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Author Topic:   13' Standard to Sport Configuration ** Help!
Mirage posted 07-16-2002 03:45 PM ET (US)   Profile for Mirage   Send Email to Mirage  
I just purchased my first Whaler.

I need the help of the knowledgeable people on this Forum. I plan on restoring the boat and keeping a record of my results, and I will share any knowledge I learn with the members of this Forum.

I just purchased a 1979 13' Standard Boston Whaler (Tiller Steering, Thwart seats closer to the aft than a Sport). I want to convert it to the Sport Configuration (Console steering and seats closer to the bow) I have located a wooden console for a 1979 era sport. I need to know the placement of wood side risers and the Thwart seats for a 13’ Sport. Could any of you 13' Sport owners measure their 1979 era sport and tell me where the seats are located? I will have to relocate and drill hull for the side risers and any information, drawings, measurements would be helpful. I have tried calling the factory, without success. I have downloaded the drawings of the 1998-2001 boats from (click on the logo when you get to the website) the drawings do not show dimensions.

My next request is for any information on Steering and engine controls, I am considering using the Teleflex NFB (no feed back) Does anyone have a recommendation on steering components and controls?

I currently have a 1979 short shaft 35hp Johnson Engine. Does anyone have any experience with long shaft motors on this boat? I am planning to re-power.

Thank you in advance for any support you can provide.

Steve Bohlig
Minnetonka, MN

JBCornwell posted 07-16-2002 05:31 PM ET (US)     Profile for JBCornwell  Send Email to JBCornwell     
Hi, Mirage.

The '79 and any other 13 That hasn't been cut down after about '74 requires a 20" (long shaft) engine.

Good luck on your conversion. I am toying with the idea of converting my '98 11' Tender to a Sport config.

Red sky at night. . .
JB :)

Tom W Clark posted 07-16-2002 10:27 PM ET (US)     Profile for Tom W Clark  Send Email to Tom W Clark     

I can't tell you the exact difference in inches between the Standard's seat placement and the Sport's but I can tell you where the Sport's seats need to go.

If you have an original Sport side console then the "leg" of the console will need to be screwed to the floor of the boat. To that end there is a 4" x 12" piece of 1/2" plywood embedded under the floor. The centerline of this piece of wood is 56" forward from the face of the splash well (See: )

You can work backwards from there knowing that the rear edge of the forward thwart seat butts up against the front edge of the console leg.

The base of the “leg” is about 8 1/2” wide, so if the center line of the leg’s base were on the centerline of the embedded wood, the rear edge of the forward thwart seat would be 60 1/4” forward of the face of the splash well.

Given that the embedded wood is 12” long, you have almost 2” of play from the centerline either forward or backward for the placement of the wood.

Looking at some old photographs of the Standard and Sport I would estimate the Sport's wood is about a 10" further forward than the Standard’s.

Boston Marine posted 07-16-2002 10:36 PM ET (US)     Profile for Boston Marine    
Sounds like the boat I sold to a customer in Prior Lake Two Years Ago. I believe the year is 1969.
Tom W Clark posted 07-16-2002 11:23 PM ET (US)     Profile for Tom W Clark  Send Email to Tom W Clark     
Well, if it's a 1969 then the centerline of the wood in the floor is 54" from the face of the splash well and you need a 15" shaft motor instead of a 20" shaft.

Steve, is it blue on the inside or tan? Is the transom "notched" or does the top of it flow in a continuous curve from corner to corner? Is the splash well straight across or curved? What is the serial number?

Boston Marine posted 07-16-2002 11:28 PM ET (US)     Profile for Boston Marine    
Just spoke with Steve. It is from Elko,Mn.
This one was in Boat Trader for two weeks.
browning20ga posted 07-16-2002 11:47 PM ET (US)     Profile for browning20ga  Send Email to browning20ga     
Mirage, since you will need to make new side rails, make sure the distance is comfortable for you. Like Tom said I'd start with locating the console in relationship to the imbedded wood in the deck and work backwards and locate the rear bench seat as far forward as possible without crowding yourself. I think the more weight that you can get as far forward as you can, the better off you will be. Another trick I've seen recently is instead of putting the bench seat on top of the side rails, make the cutouts in the side rails on top instead of on the bottom of the side rails, raising the seat about 3" so your knees aren't under your chin and gives you more storage under the seat for gas tanks and batteries, (moving a little more weight a few inches forward). If your a true purest, please disregard these suggestions but if your making the boat more comfortable do a little fudging to make the boat fit you and your needs.
Regarding the NFB steering, the kit I bought at West Marine had everything I needed except a steering wheel. If you're going to use your existing tiller motor you may have to do some engineering. Maybe someone else can help you with that. The NFB steering has about 1" of lash when you turn the wheel back and forth, you will also notice it feels very stiff but it stays put where you set it, you will love it.
Bigshot posted 07-17-2002 09:42 AM ET (US)     Profile for Bigshot  Send Email to Bigshot     
You won't need to make new siderails....just move them forward I believe.
Mirage posted 07-17-2002 11:02 AM ET (US)     Profile for Mirage  Send Email to Mirage     
Thanks to those who have replied. I can use all the help and suggestions.


The boat is Desert Tan and I have confirmed the serial number is a 1979 Standard.

I have a spare 35hp Johnson Long shaft, electric start that I am thinking about installing. Any Comments?

I have ordered a sport wood console from

Anyone have opionions or part numbers of the steering components they have used on the 13's?

The lighting wires have never been used and appear to be intact under the factory yellow plastic plugs. What has everyone used for lighting?

Thanks once again.

Steve Bohlig
Minnetonka, MN

Tom W Clark posted 07-17-2002 11:17 AM ET (US)     Profile for Tom W Clark  Send Email to Tom W Clark     

The Johnson 35 will work very well. I had one on my 1976 Sport 13.

Most here on the FORUM like the No Feed Back steering from Teleflex. I actually prefer the original style mechanical steering. I do not like the slop and stiffness of the NFB nor do I like not having the feedback. Just something about sensing what is going on and being connected.

Given that your boat does not have any steering at present I would not recommend the cable and pulley steering.

You can put any lights on the boat that you want. If you want Whaler lights, they will cost you. The OEM bow light can be had from Twin Cities Marine for $66.50 plus shipping. You do not need the bow chock to go with the light but it remains an option.

The stern light is a standard 3/4" diameter but the Whaler light is not an off-the-shelf part. Either way Whaler uses custom cast brackets to hold the light. Talk to Sue at Twin Cities Marine about all this.

Bigshot posted 07-17-2002 11:20 AM ET (US)     Profile for Bigshot  Send Email to Bigshot     
Great engine for that boat....all the power you need. I have a 25 on my 76 and she scoots. I had a 35 on my 82 and she scooted also.

For lights I would get the round Perko that resembles the OEM a bit. For stern light....whatever floats your boat.

For steering I would not get the NFB being a 35 does not really "feedback". Just get the Teleflex 8' cable and helm ($150 +/-) and a 13" defender wheel($35) and you are set.

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