I have a roughly 1969 Starcraft 14 foot aluminum runabout with the same age
Merc. 35 hp motor. The boat seems to plane well enough with just me on board
but will barely plane with 3 people on board. This is a flat bottom boat and I
figure it should do better - the motor is well tuned and compression is fine
although I will try a flatter pitch prop this summer.
The hull has only one longitudinal strake, along the centerline. There are no
longitudinals parallel to this closer to the outsides like on most other flat
bottom hulls. I think that if I installed two longitudinals as close to the
outside as possible the hull would plane more efficiently because of trapping
some of the water that presently is just sprayed out sideways. There was an
article in one of the power boating magazines last year where they tested this
sort of add-on for large power cruisers with V-type hulls. They got a minor
improvement and I think it would be even more significant on my flat bottom
I think a pair of 1" by 1" or maybe 1.5" by 1.5" as long as possible should do
the trick. They may even trap some air under the hull and thus reduce friction.
I don't know how to fasten these on to the bottom. The boat is riveted
construction but how does an owner make these solid type rivets? How do the
factories make them? What brand of waterproofing should I use?
Is there some type of glue that could be used instead? If so, where would I get
it? It would have to be strong stuff as the boat gets beached.
The boat is leaking about 1 gallon of water for a 7 hour day which I figure is
pretty good for a 26 year old boat. The floor is rivetted down plywood with
foam floatation underneath. If I have to take up the floor to install the
longitudinal strakes that would be a good time to fix whichever rivets are
leaking. How would I do this?
I bought the boat last year for a good price and like working on it for a
hobby so a little experimentation is okay. Would be nice to be able to remove
the strakes if the idea turns out to be a bad one.