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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Well, I've been posting enough about this darn boat in my truck and Bronco threads that I figure I'll just make a dedicated thread for it now. I'll explain what it is, give some backstory on my acquisition of it, and then get up to speed on where I am with things.



This is a Porta-Bote brand folding portable boat. It's made out of "High-Impact Polypropylene-Copolymer". This is their 14' model from 2005. They apparently redesign them what seems like every 10 years, so if you google some pictures of them, you'll find slightly varying designs. It's mostly the seats and transoms that differ, I believe the hull stays the same.

Anyway! I was in the market for a kayak a couple months ago. I really wanted to take my twin 9-year-old daughters out for a ride on the river here on kayaks, but seeing as they've never been on one, I thought maybe a tandem would better suffice. That way I could do most of the work and they wouldn't potentially get overwhelmed like they probably would if I put them on one of their own and then just shoved them out into the river and said "figure it out!". However, a tandem kayak also probably wasn't the best fit for a 230ish pound guy and two 9-year-olds to go paddling. They're not really made for 3 people, after all, and probably wouldn't be too comfortable for three butts.

Thanks to the FB Marketplace algorithm, it decided to show me a porta bote, which is really not like a kayak, but thanks anyway FB. So, I modified my search to look at porta botes to see what they were. I thought the concept was pretty cool and it would definitely fall in line with the way I like to try and haul everything on my Bronco when I go camping without using a trailer.

I found one that a guy in Boise was selling. For $800 he was selling this 14' porta bote along with a 35lb thrust Minn Kota electric trolling motor, 4hp Mercury 2 stroke outboard motor, 3-gallon fuel tank with hose and primer bulb, a set of full size oars with oar locks, some battery powered lights for night fishing that clamp onto the boat, a rod holder that also clamps onto the boat, a swiveling/folding seat that is screwed in place onto one of the porta bote seats, a set of wheels that clamp onto the boat towards the stern you can grab the bow and pull the boat around, a big blue bag that holds most of this stuff, and a partridge in a pear tree.

Boise's a little bit of a trip for me, about 160 miles from where I currently reside, but it seemed like a pretty good deal and he didn't even list everything in the ad, so I got some bonuses once I showed up and he started pulling things out of his storage unit for me.



I took my kids with me and I borrowed my girlfriend's minivan for the trip to Boise, so I strapped the hull down on the roof and tossed everything else inside the van. I didn't get a bunch of pics of the boat on her van as we essentially did a baton handoff with the van as she needed to leave to work as soon as I got home, but here's a shot of it on the van once I got out and before I started to move everything to my truck.






Here's all the loot once I moved it over to my truck. I essentially backed the van up to my truck and then slid the hull off the roof and laid it on the bed of my truck for the time being.













And then here it is being partially set up. I was showing it to my kids, because apparently no one thought what I brought home was a boat, my kids or my girlfriend. lol









 

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Discussion Starter · #2 ·
One of the first things I did after getting all of this stuff was to take the 4hp outboard to a boat shop and have them look it over. The PO said everything worked the last time he used it before he shoved it all into his storage unit, but he admitted that it had been about 4 years since then. So, I wanted to have things gone through as I know jack squat about boats, boat motors, and especially 2-stroke engines. Though, the past couple of months, I have been learning a lot! lol

Long story short, the shop went through my 4hp motor, told me it was good to go, I picked it up, went the couple miles from my house to the river a few days later, and then proceeded to become stranded in the middle of the river with a motor that would not run for more than 10 seconds and oars that simply would not suffice against the current that day. I was not very happy.

Another long story short, I tested the motor again at home, no luck, took it back to the shop so they could "run it in front of me", they had no luck, I left it with them, they had a lot of issues with it, they pillaged parts off other outboards in their outboard graveyard, I now have a perfectly running 4hp outboard and they ate the cost for that second visit and then said they would never work on an outboard that old again. lol. I still haven't bothered to confirm the year, but this Mercury is somewhere around a '69-'70 model based on pictures and videos I've seen online of others like it.

The next time I had my kids once the motor was working properly, we took it back to the same place I launched it before and had much better luck. The 4hp motor doesn't move the boat very quickly, but it seems very steady and consistent in its performance and suffices for putting along the river. It'd probably be perfect for fishing, which is what the PO used this setup for.

