Hard Top Frame: Part 14 – Taco Marine Project Boat on Ship Shape TV

To update the project boat’s hard top, there are two main components – the frame and top. Each part had its challenges, but one had an unexpected ending.

Boat repairDIY boat repairThe boat’s hard top had close to a hundred holes that needed to be filled. The process to repair and fill the holes in the top was to drill larger counter sink holes and then fill them with an epoxy resin mixed with milled fibers. See what happened at the end of the video.

Boat rehab of hard top frame

Welding the Taco Marine rod holders to the hard top frame.

For more ideas on updating your boat with innovative Taco Marine products, go to our website at: TacoMarine.com

Galley Updating and Replacement: Part 13 – Taco Marine Project Boat on Ship Shape TV

Ship Shape TV galley

Boat Galley Restoration Ideas

Do you really use the refrigerator in your boat galley? Does it ever get musty smelling, doesn’t get cold enough or it plain stopped working? In Part 13, of the Taco Marine Project boat, we took out the refrigerator and in the video below we show you an alternative of what to do with that empty space and other tips on updating the galley area.


For more ideas on updating your boat with award winning innovative products, go to our website at: TacoMarine.com


Companionway Installation: Part 12 – Taco Marine Project Boat on Ship Shape TV

Ship Shape TV

These old style doors and smokey transparent acrylic lid get updated.

This how-to video clip from Ship Shape TV provides tips on updating or replacing the companionway in an older boat. From redoing the glide rails, to replacing the doors, to selecting the best materials and hardware, this video provides helpful insights.

lid for companionway

Older lids were transparent to let light through but did not provide privacy.

glide rail

The video below shows what to do with the old companion lid glide rails, hardware and how to select more durable and practical companionway materials for your boat.



Rub Rail Installation: Part 11 – Taco Marine Project Boat on Ship Shape TV

rub rail selection tipsRub rail selection and installation. In our latest Taco Marine Project Boat video, the first 4 minutes is about selecting rub rail that best fits the size of your boat and the different choices in materials. The second half of the video provides tips on installation to make the rub rail project go a little quicker and how to create a better seal against water intrusion.

Rub rail selection

Watch the video below for rub rail installation tips on measuring, caulking, attaching, bending and trimming rub rail.

Click here for Taco Marine’s handy rub rail replacement selection guide.

Painting the Deck and Hull: Part 10 – Taco Marine Project Boat on Ship Shape TV

Putty for fiberglass boats

Applying a special putty to smooth out the fiberglass repair.

Part 10, of the Taco Marine Project Boat,  is filled with prepping and painting tips. Before painting the deck, a product called Super Poly-Fill putty was used over some exposed structural fiberglass in the splash well to provide a smoother surface for the paint. It sanded real easy and Ship Shape TV was able to paint over the top of it. If you have some micro scratches in your gelcoat, they recommend Gelcoat Putty that’s used for that finer type of repair. But if you need to repair below the water line, it’s best to use Trowel-On Epoxy Putty which is resistant to osmotic blistering for a more permanent solution.

Painting a boat with a roller or spray?

Ship Shape TV spray painted the Taco Marine Project Boat versus using a roll-on method.

When it came time to painting, we learned a few tips from Ship Shape TV and other vendors that you might find helpful; from priming to sealing, to sand or not sand, to roll-on or spray-on the paint finish. It all depends on your needs and application, watch the 5 minute video below for some helpful information.

Stringers, Bulkheads and Fuel Tanks: Part 9 – Taco Marine Project Boat on Ship Shape TV

boat stringers and bulkheadsBefore installing the new custom fuel tanks into the Taco Marine Project Boat, issues with the stringers and bulkheads were addressed. The rotted wood inside the stringers was replaced with a resin infused marine fir plywood, then they were fiberglass attached to the back of the transom. An additional stringer was added Taco Marine Project Boat stringer addd between fuel tanksbetween the two fuel tanks to support the deck so it complies with current Coast Guard regulations – which mandates for safety reasons, that the deck cannot use a fuel tank for structural support.

The video below, (edited from Ship Shape TV), provides tips on types of materials we used and changes in structural requirements since the boat was originally built.


Boat’s Fuel Tanks Leak. Now What? Part 8 – Taco Marine Project Boat on Ship Shape TV

A leaky fuel tank needs to be fixed or replacedHaving fuel tanks that leak fuel is wasteful and dangerous. To test for leaks the TNT Custom Boatworks staff pressurized the Taco Marine Project Boat’s fuel tanks with 3 lbs. of air pressure and then went around the seams and weld joints with a soapy paint brush. Notice all the pin hole leaks causing bubbles around the seams. Older boats in use may have similar leak issues, so it is a good idea to have your boat checked. If left un-addressed, fuel leaks are bad for the environment and could be dangerous if not repaired. With the Taco Marine Project Boat going to a future owner, we chose to have new tanks made versus repairing the pin-holes. Make sure your new fuel tanks are built by a certified tank manufacturer so they meet specific US Coast Guard requirements. Check to see if your current fuel tanks have a seal or placard with a US Coast Guard Approval designation.

Boat fuel tanks are typically made from different gauges of aluminum, from 1/8th inch to 1/4 inch, depending on the sizFuel-Coatinge – in gallons, of your tank. An option for more protection to help prevent fuel tank leaks in the future, is to have them powder-coated, shown here on the left. With the boat being upgraded to best possible state, we opted to have our new tanks powder coated

Watch the video (Part 8), to see how the new fuel tanks were built and the options we had as the manufacturing process took place.


boat fuel level sensor

A couple of fuel tank sensor unit options discussed in the video are the Rochester Arm Sender unit that has been used for decades, and a Wema Fuel Level Sensor that slides up and down.

Fuel tank sensor