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KC55
09-15-2012, 06:38 AM
Hello,

My wife and I are getting ready to purchase a Kingscraft Houseboat and I am hoping to connect with other Kingscraft owners. I will post the particulars on our boat as soon as we close the deal (should be within two weeks) and I hope you will consider saying hello here.

I have done a fair amount of research on Kingscraft and had decided this is the boat I wanted. We talked to folks all over the midwest about their boats for sale and were pursuing only Kingscraft. The all aluminum construction was what sold me, but then I began to really appreciate the classic lines of these vintage boats. My budget dictated an older boat but I wanted something lasting and my wife wanted something pretty. I think we are both going to be happy.

I am very interested in any mechanical, electrical, HVAC, and plumbing drawings there are on Kingscraft. Original manufacturer or custom drawn. I hope to document any work I do and share it here.

Wish us luck on this endeavor and I hope to see you here soon!

KC55, The Admiral (My Wife), and 1st Mate (our 9lb Maltipoo)

OLD HOUSEBOATER
09-15-2012, 06:56 PM
You will like your KC. We owned a 47 and a 48. Both were outstanding.

JTAlberts
09-15-2012, 10:01 PM
Do you already have one picked out or just started looking? Info will be hard to find. I started a blog about my Kingscraft ownership. Kingscrafthouseboat.blogspot.com. Any questions I can answer I will.

KC55
09-16-2012, 10:04 AM
OHB- Thanks, I lurked here for a bit and read old postings and your favorable opinion of KC helped me pick it as my first choice for a great HB.

JTA- I am happy you posted, I had already found your blog and I am impressed. I have picked a boat and will hopefully have everything lined out to purchase it in 2 weeks. It seems to be in very good shape, I am going to do a hull thickness test next week and then get it surveyed. I am sure I will want to ask you many questions, I appreciate the offer!

Is there anything I should look for before I purchase? What would you look for if you were going to buy a KC now.

Best regards,

KC55

fisheatingbagel
09-17-2012, 09:09 AM
Hi KC55,
I have a Kingscraft 40' with twin Chrysler 360s and Kohler 7.5 genset. I bought it about 5 years ago and have learned a lot in the years since. I also looked for a KC as I see way too many Gibsons around here with sagging roofs and soft decks.

There are lots of "systems" on a boat, though, and the hull is just one of them. The electrical system on mine, both 12 and 120v are a mess. Looking under the helm where the fuse/breakers are located there are wires piggy backed and wires not connected to anything. It's not clear or obvious how the various 12v components are powered, and I'm an electrical engineer by training.

Here would be my list of things to check out if I were buying another Kingscraft (or other older HB) (not necessarily in order of import)

- have electrical systems been redone
- galvanic corrosion is a concern especially with aluminum hulls. Check the hull for pitting/corrosion.
- assuming vdrives, when where the stuffing boxes last packed? they are a royal pain, almost impossible to access
- engine ignition conversion to electronic
- condition of fuel tanks
- condition of water tanks
- window guides been replaced?
- inspect for water damage from leaks around window bottoms. A common problem is for the bottom window guide to fill up with debris causing rainwater to run over into the inside

Tnriverrat
09-17-2012, 09:40 AM
Welcome to the Kingscraft world, I have a 1975 15x44' for about 15 years, let me know if I can help.

JTAlberts
09-17-2012, 01:38 PM
I'll comment on Fish's suggestions and add a few more:


- have electrical systems been redone
This has been a time consuming job for me. If it has been done, make sure it is nice and clean. Hopefully things are labeled correctly.

- galvanic corrosion is a concern especially with aluminum hulls. Check the hull for pitting/corrosion.
This is a biggy!! Make sure your hull isn't pitted like mine. Even though mine is straightened out, I would still rather it not have any pitting.

- assuming vdrives, when where the stuffing boxes last packed? they are a royal pain, almost impossible to access
This is on my list for the winter. I plan on pulling my transmissions this winter to get them rebuilt. I can see this will be a tough job.

- engine ignition conversion to electronic
I didn't have this issue as mine were already done.

- condition of fuel tanks
My fuel tanks are the originals. It is going to be such a difficult job to get these tanks out as well as an expensive replacement.

- condition of water tanks
Can we even change this out with it being in the Keel?

- window guides been replaced?
Mine are pretty much destroyed. I am weighing my options of replacing all the windows for $6500 or just buying new window tracks. I am not sure yet.

- inspect for water damage from leaks around window bottoms. A common problem is for the bottom window guide to fill up with debris causing rainwater to run over into the inside
I have water damage by the rear window from this. Luckily it is just some wood trim and paneling. Nothing structural needs replaced.


Things I would add onto this. Depending on the price you're getting on the boat I would inspect a few other things.

1. Make sure the water pumps work
2. Check for number of working bilge pumps. This can get costly adding to the final cost.
3. Do a test drive of the boat for a significant time frame. Long enough to really get the engine at full operating temperature. Pull the dipsticks on both engines and look for a whitish sludge in the oil. You might even get enough of it to really sludge up the dip stick. This is water in the oil and should be investigated. It could require you rebuild the entire engine.
4. Make sure the Generator starts without issues and will run with load.
5. Check the Vdrive fluid. If they are Paragon transmissions, there are two dipsticks on each transmission. Check fluid level as well as if it is burnt. You will be able to smell it as well as a black look to it.
6. Check all the water tubing for the interior. Not a huge deal but another thing that bit me.
7. Check the condition of the props. Make sure they aren't bent up. This can be a costly repair.
8. Check every light, spotlight, horn, Nav lights, etc..... for working condition. I currently have a spotlight that is just a roof ornament.
9. Check all gauges work at the helm. Make sure you validate the flybridge controls as well.
10. Check any appliances (AC, Fridge, toilet) to be in working order.


As with anything, if any of the items don't pass inspection you can take it off the cost or walk away. The only real issues that are tough to deal with are major engine issues. Even with all the issues I had with my boat I would have still bought it. I would have just talked the owner down a lot further in price. The boat is great but don't over excite yourself to just buy it if there are issues.

fisheatingbagel
09-18-2012, 06:05 AM
In my opinion, Kingscraft didn't do a very good job designing the windows and doors. I really like the huge window sizes, I just think they should of made the actually opening part a separate, smaller window and made the rest of the window fixed. I've though that it would be better to change the windows in the main cabin to be fixed, non-opening tinted glass. I think some owners have done this.

Jamie, I'm curious what is included in your $6500 window replacement?

JTAlberts
09-18-2012, 06:33 AM
In my opinion, Kingscraft didn't do a very good job designing the windows and doors. I really like the huge window sizes, I just think they should of made the actually opening part a separate, smaller window and made the rest of the window fixed. I've though that it would be better to change the windows in the main cabin to be fixed, non-opening tinted glass. I think some owners have done this.

Jamie, I'm curious what is included in your $6500 window replacement?

That is the pricing I received for 6 sliding windows on the port and starboard and two from stationary windows. They will be the double pane 1800 houseboat elite series. They will also be double slides, so they will remain the same for functionality.

KC55
09-18-2012, 03:20 PM
I too agree the windows are a weak point, I am considering filling the lower side windows with appropriate sheet aluminum (welded in) and replacing these windows with slightly smaller, production marine windows. Do any of you know a source for 3-track aluminum replacement window tracks? I know this was covered in previous postings but I just wanted to ask in case someone had found a manufacturer or supplier.

Have any of you tried replacing your handrails with a system like this http://www.hollaender.com/?page=sliponfittings? I am wondering how difficult it would be to attach the baseplates to the deck. Would I be able to bolt on or would welding be necessary or advisable?

Can you offer any advice on inspecting the clean water tank? Are there any inspection/access ports ? I am leary of using a metal tank this old for drinking water.

Last question :) Have any of you modified (lengthened) you swim platform? How did you do this and are there any operational/legal issues with this?

Thanks again for your responses.

KC55

JTAlberts
09-18-2012, 06:30 PM
Marinette Yachts has the tracks that would fit.

http://www.marinette.com/rparts09.htm

I do know someone who replaced their handrails with a system similar to what you posted. Looks pretty good. I have no idea how to check the water tank either. All I know is that my water is clear coming out of it. There is a drain plug on the bottom of the keel for it though. My boat didn't have a swim platform either. I do know a guy that cut his in half.

fisheatingbagel
09-19-2012, 07:39 AM
I replaced the aft pilothouse-main cabin window with a custom window from Motion Windows (http://www.motionwindows.com)
They will custom make windows for about any opening, just a matter of cost.

You can get replacement aluminum window slides here: http://www.marinette.com/
As far as the water tank goes, I wouldn't drink water from a 30+ year old metal tank either. We flush ours every spring, and throughout the season and just use it for washing, etc. We keep bottled water in the fridge for drinking. We would probably do this regardless as we just don't use enough water from the boat tank to keep it fresh.

JTAlberts
09-19-2012, 12:32 PM
I replaced the aft pilothouse-main cabin window with a custom window from Motion Windows (http://www.motionwindows.com)
They will custom make windows for about any opening, just a matter of cost.

You can get replacement aluminum window slides here: http://www.marinette.com/
As far as the water tank goes, I wouldn't drink water from a 30+ year old metal tank either. We flush ours every spring, and throughout the season and just use it for washing, etc. We keep bottled water in the fridge for drinking. We would probably do this regardless as we just don't use enough water from the boat tank to keep it fresh.


Fish,

Was the window install a pain? Did you just close up the rear window?

KC55
09-20-2012, 02:05 PM
Hello again, we are in wait mode. I have requested documentation (copy of registration, HIN, serial #'s) and have not received them yet. The owner is making a few minor repairs as I understand it. We are eager to try out the boat and proceed with the survey, but the timing is not up to us. If I was selling a boat, I think I would be a little better at communicating with the prospective buyer. I guess I can't walk in his shoes, hopefully we will conclude this with both parties getting what they want.

I contacted Marinette and they do indeed have the 3-track aluminum window track available ($60/9ft), so thanks for the heads up. I hope fisheatingbagel will share a little about his experience with the aftermarket replacement window(s). I am not sure what we will be doing with our windows.

I reread JT's blog last night, and I am even more impressed with his style and diligence. I hope that we get to meet someday. I would like to hear/see more about the engine/transmission work.

A new question, I have been looking for repairs on pitted hulls, and I don't seem to find a consensus on the preferred method. Many different suggestions. I hope to never have to deal with this, but I would like to know what is involved. I just saw a boat in Florida (online) that has a new hull ($9k) and I would hope there is a less expensive and optimal solution available. I hope someone will jump in and give a "knowledgeable" answer to this question. I would assume there is a way to "weld" in the pits and sand down.

Lastly, I hope there are a few Kingscraft "lurkers" here and that you will consider registering and joining the conversation. This is a selfish request, I am sure I am going to need helpful advice and knowledge in the near future.

Wish us well on our (hopefully soon) purchase,

KC55

PS Would the name "Nice Ketch" be any good? My wife says NO :p

JTAlberts
09-20-2012, 06:30 PM
I have found the pain in dealing with people a lot. They will do it at their own pace. I am putting my order in for all new windows tomorrow. I hope the install goes easy.

As for the pitted hull repair, I have seen most people talk of replating if it is that bad. I have also heard of some just filling in the pits. I probably had a couple small spots that could of used filling however it wasn't as bad as I thought after it got sandblasted.

Thanks for the kudos. I will be posting a lot more this winter as I have a lot planned. I try to document it as best I can so that the next person will have something to follow. The transmission work has me the most concerned as that isn't anything I'm familiar with. Now that I don't have the season creeping up on me I will buckle down and get it done.

fisheatingbagel
09-21-2012, 08:22 AM
The replacement was pretty easy. I replaced the sliding, leaky window with a fixed tinted window. I'm sure this is the easiest window to replace on the boat. I've had replacement channels for my sliding windows for 2 years now; still looking for time to install them. There is a good write up on the Marinette site about installing new channels:

http://www.marinetteboat.com/forum/yaf_postst150_Window-track-replacement.aspx

fisheatingbagel
09-21-2012, 08:24 AM
Jamie,
I'm curious about your replacement windows. Are these self-contained units with their own frames or will they use the sliding channels of the existing windows? If they are self contained, are they made to fit the existing openings? I would love to see what these look like after installation...

fisheatingbagel
09-21-2012, 08:29 AM
Regarding galvanic corrosion, I think in some cases it's near impossible to eliminate all the causes, simply due to stray current from other sources in the marina.

