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Old 10 August 2014, 06:17   #1
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Hi, new to the forums and looking for advice.
I have an old zodiac inflatable about 4 mts long, and the transom has just started coming loose from the tubes. Before starting a repair, I was wondering if it would be possible to build a solid hull out of ply and glass fibre to fit the tubes to and if so how would I go about it?
I am not interested in "save your money and buy something else" replies if that's all you can offer, I am just looking at something to do in my spare time.
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Old 10 August 2014, 06:28   #2
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Well... It's technically possible. I understand where you're coming from about 'something to do'.

However,is it PVC or hypalon? That would swing it for me-if it's PVC I wouldn't bother as age-wise it'll be nearing being a lost cause with multiple glued joints nearing failiure if the transom is falling off.
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Old 10 August 2014, 07:35   #3
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Oooh... we do love a good build thread!!


Your theory sounds good... ...not sure how cheap it would be to do. Assuming you are using genuine Marine Ply you would need at least 2 sheets for the base, plus some frames plus a deck I guess? Or just stitch and glue?

Must be looking at 150 for the plywood delivered plus 50 for epoxy plus 50-100 for GRP sheathing. Then some form of coating and sanding - 50-100

Then you need a plan! You are constrained by the existing design and your easiest plan would be to copy the existing inflatable hull shape although something with a chine might be better....

Oh and you'll still need a transom!

Back of a fag packet 500? But your boat will be heavier. Do you have a trailer. Is your engine big enough?

Plus you need to glue the tubes to your new hull Thats a fair bit of glue and needs to be done well.

Tiller steer or console?
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Old 10 August 2014, 09:32   #4
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It's PCV as far as I can tell. It's the transom mounts that have started to come adrift from the tubes, but the rest of the boat seems ok.
I got the idea after seeing the web diary of a guy who built a gemini rib from plans provided by gemini.
No, I don't have a trailer and I scrapped the outboard last year. At the moment it's an idea in principle and initially wanted to know if it was feasible and also how I'd go about measuring up and building it so the tubes could be glued on
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Old 10 August 2014, 09:33   #5
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Oh and if I was going to try then before I spent any serious money I'd get two sheets of 6mm MDF and a roll of gaffa tape. Cut my shapes in that and tape with gaffa. Make sure shape works and fits toobs...
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Old 10 August 2014, 12:12   #6
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Well this guy made a hull for a Avon redcrest with aluminium, turned out well.



I know you dont want to hear this, but its not just the transom thats a bit loose, every glued part of the boat is about to fail. If you are going to spend time and moneu doing a hull, factor in the time (lots) and the money (little) to remove and re glue everything.
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Old 10 August 2014, 12:34   #7
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Thanks for the advice. When you say every glued part of the boat is about to fail, I'm hoping your not telling me the tubes themselves are about fall apart? Just the things stuck to them?
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Old 10 August 2014, 12:37   #8
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Originally Posted by Bigjo View Post
Thanks for the advice. When you say every glued part of the boat is about to fail, I'm hoping your not telling me the tubes themselves are about fall apart? Just the things stuck to them?
No, it's quite likely that the tubes themselves aren't far off letting go as well.
It's the curse of old PVC boats. Glueing PVC is a pain in the neck too, particularly if you're doing areas as large as you'll need to to attach tubes to a hull.
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