The Hull Truth - Boating and Fishing Forum - View Single Post - Headhunter's 31' Contender Dive Conversion
Old 01-07-2013, 05:12 PM
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Originally Posted by JayLeto View Post
What all are you doing to the boat? Do I understand right that you are making it a side console?

The Line-X seems like the perfect product for divers. I hated bringing tanks on my boat. Was always scared somebody was going to tear it up.

I was a little hesitant to share the build here because I figured I would be crucified for tearing up a beautiful contender. But what the hell.

It started as a 1998 Contender 31 cuddy. It will be a side console express layout when we are done with it. The CC layout is great for fishing but just not ideal for what we do. There is a lot of space in a CC but it is all divided up. We need one giant open cockpit. We carry a ridiculous amount of gear, tanks, dive scooters etc etc etc. I needed the dive-friendly layout of an express. And wanted the protection from the elements.

I tried to make it work with production outboard express like Pursuits and Gradys, but they weren't ideal either. Small cockpit compared to overall length. anything over 28' long is 10+' wide, wider than I care to trailer. Not enough fishbox space. No true 24* hulls. Big fancy cabins I'd rarely use.

What drove me to the Contender 31 cuddy for this build was:
-1200 qts of in-deck fishbox space. Nuff said
-24* deadrise, nuff said.
-32'x9.5' dimensions. Easy trailering anywhere with a 3/4 ton diesel pickup.
-small utilitarian cabin that I can hose out. No frills and extra weight. No windows, no headliner.
-tons of in-deck storage.
-deck layout that lends itself well to our goals.
-The inspiration came from my friend, a commercial diver in the gulf, who built an awesome pilothouse commercial spearing boat on a 35 Contender hull.

We are adding:
-9'x12' Hardtop and custom Pipework. This is all done and the work is amazing.
-center island where CC was, will house 12 tanks stored vertically. Steel tanks are heavy and we went to great lengths to make sure the weight was down low, and on the centerline. This will have that massive weight 24" below deck height, on-center. Hatch with seating on top
-4 more Roll Control tank racks on each side for a total of 20 spots. Plenty of places for more if needed.
-31" wide console to the left of the the tank island. Single bolstered helm seat.
-Makrolon polycarbonate enclosure. Will tie hard top into existing cabin.
-Linex protective nonskid.
-New (to me) Suzuki 250 4-strokes, new Garmin electronics.

In the end I will have a trailerable expedition spearfishing vessel with few limitations. I can dive 6 people for day trips, 4 for overnights, carry 20+ tanks and all our other crap. Plenty of fishbox for anything we catch. Trailer it anywhere in the Southeast, splash and do overnight trips and/or tournaments anywhere within 150 miles of the dock. All for much less than a 33' Pursuit or Grady would cost, and a much more capable boat for what we do. We put over 400 hours on my Pursuit last year, and 3k miles on the trailer, and have even bigger adventures planned for this rig.

So, feel free to ask questions. And if you want to blast me for ripping up a beautiful fishing boat, thats cool too.

(heres a sneak preview)
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Last edited by head_hunter; 04-05-2013 at 12:44 PM.