OLD HOUSEBOATER
09-21-2012, 10:14 AM
You might consider fixed windows. We owned 7 houseboats and NEVER opened the salon windows. If we wanted ventilation we opened the front and back doors. We used the air conditioner most of the time.

How many of you open your salon windows?

JTAlberts
09-21-2012, 12:16 PM
You might consider fixed windows. We owned 7 houseboats and NEVER opened the salon windows. If we wanted ventilation we opened the front and back doors. We used the air conditioner most of the time.

How many of you open your salon windows?

Now that the weather is a bit chilly we will just crack them, but anytime we go away from the dock or don't require the AC we open them. With the angle of our boat dock, we get a nice breeze across the boat from Port to Starboard.

JTAlberts
09-21-2012, 12:28 PM
Jamie,
I'm curious about your replacement windows. Are these self-contained units with their own frames or will they use the sliding channels of the existing windows? If they are self contained, are they made to fit the existing openings? I would love to see what these look like after installation...

They are self contained to their own frame. They will be just like your fixed window in the rear but will still function as sliders like the current windows. They will slide into the middle from both sides. I am replacing the front windows with fixed windows. Both windows have cracks in them and look ghetto. I am leaving the rear sliding window as we haven't had leaking once we kept it clean and cleared the drains. When talking with the guy at Motion Windows he recommended what you did to stop the leak. We use the back window a lot for getting in and out of the boat so we don't have to shuffle down the side. We currently have a canvas that covers the back window with a track above it. I think that if put a waterproof liner on the inside of the canvas we would have no leak. The question I have for you, does the drainage track run all the way across the bottom window sill? Or is it just where the holes in the window frame are? I would like to add a couple more drainage holes in the frame so it will drain quicker through the holes in the cabin.

fisheatingbagel
09-24-2012, 05:56 AM
The drainage track runs all the way across the bottom sill - I drilled a couple of extra holes early on, but it didn't help much. One bad side effect of these holes is it allows bugs, especially ants to get in. I had a train of them this weekend, coming in from outside.
I recommend adding the aluminum strip at the bottom. I haven't had any leaks since doing this on my boat (knock on wood). With the angle of the back window being what it is, the height of the existing aluminum edge is just too short.

KC55
09-24-2012, 01:07 PM
Well I think things are back on track now for us to buy the boat. This coming weekend will tell the tale, wish us luck.

Thanks for the discussion concerning the windows, this is exactly what I was hoping would happen in this thread. It is great to know there are some people who have hands on experience with Kingscraft that I can ask questions of.

Does anyone know of either a place to get an original KC spotlight, or if that is not possible, which spotlight do you reccomend to replace the original. I have been looking at some in the $300-$350 neighborhood, but I would really like to have an original.

One more question, do you find the the "bunks" in the hallway get used that much. While we are waiting to get into the realities of houseboat ownership (maintenance, repair, weather etc.) my wife and I have been debating the merits of using that space for something else like a laundryroom/utility closet. We will be able to sleep two guests on the sleeper-sofa, so our question is whether the extra 4 sleeping spaces are worth the space?

Happy Houseboating,

KC

JTAlberts
09-24-2012, 01:27 PM
Well I think things are back on track now for us to buy the boat. This coming weekend will tell the tale, wish us luck.

Thanks for the discussion concerning the windows, this is exactly what I was hoping would happen in this thread. It is great to know there are some people who have hands on experience with Kingscraft that I can ask questions of.

Does anyone know of either a place to get an original KC spotlight, or if that is not possible, which spotlight do you reccomend to replace the original. I have been looking at some in the $300-$350 neighborhood, but I would really like to have an original.

One more question, do you find the the "bunks" in the hallway get used that much. While we are waiting to get into the realities of houseboat ownership (maintenance, repair, weather etc.) my wife and I have been debating the merits of using that space for something else like a laundryroom/utility closet. We will be able to sleep two guests on the sleeper-sofa, so our question is whether the extra 4 sleeping spaces are worth the space?

Happy Houseboating,

KC

My boat doesn't have bunks so I can't really vouch for the use, but I would rather make sure I have a spot for me and maybe another couple. Anyone else can jump find a spot elsewhere.

42gibson
09-25-2012, 06:56 AM
we have all our windows open daily. we do use the air but mostly when we go to bed but any other time if were there all the windows are open. we just prefer the fresh air and or 44 executive has a ton of windows.

fisheatingbagel
09-25-2012, 07:34 AM
KC,
My 40 had an old Tempo Marsolite spotlight. It was the traditional chrome round light. One of the servo motors was bad, and it would only go up and down. It was barely brighter than an old 2 D cell flashlight. I would love to have a Carlisle Finch spotlight, but they cost more than my boat. I settled for a http://www.golight.com/products/golight.html

Sorry, I can't really speak about the bunks - the 40 doesn't have them. Here's the layout of the main salon on Catfish
http://public.fotki.com/dave-barker/houseboat-and-remodel/hb1.html

KC55
09-25-2012, 01:18 PM
Thanks for the responses. I am hoping to get away with just changing to the aluminum window tracks, my budget wont handle $6K for windows right now ;) I am seriously thinking about blanking some of them over and replacing with a smaller production type window. I know that may not sound very pretty, but I think I can work it out where it will look like a factory install. I'll let you see how this progresses when the time comes. I do think I want to keep the slider functionality for most all my windows, I like a breeze.

We are not making up our minds yet, but we are leaning towards removing the bunks. We will have to see how much use they get. I really like the idea of a laundry/utility/storage/fishing gear room. We think it will mostly be us (me and the wife) and another couple or us and a couple of our grown sons. I suppose daughter-in-laws and future grand babies can alter the best laid plans. It sounds like not having bunks doesn't hinder you guys.

Fish, thanks for the heads up on the spotlight, I hope you will share with us how you feel it is working out, the value for the money spent, and whether you would buy that again knowing what you know now. Additionally, thank you for the link to your boat layout. That helps me "see'' into your description and gives me ideas about space usage. That is very professional looking, well done.

Something new. I was at the mega-store and was looking at the pex plumbing supplies. Do any of you have experience installing this on a boat. I think this is the route I am going to take but I would like to hear pros/cons if you have any. I like the idea of installing an isolation manifold to control each of the hot and cold lines. I have big plans but I will probably take my time and do it right the first time... or so I think. Your thoughts on thiese types of subjects are valuable to me, I do hope you will continue to post your thoughts and observations.

Thanks to all

KC55

PS If your wives have any had any ideas on improving boating life my wife would love to hear them!

JTAlberts
09-25-2012, 04:45 PM
Thanks for the responses. I am hoping to get away with just changing to the aluminum window tracks, my budget wont handle $6K for windows right now ;) I am seriously thinking about blanking some of them over and replacing with a smaller production type window. I know that may not sound very pretty, but I think I can work it out where it will look like a factory install. I'll let you see how this progresses when the time comes. I do think I want to keep the slider functionality for most all my windows, I like a breeze.

We are not making up our minds yet, but we are leaning towards removing the bunks. We will have to see how much use they get. I really like the idea of a laundry/utility/storage/fishing gear room. We think it will mostly be us (me and the wife) and another couple or us and a couple of our grown sons. I suppose daughter-in-laws and future grand babies can alter the best laid plans. It sounds like not having bunks doesn't hinder you guys.

Fish, thanks for the heads up on the spotlight, I hope you will share with us how you feel it is working out, the value for the money spent, and whether you would buy that again knowing what you know now. Additionally, thank you for the link to your boat layout. That helps me "see'' into your description and gives me ideas about space usage. That is very professional looking, well done.

Something new. I was at the mega-store and was looking at the pex plumbing supplies. Do any of you have experience installing this on a boat. I think this is the route I am going to take but I would like to hear pros/cons if you have any. I like the idea of installing an isolation manifold to control each of the hot and cold lines. I have big plans but I will probably take my time and do it right the first time... or so I think. Your thoughts on thiese types of subjects are valuable to me, I do hope you will continue to post your thoughts and observations.

Thanks to all

KC55

PS If your wives have any had any ideas on improving boating life my wife would love to hear them!

I think the aluminum tracks would be a good way to go. I only decided to go with the replacement windows as that was our final choice. You can get the windows tented as they are. I know a lot of people that put PEX on their boat. That is what I will be replacing my plumbing with this winter as well. From what I can tell, that should be a fairly quick job to complete for me. We have 2 sinks and the shower.

fisheatingbagel
09-26-2012, 07:29 AM
I've thought about replacing the smaller sliders in the main cabin with tinted Lexan. This would be straightforward; replace the aluminum tracks with angle aluminum and fasten the Lexan to that with SS screws and rubber gasket.

I think PEX is the way to go. The plumbing on my boat works pretty well, so that's one thing I haven't had to mess with much (other than replacing the water pump motor).

The golight has worked well, just wish it was brighter. It is well built, and the wired remote works well. I don't think you can get too bright with a spotlight. golight has an HID version of their light that is brighter. I've thought about swapping in an HID conversion for mine. I have a handheld HID Stanley light that I use when coming into the marina after dark, and it puts the golight to shame ;-(

My wife loves boating, and the boat so I haven't had to work hard in this area :-) Our kids are still young enough to enjoy being on the boat, and as long as they are happy my wife is happy. We have a favorite spot on the river where we usually dock, and we enjoy hanging out there. We keep kayaks on the boat and get them out on occasion.
We overnight occasionally on the boat, and it makes life easier to keep as much "overnight" stuff on the boat as possible. But we still seem to drag a lot of stuff to the boat. So lots of storage on the boat is key, especially storage that can be accessed easily. We keep some linen and bedding under the bunks in the back.

JTAlberts
09-27-2012, 08:18 AM
I've thought about replacing the smaller sliders in the main cabin with tinted Lexan. This would be straightforward; replace the aluminum tracks with angle aluminum and fasten the Lexan to that with SS screws and rubber gasket.

I think PEX is the way to go. The plumbing on my boat works pretty well, so that's one thing I haven't had to mess with much (other than replacing the water pump motor).

The golight has worked well, just wish it was brighter. It is well built, and the wired remote works well. I don't think you can get too bright with a spotlight. golight has an HID version of their light that is brighter. I've thought about swapping in an HID conversion for mine. I have a handheld HID Stanley light that I use when coming into the marina after dark, and it puts the golight to shame ;-(

My wife loves boating, and the boat so I haven't had to work hard in this area :-) Our kids are still young enough to enjoy being on the boat, and as long as they are happy my wife is happy. We have a favorite spot on the river where we usually dock, and we enjoy hanging out there. We keep kayaks on the boat and get them out on occasion.
We overnight occasionally on the boat, and it makes life easier to keep as much "overnight" stuff on the boat as possible. But we still seem to drag a lot of stuff to the boat. So lots of storage on the boat is key, especially storage that can be accessed easily. We keep some linen and bedding under the bunks in the back.

Fish,

I just looked at your renovation pics again. I am looking at putting wood flooring in our as well. What did you use? Also, how did you manage the hatch inside the front door and the ones in the rear of the boat for the transmissions? Could you take some pictures for me?

fisheatingbagel
09-27-2012, 09:40 AM
Jamie,
I'll take some pics next time I'm at the boat. For the forward hatch, I cut the flooring to fit the existing plywood hatch. The transmission access hatches are contained within the bunks - remove the bunk top, then remove the hatch.

For flooring, I would only go with engineered flooring. This is the type that is essentially plywood, NOT MDF. MDF is like a sponge, and will swell in a humid environment (i.e. "a boat"). I would also not use solid wood as it will move too much. I toe-nailed mine down, but you could also float it. I would not glue it, as the flooring needs to move with the humidity. Mine has been down for a couple of years and gets lots of wear and water from the kids. So far, it's doing great. Only drawback I see is it is very slippery when wet. The floor had carpet when I bought it, and I just couldn't imagine that wearing well with kids, sand, mud and water.

FWIW, I went with Brazilian Cherry from a closeout sale at Home Depot. Regular price was about $9/sq ft and I got it for $3/ft. The prefinish on this stuff is incredibly tough, but it makes the wood look a bit plastic.

JTAlberts
09-27-2012, 11:20 AM
Jamie,
I'll take some pics next time I'm at the boat. For the forward hatch, I cut the flooring to fit the existing plywood hatch. The transmission access hatches are contained within the bunks - remove the bunk top, then remove the hatch.