Here's a few shots while in the boat. We just putted around a section of the river and chased birds. It was the "successful maiden voyage" of the boat in my possession, so I was just feeling things out as far as what to expect from this portable boat.










I don't have a GPS speedo app on my phone, but if I put in an address on google maps and tell it to give me directions, it'll tell me my speed that way. We got a whopping 5mph, which, from my reading online, is to be expected from this particular boat and this hp of motor.

 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Couple videos from that day.




 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
My next "trip" was to a lake about 20 or so miles from my house. This time I took my dogs to see how they'd do in a boat. They had mixed feelings about it. Curiosity, Fear, Excitement, the works.

This is how I previously transported the boat in my truck, to give you an idea. It'd be more ideal on a truck with a canopy over the bed or a ladder rack, so you can transport it parallel to the truck, rather than... this.







I changed the way I did the strap(s) over the bed, to make it more stable, but it's the best I can do without a way to hold things parallel to the truck. Yes, it does catch wind and driving into a headwind is interesting. lol. My truck is very underpowered, so you feel it all.

I tried to move things around and make my payload as compact as possible to give my dogs some room. We did about 45 mph there and back. They did well, all things considered. They're seasoned bed riders.




Boat set up with the wheels on it for transport. I need to modify them for the weight of the outboard, though. They camber-in from the weight and rub against the boat and make it very difficult to pull the boat. If I was just rowing, they'd work perfect.







On this 14' model of Porta-Bote, they have these extra transom braces. I'm assuming it's so you can run a larger motor without worry of breaking the transom, as this boat is heavier than say a 10' model and could benefit from some more hp, which means more weight.







We had to wait out a relatively short wind storm before I felt comfortable launching the boat, but we got out on the lake eventually. It was tucked tails for the whole boat ride for both of them.







Hazel got a little brave towards the end of our boat ride and propped herself on the edge of the boat. Still had her tail tucked, though.







I believe it was around 9:30-9:45 or so once I packed it up and we left the lake.





On the way there, I had the outboard near the tailgate. On the way home, I put it up against the rest of the boat parts and then strapped it to the bed, so it would hold everything there. That gave the dogs a little more room to lie down for the drive home.









And a couple videos of the dogs in the boat.



 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
My third successful launch was in the Snake River again, but in the town I used to live in which is about 40 miles away from my current home and it's down in the canyon rather than being level with the surroundings like it was for our first launch. I didn't take many pics from that day, but here's one of my daughters taking in some sun on our way back to the boat dock.






This was on the 4th of July and there was an insane amount of people kayaking and paddle boarding in the river. I know the picture doesn't really show that, but believe me. lol. We also saw some people BASE jumping from the Perrine bridge as we were coming up on it right after we launched. It had to be a quick trip, though, because I worked that night and they had to go back to their mother's. We were only on the river for maybe 45 to an hour. We went from Centennial Park to Pillar Falls and back, for anyone familiar with the area.

This time I took the boat on my Bronco and it was a much better experience as far as driving with it. Around four times the horsepower helps, along with having the hull parallel with the Bronco. It really felt like nothing was up there as far as wind resistance goes.

I don't have any pics of the Bronco setup from that day, but this is from the first day I put the boat on the Bronco when I was figuring out how I wanted to strap it down.






One ratchet strap on the rear bar on the cab. Strap is looped under the bar on both side and then the ends meet on top of the boat. I don't know how most people strap stuff like this to their roof racks, but I saw this done on a random video on youtube once and I was like "That's genius!". lol. So that's how I do it now.





One strap on the front holding the bow to the bottom of the bumper. There was a short rope on the boat when I bought it, so I just tied the ends together to make it a loop and feed my strap through it and hook both hook to the bumper. Same thing I did when it was on my truck, but with a beefier strap. I used two straps on the Bronco and three on the truck.





I left the rear of the boat flush with the rear of my soft top. The weight of the boat is on the cross bars above the cab, but I wanted to keep the boat from rubbing against the canopy. I put a piece of a pool noodle I found at the house, cut to size, on the end of the boat. It kept it from rubbing and helped keep the end of the boat from bouncing too much if I went over bumps. It worked for a few miles and then flew off. I knew there was a 50/50 chance on that when I put it on, as I didn't secure it to the boat, so I'll try something different another time.

