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Author Topic: Sea Commander Refurbishment  (Read 2086 times)

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Sea Commander Refurbishment
« on: June 04, 2014, 08:53:32 PM »

Looking around our favourite auction site a couple of weeks ago, I came across this heading "Remote control sailing boat" the seller put in the description "that he had not used it for 10 years, and it most probably just needed a long charge" I took a punt at it and for 31.00 this is what I got.
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Re: Sea Commander Refurbishment
« Reply #1 on: June 04, 2014, 09:05:59 PM »

I asked for help in identifying this and thanks to RadioJoe, I found out it was a Sea Commander. I asked if anyone had any plans, a big thank you to NoNuFink and Manfjourde, let me have copies of the plan and instructions. So what is it like, it has a Torpedo 800 motor fitted, it appears to run ok, it was badly out of alignment with the prop tube.
It had an Electronize ESC in it, now sitting in a draw as I am not going to use it. It had an Ascom 27mhz TX a Futaba 27Mhz RX and a Futaba servo, not sure that combination has ever worked. It also came with a 12v battery, from a fire alarm so not suitable for running the motor. It also came with a NiCad charger that did not work. The paint work looked like it was put on with a yard broom, I have since found out it was four coats deep, I think the motor is about 1kg lighter now.
Some photos
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Re: Sea Commander Refurbishment
« Reply #2 on: June 04, 2014, 09:12:42 PM »

On further investigation I discovered one of the previous owners had a deep down love affair with No Nails, various parts have been stuck with it by putting a bead on the joint. I will get a picture of the main cabin roof to show what I mean, the prop shaft is also attached with it inside.  It also has some railings at the front and rear and some steps on the rear, not sure why. the white gunk around the top of the prop tube is No Nails
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Re: Sea Commander Refurbishment
« Reply #3 on: June 04, 2014, 09:15:18 PM »

The stick on planking had warped in a few places, and there was an odd red piece of wood with a chair on it and an odd piece stuck on the front cabin. The windscreen was a mess, and I have since found out it is the wrong type
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Re: Sea Commander Refurbishment
« Reply #4 on: June 04, 2014, 09:25:42 PM »

First off I wanted to strip the hull and superstructure of all its paint, to see if there were any cracks in the hull. This turned out to not only be a big job, but showed once again how useless No nails is for gap filling it had been used to hold the prop tube in place. When the paint was removed so was the No Nails. I also found out it was only the paint holding the front cabin roof in place and the stick on planking was holding the front deck in place, I thought I was going to end up with a kit again
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Re: Sea Commander Refurbishment
« Reply #5 on: June 04, 2014, 09:39:02 PM »

I got all the paint of using various scrapers and a heat gun, I know some of you might think that is extreme but there was four coats of paint on the boat, white, blue, yellow, white. The yellow paint was the hardest to remove until it was warm, at which point it pealed off as did the top white paint. Had a good look around the boat, a couple of small cracks where the deck met the hull, these have been stuck with Alphatic wood glue. There are a few digs and scrapes on the hull these will be filled in with a decent wood filler, the type that uses a catalyst to set. the inside of the hull looks sound as it had been varnished in its former life, I have still coated it with some resin to ensure the old glue holds in place. Casemite gets really brittle with age
I have a long list of things to do on the model, but I think it will be worth it in the end, more photos to follow
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Re: Sea Commander Refurbishment
« Reply #6 on: June 05, 2014, 09:44:59 AM »

Excellent stuff, I've got a Sea Commander waiting for a refurb and am halfway through a Sea Rover at the moment.

They really do make the best evil-bay finds don't they. I think I've paid 31 each for both of mine too!
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Re: Sea Commander Refurbishment
« Reply #7 on: June 05, 2014, 12:49:58 PM »

What I find strange is, two days ago there was a Sea Commander with no motor, no prop tube, damage to the rear cabin superstructure, unpainted and the last time I loked it was 59. Alright mine needs some work, but with a new battery and r/c it would have most probaly run just as I brought it and it was 31.
As they say "go figure"
 
Brian
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MickK

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Re: Sea Commander Refurbishment
« Reply #8 on: June 15, 2014, 05:42:47 AM »

Hi Brian,


I'm restoring a Sea Commander as well, Bought in a similar condition to yours, except that mine leaks like a sieve.


Mine was built about 50 years ago, and I notice that your front cabin window is only one, mine has two windows in the front cabin.


By the way, there is nothing wrong with paint strippers and heavy duty scrapers to clean off heavy duty (50yo lead-based???) paint.


Looking forward to watching the progress.


Mick



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Re: Sea Commander Refurbishment
« Reply #9 on: June 17, 2014, 09:39:37 PM »

Hi Mick

When I got the copies of the plans for the sea commander I noticed that not only is the front cabin missing a strut so is the main cabin. I am going to replace these when I start working on the cabins.

I am always wary of using chemical paint strippers, I wonder if it gets in the wood what will happen to the paint job. When I have been stripping the paint off and sanding I have been using dust mask, as you say 50yr old paint would have had lead in it

I have started to repair the front deck and I have given the hull its first coat of sanding sealer, I had forgotten how strong the sanding sealer odour was I will post some more pictures shortly.

Brian
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MickK

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Re: Sea Commander Refurbishment
« Reply #10 on: June 18, 2014, 09:15:13 AM »

Hi Brian,


Regarding the windows, my main cabin window is in one piece, the shape is a bit different, that's all. In fact, I prefer the shapes of yours, they give the boat a bit of a more "racy" look, more like a 1960's futuristic style.


Just my humble opinion.


Mick



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