CQARA Boat Project

Our association participates in the International Lighthouse & Lighthship Weeknd each year at Sea Hill Lighthouse on Curtis Island. In past years we have relied on a third party, namely the caretakers of Sea Hill to transport us to and from the island in their boat. This year, we decided to do something about being self sufficient in using our own transport for this years, and future events in having our own boat.

We obtained a 1979 4.9 metre DeHavilland boat on a Redco trailer with 1993 Johnson 25hp tiller steer outboard. The boat is plated to carry 5 people and was the main reason for the choice, it’s very solid in its construction. The Redco trailer of same vintage was the national HQ for steel termites in that it was eaten beyond repair. The outboard was suffering a waterlogged gearbox and making terminal noises, but the power head was in excellent condition. So, for the last 6 months or so, our Wednesday working bee team has attacked the project with a vengeance and ended up with a job they can be very proud of.

The trailer was rebuilt from the A frame back, with a welded galvanised steel chassis, new galvanised axle, springs, wheels and other hardware. The outboard received a rebuilt gearbox and a tune up.  The boat was sanded back to bare metal and under coated, top coats in sea rescue orange and white 2 pack paint, new nav lights, floor panels refurbished and painted with grey paint (4 coats) these were refitted and covered with marine carpet. The boat was totally rewired, including bilge pump. A Honda 2.3hp outboard was fitted as an auxiliary motor. This boat will also be used for our radio and fishing weekends on nearby Islands, when planned.

A bit tired looking!
2The steel termite infested chassis!
3A bit more trailer rubble……..
4The boat as we got it
5Ray VK4HOT and Graham VK4NFZ hard at work sanding in the Weasel Park Workshop.
Chris Bell welding the trailer chassis while Graham VK4NFZ supervises 🙂
7Painting in progress by Ray VK4HOT
8Getting closer………
9Bob VK4HRC at left, Nev VK4KNB centre look on as Merv VK4DV gets ready to trowel some paint on the internal floorboards!
10Everyone pitches in to give a hand.
11Finally ready to go, with our website address proudly displayed on both sides 🙂
13-1Jack VK4JRC near the boat ramp. It looks like it floats.
12-1Ray VK4HOT doing a speed run!

Weasel Park Wednesday Update 04/12/2014

Numbers down this week, but still had 3 of us attend, Mick VK4NHX, Dave VK4DJC and myself.

Ray VK4XXX, Graham VK4NFZ and Chris Bell have gone away to Curtis. Island for a week in our boat for fishing, crabbing and radio expedition. Worked them on the island from Weasel Park on 40 metres and our UHF repeater.

Mick brought his Wavenode adapter along to have a fiddle with and it displays some interesting information on radio and antenna performance.


I brought an Elecraft KX3 with the PX3 Panadapter, we did a firmware update to both units via the Weasel Park WiFi and had a listen around the bands etc.



We also visited the repeater shack, as it had gone off air for some reason, a reset fixed it and batteries were checked at the same time. Also measured up space for our new 2 metre repeater which will fit OK. I brought the donated cavity filters back from Victoria last week, they rode home in our caravan. Lyle VK4LM has the new repeater at his home, ready to go on test shortly.

We retired to the. Bouldy Pub for a counter lunch in place of the usual Weasel Park BBQ and it was a nice feed 🙂
As usual, we all had a great time!

Club.    www.cqara.org.au
GQRP       #14392
QRPARCI #15068
VKQRP.    #833