Bateau Forum where I will update the most.
This is where we start my part in this build:
I've been on the water most of my life. My father was highly into fishing and always had a boat to pull us on skis or to cast a line in the water. He even owned a couple of fishing lure companies. My stepdad had a Hobie-Cat that we used on Lake Jackson or down at St. George Island. Life seemed to get in the way and the boats slid out of the picture for both men. That led me to an NJROTC unit in high school that had a fleet of vessels. They still have a US Navy sailboat along with 30 or 40 other boats.
As life went on, my desire to own a boat increased. The Marine Corps, marriage, kids, divorce, rebuilding myself, college and finally another marriage seemed to always keep the dream out of range but burning brighter with every turn. I had seen an article about a man (I assume stickystuff) that built an XF20 in Florida. The article mentioned a strange company called Bateau. I ordered some samples of a material called Nidacore and I have been hooked for a couple of years on the idea of building my own boat. Luckily, the best wife in the world (just in case she ever reads this) promised me it would become a reality. That's right, a wife that encourages this crazy line of thinking!
I have been really amazed with the variety of boats Jacques has designed. I've flipped between several designs over the years with the FS18, SC16 and now the FS13 holding my interest since I have been enjoying fly fishing the last few years. I've also kicked around the idea of one of PC22/24 but was not satisfied that it could take on some of the waters around the panhandle of Florida. When OzzyC posted the GT23 for sale originally, I knew it was too high after we just bought a house so I didn't mention it too the wife. After a few months of it sitting there the price was lowered and I had to call to ensure it wasn't a mistake. OzzyC assured me that it was correct and I told him I wanted it but had to talk with the accountant (wife). We prayed about it over night and she came back and said she was okay with it. And so it begins.
I've got to say a special thanks to Dave for all the help he gave us through the day in packing her up for the long ride home. He made comparisons to me and Greg through out the day. Hopefully I can put as much thought into finishing this build as the one who started it. I think Greg's wife threw a party when we left with the boat, literally!
We started out by looking at the tires and deciding that new ones would be needed. No sense in even starting that long of a trip on tires with flat spots. Here's a shot of my dad putting the new tires on the trailer. I'd swear that trailer had not seen 100 miles on the road prior to the return trip.
After we had sent my brother for the new tires, Dave and I set to work wrapping the beast. I think it was a mistake to attempt a shrink wrap job without the right shrink guns. I tried getting Dave to fire up the huge heater he had sitting on the shelf but he wouldn't bite. I think that getting the thicker wrap was a bad idea with the heat guns we were using. Here's a shot of me taking forever to try shrink wrap.
Thought from early in my part of the build:
Don't let those around you make life a race. You lose the good times that could have been and now will never be. Life is not about the numbers or speed at which we do something. It should be about the people that you have in your life at that moment. You never know when they will be gone.
Here's Midstream's new home and my solo unload of all the big pieces:
Don't worry, there were pillows on the roof to keep the straps off the paint!