 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Pretty cool stuff!!! It looks like that F100 could fit a bolt together home made 2x2 ladder rack & hold that boat perfectly level above the roofline & free up some doggie room!

Thanks! It's been pretty fun so far.

Yeah, I've been passively looking for a shell/topper on the FB marketplace as a possible option. I could always move my ladder rack/roof rack off the Bronco and over the the F100 as well, though it might be a bit more floppy on the truck with no sort of canopy over the rear.

A home made rack is definitely a possibility as well, hadn't really thought about doing that. I like the idea of having the dogs more secured in the back at the same time as having the boat parallel with the truck, which is why I considered a shell first. I suppose I could put some slats along the sides of the rack and kind of put them behind bars, so to speak. lol.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
So, after dinking around with the boat with this 4hp outboard, I decided I need more hp. Not crazy hp, but enough to move this thing a bit faster than 5 mph. I've seen people with these boats on youtube and they're getting them upwards of 15-20 mph with around a 10hp motor, which, again from what I've read, is around the max speed for a "plastic", floppy hull like this. I guess they get a bit unstable once you approach 20 mph. I'd settle for 10, honestly.

A while back I was browsing the marketplace again and happened upon this, minus the Sold label. Guess who bought it.


Product Automotive tire Bumper Automotive exterior Font




$100? Yes sir, I'll take that risk on an unknown condition motor! I was looking for some other items at the time and as I was making the rounds one day, collecting my items, I swung by and got this 1974 Johnson 9.9hp outboard.







 

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Discussion Starter · #9 · (Edited)
I believe the biggest hurdle to overcome with adding a more powerful outboard to these boats is that the transom can only handle so much weight before it becomes a problem and a larger motor equals more weight.

The one advantage I have with the 14' model vs the shorter ones is that this model has those aluminum transom supports that go from the transom to the sides of the hull and attach to an aluminum channel that is riveted to a large length of the hull, essentially 3 of the 4 seats.

I've seen some mods done to these boats to add strength to the transom and this is what I decided to do for my solution. Basically, I decided to put a piece of aluminum plate in the center section of the transom that is recessed, where the outboard mounts to.

That's also the section of the transom where the support brackets attach, so this way I'll essentially have the outboard hanging from the aluminum plate that is supported with those brackets to the hull, which should relieve a lot of stress from the transom, which is mostly plastic. The sides of the transom are aluminum angle that is riveted to the plastic transom and then there is another, thinner aluminum angle that's screwed into the bottom length of the transom.

The center section of the transom, from what I've read, has some aluminum sandwiched between the plastic, which is doing what I'm already planning to do, but my version will be much beefier.


Here's one of the aluminum angles on the side of the transom. I believe it's 1/8" thick.





Here's the aluminum angle that goes along the bottom. It looks much thinner than the side pieces and I'd guess it's 1/16" thick.





Here's the center section and you can see some of the aluminum that's sandwiched in it when you look at the holes for the support bracket bolts. This portion of the transom has seen some damage and repairs prior to my ownership and I'd imagine it'd be a lot worse without the aluminum inside of this portion. There's more damage than what is pictured.







So, the other day after work, I waited for the metal recyclers to open and then I went "digging" for some aluminum plate. Of course, the one piece I found that I thought was perfect was the most expensive stuff they had, but since they sell it by the pound, it's a lot cheaper than if you just bought this chunk pre-cut online or something like that. This is a 10" x 15" piece of 1/4" thick 6061 aluminum. It cost me a whopping $6. It was sold to me as weighing 3 pounds, so I guess they sell it at $2 a pound. Yay math. If it wasn't so beat up, it nearly has a mirror finish.