For flooring, I would only go with engineered flooring. This is the type that is essentially plywood, NOT MDF. MDF is like a sponge, and will swell in a humid environment (i.e. "a boat"). I would also not use solid wood as it will move too much. I toe-nailed mine down, but you could also float it. I would not glue it, as the flooring needs to move with the humidity. Mine has been down for a couple of years and gets lots of wear and water from the kids. So far, it's doing great. Only drawback I see is it is very slippery when wet. The floor had carpet when I bought it, and I just couldn't imagine that wearing well with kids, sand, mud and water.

FWIW, I went with Brazilian Cherry from a closeout sale at Home Depot. Regular price was about $9/sq ft and I got it for $3/ft. The prefinish on this stuff is incredibly tough, but it makes the wood look a bit plastic.

Pictures of it all would be great. From your albums I never saw a finished product. The bunks over the transmssions have me interested. Right now we just have about 3 feet of dead space so I can access the transmissions.

KC55
09-28-2012, 06:49 PM
Well... tomorrow will tell the tale. We are going for a thorough inspection and test run, if it all checks out we will schedule a marine survey. We are excited and anxious. I will keep in mind all of the tips and advice you all have shared. I know there will be trying times ahead (just realistic) but we are hoping this will be great haven and hobby for us. Wish us luck.

When we have actually purchased the boat I will post pictures and brag a little :p I think you will like it, I look forward to your comments and advice. I love Kingscraft houseboats. I was talking to a coworker and told him I was going to buy a KC and he said, "That's aluminum isnt it? Thats good." He owns a nice Burns Craft but I could tell he really like the idea of less maintenance. He commented on the fact that when you screw the handrails to the deck a fiberglass boat can't help but eventually have issues. I am excited.

As an aside, we are looking at picking up a Starcraft runabout. I would like to hear your thoughts on this type of boat for taxi/fish/play/dog duty/toy purposes. Yep, I picked this manuf. because they are old, cheaper, and (#1) aluminum. A lot of people have recommended we get a jet ski for these purposes but it just seems like dog duty or getting dressed to go into town to eat or transporting my 79 year old Mom might be a little inconvenient on a jet ski. Do any of you leave your houseboat anchored for short periods (2 -4 hours) to go do other things? Is this kosher or is it a bad idea? I hope you will share your thoughts on this, your experience is valuable to me.

Thanks for reading and thanks to all those who have posted. I want to encourage current/former/hopeful Kingscraft owners to post comments. It's nice to share a common interest.

Best wishes and fair seas,

KC55

KC55
09-30-2012, 05:04 PM
Well, we went and looked. Closely. We had a nice test run, really liked the boat and wanted to buy it. There was a little problem with the generator, but I think that will be resolved with a new water pump. My wife was very happy with everything except the head had an odor when flushed( I assured her we could deal with that) and she was on board (pun intended) with the purchase. But there turned out to be one other problem.

I had borrowed a metal thickness tester from work and brought it to the boat to make some quick tests of the hull. As I checked, I was looking for 3/16" (or about 0.18"), and was finding consistent readings of 0.16" but every once in a while (moving to several locations) I would get readings as low as 0.08". Unfortunately I think this indicated potential pitting. I do not believe the hull is thin or even bad, but I do believe the hull needs an out of water marine survey. I had been willing to pay for the in water survey (general condition and valuation survey) ~$500, but I am not willing to foot the bill ~$1100-$1200 for a pull out, survey and relaunch on a boat I don't own. I offered to split the bill with the owner (I think reasonable) and he wanted to consider it. We have not heard anything (should have heard that night) and I believe the deal is undone.

I really wanted that Kingscraft. My wife even said she had come full circle on the lake it was on and thought she would really like it there. She had originally wanted Lake Monroe in Indiana. Maybe it will still happen, but as more time goes by I think its less and less likely. I hope them well with their boat, if I could be assured the hull is OK I would definately move forward with the purchase. As it is I will continue to look. We are opening up our options to other aluminum hull houseboats and even looking for bare hulls. Wish us luck, I hope you will give me your opinion on this situation as I value the collected knowledge here.

Thanks for reading my little story. :(

KC55

JTAlberts
09-30-2012, 05:25 PM
KC,

I understand how you feel. If I had seen the pitting on mine I would have walked. Where was this boat located? I do know of a 55 footer for sale in Cincinnati that is pretty loaded. I am not sure of your price range however. I am impressed you didn't let the emotions get the best of you and go ahead with the purchase. How many readings showed the hull thickness that low? With a boat that is older, you could have some small pitted areas.

fisheatingbagel
10-01-2012, 10:15 AM
Jamie,
I took a few photos over the weekend showing the bunks and transmission cover...

http://public.fotki.com/dave-barker/houseboat-and-remodel/img-20120929-163759.html#media

JTAlberts
10-01-2012, 11:27 AM
Fish,

I thought your rear window was made into one solid piece? Does the window open in the middle?

fisheatingbagel
10-01-2012, 12:48 PM
not the rear door...the window that is between the pilothouse and lower cabin...

fisheatingbagel
10-01-2012, 12:54 PM
KC55,
I can understand your angst, and I second JTAlberts reply: if I had known of the pitting on my boat before I bought it, I probably would of walked away. Honestly, though, I think it would be difficult to find any Kingscraft without some pitting - these boat are getting pretty old and have probably encountered galvanic corrosion at some point in their lifetime.

I'm not too worried about my hull though. I figure if it starts leaking, it will be pretty minor and I'll just fix it - as I've been fixing everything else on this blessed thing...;-)

JTAlberts
10-01-2012, 01:09 PM
not the rear door...the window that is between the pilothouse and lower cabin...

OHHHHH. I never get leaks from that one. Do you still have leaking issues in the rear door? Does your rear door open in the middle?

JTAlberts
10-01-2012, 01:10 PM
KC55,
I can understand your angst, and I second JTAlberts reply: if I had known of the pitting on my boat before I bought it, I probably would of walked away. Honestly, though, I think it would be difficult to find any Kingscraft without some pitting - these boat are getting pretty old and have probably encountered galvanic corrosion at some point in their lifetime.

I'm not too worried about my hull though. I figure if it starts leaking, it will be pretty minor and I'll just fix it - as I've been fixing everything else on this blessed thing...;-)

I am in the same mindset. If I start getting issues with my hull leaking, I will get it repaired.

42gibson
10-01-2012, 05:14 PM
kc55 i understand your problem with the survey amounts. we have had 4 surveys for 3 different boats we've bought in the last 5 years all of which we had to pay the full cost. i would "never" buy any boat without a out of water survey.before you sign on the dotted line,check for insurance. one had 290 hours on it and a ton of blisters. we fixed them and bought it anyway( at a reduced price), another reason for the out of water, most insurance companys wont give you full covereage with out one.it just pays to be safe and spend the money.try to get the marina or broker to pull it for free, mine did on the last one.good luck

KC55
10-01-2012, 08:03 PM
Well, we are pretty bummed, but who knows he might still call.

Thanks for the replys, I know we did the right thing, but I still want to just buy it. We won't of course, without the out of water survey. I still think the boat is OK, just can't take that big of a gamble.

We had the insurance lined up with an in water survey, the financing is in place and we had done our homework on expenses (slip, gas, maint. etc) so we are nubes but we did a little homework. We are now actively searching for something else. I looked at the pics Fish put up and it made me want a KC just that much more! Great job on that, I like what you have done.

I will let you know what happens, we are already houseboaters in our minds.

KC55 (still just a fan)

fisheatingbagel
10-02-2012, 06:09 AM
The rear door is the one I put the piece of aluminum in to essentially extend the top of the channel - so it doesn't overflow before it has a chance to drain. So far it's been working...

KC55
10-04-2012, 01:04 PM
This may be the last post in this thread for a while. We are going down tomorrow to look at a non-KC houseboat. I know, it makes me a little sadtoo, but we think we are looking at a real potential candidate. Its aluminum hulled but its no KC ;)

I will start a new thread here in Vintage Houseboats if it looks like this one is the real deal. So yes it is an old boat, we can't afford the new fancy stuff, but I am not complaining. I'll let you all know how it goes.

KC55 (gonna make my name seem kind of odd if I get this other boat)

ShoreBound
10-04-2012, 01:24 PM
KC55, you are like the guy who tatoos his girlfriends name on his chest, then looks for another girlfriend! Hope you find one with the same name! Enjoy your search!

fisheatingbagel
10-04-2012, 01:51 PM
ha, ha...good luck - hope this one works out!

KC55
10-04-2012, 02:43 PM
Too funny. You can't hate on true love... shore do like me some Kingscraft.

Thanks for the well wishing guys.

KC55:cool:

KC55
10-07-2012, 08:14 PM
Well, looks like that one didn't make it. I am a little vague about the boats I am looking at because I don't want to affect the different owners ability to market their boats. The reasons a different boat doesn't work for me doesn't mean it wouldn't be a good boat for someone else. Enough said about that.

I hope anybody that knows of a Kingscraft (44' or longer) will let me know. We will consider trashed to treasure.

By the way, this weekend I heard of a device (cant remember the name) that monitors the condition of stray currents in the water near your boat. If this rings a bell with anyone I would like to know what they are called or who manufacturers. I have tried several google searches and cant come up with anything.

Later
KC55

KC55
10-09-2012, 02:11 PM
We have looked at one other boat, a Kingscraft of course, and are going to look at a different one Thursday. I tlll you, when we have purchased a boat, I will have a bunch of things to tell about all of the neat and different things I have seen on the various boats we have been on. One of the best things in all this is the people we are meeting. The KC owners, former Kingscraft employees, Harbor Masters, and all of the various boat owners on the many docks/marinas we have mentioned are all great folks. If you want to meet nice people, just walk on to a dock (with permission of owner/manager of course) and start telling people you are looking to buy a certain type of boat. Everyone knows someone who has a boat to sell and wants to know your boating experience, where you are from, and what you have looked at. We have been offered tours of boats from complete strangers, been offered cokes and beers, and been given phone numbers and recommendations for many different boats. Boat owners are friendly, open, fun and most of them seem to own dogs!

I will give some updates when we have looked at the these last ones, I am truly hopeful one of these will be our boat. My wife is at the point she doesn't want to get her hopes up because we have come so close and then have to spend another weekend OFF the water. She is being a trooper and we are figuring this out together.

Again, please let me know if you know of a KC for sale (44' or longer). I dont have anything against the shorter KC's, I love looking at them. We drive around to marinas and marine service centers just to see if we can find old KC's (and Marinette houseboats) just to look at them and compare the differences.

Best wishes and fair sailing,

KC55

PS can you believe we had a weak moment and actually looked at something besides a Kingscraft? :confused: I hope you like your boat as much as we plan on liking ours.

KC55
10-12-2012, 05:14 PM
Well, if anybody is still reading, the KC we looked at Thursday was not a good value. There were many pluses but they were outweighed by the minuses. It is interesting how many people will give you a description and pictures but reality doesn't match reality.

We had started to reconsider the 44'ers and found a whale of a del on one but then we talked to a guy (whose opinion we value) and he said the early (70, 71, & 72) 44' KC's tend to be bow heavy. I had never heard this, but this was a former owner and hardcore boating type. We are in pursuit of two different 55's right now and I may know something for sure by Mon. evening.

If you have replaced your plastic window tracks on your KC (past or present) with the three track aluminum Marinette tracks, please post here and tell us your experience. I am thinking I will be looking at this project on either of the two boats we are looking at now.

We have really had to expand our geographic horizon to continue to pursue our boat. I never dreamed we would be this involved and persistant in finding a boat.

By the way, we went to look at a 18' deep V inboard w/sterndrive Starcraft runabout today. It needs work but we made an offer (which they are considering), and we hope to be able to get it as a "yacht" tender/taxi/playtoy/dog-business boat. It's a 1975 aluminum boat, I hope this is a good choice.

Well, all for now,

KC55

JTAlberts
10-12-2012, 08:52 PM
Was the KC in Cincy white with red stripes?

OLD HOUSEBOATER
10-13-2012, 03:56 AM
"he said the early (70, 71, & 72) 44' KC's tend to be bow heavy"

Not true if equipped with twins. The 44's were a well balanced boat in all lengths. The 44 was/is the most popular length. Truly forever boats. We owned 2, a 47 and a 48.

