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Author Topic:   Project: RAGE O/B Conversion
BOB KEMMLER JR posted 04-10-2002 03:15 PM ET (US)   Profile for BOB KEMMLER JR  
Has anyone tried this?Any tips on bracketts?I think i need a 10" setback.Steering suggestions?
phatwhaler posted 04-10-2002 05:24 PM ET (US)     Profile for phatwhaler  Send Email to phatwhaler     
Seems like a small Gil bracket would work with maybe a 70HP outboard. I guess you'll have to glass over a nice size hole in the hull. Sounds like a great project to be featured in Cetacea.

phatwhaler out.

KeysNole posted 04-10-2002 10:16 PM ET (US)     Profile for KeysNole  Send Email to KeysNole     
Bob, I was just about to make a similar post when I saw yours. I actually think it wouldn't be that difficult of a project, but a lot depends on the integrity and strength of where the outboard will be located.

My question is: what kind of steering does a stock rage have? Teleflex? I am not familiar with jet drive engines, but having teleflex steering seems like it would make life a lot easier.

Either way, I believe the rage with a 50-70hp outboard would be a very nice boat.

BOB KEMMLER JR posted 04-11-2002 09:22 AM ET (US)     Profile for BOB KEMMLER JR    
It has a throttle type cable setup with a tight ratio 1 turn lock to lock,so i basically need to replace EVERYTHING!Im going to do everything but the glass and gelcoat work myself,but after thats done there really isnt alot of complicated stuff to do.I was going to do that my self with some type of starboard and 5200 adhesive,but decided i wanted it to look good.I may have to go with a older O/B for right now but in a season or two,a new yamaha 100 would make that thing really move.I even have plans to put a livewell under the seat and use one of the original goofy drain holes as the pickup.Im going to have the other glassed over and im going to have them install a conventional brass drain tube.Im going to have the glass&gelcoat guy take lots of pictures,and im going to take a bunch every step of the way.Any input will be greatly appreciated.Hey i stuck a 460 into a 69 falcon once with no hacking involved,so if i can do that it should be fairly easy.
Eric posted 04-11-2002 09:53 PM ET (US)     Profile for Eric  Send Email to Eric     
A 460 between Falcon shock towers with no cutting? That's incredible.
BOB KEMMLER JR posted 04-12-2002 08:35 AM ET (US)     Profile for BOB KEMMLER JR    
"66-69" Falcons have the same shock tower dimensions as 67&up mustangs and fairlanes,but i did it with manifolds,so it looked all stock.
tuna1 posted 04-12-2002 12:12 PM ET (US)     Profile for tuna1  Send Email to tuna1     
The Falcoon Sprint had a HP V8 and you could drive it off a dealer's lot. What you attemp is the equal to converting a stern drive OMC 400/800 stringer drive boat(big rubber boot around hole in transum where drive went thur)to a transum flange drive-Mercury,ect.I have never seen a good swap done.The transum must be completely redone to provide the required strenght to support the verticle(weight) load and then thrust moments.Yes it can be done!!!,But at what cost$$$ By far easier to repair the powerhead damage.Most likely cause of the failure was a damaged gasket ,with it causing a intake leak and a lean mixture to #4 cylinder. I am afraid-It's going to be like getting married,all your friends say do't,but you will go ahead and do it anyway,because your in LOVE. Good Luck?
BOB KEMMLER JR posted 04-12-2002 12:35 PM ET (US)     Profile for BOB KEMMLER JR    
Falcon sprint didnt run 11.20's either, with a super mild motor.As far as the strenth of the transom,they were also used for sking,right?If that little tow eye can pull some 300 lb bubba out of the water without breaking,a properly braced brkt and lt wt motor should be no problem.And on the cost issue,i will be able to keep total cost under the $2000.00 price of the powerhead.
Peter posted 04-12-2002 01:31 PM ET (US)     Profile for Peter  Send Email to Peter     
Can the transom take it?
BOB KEMMLER JR posted 04-12-2002 02:24 PM ET (US)     Profile for BOB KEMMLER JR    
Time will tell.
mbking1 posted 04-12-2002 02:29 PM ET (US)     Profile for mbking1  Send Email to mbking1     

I see there is a strong feeling that you are trying to turn an apple into an orange. Are you willing to wipe out your investment in the Rage in the process? Just my .02 cents worth. Mark

BOB KEMMLER JR posted 04-12-2002 03:21 PM ET (US)     Profile for BOB KEMMLER JR    
Well i doubt ill get $3995.00 with a blown powerhead,and selling it for the$1000.00 the dealer in DE wanted to give me wont do.They want $2000.00 just for the powerhead(dealer cost)not counting installation and setup.Id sooner set the damn thing on fire than give it away for $1000.00,im keeping the costs down by getting a used O/B and doing almost all the work myself.If i put the powerhead in and theres a gearbox issue(not sure)the powerhead has to come back out and thats another$1000.00 just for the gearbox.Do you guys really think Boston Whaler wouldnt build a strong transom just because they didnt mount a O/B on it?You dont have much faith in BW.Look on some of the O/B brkt websites and you will see all kinds of I/O powered boats with brkts on them,and there not even the best boat made(BW)!
lhg posted 04-12-2002 03:41 PM ET (US)     Profile for lhg    
I would recommend getting the wood locating diagram on your hull, to confirm that the transom is made from 2 1/4" plywood, and suitable for outboard bracket mounting. Have you contacted Customer Service for a company go-ahead on such a conversion?
BOB KEMMLER JR posted 04-12-2002 03:43 PM ET (US)     Profile for BOB KEMMLER JR    
Customer service will not give the ok on anything other than stock.Much like putting anything bigger than a 90 on a new 2002 montauk.
tuna1 posted 04-12-2002 07:55 PM ET (US)     Profile for tuna1  Send Email to tuna1     
The transum is not built for the required load strenghts you are looking for/and required.The Whaler hull should be thought as a egg shell,very strong in one direction-compression,but extremely weak in the other-tension.You can not crack an egg shell by compression in your hands thur the long axis,but turn 90` degrees and it cracks quite easy. So it is with a Whaler hull,compression forces it carries very well until the strenght of the layminent is exceeded,then it crushes.Pull outwould on the layminent and it pulls away from the foam and cracks and pulls thur. I repeat the transum as built on your RageII/XLT is not strong enough.Repeat do not attempt the conversion without a complete and through complete rebuild on the transum.
DIVE 1 posted 04-12-2002 09:35 PM ET (US)     Profile for DIVE 1    
I would get the wood diagram from BW. I remember some thin aluminum plates and a lot of foam in the Rage transom. I think that there was only a little wood in the transom.
Hendrickson posted 04-13-2002 12:08 AM ET (US)     Profile for Hendrickson  Send Email to Hendrickson     
You may want to take a look at and their "Seacast pourable transom". Good luck. (Have mentioned this before, but waited until the post was pretty old.)
PMUCCIOLO posted 04-13-2002 09:51 AM ET (US)     Profile for PMUCCIOLO    

