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C Hawk 23 Rebuild...

Old 07-30-2018, 10:40 AM
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Default C Hawk 23 Rebuild...

I purchased a 23' C Hawk that had been sitting in a field near my home for a couple of years. The boat has a great running Suzuki 200hp outboard and the trailer is in great shape as well. I knew the boat needed work as the floor was soft in a few spots. I used the boat last summer and decided to go ahead with the rebuild a few weeks ago. My son and I have the floor out and have removed the foam and the leaking fuel tank. I am planning to redo the stringers and the transom (from inside the boat) then the cap needs to be recored. I will be using epoxy and marine ply for this rebuild. I do have a few questions for you guys that have much more experience with this than I do:
  • The boat currently sits on a roller trailer and the rollers are in good contact with the hull...is this acceptable? Do I need more support before I remove the stringers and transom wood?
  • What is the best method of removing and flipping the cap when I get to that point? I have thought about cutting it into pieces but would rather keep it all together if possible...
  • What thickness ply can I go to on the floor? The original floor appeared to be 1/2" ply. If I do decide to use nida-core for the floor, what thickness would you use?
  • Is ply the best for stringers and bulkheads or can "board lumber" be used? I have read mixed results on both...
  • What would be involved in lowering the floor in this boat? If it is too much of an undertaking, I will just go back on top of the lip I cut around the hull. I am just curious.
I want to enclose the transom and add a bracket to the back for the outboard engine. This site has some really knowledgeable builders and I have learned a wealth of information just reading here. My rebuild will take longer than the average because I work a full time job as a Lineman...so I am forced to work on the boat on days off. I will get some pictures up as soon as I can. I appreciate any info/advice any one wishes to offer in advance!
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Old 07-30-2018, 11:10 AM
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You are n the right place.. good luck!

I will let the pros respond with the correct advice ..
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Old 07-30-2018, 11:40 AM
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•The boat currently sits on a roller trailer and the rollers are in good contact with the hull...is this acceptable? Do I need more support before I remove the stringers and transom wood?
Answer: If you have a level concrete pad that the boat can rest, it would be better if the boat was off the trailer. Put the keel (centerline) of the boat flat on the concrete and use blacks of scrap wood to level each of the corners. You can rip out all of the old and rotten parts at any time. But before you replace anything, make sure that the boat is not twisted. Use a tape measure from the center bow of the boat and extended to each corner.

•What is the best method of removing and flipping the cap when I get to that point? I have thought about cutting it into pieces but would rather keep it all together if possible...
Answer: The cap should simply unscrew from the hull. Before removing, screw 3 or 4 2x4"'s across the cap (port to starboard). Then screw 2 2x4's or 2x6's length wise. Then simply lift the cap off. Measure the width of the hull before removing the cap and write it down. Without the cap, the hull will spread.


•What thickness ply can I go to on the floor? The original floor appeared to be 1/2" ply. If I do decide to use nida-core for the floor, what thickness would you use?
Answer: 1" Nidacore. Keep in mind that if you decide to use Nidacore (which is a fine choice) that you can't easily screw anything into it.


•Is ply the best for stringers and bulkheads or can "board lumber" be used? I have read mixed results on both...
Answer: Plywood. Just make sure that you seal up the wood. Yes ..... plywood is still the strongest, lightest and easiest material to use for stringers and bulkheads. Just seal it up completely.

•What would be involved in lowering the floor in this boat? If it is too much of an undertaking, I will just go back on top of the lip I cut around the hull. I am just curious.
Answer: Put this thought out of your mind. You have enough other things to worry about.
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Old 07-30-2018, 11:50 AM
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I am going through a rebuild and had many of the same questions. I plan on using coosa board for the middle section of the floor where my console, leaning post and t-top are going to be mounted. Nida core for the rest. I am also using coosa for the transom. Much more expensive but you dont have to worry about meticulously sealing the ply wood. I have my hull on block and am doing the transom first then stringer and floor.
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Old 07-30-2018, 12:29 PM
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Great advice from Chris rack above. Check out some of his work on here.
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Last edited by Capt.George1; 07-30-2018 at 12:37 PM.
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Old 07-30-2018, 09:17 PM
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Chrisrack, I really do appreciate you taking the time to answer my questions! I do not have a concrete pad to unload the boat on...so I am just going to leave it on the trailer (my land is not flat, but rather sloping) and block up the keel as well as place a few 6x6's under the hull at locations where there is no contact with the roller. I will upload a couple of pics to show where I am at the moment with the rebuild. I am sure I will have many more questions as I progress...




