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Author Topic:   Scuba Diving from Whalers
Frenzy posted 11-28-2001 01:49 PM ET (US)   Profile for Frenzy   Send Email to Frenzy  
I am currently thinking about buying a boat for diving and other recreational use here in the Pacific Northwest. Of course, one choice is an inflatable. But I am also thinking that a Whaler might make a good dive/multipurpose boat as well. I am interested in hearing from anyone who may have an opinion on using Whalers for diving and which Whaler models (17-20 feet) may be best suited for this use. Thanks in advance.
Bigshot posted 11-28-2001 02:09 PM ET (US)     Profile for Bigshot  Send Email to Bigshot     
Every boat is a good dive boat as long as it has a great ladder. I dive off my 17 Montauk. If it was my main objective, I would remove the side rails.
tlynch posted 11-28-2001 02:29 PM ET (US)     Profile for tlynch  Send Email to tlynch     
Some of the commercial boats have a side door that I think would be excellent for diving.


Todd Lynch

Drisney posted 11-28-2001 03:36 PM ET (US)     Profile for Drisney  Send Email to Drisney     
There is a comercial built hull on Ebay with the side door..He has listed it numerous times always too much money, but keeps reducing his price. It would be a wonderfull boat if you have the money/patience to build it back up. Dave it is the 22ft hull I think
Barry posted 11-30-2001 11:34 PM ET (US)     Profile for Barry  Send Email to Barry     
Frenzy (as in the old vest/bc?)

Check out triblet's page

Good luck,
NASDS Basic Diver
PADI Deep, Rescue, Research, Search & Recovery Specialty Diver

dfmcintyre posted 12-01-2001 08:03 AM ET (US)     Profile for dfmcintyre  Send Email to dfmcintyre     
Beyond Chuck's excellent website info on the 17' setup for diving, I can only offer one or two comments.

How many people do you normally dive with? If it's just you and your partner, the 17 will work... beyond that however, it's gonna get real cramped, real quick. I did some diving down in the Keys, with friends in my Montauk, and I noticed that we were stumbling over each other.

Note that Chuck talked about the ride. What kind of water conditions are normal, and how far is your ride to the dive location?

Personally, I'd look for an 28 or 20 Outrage. You have the advantages of a better ride, internal tank (for more equipment storage under a reversable pilot seat.... no net gain if the model has swivel seats)

Years ago, a good friend of mine who was a Whaler lover designed and had built a unique boarding ladder. He tried to get Whaler interested in it to sell, and even went into production for a short run. I'll try and describe it:

Basically, it was a 1.5" o.d. stainless steel pole with a hook on one end, and steps. The hook or loop fitted into an attachment that was mounted on the _inside_ of the gunwale on either side of the boat, between the side grabrail and the bow rail.

It extended a good four feet into the water, and had a standoff with rubber feet that rested against the outer hull, about three inches from the bottom of the gunwale. Having a swim ladder go deep into the water is important. I had a ss ladder made for the stern of my 25 Revenge (took it off when we mounted a swim platform) that was almost two feet wide and went into the water three feet. It was a breeze to get into the boat with it>

The Mark 1 Mod 0.0 version worked well, but was a pain to store, as it couldn't really store flat, because of the hook.

The second version was a huge improvement, with the addition of a swivel at the top of the ladder, which allowed the hook to swivel 90 degrees to allow for storage into clips mounted on the inside of the gunwale.

Steps were padded, and had a triangular shaped piece of ss welded under the step right at the corner for strength.

The hook portion of the tube rested right on the edges and was also padded.

The last version could be inserted into the fishing pole inserts built into the gunnels of the Outrage series.

Up reflection, it was just what a Whaler owner would want, very functional and strong. Too bad that the corp didn't want to work with Bob on it.

One winter project I'm looking at is making a role up latter, using chunks of Starboard for steps, and coated s/s cable. One problem with a ladder like that is the tendency once you start climbing on them, the steps will swing under the boat.

Best -Don

triblet posted 12-01-2001 01:36 PM ET (US)     Profile for triblet  Send Email to triblet     
Barry posted the URL to my web page. I dive
from my Montauk most every weekend in
Monterey. I suspect the Monterey sites are
more exposed than the PNW sites -- no
offshore islands, penninsulas, etc., just a
7000 mile fetch. Two divers with two tanks
is spacious, three divers with two tanks
and you have coordinate movements, four
divers with one tank, and it's a bit
crowded and I don't tend to go far. But
its still less crowded than most inflatables.