There are a larger percentage of KingsCraft still in use than any other brand. This is due to their aluminum construction and quality of build. They are the #1 prospect for rebuilding/refurbushing. Another fact is that their style is timeless.

42gibson
10-13-2012, 05:06 PM
OHB , you seem to know alot about the kingscrafts, i saw one in michigan for sale a couple years ago. it was advertised as a 63footer. i called the guy and his wife said it was indeed a 63.have you ever heard of one before? thanks

KC55
10-13-2012, 08:25 PM
JTAlberts - Yes the cincy boat was the one with red stripes. Nice boat but issues and price ruled it out for us. I would have made an offer but I didn't want to make the very nice owner upset. There are some real upsides to that boat if you can get it at the right price. I was salivating over the 20kw diesel genny. There are 2 44'ers in the same marina, I asked a local guy to try and get me the owner's numbers so I could call and talk with them.

OHB - I will definetly bow to your experience owning the Kingscraft, I love them, I was just going by what a marine professional had told me. I am glad to hear you step up and set the record straight. I will probably put them back on my possibility list. I saw a 47'er listed and called them the same nite, it turned out to be a 44', I was really excited to go see it. I hope I run into one of the rare ones someday.

I am out of state looking at a couple of KC's, I really have high hopes this time. Maybe I can even find one that will make my name (KC55) make sense. :)

Best wishes,

KC55

JTAlberts
10-14-2012, 04:14 AM
What issues did you see with the red one? I am just curious as I saw the large price tag and figured it was pristine. I had actually talked about looking at it.

OLD HOUSEBOATER
10-14-2012, 08:22 PM
I don't know of KingsCraft houseboats over 55'. However they built some cruisers that might have included a 63. I heard talk of a streched 55 but I always thought it was a rumor. They also built commercial and military speciality units.

A close friend of mine has a beautiful 36' cruiser he bought new in 1973. It is in Mint condition and shines like a new penny.

The only downside to most KC's is that there is not enough hull depth for a cuddy.

boatlover
10-15-2012, 05:50 AM
KC

Don't be so quick to drool over that diesel gen. Diesel gens are not ignition protected and should not be installed in a gas engine room. I have a friend that had to replace a diesel gen with gas on a newly purchased boat when it failed survey and was uninsurable because of the diesel gen not being ign protected.

Good luck with your search and don't settle for a glass boat like a Gibson. You will be sorry later if you do. I would listen to OHB's advice, having owned 2 Kings and a Plucke he knows what he is talking about.

42gibson
10-15-2012, 02:53 PM
I don't know of KingsCraft houseboats over 55'. However they built some cruisers that might have included a 63. I heard talk of a streched 55 but I always thought it was a rumor. They also built commercial and military speciality units.

A close friend of mine has a beautiful 36' cruiser he bought new in 1973. It is in Mint condition and shines like a new penny.

The only downside to most KC's is that there is not enough hull depth for a cuddy.

if i can remeber the sight i saw it on i'll forward the pic. i know it was in michigan though and if i'm not mistaken it was harrison twp.it did however look like it had a extension welded in ahead of the engine compartment.thats what puzzled me at the time it looked so much like the 55 but you could see something different. now i have a winter project.....finding it again

KC55
10-15-2012, 05:55 PM
Many details to follow probably Wednesday. I am Happy. I know I have a lot to learn. But that is why I'm here. I will have some info that will be of interest to Kingscraft fans, brochures etc.
I am posting this from my phone so I'll make it short.

see you soon
KC55

KC55
10-17-2012, 06:45 PM
We finally got it done! We are the proud new owners of a 1974 55' Kingscraft Houseboat. We are the 3rd owners, the second owner had it for 25 years and the first owner custon ordered it from the factory. It has 2 factory installed marine air units, central vacuum, and a flybridge. She's powered by twin Chrysler 318's through Paragon V-drives into bronze screws. The owner had a current survey (April 2012) and we did a 3 hour sea trial Sunday. Monday the marina hauled her out and power washed the bottom. The hull has a Devoe paint and anti-fouling finish. I am very pleased with the hull condition, a few very small areas with mild pitting, but overall excellent condition. The anodes (magnesium) are in good shape and will easily last another year or two. The downsides are that the genny (Kohler) is a little tired (uses a fair amount of gas and I believe needs at least a carb rebuild), the windows are stock (the plastic tracks need a LOT of cleaning and work) and starboard throttle cable is stiff. The engines start right up when cold & idle smoothly. The boat ran and steered very well, the genny didn't flicker for over three straight hours and the sea trial had zero issues.

It came with tons of documentation (brochures, blueprints, original pricing sheets, and more) and papers for all of the systems. As I get the opportunity (and figure out how to do it) I will post scans of the documents and pics of the boat.

I didn't even know they offered factory marine air, the roof is smooth and didn't have to have roof AC holes filled in. The neat thing about this we have the 1973 Basic price list with option pricing. Turns out the 55' came standard with 2 custom heating/cooling units ($1325/unit option on all other models)

We are planning on storing it on the hard (right terminology?) for the winter and do a few interior changes.

We are happy with this boat, I hope we feel that way a year from now (I don't think my smile will fade by then)

Gotta go,

KC55

fisheatingbagel
10-18-2012, 05:53 AM
That's great news KC55 (and you can continue to use your KC55 name!)
I'm curious to see the documents that came with your boat - mine came with zero! What condition is the inside? Has it been remodeled recently?

FWIW, I wouldn't worry much about the Kohler - they are bulletproof for the most part. Does yours have the stainless steel exhaust? Mine does not, and apparently Kohler isn't performing this recall anymore, at least according to my local Kohler dealer.

BTW, where are you located?

boatlover
10-18-2012, 08:49 AM
Fish

I think your Kohler dealer is full of ****. If you go to Kohler's website the recall and service bulletin info is still there. I can't believe that Kohler would take a chance on another wrongful death lawsuit by stopping the recall. You can call Kohler for info. 1-920-453-6309

OLD HOUSEBOATER
10-18-2012, 09:30 AM
Take a look at the "Cable oiler " sticky in the Maintenance Thread.

JTAlberts
10-18-2012, 10:47 AM
If the structure is good, everything else can be replaced! Glad you joined the KC family. I have relatives that go to Madison a couple times a year. Hopefully I get the boat finished this winter and we can make a trip down river.

fisheatingbagel
10-18-2012, 12:33 PM
What's funny is when I first contacted them about it, they acted as if the bulletin was still active. Later when they hadn't done anything and I contacted them again, they claimed there "was no open bulletin on it".

KC55
10-18-2012, 03:10 PM
We have lined up storage for the winter that will allow us access, electric, and close proximity to our home. I plan on building a set of stairs for ease of access. I can pull my truck up close to bring supplies and get rid of trash.

I read the sticky on stuck cables, thanks, I think that is exactly what it needs.

I will post the documentation from Kingscraft as soon as I get the space. I really cant believe some of the stuff, for example, coastal cruisers up to 75'. Carpet and interior color scheme choices. Original sales brochures. It is like icing on the cake.

We are located in Madison, IN. It is a small, historic town on the Ohio River half way between Louisville, KY and Cincinnati, OH. We had debated taking the boat to a lake in Indiana or Kentucky but decided to stay right here on the river.

We had made offers on 3 boats, a 55', a 44', and the 55' we bought. We also went to see 2 other 55's, 3 44's, and 1 35'. Some of these were boats for sale but not advertised that I found by going to multiple marinas. I called probably 10 other KC's, most off of Craigslist and a few from diligent internet searching. We traveled to 5 different states and stopped at many back yards and storage lots. Every KC we saw was interesting and exciting for me. I have tried to save every picture of a KC I could find on the internet, this was to have ideas for different layouts (and decorating ideas for my wife). All of this doesn't count the scores of first, steel hulled houseboats, and then fiberglass (especially Gibson, Harbor Master, and Burnscraft). I loved seeing these boats (and there are some beautiful ones) but when I went into the first Kingscraft and crawled through the hatch and saw the aluminum joists/stringers and felt the aura of permanance and concern for quality I was not only sold but hooked. If you are considering a KC, wait for your boat. It will come. I appreciate all of the boats I saw during this search, but I know I made the right choice for me and my wife.

In two weeks the cleaning, repairing, and redecorating begins. I have not been excited about a home project for a few years, but I am on fire to get started on this. I hope you all will be free with advice, suggestions, and help.

If you can't tell, I'm on cloud 9. My wife is excited to pick out paint, curtains, furniture and etc.

Hopefully my next post will have info on where to see pics, docs, and info on our boat.

KC55 ;)

I was worried for a while my name wouldn't make sense....OH YEA

42gibson
10-18-2012, 03:24 PM
good for you kc. you will love doing the renovations, its a blast. take your time and do whatever you want, you have plenty of time...again, congrats

fisheatingbagel
10-19-2012, 05:47 AM
KC55,
We cruised to Madison last year and really enjoyed the town. I like the idea of being on "the river", as you can go anyway from here (in theory). Lots of interesting places to hang out. We are in Louisville and our favorite spot is at Charlestown State Park on the Indiana side of the river, just across from 12 Mile Island. Rose Island is another favorite hangout.

Let me know if there's anything I can help you with. I'd love to come check out your boat sometime.

JTAlberts
10-19-2012, 06:53 AM
We want pictures!

Ed K
10-19-2012, 08:03 AM
Congrats, KC55. We have a 1975 44' KC on the Ohio in Cincinnati. We bought it in 2007. We love the boat. Ours has twin 318s and a 7.5 Kohler generator. There is a local guy in Cincy who works for the Kohler rep and does marine generator repair on the side. He works on a lot of the boats at our harbor. He did the recall repair on ours last year. If you are interested in contacting him, let me know.

Ed

KC55
10-19-2012, 01:20 PM
Here is a link http://imageshack.us/g/1/9821252/ to some pics, please let me know if you can see and if the quality is OK.

Ed K - Thanks, I look forward to meeting you. I'll PM you. I want to see your boat.

JTAlberts - Hope these will do till we can get some really good befores :cool:

These two weeks are going to crreeeeeeeep by

PS and these http://imageshack.us/g/1/9821535/

42gibson
10-19-2012, 03:57 PM
the boat looks great kc, the only problem i see is that you need to stop that big i just bought my dream boat smile before you hurt yourself.....lol

KC55
10-24-2012, 12:54 PM
Well, I got a scare for a while today. My Ins agent calls this morning and says my coverage has been refused. I was not a happy camper, and I let him know it. He had forgot to ask me a question on the application (we did it over the phone) and he said that I was being refused. Not having years of experience, it is hard to get a policy where they don't charge you 2 arms and 2 legs. Seriously. After a flurry of calls and many apologies they were able to work things out. When buying the boat, I thought I had done everything right, current survey, sea trial, out of water inspection, getting insurance bound on the boat, lining up transportation, not to mention doing my homework before hand. The 2-3 hours of calls and waiting and uncertainty was upsetting. I know there will be ups and downs, I just didn't think I was going to completely have the rug pulled out from under me so soon. My wife suggested to let things work out, it was good advice. I will count this as a learning experience.

I'm supposed to go and test drive a 18' Starcraft tonight. I hope it goes well, I like the boat.

I'm still working on the brochures and factory documentation, I'll post it as soon as I can.

Still smiling
KC55

KC55
10-28-2012, 08:56 PM
The KC is supposed to get picked up in Minn. on the 30th or 31st. We are hoping to see it no later than Fri. It will be good in that my wife has not laid eyes on it yet and we can get started on making it our own. We are truly looking forward to this.

The Starcraft we were supposed to test drive the other day fell through (when I told the guy I was going to have a mechanic check it out, he decided he wasn't interested in selling it anymore). So, we kept looking and today we made a deposit on a 18' bowrider Ebbtide with a V8 Mercruiser motor. It is an 87, but I thoroughly checked out the hull, floor, and transom and it is in excellent shape. The sale is contingent on a sea trial (do you call it that for a runabout?) we will have within a week.

I am still trying to figure out the best way to show all the papers and documentation I received on Kingscraft boats with our HB purchase. I am leaning toward getting a website to just record our story and make Kingscraft information available as I uncover it.

When the KC (Empty Nestin') gets here I will let you know. This will be a long week

BUT FUN!

