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88 crestliner sabre restoration

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I bought a 22' Sabre a year ago from someone on this site. It's just been sitting in a garage for the past year. I've finally started working on it this past month. I just thought i would share some of my progress on my first restoration project.

Here's a picture of the boat at the start. I just had just started sanding down the top.


I sanded down the entire boat. The worst part of this entire step was removing the pin stripe. What a tedious job that was.


I talked a tech at Jamestown distributors and he directed me in the proper primers to use. Most of the research I did online said to use zinc chromate on the aluminum. From what I was told by the tech, zinc chromate is being faded out and told me to use Interlux 2 part interprotect on the bare aluminum.


I then put a coat of Interlux Prekote as a second coat of primer.

I decided to use Interlux Brightside as a top coat. I original planned on black hull and a beige on the bow and cuddy.


I'm applying the paint using the roll and tip method. A little bit of a learning curve but not bad. If i could start it over I'm sure I could get a flawless job the second time but I'm a finish carpenter and not a body man.

After looking at it I decided it was way too much black and i needed to break it up so I added some beige to the hull.


I have one more coat of beige to go and i can start laying carpet inside. I replaced all the deck with new plywood. Rebuilt the boxes for the seat bases. I also had the upholstery re-done on the seats.


This has been a ton of work and I'm getting close. I've really been enjoying myself too. Let me know what you guys think!

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Look's awsome, a lot of work but you will know your boat inside&out. I like the seats, I would like to see more pictures of the inside when you get that far, Keep plugging at it soon it will all come together. PAP

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Solid black is not too visible at night, good change there. Congratulations on your efforts, looks like you did the right things. Keeping the money locally is good for your wallet.

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Wow great job. Looks like a new boat. I'm impressed. I've got a '95 Crestliner Eagle I'm slowly restoring, but work keeps getting in the way. Very similar to yours but just has the walk around feature and a little narrower cuddy. Great boats.

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There is a ton of info online about the roll and tip method. Here is a run-down of what i did. I sanded the entire boat with 80 grit with an orbital sander. Aluminum releases oils so you want to sand and prime right after. So i re-sander a side at a time when i was ready to prime. After I sanded down a side I wiped it down with a tack cloth. Then wiped down the side with Acetone.

I used all interlux products for my paint job. I used a 2 part product called interprotect for my first coat of primer on the bare aluminum. Thinning it with interlux 2333 brushing thinner 10%. I would mix 16 oz at a time. That should be enough to do one side. You definitely don't want to run out while your painting. By the time you mix more your last spot with be dry and you'll get lap marks.

As far as applying the paint I found a 6" dense foam roller worked the best and the most important thing is get the badger hair brush for you tipping. I tried using a good oil brush and the results were no where as good. My first mistake.

When you start rolling don't do more than a 2' wide section at a time. If you paint to big of an area it will start to dry and you'll get lap marks. Roll it out with the roller and go over it a few times to make sure the paint is applied evenly. You then take the badger hair brush at a 45 degree angle and tip the paint the opposite way you rolled. You want to use as little pressure as possible.

After 24hr I sanded the interprotect pimer with 220 gr paper. I then cleaned with a tack cloth and the 2333 thinner. I then applied interlux Prekote with the same method. Thinning the Prekote 10% with 333 thinner (made for the one part paints). Sanded the Prekote primer with 220 and did the same procedures as before and started appling the brightside paint. 3 coats of Brightside and sanding and cleaning between each coat.

I used about 4 quarts of paint and half a gallon of each primer. I think I had around $400 in the paint job. Google Interlux roll and tip and you'll find a bunch of videos on YouTube showing these methods.

When I made my paint lines I used a 1/4" vinyl tape from the auto body store and taped over that with a delicate making tape.

Hope this helps!

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  • 2 weeks later...

Had a Amish tarp shop make a new top, side windows and cover this past week. Also found a kicker motor too. The motor came from an old local boat yard. The old man that ran it passed away a couple years ago and his son has been selling everything off. The motor is 10 years old but is BRAND NEW. Never been ran. Tiller handle was still in its original package and tags on the motor. 15 hp Tohatsu. Paid $1,000. Thought it was a good buy.

Next pictures will be the last, after I get all my gear on. I should start receiving it next week. All my Big Jon gear is coming in Gold Finish! It gonna look sweet.


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  • 6 months later...

tony, whats the latest on this project? did you get it on the water before seasons end? looks great. looking for this same hull to make an open sea duck boat. best, mark

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  • 3 weeks later...

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