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Author Topic:   whaler identification
kent posted 03-08-2000 11:17 AM ET (US)   Profile for kent  
I have recently become the proud owner of a well used classic 13 ft
>Boston Whaler. My brother and I are currently in the process of
>completely restoring the boat and adapting it to accomadate it for our
>plans to using it for saltwater salmon fishing on the west coast of
>Canada. I have been trying to figure out how old the boat is and came
>along this site tonight. I read with interest the descriptions of the
>boats as they evolved. My boat does not seem to fit in any of the
>catagories. Let me explain.
>First of all, we have completely sanded off 3 layers of paint from both
>the inside and outside of the boat and are now definitely down to (as
>well as through in places) the original gelcoat. The colors do not fit
>the years described. The interior is blue ( more of the torquise than a
>baby blue) and the exterior is a light tan color. The torquise interior
>color would place the boat in the mid-sixties. However, this doesn't go
>with the exterior, which should be white if it were a pre-'73 boat. The
>tan exterior would indicate a post-'73 boat.
>Secondly, the rub rail on the pre-'73 boats is described as a one piece
>white rail. My boat has a two piece white with black insert rail. The
>rail was removed to facilate the restoration. As the rail was well used
>and all the screw holes matched perfectly, I would assume that it was
>the original rail. This would indicate that the boat was post-'73.
>As well, the hull design appears to be the pre-'73 design, as it does
>not have the "smirk" and the transom is the dropped 15" format.
>The boat has the mahogany thwart seats and side console with a white
>plastic steering wheel. The boat was fitted with side rails, which
>seems to indicate a post-'73 boat. It is also fitted with the brass
>oarlock inserts. There were also factory navigation lights, with the
>wiring for the bow light running through the hull and out under the
>I am really wondering how old this boat is. To further complicate
>matters, there is no serial no. to be found anywhere. Based on the
>above info, would you have any idea when the boat was made? I could
>provide pictures if that would be helpful.
lhg posted 03-08-2000 01:58 PM ET (US)     Profile for lhg    
Kent: The give away on your hull age is the absence of the smirk, the oarlock sockets, and the 15" transom, which means the boat is probably from between 1965 & 1970. The turquoise blue interior also fits this age group. My guess is that the tan gelcoat was either a factory special order, or was done later by sanding off the original white, at which time the newer syle rub rail would have also been added. Most people are not aware that, until recently (Sea Ray won't do it in the Recreational Division) you could order any recreational Boston Whaler in any gelcoat color that you wanted, for an extra cost, of course. This was often done with the 13's, to match the color of a yacht, for instance, when the boat was to be used as a tender. Also, side rails were available for the 13's beginning in 1958, and also the lesser used, but highly desireable, bow rail.
The latter greatly increases utility of the bow area for fishing, as you can stand up and have something to hang on to. Good luck with your restoration project.
Peter posted 03-08-2000 09:49 PM ET (US)     Profile for Peter  Send Email to Peter     
In our harbor many years ago, a "transition" 13 resided. It had the blue interior, smirk, black and white rub rail, a 15" notched transom with the motor well instead of wall, and a console that either extended entirely across the boat or was elongated, in either case the steering wheel was located in the center of the boat instead of on the starboard side. I'm curious to know what
year(s) whaler made that hull. My guess would be between 1970 - 1972.
lhg posted 03-09-2000 02:08 PM ET (US)     Profile for lhg    
Peter: I think you are correct regarding that boat, and I would lean toward 1972, the last year of the blue interior. We know that the Smirk was first introduced on the 1971 21' rib-sided Outrage. But since I do not have either a 71 or 72 catalog, I don't know if the Smirk was added to the 13 in the same year. My guess is that it followed in 1972 for the 13' model. I do know that by 1975 the 15" short shaft transom was raised to 20" to accomodate new long shaft engines now being made in the lower hp ranges.
Peter posted 03-09-2000 08:48 PM ET (US)     Profile for Peter  Send Email to Peter     
Larry - FYI, to better bracket the dates, back in my formative years I had a 13' sport hull with a HIN ending with 73. Thus, I think it was a '73 hull. Anyhow, it had the 20" transom and the tan interior. Peter.
kent posted 03-09-2000 11:25 PM ET (US)     Profile for kent    
Hey guys! Thanks for the posts. They are very interesting and helpful. My brother and I have definitely got "Whaler fever". We really think that these old boats are great. Ours was in really rough condition, but we are having fun bringing it back to life. It hasn't been in the water for about 5 years. The restoration is coming along nicely and we shouldn't have any problem having it ready for this years salmon season. We are powering it with another old classic, a 1964 Johnson 40 HP.
raydent99 posted 03-16-2000 10:10 PM ET (US)     Profile for raydent99  Send Email to raydent99     
I have a 1962 Whaler 13. It has the oarlocks, 15" transom (since modified to a higher height), and lacks the smirk.
wbfh posted 04-04-2000 10:34 PM ET (US)     Profile for wbfh  Send Email to wbfh     
In 1981 I bought a used 13 Whaler of unknown ancestry. The chap I bought it from has used it for a fishing boat and before that it was a shipyard utility boat.She had no hull numbers, but had an "assigned" California hull number. I too would love to know her age . She has a curved 15" transome with moulded lifting handles and outboard motor notch. Boats under 21' were not registered until around 1965.

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