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Author Topic:   Rub Rail c.1976
jimh posted 05-07-2000 12:58 PM ET (US)   Profile for jimh   Send Email to jimh  
I have just added a close-up image of the rub rail construction on my 1976 Whaler 15 Sport. See:

Can someone comment with authority if this is the original rub railing? It looks very nicely done, so as far as I know, it is original, factory rub railing.


kent posted 05-08-2000 09:17 PM ET (US)     Profile for kent    

I am certainly no WHALER expert, but I have recently made some interesting observations about the WHALER rubrails. The underside of the white rigid molding in your photo does not show clearly, but your rubrail setup looks like the rail that was on my boat. I have the 13 ft. that I don't know the age of. I am certain that my boat originally had the tan gelcoat on the exterior. However, BOTH the L-shaped trim mold and the bigger rigid molding were white, not tan, with a black insert. Although my boat seems to be dated as a pre '71 no smirk boat and should have had the white one-piece glue on rail, I am still not convinced that the 3-piece rail that was on my boat was not original. As I have said before, there was absolutely no residual adhesive from a stick on rail, if there ever was one. Also, the rail was installed perfectly, just as yours is and as you would expect from a factory install. Given that all of the other work that had been done on my boat by previous owners was marginal at best, I have trouble thinking that for some reason the rail was a replacement professionally done.

In my quest to find a replacement rail, I have found that BARBOUR PLASTICS are the only company that produces anything that comes close to the design that I had on my boat. Yours looks the same as mine. It is their Part No. R1078 for the main piece, Part No. F878 for the insert, and the no. is unknown for the L-shaped piece. It is interesting to note the following:

1. The way that the main piece of rigid molding is installed is actually upside down to the way that BARBOUR intends it to be installed. The flange that covers the L-shaped mold is actually meant to go under the bottom edge of the fibreglas rail protusion of the hull.

2. The L-shaped mold is not considered a standard piece, but is described as a "custom" piece. On my boat at least, the L-shaped molding almost appears to act as a shim, for if it were not there, the main piece of rigid molding would hang below the bottom edge of the fibreglas hull protusion.

3. If yours was original, I don't know why both the L-shaped mold and the main rigid piece are not the same color. Since your hull is Desert Tan, your molding should be all tan, no white. BARBOUR does make it in all tan color. I received a photo from TWIN CITIES MARINE showing it as all tan. On my old boat it was all white, no tan. If your hull was white, then it would make sense to have those two pieces white. Yours seems to be a mis-match.

lhg posted 05-11-2000 07:22 PM ET (US)     Profile for lhg    
Kent: Boston Whaler never used a 3 piece rub rail on their boats, so yours was definitely an aftermarket add-on. Through 1971, the rails were the one piece, glue-on, white rail that Classic Whaler has found and now sells for those wishing to keep their whaler "absolutely original". Beginning in 1972, they switched to the Barbour "receiver/insert" style, with a white receiver for white hulled boats (1972 & earlier) and then tan for 1973 & later. Insert was usually black, except for Newports & early Outrages (19, 20, 22)it was red. Whaler also offered an UPGRADE KIT of this new design for those wishing to change from the earlier 1-piece type. I purchased one of these for my 1971 Nauset (in 1984) and did the installation myself, using a pop-rivet tool. Jim has a picture of this boat on the site. You'd swear it was original, as I was able to remove all traces of the prior adhesive. Many of these were done, and I noticed that Jim just posted a picture of 1967 Nauset that also had the rail upgrade, using the white receiver.

Jim, regarding your question, I'd say your rail is original "Barbour". I have a Barbour catalog showing full size sections of these rubrails if you'd like it for the website. Kent is correct, Whaler installed the receiver section upside down to conform to their hull lip.

kent posted 05-11-2000 08:17 PM ET (US)     Profile for kent    
Larry, sorry, but I am not getting this rub rail thing. I am confused again.

When I contacted BARBOUR PLASTICS about the rail, I only asked about the 2 pieces, the big main receiver and the insert, as I didn't like the third L-shaped piece that went over the top of the gunnel. I never mentioned the L-shaped piece. BARBOUR responded to me that if I wanted my 13 to be Boston Whaler correct I would need the third piece. If my boat had the Whaler upgrade rail kit and Jim's boat has the original BARBOUR rail, why do they both have the third piece? Is this just a coincidence? Also, if Jim's rail is original, why is the receiver section white when the hull is tan?

I am not necessarily concerned about making my boat absolutely original, and I don't really like the third piece, but if I don't use it with the main receiver section, the receiver will hang below the fibreglas lip. Is this normal? Not using the third piece will also save me some money.

Please respond.

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