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Old 07-30-2018, 09:20 PM
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By the way...I am so surprised this boat lasted for 30 years in this shape. The stringers and floor were rotten and the foam was very saturated with water and gas from the leaking fuel tank. Very poor job of sealing the wood. At least I can take the time to do it the way it was supposed to be!
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Old 07-31-2018, 05:03 AM
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I'll be watching. Lot's of great guys on here with invaluable info. Plus lots of rebuild pics to get ideas from. Always be thinking a few steps ahead. Sucks to cut up something you've already done. Good luck, keep the pics coming.
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Old 07-31-2018, 07:01 AM
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FL.flatback 222, If I’m not mistaken you rebuilt a aquasport correct? If so, please feel free to post some pictures of your build here....I love to admire the work of others...plus it gives me motivation!
I am getting ready to remove the stringers and the wood in the transom. I will try to post pictures as I go along.
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Old 07-31-2018, 07:11 AM
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That's right, it was my first experience with fiberglass. I'll have to get some pics together and put them in my profile album. It was a fun and aggravating project. I learned a lot between friends who have done a few boats and watching builds here. But it's rewarding when you get on the water. Knowing every inch and confidence in your work.
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Old 07-31-2018, 07:51 AM
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You may want to consider replacing the transom and stringers in phases to keep the shape of the hull and then pull the cap. It’s a lot easier to keep the hull from twisting than to try and untwist it, especially if you bedded stringers in a twisted hull. Removing and replacing one at a time is what worked best for me.
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Old 07-31-2018, 08:13 AM
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Awesome! I enjoy looking at others work. It gives me inspiration. Post the pictures when you can!
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Old 07-31-2018, 08:32 AM
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Not an expert but own the same hull. Like another said, I don't think lowering the floor is a good idea. I got my boat brand new and feel like they should have raised the floor a half inch if anything. I have enclosed transom and a 200hp on a porta bracket so that has some impact I'm sure. The boat self bails fine at the dock but a little water gets in with a few guys in the back. When you are putting your floor in, you might consider creating a trough well, just a little drop down right in front of the scuppers to contain that little influx from the ping pong balls. That's what I would have done with mine if I had the ability to go back...That or raise entire floor. Good luck and I'm subscribed. I'm about to take a saw to an old boat here in the next few years maybe. Trying to learn from others too.
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Old 07-31-2018, 09:59 AM
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2TDave, I appreciate your advice as well. I will certainly heed it. I plan to remove the stringers first then replace them before going on to the transom. Bluejack, you are right, I do not plan to lower the floor at this time...I was just curious what was involved. I am going to build off the lip of the existing floor instead. All great advice and information and I am grateful for all of it. I am definitely a beginner in the world of boat building (I have used fiberglass cloth and epoxy before) and I need all the help I can get. Thanks again guys!
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Old 07-31-2018, 10:23 AM
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Happy to help. Personally I would and do replace the transom first then remove and replace one stringer at a time. Unless you can get the boat level and build a cradle to hold it that way.
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Old 07-31-2018, 10:26 AM
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^^^^definitely
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Old 07-31-2018, 11:35 AM
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Originally Posted by 2TDave View Post
Happy to help. Personally I would and do replace the transom first then remove and replace one stringer at a time. Unless you can get the boat level and build a cradle to hold it that way.
Great advice! I will do just that. Thank you guys!
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Old 07-31-2018, 11:40 AM
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Maybe a pic of the trailer? Some of the roller trailers are real sparse on rollers. you may end up with a few belies in the bottom? you could always use some untreated cheap lumber, and basically put temporary bunks under her on top of the roller brackets. Also, if rebuilding on the trailer, make sure to block up the trailer with the boat square and level. Trailers twist too, and if sitting on uneven ground, it may cause you to build some twist into the hull too. Good luck!
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Old 07-31-2018, 12:12 PM
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Did pretty much the same as you're doing to a 25 a few years ago, stringers weren't near as bad though. You're on the right track with your current game plan, I'd redo one stringer at a time after cutting them back and gutting the transom.
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Old 07-31-2018, 02:17 PM
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Awesome project! ill be following
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