View Full Version : 1976 Stardust Steel V Hull

06-11-2015, 07:16 PM
I am neck deep in refurbishing the above boat and the current Stardust manufacturer just bought the name, so I am looking for any sources of information I can find about these boats. My primary question is related to the condition of the hull.

First, does anyone know what gauge steel it might have been constructed from?

Then, a general question on steel boats. Six years ago the previous owner had the boat pulled. A couple of spots on the hull were repaired (pinholes that were not leaking), then it was painted with two coats of a tar/epoxy resin. When should the boat be pulled again and inspected? Also, I have heard that there are "boots" that can now be applied to the steel that prevent corrosion for many years. Any info?


06-12-2015, 06:05 AM
I hate to be the bearer of bad news but your boat - when done - has ZERO value. Most Marinas don't allow steel boats and I know of no current insurer that will sell insurance on one. Strongly suggest you take your hit now and go for something else.


06-12-2015, 11:58 AM
My boat is already in a marina and I have insurance on the boat.

06-12-2015, 08:44 PM
Great - Best of luck in the future.

06-13-2015, 07:03 AM
There are a few steel boat owners that are looking for insurance. They would be very happy if you would share your Insurance source . Also what marina are you located at?

06-13-2015, 07:21 AM
I neglected to answer your first posts questions. I believe the metal thickness was 10Ga. The coal/tar epoxy was and is the best coating for steel boats. Life is 5 to 7 years with touchups every 2 or 3 years. We owned a Carri Craft and 3 RiverQueens and used Coal Tar Epoxy on all of them. We also used it on our 2 aluminum KingsCrafts and our Pluckybaum.

Applying plating or boots over the exterior of a steel hull is worse than nothing. Rust forms between the surfaces and holes out in as little as 2 years. The only proper repair of bad spots in a steel hull is cutting it out and replacing the bad metal. Over patching is not acceptable. The Coal Tar is the best protection you can use. Over 90% of steel boats rust from the inside out. Usually in low points such as keels, areas under engines and transmissions and other hidden areas that are not easily accessible. When I owned steel boats I made ALL areas accessible and kept them dry and coated with Rusoleum. None of my boats ever had rust. But it took a LOT of effort. The Carrie Craft had steel toons and had soluble oil in each section, from the factory.

Iv'e been moderating house boating forums since 1996 and you are the first owner to take on a steel boat since Mike Wolf Did a River Queen 6 years ago. Would like to see pictures.


06-14-2015, 06:36 PM
I'd be happy to share some pictures. Been on it since Friday night and just got home at 8pm Sunday night. Will add some pictures when I can. Essentially the boat was in disrepair from when my uncle owned it - he was not in good enough health to maintain it well since he got it from the original owners in 2004. At that time he remodeled the boat, but over the last 3-4 years he could not do much with it. I essentially gutted the interior after removing the old top steel rails and applying new gelcoat. I also rebuilt some of the structural 5/8" plywood around the box, have been waterproofing the doors and windows, flap-sander grinding the deck and priming/painting.

I do have a new shower installed and almost have the toilet/Purasan back in working order (it worked before I unhooked it to redo some of the plumbing and wiring).

My primary concern right now is doing exactly what you are talking about. I am taking the middle portion of the floor out (over the V), removing loose rust, and will be using a rust encapsulator then some sort of coating. The engine compartment is a mess. Rotten plywood underneath the gas tank, open rails underneath the engine - so that part of the V is accessible, and rotten plywood under the HUGE Onan generator. I am going to remove the generator and get it working again for home use. With that gone I can easily climb in either of the two side hatches and get to, and underneath, the engine and the hull. Lot of rigged up wiring and stuff to sort through and get right also. Will also remove the fuel tank and replace the wood. That will allow me to inspect, clean, and repair the entire engine compartment. The entire boat is dry, but in the past water has gotten in from topside and been bilged. I am going to stop that as much as possible. The good news is that there is no weeping of water anywhere and the entire V is bone dry.

I have a great insurance agent that I have everything insured with and have for 25+ years - it's State Farm. It's at a marina on Chickamauga Lake - my boat was grandfathered and you are correct - they state they are not taking new steel boats. But I have seen at least one new to our marina so it probably is based on condition.

06-15-2015, 09:04 AM
Is there a 48 foot single level Kings Craft there? Has Volvo Diesels. I sold it to a couple in the middle 80s.

Suggest you use a rust converter (I used Navel Jelly) on the residual rust. I then used Rust Oleum primer over that. The automotive repair trade also have rust converters that are very effective. Leaves a black finish that holds paint real well.

I always used Sherwin Williams Coal Tar on the bottom. Since your boat already has a coal tar bottom you don't have to take it to the metal for a couple of new coats. Just a good blasting to rough up the old surface.

06-16-2015, 07:48 AM
Not sure about that boat - large marina and I have been keeping my head down working on the boat while I am there. I think my dock is the only one in that marina that can handle boats of this size so most likely it is not.

I've done quite a bit of research on the rust converters - I think I have found one that I want to try. YouTube and customer reviews are wonderful tools. I really have an appreciation for Al Gore's little internet invention.