A friend of mine has extensive experience with marine architecture. He is quite familiar with Boston Whalers as well. I related your story to him, as well as the proposed solution of converting the boat to an outboard.

His response? "I wouln't even consider that." He proceeded to go through a list of reasons why. His biggest objection related to alteration of the boat's center(s) of gravity. He also, as tuna1 commented earlier, called the transom design and reinforcement of the rage into question.

Please do not misinterpret my posts, I am not trying to persuade you to repower or modify. However, I am of the mindset that, if professional advice can be renedered, it should be shared.


mbking1 posted 04-13-2002 10:01 AM ET (US)     Profile for mbking1  Send Email to mbking1     

I agree 100% with Paul. Please reconsider this....

jimh posted 04-13-2002 10:50 AM ET (US)     Profile for jimh  Send Email to jimh     
There were probably plenty of people who told Dick Fisher he couldn't make a boat out of foam, too.

Considering the situation, I would say "Why not experiement?"

The transom can be reinforced with plywood. Some stringers could transfer the loads to the hull. You could even use two pieces of plywood, one on each side, bonded to the hull and covered with cloth and resin. It might end up looking a lot like this:

The best place for the weight is aft, anyways. If the greatest place to mount engines was three feet in front of the transom then we'd all be cutting motor wells into the cockpits of our 22-Outrages, right?

Do a decent job of engineering the transom and filling the hole in the hull from the jet drive.

Keep the engine weight on the light side. Don't try to hang a 350# 4-stroke back there. Make the bracket as light as possible. Don't buy a commercial bracket rated for 300-HP, but make your own with proportionate strength for your 50-70 HP engine.

I would rather invest $2,000 into doing something like this than put the same (or more) money into rebuilding the jet drive.

PMUCCIOLO posted 04-13-2002 10:03 PM ET (US)     Profile for PMUCCIOLO    

"Why not experiment?" The manufacturer is supposed to do that before the finished product is presented to the general public. The reason is a simple one...$$$$$$$$$.


Hendrickson posted 04-13-2002 10:59 PM ET (US)     Profile for Hendrickson  Send Email to Hendrickson     
Paul, I have three BW's, a Mako, an Aquasport, a Robalo, a Searay, a Sylvan, etc. and every one of these worthwhile, tested products seems to need owner improvements on one occation or anouther. I passed up a deal on a Rage a few years ago because I had just purchased two Sea-Doo's. If I had gotten the Rage I would loved to have tried this very same thing. I have five Gil brackets, but at 29 inch setback I don't they would be what is desired for this job. I would consider making a glass/foam filled bracket that bolted on. Saw one on a center console in Tallahasse, Fl. that looked real good. Aluminum would no doubt be the most practical. I think Gil does make a short tank style one, although a jackplate might also work.
PMUCCIOLO posted 04-14-2002 05:42 AM ET (US)     Profile for PMUCCIOLO    

I think that the variation in suggestions (modify versus maintain stock) stems from preference. Some people are tinkerers and experimenters by nature. I am not. However, I recognize that, without them, we would not enjoy some of our current innovations.

However, I neither have expertise in this type of project nor do I want it. The thing I'd like to avoid is watching Bob Kemmler risk investing (probably thousands of) dollars in a venture with a questionable (at best)outcome.

The thing about this whole venture that concerns me is the issue of the transom's ability to be converted to a bracket. Although a poor analogy, the suggestion of converting a jet to ouboard seems akin to converting an inboard to an outboard. The boat is designed, built, and equipped for one type of powerplant. Radical departures can prove disastrous, at least financially.

If the proposal is being pursued solely on the basis of being an experiment (and being funded by "disposable" income), the story is a different one.

Whatever Bob decides to do, I wish him luck in his venture.


