Just bought 1988 Montauk - initial repairs

Repair or modification of Boston Whaler boats, their engines, trailers, and gear
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Joined: Tue Sep 12, 2017 10:24 pm

Just bought 1988 Montauk - initial repairs

Postby Skier604 » Tue Sep 12, 2017 11:18 pm

Hi, first time poster, long time Whaler owner/enthusiast, and have leveraged this this forum on and off for years.

Just picked up a 1988 Montauk over the weekend and have two primary areas for repairs I am prioritizing: 1) glassing/painting over holes due to trolling motor, electronics I may or may not keep, as well as small drill holes that have been filled/not painted and 2) cosmetic fix to the 2001 Yamaha 90 4-stroke. I intend to return this to stock/show ready and being that it has been well kept, I don't believe will take too much.

1. Regarding the glassing/painting, what is a reasonable rate? Take for example the trolling motor as seen in one of the pictures. How much would a skilled craftsman charge me to fill the holes and blend the color? Should I just have the entire inside painted over?

2. The console has plenty of small drill holes that have either been filled and not painted or need to be filled and painted. The windshield also needs to be replaced as the previous owner drilled and secured a small compass with rivets. Some other moderate repairs are needed to fix the console. Should I pay someone to do it and will they be able to do a good enough job so that it's close to perfect or should I pay the $1600 minus my USCG discount (Semper Paratus) to Specialty Marine for a new console entirely?

3. Lastly, the outboard needs some cosmetic work. This outboard has 485 hours and has been well maintained, so I expect it to last me quite some time. That said, I don't want to put in investment that is equivalent to a significant percentage of its value. Question: where is a good resource for replacement top cowlings? Should I buy a sticker set off the web and spray paint existing top/lower cowlings as per this Youtube video? https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=acoCePs-PhQ&t (I'm only semi confident in my ability to do this). Or should I pay someone to do this? How much should that set me back?

4. Am I able to hide the engine battery in the console? Is this common? I'd like to keep the aft area clean.

Lots of questions - excited to restore this boat as I've been dreaming of owning a late 80s Montauk since I was a little kid, ripping around in a severely underpowered 1987 11' super sport.
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Thanks! Looking forward to engaging more and sharing my progress.


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Joined: Tue Sep 12, 2017 10:24 pm

Replace or repair outboard cowling

Postby Skier604 » Sun Sep 17, 2017 10:55 pm

On my 1988 Montauk I have a 2001 or 2002 Yamaha F90 with fairly severe sun damage to the cover and decals. Replacement decals are easy to find. What is the best option:

--replace an outboard top cowling, or

--repair an outboard top cowling?

Besides eBay, where is my best option to find a replacement cowling?

Does anyone know of a specialist who can do this type work and cosmetic work?

I would be open to shipping the cover

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Re: Replace or repair outboard cowling

Postby andygere » Sun Sep 17, 2017 11:55 pm

It would probably be cheaper to paint the cowling or have the cowling painted by a pro.
1989 Outrage 22 Cuddy

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Re: Just bought 1988 Montauk - initial repairs

Postby jimh » Mon Sep 18, 2017 5:58 am

I can offer a bit of advice on two areas.

On a center console that has lots of old screw fastener holes that are no longer needed, you can attempt to repair these yourself by filling them with polyester resin and top-coating with gel coat resin that is color-matched to the original gel coat color. For advice in making such a repair, see the articles in the REFERENCE section:


Repairing Hull Damage the Whaler Way
by Taylor Clark


As for moving the engine starting battery to the console from the transom, this can be done and has often been done. But you generally MUST replace the battery cables with cable of much larger size in order to reduce the voltage drop in the cables. For advice see the SMALL BOAT ELECTRICAL forum:

Recommended Battery Cable Size

There are two approaches to extending the battery cables of the outboard motor: splice in a new extension and re-use the old cables, or discard the old cables and get a new, one-piece, splice-free cable.


If you wish to extend the battery cables by splicing in a new conductor, the new conductor will need to have very low voltage drop. The existing battery cables were probably sized to be about the smallest conductors which would provide proper voltage drop for their length, so the extension cables need to be very large size conductors in order that they have almost no voltage drop. Because a spliced cable will have extra connections, these connections are also potential sources of additional voltage drop, and one must be very careful that the splice and its connections are very well made so as not to introduce any additional voltage drop into the circuit. The location of the splice must also be considered. If it is below deck and in an area where water can pool and stand, the splice must be absolutely waterproof.


Discarding the original battery cables and replacing them with new cables of the proper conductor size for the total length of the circuit eliminates all of the splice and connector problems. If the conductor is run in a tunnel there will not be any spliced connections which may be in standing water. Generally this results in a smaller size conductor being used than if you splice an extension onto the original cable. Although you will have to purchase more cable, the cost will be about the same because the price of the smaller cable will be less per foot. The smaller cable will be more flexible, which is a benefit for use with an outboard motor.

Tom Hemphill
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Re: Just bought 1988 Montauk - initial repairs

Postby Tom Hemphill » Mon Sep 18, 2017 6:45 pm

As to Question #2, if you want to keep the original appearance, I don't think the Specialty Marine console will satisfy you. I can't tell from your pictures, but I think your 1988 boat probably has multiple faces, with the binnacle sitting up higher. The aftermarket substitute looks to replicate an earlier model.