Custom hardtop on older Sundancer

Discussion in 'Modifications/Customizations' started by hillsideshortleg, Nov 3, 2017.

  1. hillsideshortleg

    hillsideshortleg Member

    172
    Feb 5, 2012
    Lake Pend Orielle, Idaho
    89 Sea Ray 280 Sundancer
    2 350's Mercruiser drives
    My wife and I are thinking about having a hardtop built for our 1989 280 sundancer. Has anyone ever had a custom hardtop built? I am worried that the arch and 2 front supports and 2 back supports may not be enough for the extra weight when it comes to side ways thrusts.
    Any comments?
     
  2. keokie

    keokie Well-Known Member

    Dec 27, 2006
    Arizona
    2002 310 Sundancer, Westerbeke 4.5 Genset
    496's, Bravo III's, 2.2:1 Gears
    Talk to Swimplatforms.com. They do stuff like this... very well.
     
  3. NorCal Boater

    NorCal Boater Well-Known Member SILVER Sponsor

    Jan 24, 2008
    Covington, LA
    Cobalt CM23
    GM SB 383" Stroker" Alpha Gen I
    +1 on Swim Platforms, Inc. Call and ask for Scott, the owner, and tell him you're a Club Sea Ray member. A few years ago when I last saw Scott they were looking into making hardtops and may have the molds.

    Tell him Shawn Murphy says Hi.
     
  4. fwebster

    fwebster Well-Known Member TECHNICAL Contributor PLATINUM Sponsor

    Oct 6, 2006
    Middle Tennessee ; Panama City Beach, FL
    1996 450DA
    3116 Caterpillars
    Their website says nothing about hardtops and I'd be surprised if they offered them. I have a friend who owns a leading yacht services company on the coast and he builds custom hardtops. He has found that there are so many variables involved.....length, beam, mounting points, arch or no arch, arch forward or arch back, windshield mount or free standing......that he won't even estimate a price without having the boat either at his shop or his dock. His hardtops are foam cored to minimize weight which means every layer is done by hand. The finish, inside and out is faired with thickened resin and block sanded then painted with Imron or AwlGrip to match the hull. All in all, it is a very expensive process and usually runs about $25-$30K which means he doesn't do many on 30 year old Sea Rays, but he is the guy if you have a big sportfisherman and want a new or different hardtop.
     
  5. NorCal Boater

    NorCal Boater Well-Known Member SILVER Sponsor

    Jan 24, 2008
    Covington, LA
    Cobalt CM23
    GM SB 383" Stroker" Alpha Gen I
    Frank, when I was last at Scott's shop he told me they were making some hardtops and had not decided whether to pursue the tops with the effort of the platforms. I merely suggested the OP contact them to see. Sometimes Scott will start something and then discontinue it due to a lack of consumer interest. Still might be worth a call.
     
  6. fwebster

    fwebster Well-Known Member TECHNICAL Contributor PLATINUM Sponsor

    Oct 6, 2006
    Middle Tennessee ; Panama City Beach, FL
    1996 450DA
    3116 Caterpillars
    Oh, I agree, Shawn.....certainly worth a phone call, and swimplatforms.com is a great company.

    My point is the OP is looking for a hard top for a 1989 model boat which is probably a low demand item. If one must cover the engineering, mod construction, etc, that this can be a very expensive project that probably involves more then a "roof on the boat". I'm not even sure the added weight on a 28ft boat is sensible.
     
    NorCal Boater likes this.
  7. dwna1a

    dwna1a Well-Known Member PLATINUM Sponsor

    Apr 23, 2012
    James River
    88 Weekender 300 "Seahorse"
    Twins 350
    I can email you the photos of mine if you wish. Just keep in mind mine is a WE. It was made in Saluda VA for a PO

    dwna1a@aol.com
     

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