BOB KEMMLER JR posted 04-15-2002 09:06 AM ET (US)     Profile for BOB KEMMLER JR    
Well i have a O/B for the swap,a 1975 70hp jonson.I think the weight is around 200#.That should definatly be light enough.I still need a bracket though,i think im going to need a 10" setback to clear the rear deck when tilted up.Any suggestions???????I think a manual jackplate will be needed to fine tune the setup. The best part is it was only $300.00 with a spare motor and controls.Looks like this swap is going to be much cheaper than expected.When O/B's are mounted on a 10" setback,is there also a bracket needed for the teleflex(extension)?
Hendrickson posted 04-15-2002 09:42 AM ET (US)     Profile for Hendrickson  Send Email to Hendrickson     
When I put a Gil bracket on my SeaRay after the I/O went out I took the steering cable to the local shop and they made the swap. Didn't even charge me. Guess they wanted my cable and I wanted their's. Good luck.
seagull posted 04-15-2002 10:09 AM ET (US)     Profile for seagull  Send Email to seagull     
The transom on that boat is probably just as strong as any Whaler's less maybe some thickness where the engine would bolt on. I would sandwich the transom with two 1/4" thick aluminum plates sealed with 5200 and thru bolt the engine bracket or jackplate to them. With a jackplate the engine may situp high enough not to need any extra extension from the hull than neccessary. My Montauk with 90hp Yamaha is jacked pretty high with a CMC 5 1/2" manual jackplate, so you may want to check how high the engine may sit before getting to elaborate with a bracket.
JohnAz posted 04-15-2002 10:23 AM ET (US)     Profile for JohnAz  Send Email to JohnAz     
I am doing a 20ft "JetBoat",,filled the holes in the bottom, and added two 3/4 inch transoms to the inside with glass layers. total transom is 2 in thick now & stringers to transom, this boat is going to be powered with my 2 x 40hp omc"s.
Building the set back out of glass and wood
So far i have $300. in material. (luckly that i can get Glass and scrap Wood, from boat manufacturers, here in Havasu, they throw away vast quantities of material.)
zpeed7 posted 04-15-2002 04:36 PM ET (US)     Profile for zpeed7  Send Email to zpeed7     
Sounds like a great project to me. I say go for it. Like seagull, I would sandwich the transom with two aluminum plates to make it stronger. And as far as factory testing goes, I have a 1988 Mazda Rx7 that had 165hp in stock form, now it has over 400... And it's much more fun...

Take care and good luck,

BOB KEMMLER JR posted 04-15-2002 04:49 PM ET (US)     Profile for BOB KEMMLER JR    
My other weakness is cars too,i have a 1986 glh turbo omni with about 300hp.I should have taken up stamp collecting,much cheaper.
tuna1 posted 04-15-2002 05:45 PM ET (US)     Profile for tuna1  Send Email to tuna1     
Bob,the transom repeat is not strong enough to support a outboard,,let alone one mounted on a bracket.It's really a dumb move without a complete rebuilding of the stern. The stern of the Rage contains very little reinforcement.I suggest you check where the bilge thurhull goes thur the transom.Remove the thurhull fitting and measure the outer thickness of the laminate-(it's only gelcoat and 2layers of glass).I have found that a excellent tool to find where wood is used in a glass laminate is a "Stud Sensor"by Zircon International it will pinpoint wood location in the hull.You will find a 3" wide 1/2 thick piece behind the rear tow bar(remove towbar to confirm thickness),then a 3" piece up each verticle side of the jet opening. A automotive example of reduced value-How many 1963 splitwindow Corvettes had the split hacksawed out and a 1964 1 piece window installed early in there lives,and what is that car worth compared to unhacked car. Fix the powerhead-don't spoil a Well designed boat and drive system !!!
zpeed7 posted 04-16-2002 01:22 AM ET (US)     Profile for zpeed7  Send Email to zpeed7     
I know what you mean Bob, I can never leave well enough alone either. I wish I had much cheaper passtimes myself! As far as your project goes I think it's certainly doable. I've seen everything from Phoenix 28's to 25 Bertrams converted to twin outboards so your's shouldn't be that big of a deal. I would try to find a way to distribute the weight through the rest of the hull. Is it a 18', 15', or 13' Rage?


BTW That's one mean glh. Torque steer city!!! I would LOVE to take a ride on it. Havn't seen glh's in a long while.

BOB KEMMLER JR posted 04-16-2002 07:50 AM ET (US)     Profile for BOB KEMMLER JR    
Tuna1,i hope your not comparing a rage to a 1963 vette,a 1972 pinto maybe, and those things were fun with a V8 stuffed into them.Hey if your that worried about it, $4500.00 delivered to your door.Zspeed its a 15',i think with the 70hp johnson i bought,it will definately outperform the 115hp jet,both in speed and fuel economy.Normally,i would keep it original,but when the original design leaves a little to be desired,couple that with the fact nobody wants to work on it and its 3x's as expensive to boot.I see a O/B conversion as a viable answer.
aa_mar posted 04-16-2002 10:07 AM ET (US)     Profile for aa_mar  Send Email to aa_mar     
tuna1, with so little wood in the transom, is their enough to support a kicker motor?

Also, does anyone know what kind of forces an outboard puts on a transom?

I see 3 forces: weight down, torque (round), and a forward/upward thrus. I would think of these forces will cause different stresses on different parts of the transom.

I hope the forces are small enought, with a kicker, not to cause a problem, but with an engine large enough to get up on plain ...?

How would you reinforce the transom? It has to be more than just bolting a plate or plywood to it, you need to tie it to the sides and bottom of the boat, but how?

Hendrickson posted 04-16-2002 10:22 AM ET (US)     Profile for Hendrickson  Send Email to Hendrickson     
After converting my Searay the transom started to bow. I ran an eight inch channel iron across the transom with a wood pad on each end. The top bolts of the tank style bracket ran through the channel and that solved the problem. In fact it drew the transom back into it original configuration and distributed the pressure to the corners of the transom. I also added one half inch thick hard rubber pads to the aluminum bracket between the bracket and the engine which eliminated the motor noice from carrying through to the boat hull.

tuna1 posted 04-16-2002 11:33 AM ET (US)     Profile for tuna1  Send Email to tuna1     
THE PROBLEM WITH THE RAGE TRANSOM IS - IT WAS NOT DESIGNED NOR BUILT TO SUPPORT ANY WEIGHT/THRUST ON STERN.IT HAS LITTLE STRENGHT and No Internal Reinforcement for this. Compare it to a normal outboard transom which was designed to support a verticle load and the thrust moments produced by the motor,the Rage has is an eggshell on the transom.To Stop this MADNESS i would buy the boat.Stop and think,i firmly believe your powerhead problem was a lean mixture to that one cylinder,caused by a bad gasket.If you slow down and pulldown the intake track on your motor you should find this is the problem and then have confidence in rebuilding it.Slow down and examine your powerhead to find the cause of the failure.
BOB KEMMLER JR posted 04-16-2002 12:27 PM ET (US)     Profile for BOB KEMMLER JR    
I really dont care what caused the fragged cylinder,ill take money order or cashiers check.OTHER THAN THAT MY BOAT MY PROBLEM.Thanks for your offered advice.If you want to save this magnificent vessal $4500.00 delivered,or the transom gets it!
Hendrickson posted 04-16-2002 12:49 PM ET (US)     Profile for Hendrickson  Send Email to Hendrickson     
Doing stuff like this is really rather fun. If I had to have everyone's approval for everything I've tried I sure would not have tried much. If it don't work just right the first time, try again, it should work right the second time around.
seagull posted 04-16-2002 01:51 PM ET (US)     Profile for seagull  Send Email to seagull     
At least it will not sink.
mbking1 posted 04-16-2002 02:56 PM ET (US)     Profile for mbking1  Send Email to mbking1     

Bob is right, It is his boat to destroy if he chooses.