KC55

42gibson
10-29-2012, 06:23 AM
did you buy it in red wing mn.?

KC55
10-29-2012, 01:14 PM
did you buy it in red wing mn.?

42gibson - No, it was not that one, it was the other one on Craigslist up there. Unfortunately I found out today my hauler is stuck in Nebraska trying to get another boat out of the water on a snow covered ramp. I will probably not see my boat here at home in Indiana until the end OF NEXT WEEK. Oh well, if I had wanted nothing but fun and relaxation I wouldn't have bought 2 boats. :)

I'm still smilin'

KC55

42gibson
10-29-2012, 02:47 PM
lol, i have 2 houseboats. 1 wrecked ,the other still in the water till mid november. trust me, you have plenty of time this winter to get everything done. you'll love doing it. maybe by the time its gets here it'll be warm again.

fisheatingbagel
10-30-2012, 05:52 AM
KC55,
What do you think of the idea of collaborating on a website dedicated to KC houseboat information, documentation, etc. I am willing to help in whatever manner to make it happen. Let's see what JTAlbert has to say about the idea. There are similar sites dedicated to specific boats; Marinette, Chris Craft Commander and others.

I have pretty limited documentation, but would be willing to scan and post what I have. I have fairly comprehensive docs on Chrysler engines and the Kohler 7.5 generator set.

JTAlberts
10-30-2012, 10:58 AM
I'm up for it.

KC55
10-30-2012, 01:08 PM
fisheatingbagel,

I am absolutely up for a KC website. Hopefully you, JT and I can start posting some of the material we have collected. I am interested in what you have in mind and how to implement it. I have been trying to figure out the best way to make the stuff I have available. I will PM my email to you and JT and we can get this started.

On a side note, Thursday I drive up for the sea trial on the Ebbtide 190 Catalina, I am very confident it will go well and we will have it in our garage Thurs Nite. Unfortunately, the houseboat is still on hold until the hauler gets the situation worked out on a different boat he is working on. It will probably be a little chilly for an early evening boat ride Thursday in central Indiana, but I am really excited about it. I don't know if this is the best place to talk runabouts, so when I find a good forum to discuss it, I will put up a link to it and put one there coming back to here.

If you can't tell, I am ate up with this stuff :p Also, a buddy of mine is a professional mechanic (commercial diesel manufacturer test mechanic) and when I told him about the KC and the twin 318's he was actually excited and said we would get them and the genny in tip tip shape when it got here. I can get by when it comes to mechanical work on motors, but this was awesome as this guy is a serious mechanic and WANTS to work with me on the engines. I think he and his wife want boat rides ;) but this is cool as we hang out together and play cards already. Now, if I gould just find a source of free gasoline......

Later,

KC55

KC55
10-30-2012, 01:30 PM
I am not in any way associated with either of these boats, but as a Kingscraft fan I was interested to see these boats advertised, one because of its price and the other because it seems to be somewhat unique.

I hope you enjoy looking at these if you have not already seen them ( I would LOVE to have the 36' it would be a blast in my opinion) here they are:

http://gulfport.craigslist.org/boa/3348923610.html

http://cincinnati.craigslist.org/boa/3368563885.html

Let me know if you have any trouble using these. It's pretty bad when I still surf craigslist for KC's even after I have bought mine. I guess I have gotten into such a habit, it is hard to break.

Good day,

KC55

fisheatingbagel
10-30-2012, 01:54 PM
That 36 is quite interesting - looks like an armoured landing craft!
and that 55...interesting. Wish there were more pictures. "Needs refurbishing" can mean a lot of things

42gibson
10-30-2012, 02:41 PM
[QUOTE=fisheatingbagel;760]That 36 is quite interesting - looks like an armoured landing craft!
and that 55...interesting. Wish there were more pictures. "Needs refurbishing" can mean a lot of things[/Q
i would be nervous if it said "needs refurbishing" and didnt show any interior photos or engine compartment.i do have to admit i like the diesels.

OLD HOUSEBOATER
10-30-2012, 03:44 PM
JT

You have a PM

KC55
11-01-2012, 05:44 PM
Quick Post

Just got home with the 19' Ebbtide, love it. It ran out fine, easy start, a real pleasure. We will be finding out the new ETA on the Kingscraft. Hopefully by next Friday.

Long, long winter ahead

KC55

JTAlberts
11-02-2012, 07:25 AM
I don't see a message from you OHB.

OLD HOUSEBOATER
11-02-2012, 08:12 AM
Try again

You too KC55

KC55
11-06-2012, 01:48 PM
Our houseboat is scheduled to be picked up late this week and delivered first of next week. It seems like months since I've seen her.

We plan on going out on the new (to us) runabout this weekend. It is supposed to get into the low 70's here. This will hopefully be the beginning of a long happy story for us. I will be winterizing it after this weekend.

I have not forgotten my promise to post the Kingscraft documents I received with our KC. I want to get a web site and do it right. Maybe I can make some progress this weekend.

OHB - thanks for the heads-up on the previously posted info.

KC55

KC55
11-07-2012, 03:21 PM
Well... once again there is a new delay. I agreed to put off getting delivery of the Kingscraft until approx the 19th so my hauler can pickup a new trailer. He agreed to give us a slight discount for the wait. I will get it soon enough, it just seems like forever right now.

A question, how important do you think the second head (1/2 bath, toilet and sink) would be on our 55' boat? We are considering opening up the galley to the salon, and we are not sure the second head is really that useful. Main head if shower, toilet, and vanity/sink. I would really appreciate your input.

Later

42gibson
11-08-2012, 04:03 AM
we have a 2nd complete bath. we never have used it. even when someone stays over they always use the main head.then at the end of the year its something else to winterize. i guess its just a matter of preference.

OLD HOUSEBOATER
11-08-2012, 11:58 AM
You don't need it.

KC55
11-08-2012, 01:04 PM
That is the kind of response that makes this forum great. We are leary of making changes we might regret, but when experience speaks we try to listen. My wife really wants to "open up" the forward area of the boat and I like the idea. Thanks again.

Now, another question. The main head on our 55' is Starboard, and the shower/bath is on the left as you enter the main door. The end wall of the shower blocks a great deal of the window and leaves a weird sort of unusable space to the left of the sink. My question is this- would removing the original shower/tub and replacing it with a corner shower (I think it's called a neo angle shower) be a good idea? Have any of you done this? My wife and I agree the tub doesn't seem big enough or really useful for us, we both take showers. I believe it would really open up the head and expose more of the window to the room. I would really appreciate your thoughts (and pictures would be awesome). Again, thanks for reading this and thanks for your thoughts.

OLD HOUSEBOATER
11-09-2012, 08:00 AM
I'm a tub user and we had the opposit problem on our 48. We had to fit in a small RV tub. If you don't use the tub, by all means, get rid of it.

Does your 55 have the notch accross from the galley? This makes an Ideal laundry. A stack washer and dryer and folding closet doors make this a cheap and useful use of a wasted space.

KC55
11-10-2012, 05:08 PM
Thanks to OHB on the tub advice, We are pretty sure the 1/2 bath (head) is going away. Thanks also for the advice on the "notch", we dont really need the sleeping space and we are trying to figure that space out also. Your comments are truly valued by myself and my wife.

I talked to a bathroom guy and he suggested we build our own corner shower. This is something I can do (remodeled and tiled our main bathroom at home) and save money. All we are waiting for is our boat to get here to start measuring.

Now for the gas... we took our runabout out for the first time today. Awesome, awesome, awesome except for one thing :mad:. Gas. Even though the boat is new to us, I had asked if there were any issues. None. Well, we ran out of gas on the Ohio River. Fortunately we had been out for about 2 hours and we were back at the ramp getting ready to load (still showing just under 1/2 full). It wasn't a nightmare but I was plenty embarrassed. If anybody asks you, YOU CAN load a 19' boat by hand with no gas! It all worked and we are home safe. One thing for sure, I guess it could get worse, but I don't think it will get worse than today. In case you were wondering, we loved it. We have been waiting for months to ride in "our" boat. Today we did it. Tomorrow is sending unit, maybe another ride, and then winterizing.

We are boaters now.

fisheatingbagel
11-12-2012, 06:15 AM
Glad to hear you made it back and got the boat loaded, KC55. We have run out of gas on every boat we've owned, including the Kingscraft 40 :-)
I think it's a good (but painful) experience in getting to know your boat - how far you can go on the gas you have in the tank, how accurate the gauges are, how to get more gas, who to call, etc.

KC55
11-15-2012, 01:01 PM
So I called my hauler today after he did not respond to a text for 3 hours. I was going to touch base and make sure he was picking up his new trailer today and on the way to pick up our 55' KC this weekend. Nope, he said he had told me it was going to be after Thanksgiving before we get the boat. After a brief and not so happy discussion I agreed to continue to let him do the job. I just want to say, if you are getting a boat hauled, don't hesitate to get a written contract beforehand. I went with a highly recommended hauler and let his good reputation make the determination for me. I still trust everything is going to work out, but this has put a sour taste in my mouth. My three grown sons will all be coming in for the holiday and the boat will not be here. I would never have agreed to this had I known the boat wasn't going to be delivered by now. It was originally supposed to be picked up no later than Nov. 1st.

I am going to just relax and think about the fact that this shouldn't cause any harm for us other than a frustrating delay. I know everybody can't always do things the way they want. My hope is in the end I will have had a good experience overall with this hauler and be able to recommend him. I just wish I had had a contract with him.

Oh well, at least I get to see all my boys together for the first time in quite a while.

I sure wish I was posting measurements, plans, questions, and getting going on our "redecorating".

JTAlberts
11-15-2012, 01:57 PM
I know the feeling. I had to wait 3 months to get my boat moved. The river just wouldn't cooperate.

KC55
11-24-2012, 06:54 AM
I talked to the hauler yesterday and he is going to be in Minn. at the Marina, Monday morning to pick up the boat. We had a short civil conversation and I believe my boat will be here Wednesday (+/- 1 day). I realize I have been whining about this for a month, sorry to put you all through this. I didn't intend for this to be a chronicle of the trials and travails of my learning experience.

We are almost at the point where we can't get excited about seeing the boat until we actually see it. If that makes sense. We are still just as eager to get started on our "Winter work", hopefully we can start posting some good Kingscraft information/questions. I will post as soon as we see our "baby", "Empty Nestin' ".

Hope you had a great Thanksgiving, we did. We got to see all three of our grown sons (doing well) and our extended family including my Mother( and 2 new babies of a niece and a nephew).

Good Sailing.

OLD HOUSEBOATER
11-24-2012, 10:34 AM
1. I replaced a couple of tracks on our 47 - can't remember where I got them. They were plastic - not the black fuzzy stuff. IF YOU KEEP THE DRAINS CLEAR you won't have leaks.

2. IMHO this is way to many pieces to rattle loose. Kings Crafts system of welded in place rails is hard to beat. If you have bent or missing rails I would STRONGLY suggest you bite the bullet and replace/repair as original. If you have everything precut a good welder can do a complete job in 4 to 8 hours if you help him. I assume you would like to add height to the rails on the top deck.

3. If you ae not gaining any water you can assume your tank isn't leaking. There is really no way to visually inspect the tank that I know of. There is a lot of advice on cleaning and maintaining your water tank. Peggy Hall's procedure is as good as any. We always filled the tank and used the boat system. We never hooked up directly to the hose. This kept fresh water in the tank and eleminated the possibility of sinking due to a inadvertant water leak. I know where your coming from on this but other than going through 2 or 3 flushings you don't have any other options that aren't expensive. I would suggest that IT AIN'T BROKE DON'T FIX IT!!!!!!

We had a Pur filter on the faucet used for drinking. HOWEVER my wife always drank bottled water. I drank the filtered tank water.

4. My buddy lengthend the platform on his 36 KC cruiser. He just added pieces that matched the design of the existing platform and welded them on. He lengthend it a foot and didn't need aditional bracing. Looked factory when he got it done. Cut the pieces and use the same welder that does your rail repair.

I am trying HARD NOT TO head up to Ohio and get into the $15K 55. That puppy has my name written all over it. I love KC's and really enjoy the refurbishing process.

Cheers.

OLD HOUSEBOATER
11-24-2012, 02:50 PM
1. I replaced the tracks in my 48 with plastic. Don't remember where I got them - think it was an RV supplier. Keeping the drains open will prevent water leaking inside.

