Speed On My 12.5m Pontoon/Tri-pontoon Boat Hodewu Boat Design 9 02-12-2012 09:11 PM
Posible to redesign a jetboat into an outboard engine boat? Agaponi Boat Design 14 06-01-2009 10:29 AM
Inflatable Boat wet-foot Boatbuilding 0 07-30-2006 11:49 PM
How to build an inflatable tube for a pontoon littlefish Boatbuilding 0 07-17-2006 07:28 PM
How to build an inflatable tube for a pontoon littlefish Boatbuilding 0 07-17-2006 07:03 PM


All times are GMT -5. The time now is 03:44 AM.


Powered by: vBulletin Copyright ©2000 - 2014, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.
Web Site Design and Content Copyright ©1999 - 2014 Boat Design Net