BOB KEMMLER JR posted 04-16-2002 03:17 PM ET (US)     Profile for BOB KEMMLER JR    
Mbking is right if you dont have anything to add that pertains to my original post keep your opinions to yourself we wasted enough space on jibberish,.Now im still curious,when i put the bracket on MY boat,will i need a extension bracket for the teleflex?I have also thought about putting a electric fuel pump on this boat,i heard it improves idle quality and top speed.How do you bypass the original?
Hendrickson posted 04-16-2002 04:35 PM ET (US)     Profile for Hendrickson  Send Email to Hendrickson     
You will be able to run the steering cable through the tilt tube, but you will no doubt need to get a cable that's about a foot or two longer. Not real expensive. Electrical fuel pumps work good, but I would be careful as they can keep pumping as long as they have juice, which can be dangerous in a boat should you break a line, etc.
Kingsteven18 posted 04-16-2002 04:48 PM ET (US)     Profile for Kingsteven18  Send Email to Kingsteven18     
NEW IDEA !!! Have you seen what the BW Harpoon sailboats are selling for? Pull the motor (you can install a porta-potti down there), fix the holes, install a mast and sails.
lhg posted 04-16-2002 07:11 PM ET (US)     Profile for lhg    
This thread could end up being called "Chain Saw Rage", but let's hope not.

But seriously, nobody here is right or wrong. He asked for advice, so people who have attempted to give it should not be criticized for their good intentions. Some of these intentions are obviously focused on preventing possible personal injury. I thought this site is about helping people. Conversely, it's his boat, and like the "Chain Saw Whaler", he's free to do what he wants with it, and with his safety. Chop it up if he wants to.

Also, like CSW, this is a chance for some interesting information, on how the Rage was built, and whether a conversion like this will be successful. Looks like the bets have been placed!

But there are risks for other Rage owners with this experiment. If it works, these owners will know their boats have a second life after the OMC jet drives can no longer be serviced or supported. If it doesn't, values will suffer similar to the old OMC Sea Drives, as the values of the Rages sink to practically zero with un-repairable or very high priced rebuilding costs. Continued parts availability of these OMC engines/drives will become an issue. Although at considerable expense, Sea Drive Whalers can be re-powered successfully, saving the value of the boats. Let's see what happens with the Rages.

I, for one, am happy to see that Bob is going to attempt this conversion, and keep us posted on results and expenses of doing so.

PMUCCIOLO posted 04-16-2002 11:56 PM ET (US)     Profile for PMUCCIOLO    

If you plan on keeping the boat and were satisfied with the jet performance, have you considered replacing the drive train and motor with a Mercury Sportjet? I have no idea what that would cost, or if any good ones are available used or surplus.

I saw the article in my local newspaper (if you could call it that) about the remote control CPD Whaler. It is Sportjet powered. Maybe that is another option for you.

Best of luck!


jimh posted 04-17-2002 12:22 AM ET (US)     Profile for jimh  Send Email to jimh     
Regarding a hull being "designed" for just one propulsion system:

A few years ago (1997) we were seriously thinking about getting a 25-foot trailerable mini lobster-yacht, made up in Nova Scotia. We flew up there to visit the builder. He offered the hull in the following options:

--straight shaft inboard
--vee-drive inboard
--stern drive
--cut transom outboard
--full transom/bracket mounted outboard

The hull had been originally developed with a straight inboard engine in mind. Having made just about every imaginable configuration over the years (the boats are all built to order and semi-custom) he told me that the set up he liked the best was:

--full transom with stern bracket and twin outboards (usually 70-HP HONDA 4-strokes)

Of course, this was about the most expensive option, too, so that might have had something to do with it. :-)

But I mention this as an example of how a particular boat, designed for another propulsion system, metamorphasized into something quite different.

PMUCCIOLO posted 04-17-2002 02:51 AM ET (US)     Profile for PMUCCIOLO    

Your point is well taken, but there is an essential difference in this case. The hull of Bob's boat is already built, and it was designed and built specifically for jet power. It is true that, in the design and planning stages, some manufacturers offer extensive modifications with regards to powerplants and drivetrains.

This is evident in the Rage 15 and Dauntless 15, the former jet powered and the latter outboard powered. Their transom construction, fuel tank placement, and interior layouts are specifically designed for each type of power.

Best of luck!

BOB KEMMLER JR posted 04-17-2002 11:26 AM ET (US)     Profile for BOB KEMMLER JR    
I got the wood location diagram from whaler for the 15 dauntless,seems the main support for the O/B is a piece of 1+1/12"plywood in the transom and some 3/4" mahogony arond the motor well area.After seeing this i realize i should have no problem,that really doesnt seem like much in the way of reinforcement.I also have the diagram for the 15 rage both of these are for 1995 models if anybody wants a copy of either let me know.As far as swapping a merc jet drive in,i believe that somebody in this forum talked about doing that and got no help from whaler in any way.Its the same hull they just changed some of the mounting hole sizes.I would imagine a merc175 jetdrive would be EXPENSIVE.A friend has one in a 10ft sugar sands jet boat,very reliable and fast.
Tom W Clark posted 04-17-2002 12:45 PM ET (US)     Profile for Tom W Clark  Send Email to Tom W Clark     
Oh for love of Pete! BOB KEMMLER JR will be just fine with this conversion. Of course Whaler will not condone it, what manufacturer would? If it doesn't prove satisfactory it will because of a weight and balance issue not because the transom falls off.