2. Too many pieces to rattle loose. UGLY!!!! KC's welded rails can't be beat. STRONGLY suggest you replace the missing/damaged with same as original. You probably want to tallerize your upper deck railings. If you have everything cut and fit, ahead of time, a good welder should be able to do whatever in 3 to 6 hours.

3. If tank is not taking on water you don't have any leaks. (GOOD) There aren't any inspection hatches (NOT SO GOOD). Follow Peggy Hall's cleaning instructions 2 or 3 times and Install a Pur or Britta filter on the faucet you drink out of. Your then good to go. NOTE: IT AIN' T BROKE DON'T FIX IT. This was one of KC's better ideas - lots of water storage in an unusable space and adds stability to the boat.

If you get over the fear in your mind you aren't going to get sick. If you do I was wrong. :o I always drank tank water, my wife drank bottled.

Fill your tank and use the ships system 100% and you will always have good water. I was always leery about hooking up dock water to the boat because of possible leaks developing and sinking the boat.

4. My friend added a foot to his platform on his 36' KC cruiser without adding additional braces. He fabricated pieces and added them to the original. (While on the hard) Looked factory when he was done. Get every thing ready and have the welder do the job when he repairs the rails.

Note: Some Kings Crafts were equipped with bronze cased cutlass bearings. This resulted in heavy loss of metal around lower portion of strut due to electrolysis. If yours are in bad condition have your welder build them back up and replace bearings with fiberglass cased units.

KC55
11-28-2012, 06:14 PM
Tomorrow is the day. The boat, our boat, is supposed to be here about 3:00PM. I am not holding my breath, but this is starting to get exciting. This will be the first time my wife sees the Kingscraft. I hope to take plenty of pictures. I will definitely keep you updated.

OHB- thanks again for your advice. Your experience is invaluable, I hope you do consider the 55' in Cincinnati. If I hadn't bought mine, I think I would be seriously checking that one out.

One other thing! Ta da- I finally got around to getting a place to post pictures and documentation on KC Houseboats. http://www.kingscrafthouseboats.com is the new website. It is nothing fancy, but I will be working on it. If you have any suggestions please feel free to comment. I hope you will want to contribute pictures and any information on our obsession :) More will be coming soon. I also put a link back to this forum, I hope that is okay.

Thanks for all of your comments, PM's, and interest shown.

KC

42gibson
11-29-2012, 12:42 PM
keep us posted kc. i hope it arrives so you can get to work. you'll have a great timne with it.

KC55
11-29-2012, 03:02 PM
Well, it's 6:00PM local time and the boat is not here. He told me 3:00 and he told the Marina 4:00 or 5:00. I had to contact the hauler to get any information. Now he says it will be tomorrow morning before he can make it here. And he wants cash for the balance. I won't be recommending him to anyone in the future.

What should be an evening of enjoyment and fun is now turned into extreme frustration and worry for no good reason. I am glad I did not start my journey into the boating world dealing with this guy. I don't think I would be a boat owner if I had. I can't wait until I am done dealing with him.

wish us luck

OLD HOUSEBOATER
11-29-2012, 04:20 PM
Both of these were projects. Both are rare, the 48 has Volvo Diesels. I havent seen another of either.

Feel free to post these to your website.

http://i108.photobucket.com/albums/n37/user973783/47.jpg
http://i108.photobucket.com/albums/n37/user973783/48.jpg

42gibson
11-30-2012, 03:01 AM
they both look good OHB, we found a strange one last summer @ smugglers cove in warsaw ky. i'm not sure of the year but the owner said it was a 42 foot. it was all one floor 15 wide.according to him it was a special build for a doctor at the time.

KC55
11-30-2012, 02:57 PM
Our boat arrived today, thank goodness. It seems like forever, but I know it was just a little while. No problems to speak of, the upper steering line is pinched closed and the boat almost tipped forward off of the temporary jacks while she was being blocked, but I am happy for now. My wife got to see the boat for the first time today and she is pleased. She was impressed with how clean and nice the exterior looks. She is already going a little crazy on the possibilities for interior renovation. We have a lot of decisions on the changes we want to make and the changes we need to avoid.

One neat thing that happened today, as we were going through the boat I found a note from the former owner. I left it on the boat but it goes something like this. " Oct. 16, 2012, To the new owner, Today is a sad day. I sold my boat today. I have had her for 25 years and she has been a good boat. I hope you enjoy her. Captain XXX. River Captain" I left his name out to protect his privacy. I really felt good when I saw this, he left it inside an old notebook which I almost threw away. I know this boat meant a lot to him, what better endorsement could you ask for. He must have left the note after I drove away the last day I was in Minn. He was an actual Coast Guard certified Captain and really knew how to handle her. I hope someday I can do as well with her as I witnessed him doing.

The first thing will be building some access stairs. Then I want to get some moss cleaned off of the carpet (exterior) and get the window frames and windows cleaned and sliding smoothly. This could be a busy winter. I will be posting pictures on my website soon.

By the way, thank you OHB for the beautiful pictures. I have already posted them to the website, I hope you feel I did them justice. If you have any others I would love to post them also.

This was a great day overall, especially since I got to be with my wife on-board the "Empty Nestin' ". She makes owning a boat a lot less scary and a whole lot more fun.

Fair winds,

KC55

KC55
12-03-2012, 04:59 PM
So Sunday I spent about 5 hours designing, cutting lumber and pre-drilling bolt holes for the stairs. We (wife and me) took everything down to the boat and spent 1 hour assembling the stairs and installing steps. They are 3 foot wide and have a handrail. They are level and plumb :) and very sturdy. All weather construction. That's out of the way and will be a big time saver. Deck of boat is approx. 7'6".

Tonight I went and talked to the Marina owner and am getting a quote on building and installing a hitch for our runabout. I will post design and pics when we get that far. He liked the idea. He also installed an outlet outside so we can have power and lights. I am buying one 30 amp outlet so we can have "shore power" while dry-docked. The Marina owner is a fantastic guy, real genuine and small town. We are lucky to have found him.

Next comes cleaning. The windows, window tracks, and indoor/outdoor carpet. Not glamorous but it will make things much nicer. Hopefully I will get this done before Friday. I want to save the weekend for whatever project my wife comes up with. I just have a feeling she will have something in mind by then :confused:

I have posted new pics at the website, I hope you will drop by and check them out. I spent about an hour in the pitch dark interior ( didn't bring extension cords and lights yet) taking a bunch of "before" pictures. I hope you like them, I am a little obsessed. http://www.kingscrafthouseboats.com

Fair winds,

KC55

OLD HOUSEBOATER
12-03-2012, 08:05 PM
Did they haul the boat with the bridge on?

KC55
12-05-2012, 01:28 PM
OHB, the flybridge was off for transport. The hauler was supposed to fill the srew holes (for the railing) with caulk for the trip to prevent rain from getting in. He did not. It didn't rain and I covered the holes with duct tape. I want to do some cleaning around the mounting bases before I screw it back down. The steering line (copper tubing) got crimped by the hauler. I don't think it will be a big deal for me to fix it, I do work like that frequently. I may even change the line out with a rubber hose designed for that application.

He did reinstall the flybridge but I just wanted to be done dealing with him. He was very nice in person but after all the delays, the flybridge issues and the boat nearly tipping forward off of the jacks I was just fine taking care of the particulars myself.

We are going down tonight to make a few measurements on the boat. I will try to start cleaning the window tracks. Anyone with experience of ordering the aluminum tracks from Marinette and installing them, I would appreciate it if you piped in about now :D . I will take some exterior shots and post them to my webpage.

By the way, I started a blog (thanks for the idea JTAlberts) on the website. I hope anyone with interest will read and comment. I wanted to start a Journal of our experiences in Houseboating. JT would you mind if I put a link to your blog on my page? Let me know.

By the way, I just want to say again--- get your agreement in writing with the Hauler, it may be uncomfortable up-front but it will save you major worry down the road. I would suggest time limits with $$$ penalties for late or faulty performance. This may be overboard (no pun intended) but I wish I had. What do you all think?

I hope if you live somewhere warm you are on the water right now, I wish we were!

KC55

OLD HOUSEBOATER
12-06-2012, 11:44 AM
Best to not use too much hose in the steering line. you have some long runs and too much rubber makes things mushy.

JTAlberts
12-06-2012, 03:07 PM
Awesome news. Sorry for being MIA lately. We sold our house and are in the process of moving. We will be done this weekend. You can link my blog and I'll link yours as well.

42gibson
12-08-2012, 05:37 AM
ok jamie, my obvious question is.......did you move onto a boat ?

JTAlberts
12-10-2012, 07:55 AM
ok jamie, my obvious question is.......did you move onto a boat ?

HAHA. Nope. I am in need of a much bigger boat to fit all of our crap!

Ed K
12-11-2012, 01:04 PM
Jamie,
I need to replace the exhaust manifolds on my 318 Chryslers. Where did you get yours? How much of a PITA was it?

KC55
12-11-2012, 07:28 PM
Wow, I am really running into water damage. It's a good thing we wanted to redo the looks of the interior. I just wish it were a little warmer so I could more easily work on the exterior. I have decided to go back with copper lines for the steering, I can work with copper.

Hope your move went well JT, good to see you back. I'm hopeful you'll share some info on the manifolds and windows. I am really taking it on the chin with my window problems.

I will know this boat inside and out when I get done.

later

KC55

KC55
12-15-2012, 08:38 PM
Hey guys, I just added some good stuff on the "Documentation" page of my website.
The Flu is slowing me down on "Empty Nestin' ", maybe I'll get some work done next week.

later

JTAlberts
12-16-2012, 08:58 AM
Jamie,
I need to replace the exhaust manifolds on my 318 Chryslers. Where did you get yours? How much of a PITA was it?

Actually it wasn't too bad. I purchased them from hurrikain marine. The most difficult part was the main bolts wanted to snap off. We also ran into issues with the backing plates being rusted through. If I was doing it again, I would buy brand new blocking plates with the manifolds.

JTAlberts
12-16-2012, 08:59 AM
I can't be much help with the window tracks as mine are stil original. Do you know where the leaks are coming from? One thing I did notice is the if they aren't clean they will leak.

KC55
12-18-2012, 03:26 AM
JT

I know the water is coming in from the cracked, broken, and (recently found) missing section of window track. I am exploring other options right now but am going to have to do something quick. It looks like new tracks from Marinette. I have heard good things about them from A Boat Reborn (http://aboatreborn.blogspot.com/) I was just trying to find a less expensive route.

Thanks for the info on the manifolds.

JTAlberts
12-18-2012, 11:45 AM
JT

I know the water is coming in from the cracked, broken, and (recently found) missing section of window track. I am exploring other options right now but am going to have to do something quick. It looks like new tracks from Marinette. I have heard good things about them from A Boat Reborn (http://aboatreborn.blogspot.com/) I was just trying to find a less expensive route.

Thanks for the info on the manifolds.

You can purchase replacement plastic tracks for the windows. I know a couple people who did that route. My only issue with that route is you are going to do the work again when those crack and break. Even though you might spend more money on the metal tracks, you wont have to touch them again.


The manifolds took me longer than expected just due to unforseen issues and my clumsiness. As I mentioned I was told to not by new backplates as we could reuse the ones that were on there. Being they were tight to the wall of the engine bay I couldn't see they were cracked or rusted out. Spend the money and buy the new backplates. If your manifolds are in terrible shape then your backplates are just as bad. The clumsiness I speak of is how I kept throwing parts into the river that we needed. That set us back a weekend. Total work time was about 12 hours for both engines.

Ed K
12-18-2012, 05:55 PM
Thanks JT,
By backplates, do you mean the end caps on the manifold on the end opposite the elbow? I know my starboard manifolds are bad. I plan to replace them before we put the boat back in the water next spring. I will replace the port manifter in the season

Ed


1975 44' Kingscraft, twin 318 Chryslers
2000 18' Stingray bowrider
1996 Yamaha Wave Raider PWC
1996 Tiger Shark PWC

fisheatingbagel
12-19-2012, 01:19 PM
Hi KC55,
Sorry I've been MIA for so long; work, kids, holiday's - it's been crazy. I keep meaning to send you some photos to post on your new website (awesome idea, BTW...thanks for setting that up)

Regarding the windows....they are a pain and a weak spot on KC. One thing to remember is the bottom tracks do not prevent water from coming in - the aluminum angle at the bottom is for that. However, if the bottom tracks are filled with debris, it can cause the water to rise above the angle and run inside. It's important to keep the tracks clean. The side and top rails can leak, though, as there is nothing other than the rail to keep the water out. It may be possible to recaulk the side and top rails without removing them as a temporary fix to keep water from getting between the hull and track. You'll have to remove any old caulk and clean the surfaces with solvent before caulking.

