First post, need some guidance... converting 1978 26' pacemaker to center console

Discussion in 'Boat Design' started by nadornati, Sep 28, 2012.

  1. nadornati
    Joined: Sep 2012
    Posts: 13
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    Location: NJ

    nadornati Junior Member

    I'm currently restoring a 1978 26' pacemaker that I picked up a little less than a year ago. Basically got the hull for free and it came with a rebuilt 350/Borg Warner trans (not in boat). I have currently gutted the interior, and am replacing rotted wood I come across. Unfortunately, a lot more than expected - I did realize this was going to be a project and the cheapest part would be the purchase of the boat. There's a LOT of wet wood in the flybridge. The wood in the gunwhales is wet. The condition of the deck appears to be strong but it's deffiently got wet wood inside just like the rest of the hull.

    Ever since I picked up this hull, I've pondered the idea of turning it into an express/ center console (my favorite type of boat, missing the one I had). While I have been told just leave as is/ enjoy it/ etc, I've come to realize if I'm sinking all this money into my project, why not do what I truly want. The hull has low, hollow stringers (not rot to be had :) ) and a main bulk head centered underneath cabin door. What I would do if I were to convert would be leave gunwhales, remove flybridge and the "floating" floor per se. I would add 2 more bulk heads similar to the existing and run floating supports to each. I would still have a small cuddy upfront, so deck wouldn't run all the way to bow. I would leave the gunwhales open ( so to speak) for more deck room.

    So what do you experts think? Am I crazy? Is this a dumb idea? I'm very up in the air with this. The current project is on thehulltruth, searchable pacemaker 26' restoration.

    I can add pics later tonight. Just looking for some insight from someone who's done/doing/ changed their mind about doing this before! Thanks.
     
  2. PAR
    Joined: Nov 2003
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    Location: Eustis, FL

    PAR Yacht Designer/Builder

    Sure you can do this, though you might have to address some torsional loading issues, it's not imposable and would probably make the boat much more practical.
     
  3. nadornati
    Joined: Sep 2012
    Posts: 13
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    Location: NJ

    nadornati Junior Member

    Thanks for the feedback. Can you elaborate on torsional loading issues?
     
  4. PAR
    Joined: Nov 2003
    Posts: 19,133
    Likes: 471, Points: 93, Legacy Rep: 3967
    Location: Eustis, FL

    PAR Yacht Designer/Builder

    Decking and cabin structures help hold the sides of the boat, in relative position and also keep the hull from twisting and wracking in a sea way. Center consoles can suffer, if not well executed in this regard, because the middle of the boat is wide open. Most designs compensate with a casting deck forward, which has a bulkhead at it's after end and when coupled with some seat boxes or fish wells and a splash well bulkhead, can address the torsional loading issues. Without pictures, I can't tell if these concerns will be easy or troublesome to address.
     

  5. nadornati
    Joined: Sep 2012
    Posts: 13
    Likes: 0, Points: 1, Legacy Rep: 10
    Location: NJ

    nadornati Junior Member

    well, i have some older photos.. i can take more detailed tomorrow. Heres a few of the hull, i have a few old ones on this computer when i was gutting the cabin. more to come tomorrow
     

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