By installing a bracket the value of the hull will be preserved into the future as any new outboard can be installed on it. Maintaining the jet will just cost lot of dollars and make it prematurely obsolete (if it isn't already).

BOB KEMMLER JR, you will have to jump over many hurdles in your conversion. Don't think it will be a walk in the park, but what innovation ever is? Have fun with it.

tuna1 posted 04-17-2002 02:21 PM ET (US)     Profile for tuna1  Send Email to tuna1     
This group is a great case for the addage-"tell people what they want to hear,they prefer it facts".This spring the RageII/XLT i had arranged to purchased fell thur. It did not have a clear title.The TRUE STORY rather than the yarn the marine yard told was,the owner still had title to it.The marine yard that sold it had no title,but their reason was the boat was under 14'and therefore it was not needed.But once a boat is titled it must remain that way.The Marina repaired it twice 4 years ago,and on their last test they froze a cylinder.The owner would not pay.I came along 4 years later and found it sitting with out the motor/drive in it.I tore down the motor and found in their rebuilding,they had reused a gasket on the intake,it was cracked.I was confident i found the mode of the failure.Then went to State Tax Office to trace background,and found it was titled and true owner still held title to it.I was trying to register what would have been a stolen boat.Marine Dealer was very upset with me and what i called them for the way inwhich they conducted the sale.So they had the boat. Now the boat was a open wound.So what they did was to cut out the transom above the jet opening(i have the piece and have pictures of it-do not know how to attached here)to make it an outboard.Also in pulling off the swim platform,the adhesive was so strong they tore the rear laminate apart on the transum.They know enough that a bracket was out of the question because of strenght of the transum.But when they cut into the transum and found how lite it was built,the kid who was doing the work said they were surprized and would have to rebuild the whole stern.The owner of the yard came by and asked me to leave at that point,because of our past name calling about him selling a stolen boat.I have not been back to see what's been done or the progress.This is why i say what i have did.IT was "The Truth" based on facts not something someone whated to hear.Now enough has been said.
BOB KEMMLER JR posted 04-17-2002 02:31 PM ET (US)     Profile for BOB KEMMLER JR    
Blah,blah,blah,blah blah.Some people are talkers others are doers.
tuna1 posted 04-17-2002 04:14 PM ET (US)     Profile for tuna1  Send Email to tuna1     
Bob,standup straight so our fingers don't drag on the ground.Enjoy the submarine you are making.
BOB KEMMLER JR posted 04-17-2002 04:35 PM ET (US)     Profile for BOB KEMMLER JR    
Preparing to surface
BOB KEMMLER JR posted 04-17-2002 04:40 PM ET (US)     Profile for BOB KEMMLER JR    
Load torpedo tube 1.....
BOB KEMMLER JR posted 04-17-2002 04:41 PM ET (US)     Profile for BOB KEMMLER JR    
BOB KEMMLER JR posted 04-17-2002 04:41 PM ET (US)     Profile for BOB KEMMLER JR    
Blah,blah,blah,blah......just bustin ya chops a little tuna1.
tuna1 posted 04-17-2002 08:10 PM ET (US)     Profile for tuna1  Send Email to tuna1     
You have better attach a EPIRB to the outboard,so you can locate it after it falls off. Enough jokes. Bob,sincerly the Rage has no strenght in the stern. It did not need it with the jet package .The bottom was layed up to provide the strenght/support for the drive system and thrust vectors it produced.The yard had a brand new leftover 1996 Mercury Sport Jet 120XR but cost was too high to change over.
BOB KEMMLER JR posted 04-18-2002 12:27 PM ET (US)     Profile for BOB KEMMLER JR    
Hey tuna1,as soon as i get it put together and running your invited to come take a ride,then we'll see who needs the EPIRB.
jameso posted 04-18-2002 03:41 PM ET (US)     Profile for jameso  Send Email to jameso     
BOB GO FOR IT!! I think this is a good example of yankee know how.....why not. I would not hesitate to do the same and I'll ride with ya any day.
My 03, Jim Armstrong
Bugsy Malone posted 04-18-2002 03:56 PM ET (US)     Profile for Bugsy Malone  Send Email to Bugsy Malone     
Fools will be fools ...... flaunt sound advice KEMMLER ..... so go to it ..... you'll learn Whaler didn't design that early version of a PWC for an outboard and for god's sake a 10" bracket which will even put more leverage strain on that that transom hah hah what a joke! ........ have fun
BOB KEMMLER JR posted 04-18-2002 04:13 PM ET (US)     Profile for BOB KEMMLER JR    
U tawkin to me, Buggy?Betta be careful or yous gonna end up in the jersey flats,you two bit hood.
aa_mar posted 04-18-2002 05:05 PM ET (US)     Profile for aa_mar  Send Email to aa_mar     
This site has a habbit of getting down-right mean and belittling instead of being constructive! Everyone who is interested in the post understands that their is a question about the strenght of the transom.
Now the question is what do we do about it. THIS SITE IS SUPPOSE TO GIVE IDEAS NOT SARCASM! A warning is fine, we understand. Bob has weighted is options and is moving on, if you don't have any ideas to solve the problem, they you should too!

Bob in the wood location diagram from Whaler, how much and where is the wood in the RAGE.

Also, does the wood in the dauntless tie to anything? Is it the full width of the transom?

Just trying to get an idea of what it looks like inside.

Contender25 posted 04-18-2002 09:05 PM ET (US)     Profile for Contender25  Send Email to Contender25     
Hello Bob-

I almost did the same thing you are going to do and I am sure you will be fine. Of course you will have to check/improve the transom.