I think the best long term solution is to make the aft most sections of glass in each opening fixed, especially in the large forward windows. The windows and tracks would be removed, and angle aluminum installed in place of the tracks so that the glass would butt against the angle. These window sections would then be bedded in compound (maybe 5200 or regular silicon - not sure) and held in place with smaller sections of angle butted against the glass and screwed in place. The front window would still use tracks so it could slide back (the track would have to be offset some to allow it to come back by the fixed section. I don't know if this makes any sense, but I've thought about doing it with my boat. If I get some time, I may try and sketch up my idea in SketchUp to better visualize what I'm thinking about.

I'm not sure what kind of door/window you have on the rear of your 44. My 40 has a large sliding window/door - essentially a scaled down patio door. The track on the bottom has holes designed to allow water to run out. There is also an angle designed to keep water from coming in, but never worked well on mine - water would sometimes collect in the track and run over the top. I added a section of flat aluminum to "extend" the lip of the angle to allow more "water capacity" to the track before it can spill over.

Another problem these boats have is condensation - this is a real problem especially if you keep the boat in the water over winter (as I do). I run a dehumidifier in mine, and also a small fan blowing out the front cracked window. If I don't, my boat will literally rain on the inside during those winter days when the sun shines and it gets above freezing. This led me on a goose chase at first, thinking I had other leaks on the boat when it was actually condensation running down the walls!

Good luck!

KC55
12-19-2012, 04:02 PM
Fisheatingbagel,

Glad your back. I'm looking forward to those pics of your boat. I've finally decided to go ahead and buy the tracks from Marinette. I talked to the guy, John, and he seems like a good guy. I figure it won't be like getting custom double paned, tinted windows, but it should be a permanent solution to use the aluminum tracks. I think I understand your idea on making a fixed-frame set up for the windows. If you try it I would be interested in how it works out.

I really appreciate your comment on the condensation. It's good to know that kind of stuff in advance, I can plan for it. That is something I noticed on our boat, but I don't think I was paying enough attention to the issues it could bring. I think a dehumidifier is on the horizon.

I am not to the rear window yet, but I will remember your post when that gets addressed.

Send pictures! :)

JTAlberts
12-22-2012, 08:17 AM
http://www.hurrikain.com/Chrysler-exhaust.htm

The diagram shows the end plate.

KC55
01-01-2013, 05:52 AM
Quick question for Kingscraft rebuilders. Did you remove the paneling that was installed inside the walls? It seems like it will be very difficult to get it out and I was wanting to hear the thoughts of any of you who have faced this before.

Thanks...and happy New year!

OLD HOUSEBOATER
01-01-2013, 07:01 PM
If your talking about the interior panaling, I replaced all of it in our 48. Not that big a deal. I removed a sheet at a time and used it for a pattern to cut the new.

KC55
01-02-2013, 02:24 PM
OHB,

I'm not talking about the interior paneling, we are in the middle of tearing that out and installing new. I should have made myself clearer, sorry, but this is a little confusing.

In the inside of the walls (after you tear out the old paneling) the factory put sheets of paneling between the exterior sheet aluminum and the aluminum framing. It is almost like they were using it for sound deadening or insulation. It appears to have been put up next to the framing (c-channels and such) and then the exterior aluminum sheeting was held into place and welded. This made a framing/paneling/exterior sheeting sandwich. It will be difficult to get out. I hope that helps explain the configuration.

I am planning on insulating with Dow closed cell insulation board inside the wall. I just wondered what the rest of you did if/when you ran into this. I don't think it would hurt it to stay there, but I was hoping to get some thoughts or actual experience.

I didn't mean to go on so long, thanks for looking at this.

KC55

boatlover
01-02-2013, 06:50 PM
If understand you correctly it sounds like they are using the pieces of paneling as a thermal brake. This would help a little by trying to lessen temperature transfer from exterior to the framing there for trying to lessen the condensation that all metal boats experience. Since you are removing the paneling I would recommend that you spray foam insulate all of it including the framing. The insulation board will help somewhat in the summer with cooling but will do nothing to help stop the condensation you will get if you try to heat in the winter.

Pluckebaum started using spray foam in the late 80's early 90's to combat condensation. My 91 Plucke is spray foamed from the chine up. Still any aluminum that is in contact with the cold exterior and warm interior air WILL form condensation.

KC55
01-02-2013, 08:19 PM
boatlover,

Thanks for the response and the info. I will definitely look into the spray insulation. I like those Pluckebaums, I am tickled with our KC, but I really admire some of the "competition". Any advice on carpet padding?

Thanks again and smooth sailing!

KC55

boatlover
01-03-2013, 07:49 PM
KC55
Sorry no advice an carpet padding. Just a little Kingscraft info. Pluckebaum actually sold the plans and info to Kingscraft to start building boats. They built a few hulls for them also. Pluckebaum also built for Marrinette. So the Kings and the Plucke are like first cousins. This info came directly from Dennis Pluckebaum.

Kinda explains the similarity in the design of the boats.

KC55
01-08-2013, 04:18 PM
Thanks for the info on the Pluckebaum connection. For me, learning about the boat is fun, I'm weird that way. Hopefully the gentleman you mentioned will see my website and be good enough to contribute.

I am really starting to see what you mean about condensation. I am going to review posts in the old forum about spray foam insulation and then go that route.

I use to like the Winter... I want better weather to work on our boat!

Thanks again,

KC55

boatlover
01-09-2013, 03:12 PM
KC55

The gentleman I referred to (Dennis Pluckebaum) is the owner and operator of Pluckebaum Custom Boats. His father started the business in 1946. No one knows more about aluminum boat construction than them. I see you are in Madison, they are not that far from you in Prospect,KY. I'm sure they could help you if you needed it. I doubt that he will see your site.

I was talking to Dennis last year when they were doing some work on my boat and I asked him about the simularitys of the Kings and the Plucke. Thats when he told me about his father selling and helping Kingscraft get started. He also told me that they built boats for Marrinette.

If your interested there is a picture of my boat on their website.
www.pluckebaum.com

Home>Models and Specs>Pluckebaum Coastal Yacht

Third picture down is my boat.

KC55
01-13-2013, 03:06 AM
Boatlover,

Very nice. I hate to admit just how much I admire the Pluckebaums. It is cool that there is a relation to the Kingscraft. Your boat is sweet, I saw it on their sight as you described. I definitely have boat envy! :D

I am looking at this conpanyhttp://www.sprayfoamdirect.com/ for insulation. I will need to run all of my wiring before doing the insulation, so it will have to wait just a bit. If you (or anybody) has any experience with this company or any other type of spray foam kit I would love to hear about it. My search of the old forum didn't get specifics of companys or brands.

I have been working a ton of O/T and progress on the boat is slow right now. I am going to do the window tracks when time permits.

Thanks again for the info.

Best wishes,

KC55

Fork-lift-king
01-13-2013, 03:28 PM
Try this boat building site. http://www.boatdesign.net/forums/

KC55
01-19-2013, 03:07 AM
Try this boat building site. http://www.boatdesign.net/forums/

I checked that out, lots of good info, thanks.

I have been working so much O/T I haven't had time to sleep! I guess it's either work on the boat or pay for the boat. Winter isn't as fun as it used to be :p

Later,

KC55

Fork-lift-king
01-19-2013, 06:29 AM
The boat design site had some info about the spray on insulation. Something about moisture when it was sprayed on wood walls in a boat.

KC55
02-18-2013, 03:18 PM
Hey, I just had my first two day weekend, we got about 8 hours work done on the boat. Does anyone have the wiring diagram for the 318 marine Chryslers? I am not a big time mechanic, I can strip out a spark plug though (not on the boat!). If I get a good drawing(s) I will post it on the website for all to have access to.

Very slow Winter

KC55

JTAlberts
02-19-2013, 06:52 PM
What year are your engines? I might have a manual that will have that.

KC55
02-25-2013, 05:04 PM
I keep forgettting to check the year of the engines, it's a 1974 boat though.

I am getting ready to order new wiring and panels, any wiring info you have would be appreciated. It turns out we are refurbishing the boat after all. 1/2 bath is now gone :)

Sorry I took so long to reply.

KC55

KC55
04-12-2013, 06:20 PM
Hey all,

I've been busy with work. To say the least. We got started back on the boat today and will be free for more this weekend.

We have turned the corner and are starting to put back instead of tear out ;)

I'll post more soon.

KC55

KC55
05-09-2013, 03:57 AM
WOW
I have really learned a lot. I didn't know what I was getting into. If you buy a housseboat - take a disinterested 3rd party. I was way too emotionally involved.
We have been back at it for almost a month and have more work to do now than when we started. The 1/2 head, the bunk, and the full head are gone. MASSIVE leaks and ( non structural) wood rot changed our plans. We are now into our 2nd year's schedule. We have replaced all the plumbing with Apex (good stuff) and installed our newbreaker box (not wired yet). Our salon is completely insulated (sheet poly).
I STILL LOVE IT
KC55

KC55
05-17-2013, 07:47 PM
I am still here, down but not out.
We have put in the new aluminum window tracks in the front salon, ripped up all the old indoor/outdoor carpet off the roof (not the fly bridge), and are in the process of getting the carpet glue off. What a mess. I went back over the old forum, called carpet stores, and asked friends for advice and THERE IS NO GOOD WAY TO GET OFF THE OLD GLUE. The best thing I found was a hot day plus gallons of brake fluid. Yep. The old glue and backing rubber actually started off-gassing (like steam) in the hot sun after about 20-40 minutes. We tried everything we could think of and brake fluid is the best. We did not try the dry ice method, we just didn't have any handy. We are down to sanding the surface to get to bright shiny metal. We are going back with Sonoguard, a BASF product. We haven't been able to find the source of our leaks, and it has rained hard since we ripped out the head and most of the Starboard paneling (and some of the ceiling). I have really gotten behind on my website, more pictures soon, I promise. I am working 12 hour shifts at work and trying to finish a business degree so it is hectic around here.
The fact that we are already paying for our slip is a real motivator :)
Anybody need a new boat owner consultant? I could save you thousands of dollars and hundreds of hours. Or just read and search this forum and believe it.

happy floating
KC55

JTAlberts
05-20-2013, 08:04 AM
KC,

Things went off the rails for me here in terms of focus on the boat. We sold our house, the wife is due with out first baby in August, we are buying and renovating a 100 year old home, and I just changed jobs. Luckily, the new job is providing me with more time to do my out of work hobbies. Hopefully the house will be nearing the stage where I have less hands on soon. That means I can focus on getting those windows in the boat. We will be putting in the water this weekend and just work on putting a window in a night. Fingers crossed it works out. I will be pulling the boat mid-september and trying to get some work done to it then. If possible, I would like to sand and prime the body for painting the rest of the hull in the spring. Depending on how everything runs this year, I might also be looking into getting the engines and transmissions rebuilt. That might wait a couple years though.

JTAlberts
06-06-2013, 07:40 AM
KC,

Any more progress? We have the boat in the water and got her all washed up, however she is going to sit idle for a bit. We are in the main work of the house. That should be dying down in the next few weeks so we hope to get some wave time.

KC55
06-07-2013, 07:58 PM
JT,

We are making progress, it's just slow. We have all of the carpet off of the top and need to finish sanding. I will have to fill the joints on the upper deck and then I will be able to paint. We have looked at sani-tred, sonoguard, and various other urathanes, but have decided on Devoe two part epoxy primer and paint for the upper decks. We replaced one of the lower windows (middle Starboard), cleaned most of the lower bilge and replaced about 1/4 of the interior decking. I ordered a c-head composting toilet after we ripped out all of the sewage system. All of the hoses were permeated and stunk. I realize this is a pretty radical move but I couldn't find a single person that actually owns one that isn't happy. We are completely redoing the head (new shower, toilet, and vanity) and moving the walls. I also am widening the pocket door from 24 inches to 30 inches(won't have to turn sideways to go through). The new layout of the head means none of the windows will be "split" by any walls. The boat will be radically opened up. Our plans are to re-float as soon as the head, roof, and through hulls are all done. We will have a long way to go but we want to be boaters and not just builders.

