Learn how to restore a boat easily with these simple steps. At World Sailing Charters, we know that boat restoration is the process of returning a boat to good usable condition and to be structurally sound and seaworthy. You can do this yourself or with the help of someone with experience in boat restoration.
In this article, we’ll give you some of the best tips to get your boat back into sailing shape. If you’re restoring a boat and want to learn how to build a simple boat then we suggest you check out our latest article on that process.
Let’s begin restoring your boat!
What You’ll Need to restore a boat
There are some tools that can make your job much easier when restoring a boat. Good quality tools are needed to ensure your boat will last for many years. You can choose to buy a complete restoration kit, or simply buy the tools as you need them for your project. Most of the restoration kits and tools come with detailed instructions, so you don’t have to worry about losing time by getting it wrong while working on your boat. The most important tools include:
- Air compressor – Used to inflate the tires for the boat and other inflatable equipment.
- Cordless drill – Used for driving screws, drilling holes, and other similar tasks.
- Hammers – There are several types of hammers to choose from, all with different uses. These include claw hammers, nail pulling hammer, chisel hammer, and sledge hammers for demolition work.
- Jack – Used to lift and move your boat on the trailer.
- Spanners – Small tools used for tightening up nuts and bolts.
- Torpedo level – This is a good tool to help you check if your boat is level, even if the water is undisturbed.
- Ball peen hammer – Used to wipe, clean, and smooth small surfaces of metal objects, such as blocks of wood or engine parts before painting them .
Tips on How to Restore A Boat Easily
- Perform A Structural Inspection
Before you start with any restoration work, make sure your boat is structurally sound. To do this, you need to have a few general inspections done on your boat. The first one to do is a hull check, which should check whether there are leaks in the keel area, and whether any parts are damaged. The second check is for the boats interior and deck areas. Make sure everything is in good condition and free of water leaks and rust. The last check is to check the electrical system, which should be of the highest quality.
- Inspect The Hull
Before using any boat you have restored, it is necessary to inspect the hull, especially if it is small. You can do this by using a torpedo level and a torpedo gauge. You should also use your mirror to check the bottom of the boat for any cracks or leaks. If you see any cracks or leaks, which would indicate bad structural integrity of the hull, you need to repair them as quickly as possible.
- Remove Excess Water
Remove excess water from your boat to avoid corrosion and dry rot. You can do this by using a hose fitted with a pressure nozzle on the hull. This will remove water from the boat quickly and efficiently. You can also use an automatic bilge blower if you want to remove all of the water in short amount of time. A manual bilge blower works faster than an automatic one, but is harder to use for cleaning large areas.
- Remove Exterior Wood
If you have to remove some wood from your boat due to rot or minor damage, use a chisel and hammer to remove it. Be careful not to hit the metal components of your boat in any way, as this will damage the metal. The wood can then be replaced with a good quality piece of wood.
- Remove The Old Fuel Tank
Your fuel tank will most likely need replacing if it is beyond repair. To remove it, you have to drain the tank first. Then, remove the fuel line from your boat and unscrew the fuel tank. If you have a low profile boat, you can do away with the fuel line altogether by opening the holes and installing a rubber hose on each end of the old fuel line where it connects to your boat.
- Remove Metal Stains
To remove metal stains from your boat, first you have to clean the area with a cloth to ensure no residue or dirt is left behind. Use a wire brush and a 50-50 solution of white vinegar and water to remove the stains. Rinse the area with water after this. Any remaining rust can be removed by rubbing with steel wool soaked in rust remover.
- Repair Any Metal Damage
Metal damage can be caused by hitting a rock or some debris while on the water. No matter how serious the damage, you have to repair it as soon as possible so you don’t end up hitting something even harder and causing more damage to your boat. To repair the metal, use an angle grinder with a wire brush to remove any rust and paint. Wash down any dirt or rust from the area, paying close attention not to damage any other parts of your boat.
- Replace The Sails
If you have a sailboat, and some of its sails are damaged, it is necessary to replace them. The same goes for the bowsprit and the jib, as they can be easily broken from hitting another object. To repair these parts, first remove any tarnished or rusty parts using wire brush and some sandpaper. Covering any rusty areas will prevent the new material from rusting. Next, add new material to the sails using epoxy or marine sealant.
- Scrub Barnacle Off The Exterior
Barnacles and other debris can get stuck to the exterior hull of your boat, this is why it is necessary to scrub it off using a wire brush. The easiest way to remove barnacles is by using an angle grinder with wire wheel attached to it. This will remove all barnacles and other debris from your hull.
- Paint The Hull
Use a power washer with a fan tip to clean the bottom of your hull, and then screw on new zincs. Now you have clean metal ready for painting. Use a brush to paint your hull. After that, you can remove the excess paint from the hull using a rag, then smooth the surface using a fiberglass scraper.