I know some guys (USNR salvage unit) and
don't like it. It's not very sealed, and
they get a lot of water on the deck.

The Montauk will be more stable at rest than
an Outrage. With an Outrage, I could get
down to Carmel Bay a bit more often, but
it wouldn't fit in my garage.

Bigshot, the siderails don't make any
difference to me -- the gear up space is
forward. Taking the bowrail off was critical.


Dr T posted 12-01-2001 01:45 PM ET (US)     Profile for Dr T  Send Email to Dr T     
Interesting concept on the starboard ladder. Perhaps you could use a trick I have seen on collapsable tables and stowable VHF antennas:

Put sections of PVC pipe around the cable between the treads, a stop clamped to the cable just above the top tread, and a means of tightening the the two cable ends under the bottom of the lowest tread. When the cable is tightened, it will pull wall of the treads and the intermediate pipes snug against the bottom of the stop resulting in a more rigid ladder. You could even counter sink a bit for the pipes around the cable poles to make it a bit more rigid, an devise a standoff to keep it from swinging under the boat. When the cable is eased, the ladder could be rolled for stowage.


gunnelgrabber posted 12-01-2001 08:18 PM ET (US)     Profile for gunnelgrabber  Send Email to gunnelgrabber     
barry,.. the bc is a "fenzy",..french made horsecollar,the one i have. frenzy is when you're dragging back there and harry the hammerhead shows up...i've witnessed some frenetic ,walk-on- water, rapid boat entries..with or without ladders!...chuck's ladder setup is hard to improve on,and i'd make sure the platform is waterlevel or an inch below at see a lot of them installed too high on the transom.i think they are a necessary addition to a whaler in this part of the world. also i believe that more than 3 people tank diving out of a 17 whaler would be a crowd....lm
triblet posted 12-02-2001 01:03 AM ET (US)     Profile for triblet  Send Email to triblet     
> I know some guys (USNR salvage unit) and
> don't like it. It's not very sealed, and
> they get a lot of water on the deck.

DUH, this should have read:

I know some guys (USNR salvage unit) with a
whaler with the door in the side, and they
don't like it. It's not very sealed, ...


triblet posted 12-02-2001 01:05 AM ET (US)     Profile for triblet  Send Email to triblet     
Hammerheads are not a big threat. I've done
two 10 day trips to Cocos Island, Costa Rica,
to photograph them. I've had as many as
50 in view at once, no cage.

There are three sharks that concern me:
Great Whites ("the landlord"), Tigers,
and, to a lesser extent, Bulls.


gunnelgrabber posted 12-02-2001 08:06 AM ET (US)     Profile for gunnelgrabber  Send Email to gunnelgrabber     
chuck,..10-4..agreed. some people's automatic response ,however,in this scenario is interesting to observe...and,yes, they're mostly harmless..but look so menacing when they're bigger than you or look boat sized..i discretely retreat in the presence of bulls and ..those other named bad actors you mentioned.keep your eyes open down there....lm
1987GTX posted 12-11-2001 03:56 PM ET (US)     Profile for 1987GTX  Send Email to 1987GTX     
i dove the entire california coast from a 17 guardian for many years - lots of room in the back of the boat, stainless steel rails all around, very cool (my only issue was being cold on the return trips from the wind, actually). in my opinion, the montauk/guardian hull makes an excellent multi-purpose recreational hull.


Glenn Weigle posted 12-11-2001 06:06 PM ET (US)     Profile for Glenn Weigle  Send Email to Glenn Weigle     
The three sharks that concern me in order are bulls (that ate a 60 lb. dolphin last June off my gaff, whites that would get me if I swam in seal infested waters, and hammers which travel in packs in the Keys. g
Glenn Weigle posted 12-11-2001 06:10 PM ET (US)     Profile for Glenn Weigle  Send Email to Glenn Weigle     
Frenzy: I think the 17 is too small, and its actions in the open ocean are erratic. The 22 or 25 is an open ocean machine. Very seaworthy at all speeds, and dry. For diving, I would find one, install a 2.5-4' bracket (motor/dive), install twin motors and go anywhere. g

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