Stainless marine makes a bevy of various floatation brackets that should meet your needs. They have a few that are only 10-12in setbacks. You may want to check them out. if you have not already. I have rebuilt a few transoms from the inside, and the outside. Feel free to check out my site(in my profile) for some pics of the transom rebuilds. (They are under 20fters)

I can not believe the responses you have gotten. Jeez I always thought Whalers were founded on their revolutionary design?

zpeed7 posted 04-19-2002 12:53 AM ET (US)     Profile for zpeed7  Send Email to zpeed7     
Browsing at boattraderonline I noticed two or three Rages for sale with rebuilt engines. From what I've heard it's only a matter of time until all of these engines go south. If Bob's experiment works, which I thnik it will, it could be the best B/W bargain yet. Selling Rages with crapped out engines can't be that easy, so buying them for bargain prices to slap an outboard in the back could be the next big idea.
BOB KEMMLER JR posted 04-19-2002 08:35 AM ET (US)     Profile for BOB KEMMLER JR    
aa-mar as stated by tuna1 there is hardly any wood in the transom of the rage15,as for the wood in the dauntless,it surrounds the motor well 3/4"mahogony,and in the transom there is a piece of 1+1/2"plywood that is basically where the engine mounts and thats it.Im thinking im going to reinforce the backside of the transom with 1" plywood and 1/4"aluminum plate.Im going to see the glass and gelcoat guy this weekend and will ask him about tieing stuff together,stringers,etc.As far as the amount of setback needed,i obviously want the least amount possible and still be able to tilt the motor up without hitting the rear deck.I think ill be able to use the teleflex steering without to much hassle other than cable routing and length.
Ventura16 posted 04-19-2002 09:57 AM ET (US)     Profile for Ventura16  Send Email to Ventura16     
For some weird reason this whole idea really intrigues me. I am really interested to see and hear more from Bob as his project progresses. It kind of reminds me of 3-wheel Harley's with V-8's in 'em...or unlimited hydros with Allison engines...never intended to exist, but kind of cool and fun!
Go Bob, go!


aa_mar posted 04-25-2002 12:35 PM ET (US)     Profile for aa_mar  Send Email to aa_mar     
Bob, what is the latest?

Don't hold back, keep us up to date!

BOB KEMMLER JR posted 04-25-2002 12:50 PM ET (US)     Profile for BOB KEMMLER JR    
I have to take it to the glass and gel coat man this weekend for the estimate,that will be the deciding factor,hopefully ill have enough leftover(cash)to finish it up this summer.I have the O/B,found a 10" jackplate and i think i will be able to use teleflex steering,im not sure of cable length yet.To date i have not turned a screw or nut on this project yet.The boat is located at my fathers(200 miles away)so i only get to look at it on weekends.
JohnAz posted 04-29-2002 11:38 AM ET (US)     Profile for JohnAz  Send Email to JohnAz     
Bob as you know i am doing a similar project,,remember you can always jack up the bow light and build a new boat under it.
ANY transom cam be made strong enough to carry any HP..and you dont have to be a Rocket Scientiest, to figuere out how strong to make it,,,,
PMUCCIOLO posted 04-29-2002 12:58 PM ET (US)     Profile for PMUCCIOLO    

Kindly share with us how one modifies "any carry any HP."

Of special interest would be the specific sources on which you base your calculations for center of gravity modification. To where is the fuel tank relocated? The battery? The oil tank (if applicable)? How is the boat's drainage system affected?

Furthermore, what reference(s) are used from the materials science literature which allow you to determine laminate compositions, their ratios, and the placement thereof? How do you account for stress, strain, flexibility (or stiffness), and weight in Bob's proposed undertaking of converting a jet powered boat to an bracket-mounted outboard?

These are complicated questions, but it is necessary to answer them satisfactorily prior to embarking on a venture of this nature (or strongly encouraging others to do the same.)


TRAFFICLAWYER posted 04-29-2002 04:53 PM ET (US)     Profile for TRAFFICLAWYER    
I had a 15' Rage with a 115 OMC in it. Short of repairing the powerhead, the best you could do is donate it to a worthwhile charity!!!!!!
mjd65 posted 04-29-2002 05:08 PM ET (US)     Profile for mjd65  Send Email to mjd65     
If anyone has a swim platform that has no cracks I would be very interested in buying it.

When my motor or drive go I will be the next one with a Bracket Rage. I had thought about doing this when the powerhead blew and the extended warranty would not cover the ran lean condition they blamed it on.


The battery is in the console, the gas tank(23 gal.) is in the floor under the console and the oil resivor is under the seat on the side. The drainage the scuppers are on the sides and their is already a pump in the engine compartment.

And I have to believe it would still be safer than a 7 year old bayliner of similiar size.

Lake Breeze Rage

North Beach posted 04-29-2002 07:26 PM ET (US)     Profile for North Beach    
Go, Bob go! Sounds like a good project and Iwill make a point on monitoring it in this thread.

One question, though, will you be able to obtain insurance for this (ie liability)?

whalerron posted 04-29-2002 11:18 PM ET (US)     Profile for whalerron  Send Email to whalerron     
When Bob is done with the Rage, I would have more faith in it than in a NEW Bayliner.
jimh posted 04-29-2002 11:44 PM ET (US)     Profile for jimh  Send Email to jimh     
Some of the criticism presented in opposition to making this experimental modification remind me of another situation where trail and error came before science.

As I have mentioned, I used to work for an electronic instrumentation company. One of our products was a novel hardness tester that used a technique of hardness measurement unlike any other hardness testing device.

I was helping with the preparation of a long paper explaining the scientific principles that allowed the device to measure hardness. The inventor and some of the project engineers revealed that the instrument was not at all invented in that way. It was quite accidental that they noticed the ability of this device to measure hardness. They just more or less happened upon that feature of it. After they satisfied themselves that the darn thing did indeed measure hardness--and actually did it much more accurately than most all of the competing devices--then they set about studying it to discover some scientific basis that they could show as the theory behind its unusual capabilty. We published a big paper explaining its operation (after getting the patent) so we could satisfy the demand in the marketplace to understand how the thing really worked.