I don't recall the measurements for the center section of the transom, but it was smaller than this piece of 6061. I wanna say it's close to 8" x 12". So, I had to make a couple of cuts. The only thing I have to make cuts is an angle grinder and angle grinders, apparently, are not recommended for cutting something soft like aluminum. I can see why that is, as it took a long time to make the cuts. Basically the metal is so soft that it gums up the cut-off wheel. However, I can confirm aluminums ability to transfer heat amazingly well compared to steel. (y)

I cut it down to size and then I had to deburr the cuts and smooth out the gouges from the metal that were there when I bought the plate. There were enough gouges making it sit all wobbly when it was in place that I just decide to go all the way around the edges with the grinder.





I needed some aluminum angle, but I couldn't find any at the recyclers, so I bought it locally. I was very unimpressed with the price compared to my chunk of 6061. lol. $20+ for a 3' length of 1/8" thick 1.5" x 1.5" aluminum angle. No idea on the type of aluminum, but it's a lot easier to cut than the 6061, regardless of the difference in thickness. It was night and day.

The aluminum angle, surprisingly, was harder to make nice, straight cuts with too. Either way, I cut two pieces to go along the sides of my piece of plate.







I apparently didn't take pics of a few steps, but you'll get the idea. I drilled holes into the angles in four spots, making sure that the bolts I would place into them wound not interfere with the location of the wingnuts that will be coming out of the transom when everything is bolted together in the boat.





Then once those holes were drilled, I drilled holes in the plate. I bolted the plate to the angles and then after that, I drilled holes in the angles to match the location of the holes in the transom for the support brackets.





I'll have to take some pics of the finished product once I have it in my hands again and I remember to do so.

Also, for anyone light on tools, I recommend this adapter for your impact wrench. It makes it so you can drill with it using bits with a hexagonal base. It becomes a little less accurate as things get a little wobbly with adapters between them, but it's nice if you don't have a cordless drill or you're just trying to keep your tool bag lighter. Having said that, I should probably buy a cordless drill whenever I find one on sale from team red.






 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Looks like I do have a few pics of the new support I made once it was installed on the boat, just no close ups.

I used bolts to hold the angles to the plate as I needed the extra "length" from the bolt heads for my angles to reach far enough so I could drill holes in them to match the holes in the transom. I could have bought 2" x 2" angle, for a lot more money, and put in some countersunk bolts through the plate to make the back of it smooth with countersink bits I don't own, but that sounded like more work and more money for essentially the same result. 🤷‍♂️







And for anyone curious, this is all the bolts the boat uses except for two that I leave on the transom all the time. Everything else gets held in place using what looks like special cotter pins/hitch pins. This is basically for the transom and its support brackets. Notice the rubber washers, used on the outside of the boat.





You'll notice a couple of those pics have water in them and that's because after I made my new support, I took the boat out for a quick run on the river to see how the 9.9 would run.

I had previously tested the 9.9 at home in one of our big, blue trash bins filled with water and it ran, but misfired a lot. So I took it to the boat shop I went to before with my 4hp motor and, long story short, I was going to give them my 4hp motor in trade for work on the 9.9. I only want one motor, but it's gotta be a good runner of course.

In short, it was a repeat of the experience with the 4hp motor. Not that I got stranded or that the motor didn't run, but that it didn't run like they said it did. I also didn't trade them my 4hp motor, because of the amount they charged me and how much the 4hp motor is worth. Figured I'd keep it and sell it myself for a lot more than I paid them.

I'll have to take the 9.9 back to them, so they can actually work on it or whatever they supposedly did. It's running on one cylinder. The 9.9 is a 2 cylinder motor and the 4hp I have is a single cylinder motor. Guess how fast you can go with a 9.9 on one cylinder. 6! 6 mph! Ah ah ah!

However, it does look like my new support is doing its job. I had one of my daughters shake the outboard while I had the boat in the parking lot and everything looked solid. The boat shook around, because of what it's made of, but everything regarding the outboard, transom, and supports looks pretty solid. I saw a tiny bit of flex in the support brackets that go from the transom to the hull, but that's stuff I didn't make and it's something I can beef up, so that's good. They are just really long for how thin they are and how heavy the 9.9 is.


