MY 1959 CUTTER JET DEVILLE RESTORATION

{owner - Dana Howell}

This page is to document the ongoing restoration of my recently acquired 1959 Cutter Jet Deville classic fiberglass boat. I will try to take pictures as the restoration progresses, uploading them to this website, along with an ongoing description. My plans are to make mine look like the one on the left.

 

DAY 1 - GETTING STARTED


I found this boat listed on Craigslist for free and just had to go check it out! I brought a small

utility trailer with me, just in case I decided to bring it home. I took the bait and decided it

was worth the effort. After bringing it home, I took this picture, before starting my restoration.

 

 

I took this picture the evening I brought the boat home. A good clean-up is the first item

on the menu.


Day 5 - RESULTS OF A GOOD CLEANING

 

After a good scrubbing with soapy water, and a scrub brush, I managed to remove

all the moss, dirt, and tree sap. However, the  years of weather exposure had caused the

boat which had been upside down for  many years to have absolutely no shine. I used some

Mothers brand buffing compound and a good buffer and managed to arrive at the finish seen

below. It took several hours of buffing to arrive at the original finish.

This is what the bottom of the boat looked like before I made my repairs. It appears either

the boat was grounded a lot, or the trailer it was loaded on had some issues with the rollers.

Some damage to the bottom of the boat at the stern is also visible and needed to be repaired

as well.



DAY 4 - ACQUIRED AN OUTBOARD

 

This is the motor I intend to use for this boat. It is a 1959 Royal Scott, 40 Horsepower.

It bought it on Craigslist for $50.00, knowing it needed to be repaired, as it has no spark.

I painted the hood to original colors and intend to paint the rest after I get it running

properly. An outboard with the same paint scheme as the boat, It should look great

when it is complete!

The picture below was found in an old Royal Scott brochure. It shows what this

outboard looked like with the original paint scheme.


DAY 25 - FLIPPING THE BOAT OVER


I finally have the boat right-side up, protecting the bottom by placing it on car tires.

The top is supposed to be bright red, however, years of exposure to the weather, has

faded it to pink and in some places, almost white. I will be painting the top half, after

repairing the transom and all the nicks and scratches is has collected over the years.

As can be seen in the above picture, The original color or the boat has faded from red to

pink and in some places, all the way back to white.


DAY 30 - THE EVIL TWIN TO MY BOAT

 

I found this boat listed on Craigslist for $250.00. It was in worse shape than mine was,

but had a good windshield, steering wheel, decklid, and trailer. The motor was bad and

the boat was in rough shape overall.


We managed to get this boat the 75 miles back to my house, with only brake lights working

on the trailer. Obviously, the trailer was going to need a good going over as well.


DAY 45 - ALMOST READY FOR PAINT

 

At this point, I have stripped the blue boat of all usable parts, cleaned up and repainted the

trailer and finally loaded the project boat onto the trailer. Other than a few minor details,

it is almost ready for painting.


After disposing of the old blue boat, I went through the trailer, giving it new lights, tongue

crank, a coat of red and white paint and eliminated the rear rollers by adding bunky boards

and carpeting.

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As seen below, the first coat of primer has gone on the sides, now it's time for the spot putty

to fill in the small scratches and gouges in the surface.


DAY 46 - OLD GLASSPAR FOR PARTS

 

Too bad this boat had been stripped down (partially) for a restoration, then the owner just

gave up and left it sitting in the bushes. It would have been a sweet boat if it had been a

little more complete.

I acquired this boat from an ad that I placed on Craigslist for old fiberglass boats that people

just want to get rid of. The boat sat in the bushes behind the owners house, mostly stripped

down. All I wanted off it was the stern light and possibly the rub rail insert.


DAY 47 - TRANSOM REPAIR FINALLY DONE


After finding the wooden core of the transom to be rotten, I had to cut out the top of the

transom with a jig saw, then remove the rotten wood, replace it with new marine plywood,

then rebuild the outer layer of the fiberglass. I finally have it ready for some sandable primer.


After rebuilding the transom, I am just about to the point of having the upper half ready

for a fresh coat of bright red paint. Then the reassembly process can begin. Still a long way

to go though.

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Even after replacing the wood inside the transom, I felt it worth the effort to cut another

piece and install it inside the boat at the transom to reinforce the entire back of the boat

from the stress of the outboard. I really didn't want to have exposed carriage bolts on the

outside of the transom, however, I felt the additional rigidity made it a neccesary evil. The

Royal Scott outboard weighs in at 147 lbs!


DAY 55 - BOAT IS READY TO BE PAINTED!

 

 

As can be seen in the pictures above and below, the upper half of the boat

is finally fully primed and all the nicks and scratches have been filled in and

sanded out. The "V" in the top of the bow has been painted with a color

closely matching the color of the bottom half of the boat. The stern is also

painted to match as well. All that is left now is to refinish the upper half and

start the process of re-assembly.

As can be seen in the above picture, the rub rail insert is now black. I had

planned to follow the original color scheme on the insert, but the original rub

rail was so badly marred up, that after attempting to clean it up or repaint it

white, wasn't going to bring the result I wanted. I ended up going with black

as my back-up option.


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