I think this RAGE-15 conversion might turn out like that. Bob will epoxy some wood into the transom, hang a light-weight 2-stroke outboard on the thing, and discover he has a great boat. Then he can go about working out the details of the center of gravity, center of lateral resistance, metacentric height, righting moment, strength of materials, etc.

andygere posted 04-30-2002 12:58 AM ET (US)     Profile for andygere  Send Email to andygere     
Folks have been building boats from scratch in their garages, barns and sheds for years with good results (myself included). Switching from and inboard jet to a bracketed outboard on a Rage is relatively simple in comparison. This is not to say it won't involve hard work and ingenuity, but rather that Bob's chances of success are pretty good. If it works out, then Bob has just discovered a potentially low cost source of Whaler hulls that can be exploited by other Whaler enthusiasts on this board. Go for it Bob!
PMUCCIOLO posted 04-30-2002 05:10 AM ET (US)     Profile for PMUCCIOLO    

Let's hope that Bob doesn't test the righting moment of the boat--if that's what I think it is. Does one use a bubble podometer to measure that?

[That was a joke!]

Good luck Bob!


BOB KEMMLER JR posted 05-06-2002 11:28 AM ET (US)     Profile for BOB KEMMLER JR    
Well i got the estimate from the glass&gelcoat guy,to properly fill,reinforce,and gelcoat the jetdrive hole$1500.00+materials.I may make a temporary plug out of aluminum plate,until i know the transom issue has been resolved.I think im going to use the "Seacast pourable transom" to reinforce the transom of the rage.I will cut a access hole in the very top of the transom and remove a good portion of the foam,then pour this mixture in and cap off with the piece i removed.I have the O/B,a 70hp johnson,im getting the jackplate this week,a 12" ractheting jackplate.Now its time to start taking the jet drive out.The motor was $300.00,the jackplate is $160.00,teleflex setup will be $150.00,i think i will be able to use my original shifter,if not i have a morse control with the spare motor that came with the 70hp.the most expensive portion of this will be getting the jetdrive hole glassed and gelcoated.If the temporary plug turns out good,may just leave it alone.
BOB KEMMLER JR posted 05-06-2002 12:07 PM ET (US)     Profile for BOB KEMMLER JR    
Oh yea,i sold the old drivetrain for $500.00,which will pretty much pay for the motor and brackett.The pourable transom is $160.00 per 5 gallon bucket.Im not sure how much i will need yet,im still waiting to hear from them if it will melt the foam or not.
BOB KEMMLER JR posted 05-06-2002 02:25 PM ET (US)     Profile for BOB KEMMLER JR    
Man slow day,i just talked to the owner of the seacast co. he said his product will NOT melt boston whaler foam.I suggest anyone who needs to do any structural replacement work on thier whalers,look into this product.
Contender25 posted 05-06-2002 04:31 PM ET (US)     Profile for Contender25  Send Email to Contender25     
I think your project is great!!

I do no understand how the Seacast pourable transom will give you any structural reinforement.??? I know it will prevent rot but you can achieve the same with ply saturated with epoxy as long as you protect all holes with epoxy. Ply will be much less $

Why not just laminate a new transom using marine ply saturated w/ Epoxy and tie the new transom into the hull with woven roven and with some stringers running fore and aft?

I may be missing something though, how much access do you have to the inside of the transom??

$1500.oo for glass and gelcoat repair of the jet drive hole is a bit steep. IMO

Can you do any glass work?? repairing that hole would be a good first project and one that would save you some $$

BOB KEMMLER JR posted 05-06-2002 04:46 PM ET (US)     Profile for BOB KEMMLER JR    
After i take the engine cover off,i will have acess to the top of the transom at which point i will cut the top off exposing the core.Then i can remove the desired amount of foam(approx3'x3'?)and pour in the seacast mixture.When sandwhiched between 2 layers of glass this stuff is like a ROCK.This stuff will flow into every crack and crevice,something plywood cant do.Ive worked with glass before,its the gelcoat i cant seem to have any luck with.Im thinking the more foam i remove the more reinforcement i can pour in.Of course im not going to go overboard(i hope not)and remove all the foam.
jimh posted 05-06-2002 08:54 PM ET (US)     Profile for jimh  Send Email to jimh     

TAKE SOME PICTURES! We all want to see this in the various steps of conversion.



whalerron posted 05-06-2002 09:28 PM ET (US)     Profile for whalerron  Send Email to whalerron     

Seacast claims that their product is twice as strong as the same thickness of marine grade plywood. Write to them and ask for a sample. I held a 1/2 inch piece of it in my hand and I am astounded as to how strong it is. It is intended for structural reinforcement. They actually state that you can use it to replace the transoms in boats.

- ron

Contender25 posted 05-07-2002 01:31 PM ET (US)     Profile for Contender25  Send Email to Contender25     
Sounds like good stuff!

I was thinking you would work from the inside and remove the inner section of the transom and then the core, leaving the outer skin. Then work your way backwards building up with ply & Epoxy.

If it is easy enough to remove the core leaving the two skins, inner and outer, it sounds like you are golden.

I too was intimidated by Gel-Coat untill I started working with a glass shop in Groton CT named LBI fiberglass. They have been very helpful in my rebuild and gave me pointers on gel-coating. To the point I am undertaking a project of re gelcoating an entire 20 ft boat. If you feel as though you may be up to it, regelcoating your transom hole my be worth saving the $1500. Or not its up to you.

Can't wait to see pics in the future

zpeed7 posted 05-08-2002 01:01 AM ET (US)     Profile for zpeed7  Send Email to zpeed7     
Found a great picture of a Rage at Boat Trader Online, thought it might help to visualize things...