 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
If anyone's seen my posts about the boat in either my truck or my Bronco threads, I mention seeing a house with a water slide into the river, but I could only see it from a road that is pretty far away. When I took the boat out to try the 9.9, I launched from the portion of the river that's where I can see the slide and then we drove up closer to see it. It's pretty neat. Wish I had "river house with water slide" money. lol










I'm not sure if you can see it in this pic, but there are a few docks just out in the middle of the river and these people took a grill with their boat and then put it on one of the docks and had a cook out. I've been doing it all wrong my whole life!





Here's a small clip of the 9.9 misfiring. It would run solid on one cylinder and then occasionally it would fire on the second cylinder like it does in this video. What was interesting was how much power it would produce when it would run on both cylinders for those split seconds. It would catch me off guard as I was looking ahead where we were going and then it's have spurts of both cylinders going when I had it at full throttle and it'd nearly throw me off my seat. Man, I can't wait to get this thing running right.

 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
Today before I went to work I figured I'd pick up some new spark plugs and put those in the 9.9, since I doubt that shop touched them. Maybe it doesn't need them, but I figured a fresh set would be good since who knows when this thing was last serviced. That and I don't know when I'll have time to drop it off at the shop.

I looked online to see what plugs this thing takes and I guess the manufacturer recommends Champion brand plugs, but some people on the forums will use NGK's as an alternative and say they have cured some issues they've had with the Champions. Either way, I took out the old plugs (QL82C) and they aren't even the specific Champions (UL81C) recommended by the manufacturer, so perhaps that's not good? I just looked them up and it's saying these are suggested for later, '77-'92, 9.9/15hp motors. They went from a points ignition to, I'm guessing, CDI ignition in '77. '74-'76 is points.

Anyhoo! I picked up some of the NGK plugs (5110 B&HS) suggested on the forums and I'm going to try them out. I need to find my spark plug gapper or just buy a new one though. I took out the old plugs and then realized I didn't have my gapper and just put them back in to mess with later as I didn't want to rummage around right then.

I had a hard time getting my phone to focus on the plugs in the bright sunlight. This was the top plug, there's a top and bottom cylinder on the engine. When I initially pulled it out before I grabbed my phone, the gap was "closed" with oil from the 2-stroke mix and by the time I got my phone it had cleared. Clearly.. this was the one that wouldn't stay lit, for whatever reason.





This was the bottom cylinder and it looks a lot better, a lot dryer. It actually looks like it's been combusting, ya know?





Plugs side by side.





Plugs next to one of the new plugs that will eventually go in the motor. I'm planning on dropping the motor back into one of the blue trash bins with some water and I'll give it a test run with the new plugs once I get the gapped. The gap on them out of the box looks way too tiny, even tinier than the .030 gap that they require.

 

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Ah yes, the world of small boats!

Something doesnt seem right with your speeds though. I had a 6 horse evinrude on my 16ft narrow flatbottom jon. I could do about 8 mph. For the past five years ive been working on putting a 23hp beaver tail on it. Lol

My evinrude is a 79 model i believe. It uses a "power pack" to fire the plugs. Little black box with a circuit board bedded in epoxy. Most of the linkage is pretty worn out.

Be careful with the gear selector lever, they are kinda fragile. Mine is cracked.
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
Ah yes, the world of small boats!

Something doesnt seem right with your speeds though. I had a 6 horse evinrude on my 16ft narrow flatbottom jon. I could do about 8 mph. For the past five years ive been working on putting a 23hp beaver tail on it. Lol

My evinrude is a 79 model i believe. It uses a "power pack" to fire the plugs. Little black box with a circuit board bedded in epoxy. Most of the linkage is pretty worn out.

Be careful with the gear selector lever, they are kinda fragile. Mine is cracked.
Cracked you say? This is the lever off the 4hp Mercury.





Yeah, yours should be new enough to use a CDI ignition. My 9.9 should have coils, points, and condenser, though I haven't dug that far into it.

I'm sure the 4hp motor could push this boat faster if it was an aluminum boat. It's not exactly a perfectly smooth hull with all the covers going over the seams where it folds up.
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
I'm currently at the lake right now and about to pack things up and go home. I did some testing with the 9.9 and a free speedo app for my phone. I ended up with this.





And, the 9.9 is still running like crap. It runs a lot better with fresh plugs, but it's still awful. I can't imagine this thing at full strength.