Congrats on the baby! That is awesome.

Best wishes.

KC

KC55
06-18-2013, 03:42 PM
Just a quick update,

I have two weeks of intense schoolwork and my boating time is being severely curtailed. After that the time should be mine, I hope at least. Now, if the money will just hold out! On a side note, we took the Ebbtide out Saturday and had to get towed in. My mechanic thinks the needle seats in the carb aren't sealing properly. Having two boats to get fixed is way funner that just one. That is what I told my wife but she didn't believe it. When I finish school, I am going to learn gasoline engine repair. Seriously.

I haven't been on "Empty Nestin' " for two days and I think I'm going through withdrawal.

KC55

All the Sun I can stand, all the water I can see, all the money I can spend, so on a boat I can be free.

JTAlberts
06-19-2013, 06:33 AM
KC,

I know the feeling. Luckily the issue with our open bow was just user error. My father in law had the trim up way to high when he was bring the boat up river. I let him drive it while I took the trailer home. When I got to the dock he told me that the boat was running and vibrating really bad. I jumped in and took off. He was trying to put the trim almost halfway up. In our boat it can't go above a quarter of the way until the prop starts coming to the top of the water. I had feared the worst.


What engines does your KC have in it? I had a good lesson from a friend on some engine wrenching two days ago.

KC55
06-21-2013, 07:29 PM
JT
It's a mercruiser V8 230Hp. It turned out to be the ignition sensor (potted electronics device in the distributor). I was there when the mechanic took off the dist cap and the rotor had just about eaten out the inside of the dist. There were metal and plastic shavings/dust laying in the bottom of the distributor. The warm starting problem went away when he put in the ignition sensor. We took it for a test drive today and ran it for a half hour, shut it off and waited for another half hour. It restarted great and we tried it several more times, on/off, on/off, etc. It seems reliable now. May be why we got a pretty good deal on her last year. I didn't think to stop/start her on the trial ran we made. Living and learning.

Glad your boating issue was just user error.

It felt wonderful to be on the water and have things go well. When we got back to the ramp an older lady had backed her pickup truck and trailer in the water up to the drivers door window. I assume she had intended to pull the trailer out after her husband had launched and had it in reverse. To add insult to injury, when the tow truck stopped, when pulling her out, either she didn't think to hit the brakes or something, but she coasted into the back of the tow truck...BAM. I guess everybody has a lousy day every once in a while. We felt sorry for her for sure.

The first wall is framed in the HB, and the composting toilet is now aboard. It is not christened, my wife said I have to wait till all the walls are there. Sometimes I don't understand women :)

Back to schoolwork! :(

KC55

KC55
08-06-2013, 04:55 PM
Quick update

We continue to work on the boat in most of our spare time. The head is framed in and we are in the process of installing the cultured marble shower (a heavy job). The pocket door to the stateroom has been moved forward 6", widened 6" to 30" and the opening raised to where up to a 6'4" frame will fit through. The stateroom closet is gone, by choice. Approximately 45% of the insulation is done and we have one of the six lower windows re-framed in aluminum. The carb on the genny has been completely rebuilt. Probably 35% of the AC circuits are in and all of the helm wiring is gone. The helm will be on the list before we launch. I think I mentioned the upper decks sometime, we are still struggling to find a GOOD tig welder for the leaks. That is the number one frustration besides not getting on the water. The salon/galley stairs have been designed and rebuilt to save 8" of galley space. The rear steps have been replaced with a single step/workbench. Much easier in and out of the aft window and nice for short rests and work space (doesn't take up an inch more than the original stairs. Many other things too minimal to list.

We are not going to get out this year. We finally admitted it. The goal is to have it completely done for next spring. We took the boat apart staple-by-staple, screw-by-screw, wire-by-wire, and wall-by-wall. We really didn't realize we were going to do everything. We could have saved a ton of time by ripping it out all at once but I JUST DIDN'T KNOW :)

I'll put some pics on the website tonite if you care to see the progress/devastation.

I would have posted sooner but working on a boat is funner than talking about it.

Later
KC55

KC55
08-12-2013, 08:16 AM
Shower enclosure (cultured marble) & vanity installed. Ceiling is next. And shelving. Hoping to get some info about a Welder out of Louisville soon. Pics on website soon. The wife's happiness factor went way up.
Later
KC55

KC55
08-28-2013, 11:06 AM
I tested the epoxy paint for water leaks, no drips anywhere in the flybridge roof. Did discover that the exterior joint between walls and catwalks needs to be recaulked. The welder never returned our call. This is the most encouraged we've been fot a while. Fresh paint is great.
Also got some water skiing in at Lake Monroe.
Later
KC55

JTAlberts
08-29-2013, 01:28 PM
I love the idea of the pocket door. You have me thinking about doing that if I need to rip out my bathroom for the fuel tanks.

KC55
09-26-2013, 11:50 AM
We finished painting the lower roof, dew settled early and made a lot of "flat" areas in the lower roof finish. I am planning on doing a speckle effect (blue) on the roofs and deck so it won't matter. Lesson learned...apply epoxy paint early in the day on cooler days.

We got the chance to go out on a different 55' KC last weekend. She was beautiful, the Ohio River was very nice, and being with new friends was the best part of it all. We are reenergized to work on our boat. I will try to make a detailed posting on my blog very soon about our recent work and fun.

I have seen 2 - 44' KC's advertised recently for $3000 -$3500 stripped. I want to encourage you to seek opportunities like this if you are interested in houseboating. We would have been better off going this route, but we had to live and learn :)

Happy fall boating,

KC55
12-05-2013, 08:16 PM
I can't believe two months have passed since my last post. We have made progress, but it has been slow. We are still struggling with needing welding done, but I have done something about it now. We purchased a welder from Everlast (http://www.everlastgenerators.com/) and are happy with it. I am teaching myself to tig weld aluminum, not an easy proposition. We are heading into a wintry run of weather, but are looking forward to getting the welding done and getting back in gear.

Just a note, the propane frig is in, the replacement cultured marble trim is onboard, and the galley has been torn out. Thank goodness for propane heaters (http://www.mrheater.com/ProductFamily.aspx?catid=41)! I could have never believed a year ago we would still be at this. I know some of the old hands here will chuckle when they read this, it was arrogant of me to think I could have had this all finished by now.

Still lovin' our baby and lovin' working on it. It is a lot easier with a good partner, which I have.

Happy Ice skating to you and yours.

KC55

JTAlberts
12-06-2013, 01:13 PM
What are you welding?

KC55
12-06-2013, 04:24 PM
JT

Sorry, I get so caught up in what has been done and what needs to be done that I forget what I have posted here or on my webpage. I'll try to explain the welding. So... the upper deck over the galley and head and stateroom, has handrails that run the entire starboard and port side and wrap around and protect you from falling off the aft end of the upper deck. This is not to be confused with the flybridge deck. Anyway, unknown to me when we purchased the boat, the starboard rail had been hit and bent over to some degree. Whatever it hit did not come into contact with the side of the boat. The handrail had been bent back into it's original position (somewhat successfully). If you look at the bottom of the rails that support the handrail you will see that Kingscraft had welded small aluminum pads (approx. 1 1/2" x 3") to the deck, and the support rails were welded on to this at a slight angle (to avoid welding directly to the thinner upper deck aluminum surface). If you are still following me, the pads had been bent up (tearing them from the decking) and had torn the original weld (all aluminum). Somebody had caulked these back in place and several very small leaks had ensued over the years. Very small leaks. So small they wouldn't be noticed during normal rains, but noticeable when tearing out the interior. We noticed this one day when it had rained for over 24 hours straight.

Anyway, I hope that this will explain what I am going to be doing. Welding on the top of the boat to stop leaks. Thanks for asking.

My best to you and yours,

KC55

JTAlberts
04-19-2014, 06:59 AM
How is it coming along?

KC55
04-29-2014, 04:29 PM
JT,

It is going slow. But there has been progress. It had been a little depressing this winter, but when the weather turned I got re-motivated. We are working on building galley cabinets from scratch. We are going to launch by the end of June no matter the progress. Wow, I have learned a lot. That means I really didn't know much :)

Thanks for asking JT. How is your adventure going? Are you getting any water time in? I hope so.

Best wishes,
KC55

JTAlberts
04-29-2014, 07:26 PM
JT,

It is going slow. But there has been progress. I had been a little depressing this winter, but when the weather turned I got re-motivated. We are working on building galley cabinets from scratch. We are going to launch by the end of June no matter the progress. Wow, I have learned a lot. That means I really didn't know much :)

Thanks for asking JT. How is your adventure going? Are you getting any water time in? I hope so.

Best wishes,
KC55

Well, fingers crossed but the project might be transitioning hands this week. I will find out tomorrow what the status of the person purchasing it. I already have my eyes on my next one though.

KC55
05-19-2014, 01:51 AM
Yep, still chugging along

I have been horrible about keeping up with our progress. The upper cabinets are finished and the base cabinets are installed. My wife just finished sanding the base cabinet face frames and staining the doors. I haven't built the drawers yet. The ceilings in the galley/dining area are done as well as the lighting in that area. In case I didn't mention it, almost all of the lighting is 12VDC led. There is luan down in the galley awaiting vinyl plank flooring. The side walls in the salon are finished as well as 90 percent of the salon ceiling. I have some electrical/control/lighting left to do before closing up the rest of the ceiling. It is nice seeing very little green insulation. Everything was green for a long time, way too long.

The walls in the salon are pine bead board. The walls in the galley/dining area are either maple or painted wood paneling (white). I learned a beginners lesson, do not use cheap paneling. We really got it for the looks, but humidity is not kind to pressed wood products. I feel sheepish admitting this mistake. I have torn out most of the paneling and replaced it. It feels real warm and fuzzy paying for and installing paneling and then tearing it out and paying for new. Not to mention double the labor. At least I had some sweet templates :( The walls aren't warped now.

Tons of wiring have been completed. Marine rated wiring is expensive. I plan on ordering new battery cabling this week. June 1st is the target day for beginning seaworthiness work. Complete all control wiring, tune engines, test all bilges, blowers, and genny, etc. I've got a few connections in the flybridge for the steering left to do (all of them). I'm converting the flybridge to a quick disconnect system. I probably won't need it very often, but it will be a real nice feature when done.

One other quick update. I had purchased a composting toilet a while back and have used it over some months. I think it is great. Very little work involved, no odor and I can move it about. That may not sound important or interesting, but during construction, it has made the head a good workstation. I slip the toilet in the shower area (still usable) and the entire floor in front of the vanity is usable. I plan on leaving the toilet in the shower except for showers. It's called a C Head. Clever name, great product, nice company.

Best wishes,
KC55

KC55
06-29-2014, 04:50 PM
I haven't been regular about updates (and it probably doesn't hurt too many people's feelings), but I wanted to let everyone know: We are back on the water. We launched about 9:30 - 10:00 this morning. Pretty well went without a hitch. Both engines fired up nicely and we powered off of the trailer. I made a quick little circle on the river and pulled up to our dock. About 15 minutes for the "maiden voyage". I have minimal systems on-line, and much to still do. We ended up going out two more times, once for 30 minutes and the last time for 45-60 minutes. The Port engined died at low idle at the end of the second trip and wouldn't fire back up. It took some starting fluid but she fired back to life and I sat and idled her for 15 minutes and then start-stop-started her. The last trip out was flawless except for needing to bleed the hydraulic steering, the steering was a little "loose" and I think a little bit of air in the system had settled out to a high point (main helm). The steering responded nicely to the bleed-off and now has a good 5 1/2 turns lock-to-lock.

All of the warnings you all wisely gave me fell on deaf ears. I now know what you all meant, I too had to learn the hard way. I have begun to pay my dues. It's not just money or time, the emotional toll and the wear and tear on relationships are the real price. Luckily I have a great wife and we made it through.

Thanks for reading, I hope it has been a little interesting. This is a great place to have the opportunity to learn without the blood sweat and tears.

Smooth sailing,
KC55

JTAlberts
06-30-2014, 09:35 AM
Awesome to hear. Getting her on the water will give you the extra juice to push through.