<A HREF="" TARGET=_blank>RAGE 14</A>


zpeed7 posted 05-08-2002 01:07 AM ET (US)     Profile for zpeed7  Send Email to zpeed7     
Sorry about that...

Whalerdan posted 05-08-2002 07:32 AM ET (US)     Profile for Whalerdan  Send Email to Whalerdan     
I know I'll probably catch some flack on this. Everyone was talking about if the transom could be made strong enough to do this. I contend that if it's strong enough to support that huge swim platform (seen in the picture above) it should be no problem making it strong enough to hold a motor. That platform looks strong enough to easy hold two 200lb people.
daverdla posted 05-08-2002 07:36 AM ET (US)     Profile for daverdla  Send Email to daverdla     
Looks like the horizontal portion of a mini-whaler drive. Would a bracket mounted outboard also work?
mjd65 posted 05-08-2002 11:56 AM ET (US)     Profile for mjd65  Send Email to mjd65     
Just about ripped mine off landing on the platform when jumping 5 & 6 foot waves on Lake Erie. It did not hurt the area where it is thru bolted either inside or outside. It is also glued on with what I believe to be 5200. Some of the gelcoat peeled up when I removed the platform.

Lake Breeze Rage

mjd65 posted 05-08-2002 11:56 AM ET (US)     Profile for mjd65  Send Email to mjd65     
Just about ripped mine off landing on the platform when jumping 5 & 6 foot waves on Lake Erie. It did not hurt the area where it is thru bolted either inside or outside. It is also glued on with what I believe to be 5200. Some of the gelcoat peeled up when I removed the platform.

Lake Breeze Rage

BOB KEMMLER JR posted 05-08-2002 03:19 PM ET (US)     Profile for BOB KEMMLER JR    
mjd65 i emailed you but got no reply,you can have my swim platform for the cost of shipping.let me know if you want it
BOB KEMMLER JR posted 05-28-2002 09:30 AM ET (US)     Profile for BOB KEMMLER JR    
I got the swim platform off,and i noticed a unusual condition.The gelcoat had been cracked for quite some time underneath the mounting flange,and on one side the fiberglass has delaminated and bulged out,i bet if somebody keeps one of these boats in the water for any period of time it could cause alot of damage.It came off fairly easy with a little help from a heat gun,i bet that the gelcoat gets cracked the first few times somebody uses it,just thought id pass that on,next step is entire drivetrain removal.
Whalerdan posted 05-28-2002 10:01 AM ET (US)     Profile for Whalerdan  Send Email to Whalerdan     
I guess it wasn't "strong enough to hold that huge swim platform".
mjd65 posted 05-29-2002 09:45 AM ET (US)     Profile for mjd65  Send Email to mjd65     
When I took mine off last summer there were no cracks or bulges. Gelcoat did pull off on a small section in center of right side but I think that was from calk being stuck did not see any water intrusion. I have always kept boat in the water for several days at a time so this could be a problem with individual boats.

Lake Breeze Rage


Tell me how much shipping is and I will put a check in the mail.

Best regards,

North Beach posted 06-17-2002 09:07 PM ET (US)     Profile for North Beach    
Is this project still active--I thought it an interesting one
BOB KEMMLER JR posted 06-18-2002 08:03 AM ET (US)     Profile for BOB KEMMLER JR    
Yes,its still going,i just finished taking out the entire drivetrain.I only get to work on it one day a week.Tuna1 was nice enough to send me pictures of a 14rage converted to a 70hp O/B,as soon as i figure out how to link them to this section,i will.The next step is to start working on the hull and getting it ready to pour in the seacast transom.
BOB KEMMLER JR posted 08-12-2002 12:27 PM ET (US)     Profile for BOB KEMMLER JR    
The swap is going easier than expected and i have mounted the outboard on a temporary bases.I even stood on the mount and jumped up and down on it with absolutely no creaks or looseness,its like a rock.Im still looking for a PT&T unit for a 70hp johnson though.I may need some custom cables,are there any places that specialize in this?I want to mate the newer omc controls to the older johnson outboard,is this possible?
wpreo posted 08-12-2002 04:08 PM ET (US)     Profile for wpreo  Send Email to wpreo     
I too have a Rage 15 with the OMC 115 TurboJet. The Jet performance was weak, to say the least, and I was considering a complete re-power that you are talking about.
Before that I tried to improve what I had. Evenrude has been using the 115 power head for years. The problem is not with the power head, but instead with the jet drive itself. I found a fix that gives about a 25% improvement for $250. I'm very happy with those numbers and will keep my "improved" Rage as is.
The Fix is a 5 inch stainless steel "stuffer" prop mounted in front of the impeller. This small prop pre-feeds the impeller and eliminates any cavitation. Hole shots are improved substantially, high end speeds are not affected, and low speed handling is improved. I can now plane quickly with 3 200# guys aboard. No way before. I still don't think we will be slalom skiing but tubing is a real possibility.
The stuffer prop mounts on the splined coupler that connects the impeller assembly to the drive unit. No permanent modifications are required but the prop should be press fit on the shaft and balanced.

For more info on the Stuffer Prop solution contact:

Willie Priaulx

wpreo posted 08-13-2002 05:11 PM ET (US)     Profile for wpreo  Send Email to wpreo     
Bob, I finally read this entire thread. It's getting old now... but Wow, this thing had a life of it's own.
Re: the re-power. What are you planning for interior layout? With the motor 10" out the stern, the engine compartment makes a pretty big ice chest. Any plans on moving or removing the bench seat? That just seems like too much space to waste on a 15' boat. This has stopped me from considering the same re-power so I'm very interrested in your plans. I don't know the Dauntless layout. Any tips there?
Hendrickson posted 08-13-2002 05:19 PM ET (US)     Profile for Hendrickson  Send Email to Hendrickson     
No problem matching different year controls. Most suppliers such as West, Bass Pro Shops, etc. carry outboard cables.
11 footer posted 08-14-2002 02:00 PM ET (US)     Profile for 11 footer  Send Email to 11 footer     

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