The speed I was hitting while planing on this, essentially floppy plastic boat, was borderline uncomfortable. It gets really squirrelly, like a truck pulling too heavy a trailer and the steering gets super light.
 

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I venture the small (& big) boat world too, and the small ones are way more fun. When I bought my house on the lake 25 years ago, there was an a 5hp Montgonery Ward outboard from the 60's in my garage. It was brand new, never fired, brand new shiny paint, cloth wrapped spark plug wire,shiny piston, never fired spark plug.... So what's a mostly crazy 22 year old kid do? Find a boat for it!!

I found use 14' fiberglass Sears boat, and tossed that motor on it, in all of its blue-green Sears colors completely sun faded with itchy, unsealed fiberglass. What a mess that boat was, but it sure was fun & I can't remember what happened to the boat, but I gave the motor to my brother in law & he still to this day uses that little 5hp on his 12' aluminum fishing boat.

I then got a Zodiac with the aluminum floor inserts & a "speed keel". With a 10hp merc, and that was fun, & I also can't remember what happened to that one either?? (See a pattern here) I had bigger boats at the time too, but I always liked the boats I didn't have to worry about scratching & wax, and constantly lean constantly way better.

Here's a fun one, use that GPS app on takeoff in a plane, you get some good numbers on it!! Lol
 

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I'm currently at the lake right now and about to pack things up and go home. I did some testing with the 9.9 and a free speedo app for my phone. I ended up with this.





And, the 9.9 is still running like crap. It runs a lot better with fresh plugs, but it's still awful. I can't imagine this thing at full strength.

The speed I was hitting while planing on this, essentially floppy plastic boat, was borderline uncomfortable. It gets really squirrelly, like a truck pulling too heavy a trailer and the steering gets super light.
I was kinda thinking the non-rigid boat would hinder the performance. My jon boat only has a 3ft wide floor and 4ft wide at the top rails. Its a skinny little thing.

Ive spent countless hours putting around in mine. Dont need to go fast really.

I will say one thing that really helped was putting a hydrofoil on the engine, like you see on speed boats. The whale tail thingy. I made a small one for my evinrude and it really helped.



This is the beaver tail. I hope to get it on this winter. Should get me over 20mph. Im actually adding about 18" to the back of the boat for floatation purposes. I already have the transom sturdied up with a sheet of 1/4" aluminum and some round aluminum tube as a frame.

 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
I was kinda thinking the non-rigid boat would hinder the performance. My jon boat only has a 3ft wide floor and 4ft wide at the top rails. Its a skinny little thing.

Ive spent countless hours putting around in mine. Dont need to go fast really.

I will say one thing that really helped was putting a hydrofoil on the engine, like you see on speed boats. The whale tail thingy. I made a small one for my evinrude and it really helped.



This is the beaver tail. I hope to get it on this winter. Should get me over 20mph. Im actually adding about 18" to the back of the boat for floatation purposes. I already have the transom sturdied up with a sheet of 1/4" aluminum and some round aluminum tube as a frame.


I actually watched a video the other day regarding adding a hydrofoil to the cavitation plate. I guess they have off the shelf ones that slide over each side of the cavitation plate and you screw them into it. It's interesting for sure. They guy in the video said he recommended it to people who were struggling to get their boat to plane or where it would plane, but took a long time to do it and the foil would help speed the process up.

I don't think I'll need to do that. This thing, with the new plugs in the 9.9, planes real quick. It starts to do it once it hits about 10 mph. I'm new to boats, obviously, but there's no confusing what's happening when it starts to plane. lol. You feel the ass end of the boat lift up, the nose levels out, and the rpm on the motor increases. Then clench your cheeks and keep her pointed straight.

Is that "beaver tail" one of those motors used for going through very shallow water? I was watching a video on outboards and those were mentioned, especially for boats capable of traveling through only a few inches of water, but still wanting to use an outboard rather than some oars, etc. Boats sure are interesting. I've been learning a lot over the last couple months.
 

