2009 Drift Boat Makeover

April 28, 2009

drift boat

Because the “Dr” is a huge part of the Fly Fishing Frenzy, writing for us and allowing us use his posts from his blog Xstream Outdoors we wanted to let our readers know that we appreciate all that the “Dr” has done to help our site be successful.  We can’t thank him enough.


frenzy-07-jord-mal-green-044by Travis “Dr” Gillespie | Taken from the Xstream Outdoors Blog

Being a drift boat owner is something that a small percentage of fishermen ever get to experience during there life as a fly fishermen. Owning a wooden drift boat is an even smaller percentage. There is something special about taking care of a classic wood boat. Its almost as if one takes care of it as there on child. For example: They take special care to keep it safe away from any harm, they spoil it and spend countless dollars to keep it looking good, they spend hours with it to make it better and most of all they love their wood boat and would never give it up no matter what. To me owning a wooden boat is a “whole notha level” of fly fishing. I am still learning to be a better craftsman, but time is something I have to share with my little baby.

I am always thinking of new ideas to help improve and customize my boat to fit most of my wants on the water. This year I have finally made a list of “Must Does”, so here are a couple of my latest “Must Does” that have finally made it off the list.
My Boat is a 16 ft Greg Tatman Kit

1. LineX the bottom-This was a pretty easy project. All I had to do was remove the plastic bottom that was attached. (about 100 screws) and take it to LineX of Sandy. Ask for Kelly, he is the shop owner and will take great care of anyone he works with. (Great Guy!!!) They are a top notch LineX Dealer and I would recommend them to anyone that is thinking about putting LineX on their boat, truck, Jeep or anything else you want to protect. They did all the prep work needed and sprayed on the LineX. I love this stuff. It is tough (lifetime guarantee) and it looks great. Don’t have to worry about a leaky bottom any more. Also you can tell them how you want them to spray it. For me I had them spray 4 inches up the sides and up the back in an oval shape for the anchor and up the front to give it a balanced design and rock protection.

For more information about LineX of Sandy check out the link below: http://www.linex.com/ or call Kelly direct at: (801)255-5591

Before Pics

After Pics

2. Build Tubed Rod Holders- I saw these on a Hyde and I knew I needed them. I had open rod holders before and I broke a rod last year as I jumped out of the boat. They are simple, got to any store that has PVC and buy 2 inch size with some of the metal brackets that hold them in place. I refinished them with the same textured spray paint as the inside of my boat.

3. Refinish Inside- I use a textured spray paint called Stone something. ($10 per can at Home Depot) The color is pebble. It looks like granite. After I spay and dry, I cover it with clear gloss finish and it protects it great. Plus it looks very sharp!

4. Put in Swivel Seats- I got mine at Cabelas for $40 great soft seats that fold down.

5. Build in Lanyards for front and back fishermen- Nothing is worst than having to fool around looking for stuff when you can be fishing. I have made a couple lanyards so that each fisherman has all their tippets, weights, floatant and forecepts ready and accessible all the time.

6. Fix Boat Cover- Patched holes and strenghtened my old cover that has seen to may days in the sun. It sure bet spending $500 bones on a new one.

7. Customize Wood Side Panels- With putting the LineX 4 inches up my sides, I had to remove my side panels. I didn’t want to get rid of them because I love the look they give a traditional wood boat. So I figured I could make them smaller and am give them a new look to fit my personality. (The design comes from my art background)

Before Pics


The Payoff to a lot of hard work.

Things to come:

1. Dry Storage Boxes in Front, Middle and back seats

2. Built in Cooler under rowers seat.

3. Refinish Trailer

4. Durabak or Raptor inside floor

5. Cup holders

6. Lay out seat-So when my wife floats with me she can lay out in her bikini and read a book


4 Responses to “2009 Drift Boat Makeover”

  1. Pesce Adesivi Says:

    That looks great, I love the colors. Nice job!


  2. DS Trout Flies for Fly Fishing Says:

    That looks like it might just be the most well cared for wooden drift boat. Man, that thing is pretty. I’d be afraid to touch it. Nice job – enjoy


  3. Dr Gillespie Says:

    Thanks for the comments guys. Its true I spend a lot of work on making it pretty, but if saw what it looked like after each trip you be amazed at how it cleans up. Kinda like my Jeep. Oh wait I haven’t washed that in over 2 years…This week I have been installing a dry storage box in the front, it is about two coats of varish away from being done!!!

    Dr G


  4. Dan Says:

    What kind of varish? Mine is 17 yrs old…I redid the inside 6 yrs ago…now time for the outside. Last stuff i used was Interlux. I was 12 when we did the boat… now im 27…sill feels great


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