Captain's Log

Breathing New Life into a Workhorse: 2007 Beavertail B2 gets a Facelift


In 2004 I purchased my first Beavertail Skiff, a B1 series that boat was light, nimble fast and bare bones. It was the first Beavertail sold outside of FL in the company's humble and early beginnings. That boat served me well for 2 years and I took delivery of my second Beavertail a B2 in 2007 right before I departed for my annual Tarpon Trip to the Everglades of Florida.

Fast forward 7 years and roughly 1,960 days of guiding out of this skiff and I'm proud to say it's just now time for a facelift. I was fortunate to have met Beau Johnson of Johnson Custom Boats here in Wilmington, NC in 2006. Beau had recently relocated to Wilmington from the Outer Banks where he spent ample long days working under the tutelage of Paul Mann building world class sportfishing Yachts. Our friendship began over a passion for all things boating and in 2011 and several oyster scratches later it was time for me to recondition my Beavertail Hull.

 Beau was one of the few people I trusted with the reconditioning of my "office" and he knew the time constraints I was under to get the skiff de rigged, sanded, glassed, sanded some more, sprayed w/ new Gel Coat and sanded another 8 times. The hull literally looked nicer that final day of work than it did when I took delivery of it in 2007 and it looked good that day too! Under Beau's watchful eye I learned a ton about sanding, faring, shaping and more. We took some of the hook out of my skiff, reshaped the bow entry a little and overall made the skiff faster and more responsive at the wheel. It was a wonderful experience to learn about all the things that made this boat perform for me and suit my style of fishing and see that it could be refurbished with the right attention to detail and a ton of patience. Over the next few weeks trust and respect for Beau and the skills of his crew grew immensely.

After so many seasons of guiding the deck has begun to show some age from countless redfish, trout, sharks and tarpon wrangling situations not to mention dropped pliers, hooks, jig jeads and bare feet wearing on the surfaces. With February being a particular slow month for guide (I do have a back up boat and am fishing mind you... :) work it's time yet again to get the old B2 back in the shop for some TLC and ready for the 2014 season!

I began with the easy part, I removed all of the hardware and adhesive from the deck; cleats, poling platform, gauges from the console, binnacle, bow platform, fuel fill, fly line toe rails and more. Next I took on the painstaking task of removing the SeaDek...with a scraper and a heat gun and will power...7 hours later I got all of the SeaDek and adhesive off of the platforms and cockpit. I'll be re installing some custom Aquatraction padding from John Thelen and crew. They have all the same capabilities as SeaDek and a faster turn around time on the project and one hell of a great product. I'll show more of this as we get into the Re-Rig portion.

Now that all the hardware is out and new parts are arriving, it's time I repaired some dents and dings in the top sides gel coat before I sand all of the non skid off and prep the deck and console/cockpit for new AwlGrip paint and nonskid.

In order to fix existing chips in the gel coat it's necessary to round out and grind out the edges of all the rough chipped cracks in order to get good adhesion and bond on the new gel coat application. I like using a dremel for these fine detailed areas and have already completed the Dremel Sanding process of prepping the nicks for new gel coat to be pulled. After the new gel coat gets spread I'll sand the new gel coat fare and be ready for paint!

I hope you enjoy the rebuild. I am looking forward to seeing your comments and possibly answering some questions along the way!

All the Best,
Capt. Seth Vernon