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78 Custom 460 NP435 NP205 Sniper EFI HyperSpark Ignition 4.56 Gears Front/Rear Grizzly Lockers
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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
So when I got off work this morning I waiting in the Napa parking lot for the 10-15 minutes until they opened and I picked up a new spark plug gapper rather than sifting through all my stuff at home looking for my old one. I used to have it on my keychain, so I don't know when/why I took it off. 🤷‍♂️

I still had everything on my Bronco from my previous boat launch, which was Saturday, so I stopped at Murtaugh Lake which is a small lake I pass every day on my commute to and from work. Technically.. its a small reservoir for the local ag canal system (the canal enters it and exits it), but I guess if you called it that, fewer people would probably be attracted to go camping at it. I digress.

I arrived around 7:30-7:45 ish. It was a pretty calm, cool morning. Someone thought it was a good time for some fishing.





I remembered to take a couple pics of the aluminum support that I made for my transom before I set everything up.








I did make things worse for my transom though. When I was putting the heavy-ass 9.9 onto it, the weight of the outboard rested against the very top of the transom, that is plastic, before I could get the mount fully over the transom and into position on my aluminum plate.

The 9.9's mount is a bit wider than the 4-horse Mercury I have and it barely fits, so I have to hold it up in the air and kind of wiggle it around for it to seat. Well, anyway, it wiggled too much when it was at the top on the plastic part and what previous damage was there was made several times worse.





The bright side is that you can now see the aluminum that the manufacturer puts in the transom. lol. It's similar in shape to what I made, but it's one piece in a wide "U" shape and it's probably 1/8" thick. You can see the radiused corner of it at the center of the crack in this pic.





Once the 9.9 is mounted in place, the transom holds it just fine with the aluminum plate and the aluminum supports. The plastic portion of the transom at that point is just giving shape to the rear of the boat since that section is thinner and floppy as it needs to be in order to fold the boat up. I still want to beef up the side brackets, especially towards the bottom of the transom. Not sure what I'll come up with yet, so I have some thinking to do.

Anyhoo. Here's a shot for @BigBlue 94 to show all those black "covers" on the hull. I don't know what Porta-Bote calls them, but they go over all the edges and seams of the hull. The top rail, down the back of the transom, and then at every fold on the bottom side of the hull. I'm assuming they probably cause a bit of drag vs a smoother hull like an aluminum or fiberglass boat. And then you have the fact that the hull flexes a lot, which I'll show that in a minute. lol. It's wild.






Still need to do something about those damn wheels. That's the next priority after getting the outboard running right. Gets old having to struggle pulling this around, especially when I know how easy and smooth it can be when the wheels are straight, even with the outboard. It's super easy when I manage to make them not camber in.


And here we are planing in the boat. It wants to plane at about 10 mph. 12-13 mph is pretty comfortable and then at full throttle, with the 9.9 not running tip top of course, it tops out at 15-16. Once you hit 15-16, the floor gets sucked down and it pops back up. It's not rolling with the waves, as it does it on perfectly smooth water.

The floor of the boat is concave on either side, like the McDowell's golden arcs, not to be confused with McDonald's golden arches. As the speed goes up, the water sucks those two sections flat and then they'll pop back up into the.. golden arcs. It's unnerving a bit and when it does it, it alters the handling characteristics of the boat. When it sucks the right side down, it pulls the boat to the right. Same thing for the left, it takes it left. And when it does them both or alternates both at random, it goes all over the place.


 

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78 Custom 460 NP435 NP205 Sniper EFI HyperSpark Ignition 4.56 Gears Front/Rear Grizzly Lockers
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Discussion Starter · #20 ·
Also, if you noticed the water inside the boat, it is not leaking. I kept playing with the trim on the outboard and to do so, you have to tilt the motor back, make your adjustment, then tilt it forward into the water again. Every time I did that (I probably did it 10-15 times, no joke. lol), some water would drip into the boat from the outboard. That, and anything I put in the boat that had water on it, would leave water in the boat, so... my shoes, the wheels for the boat once I remove them post launch, etc.

It looks like more than it is when you're in the boat and it all runs to the back when you're not planing. When planing, the boat is level and the water runs the length of the boat. When I pack things up, I fold the hull up and then I'll stand the hull on it's nose and let the water run out the front of the hull. The only bad thing about the water, is that since it's running off the outboard, it contains a bit of premix, so it's oily water, which sucks.


 
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