Just bought a '69 SRV 185 to restore/revive

Discussion in 'Classic Sea Rays' started by RH1, Nov 5, 2016.

  1. RH1

    RH1 New Member

    14
    Nov 4, 2016
    Ontario
    1969 SRV 185, 1974 SRV 240 Weekender (next project)
    Mercruiser 120/Pre-Alpha drive, Mercruiser 225/TRS drive
    Just got home from picking my first boat - a 1969 SRV 185 with a 120 Mercruiser. Got it for a couple hundred bucks...

    I originally started shopping around for a fishing boat, stumbled across this, and decided it could be an interesting project!

    Going to need a LOT of work, but only cost will be parts/materials, and my retired father (who lives upstairs in our house) finally finished the frame up restoration of his 1949 Willys so he needs a new project to work on.

    The hull looks/feels solid, is filthy from sitting under a tree for the past year. The seats are gone, the carpeting needs to be replaced, but all of the teak, gauges, steering wheel can be restored.

    Will pull up part of the floor to check for rot - I have enough fibreglass/hull repair from being part of a boat racing team years ago, so that doesn't concern me at all (I hope it's solid, but if it isn't I'll just replace what needs replacing).

    The engine runs. That's about all I can say. Apparently it was installed a year ago from another boat, but the electrical, etc. was never completed - which is just as well as I would prefer to install all new wiring myself. If the engine needs a rebuild, I'll just rebuild it...

    The gelcoat is filthy, but I'll see how it cleans up tomorrow.

    The boat will then go into my heated shop for the winter, and hopefully emerge sometime next summer.

    Yes, it's the first boat I have personally owned, but I have had loads of experience doing all kinds of strange things with raceboats, have rebuilt dozens of engines (two and four stroke), so I'm crazy enough to tackle something like this.

    Since the original interior is gone, I think I will try to come up with something that suits how I want to use the boat.

    Already started browsing this forum for some inspiration!


    [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Nov 5, 2016
  2. 1956olds

    1956olds Active Member SILVER Sponsor

    Oct 31, 2009
    michigan,saginaw bay
    1992 370 ec
    twin cummins 6bta's 300 hp
    Rl80 pathfinder radar/chartplotter,SH 2150 matrix vhf w/ais
    quicksilver 8
    Thats awsome ,we will need lots of pictures to get us through the winter as other boaters projects keep us sane when its snowing outside.I am sure moparlvr will chime in he is doing the same with a black hulled sea ray of about the same vintage.
     
  3. dvx216

    dvx216 Active Member SILVER Sponsor

    Feb 1, 2012
    orrville,ohio
    2000 310 sundancer 5.7 vdrives






















    n/a
    twin 5.7 300 Hp. V drives
    My first boat had a 120 in it only thing i ever did to the motor besides changing the oil was replace the points with solid state from napa.
     
  4. RH1

    RH1 New Member

    14
    Nov 4, 2016
    Ontario
    1969 SRV 185, 1974 SRV 240 Weekender (next project)
    Mercruiser 120/Pre-Alpha drive, Mercruiser 225/TRS drive
    Shoveled/scraped/vacuumed out a garbage can full of leaves, twigs, rusted bolts, etc out of the thing today. Then gave it a thorough scrubbing - twice. Looks much better already!

    Didn't pull up the floor yet, but from what I can tell around the engine it looks like the stringers have been replaced at some point. Will have to see later if they did it properly or not. The floor is definitely not original.
     
  5. OldEngineer

    OldEngineer New Member GOLD Sponsor

    25
    Oct 3, 2016
    Northern Virginia
    1986 Seville CC, 3L 140 Mercruiser, Alpha I Drive, lovingly towed by "Tater" (2009 GMC Sierra)
    3L 140 Mercruiser w/Alpha I Drive
    RH1,

    welcome to the <$1k boat owners' support group, a sub-section in the Hole In The Water Club! I promised myself I would not keep track of the money spent to restore our hundred-dollar basket-case, to maintain some sense of sanity. I just keep my eye on the (very distant) finish line, and envision all the fun my step-daughter, grand-niece and grand-nephew will have next summer.
     
  6. Ike

    Ike New Member

    231
    Dec 17, 2011
    Pacific Northwest
    1972 Sea Ray SRV 190 I/O
    12 Ft Rowboat
    8 Foot Sailing Dinghy
    Mercruiser 165 6cyl inline GM 250
  7. RH1

    RH1 New Member

    14
    Nov 4, 2016
    Ontario
    1969 SRV 185, 1974 SRV 240 Weekender (next project)
    Mercruiser 120/Pre-Alpha drive, Mercruiser 225/TRS drive
    Thanks! Back in our boat racing days, we used the "hole in the water" term a lot. Like the week we discovered a cracked block at a race, put on on our back-up powerhead, and threw a rod a week later. Two engines destroyed. Major "hole in the water" - but that's racing! Pushing engines a bit beyond what they're designed for makes stuff break.

    Right now I am roughly pricing out what it will cost me for new carpeting, upholstery, various wiring bits I need, new ignition components, etc. Still have a car in the shop I need to get out and rid of before I put the boat in there - hoping to do that in the next week or so.
     
  8. RH1

    RH1 New Member

    14
    Nov 4, 2016
    Ontario
    1969 SRV 185, 1974 SRV 240 Weekender (next project)
    Mercruiser 120/Pre-Alpha drive, Mercruiser 225/TRS drive
    Just took a look through some of your photos - gives me some ideas and inspiration!

    Nice job!
     
  9. RH1

    RH1 New Member

    14
    Nov 4, 2016
    Ontario
    1969 SRV 185, 1974 SRV 240 Weekender (next project)
    Mercruiser 120/Pre-Alpha drive, Mercruiser 225/TRS drive
    Been a busy month for work since I got the boat - but I finally had a chance to start assessing what I actually bought. Confirmed a bit more about the story the seller told me (an older gentleman who was hoping to fix the boat up for himself - but health issues changed his plans).

    Seems that he had bought the boat a couple years ago with a seized Volvo Penta of some type (that the prior owners had installed). Those prior owners (at some point) had also replaced the stringers and the floor, and installed a couple of folding fishing seats.

    About a year ago, the old guy I bought it from had installed (or had somebody "install") a good running Mercruiser 120 with a pre-alpha drive in the boat. Fortunately for him, he never actually completed the wiring and never tried to use the boat with the drive as installed.

    So - in the past week, I have pulled the drive, removed the seats (they are being thrown out), and pulled up the floor. The lower part of the drive seems fine (as far as I can tell). The upper unit was rather difficult to pull out - once I got it out I saw why. The alignment was WAY off (the front of the engine was about two inches too high), and the bearing in the gimbal assembly is seized solid. New bellows, seals, bearing are needed. Other than that, the upper drive unit seems solid, but I've ordered a new seal kit for it as well.

    On to the inside of the boat. It will get a new floor, but the stringers and transom are solid (but I do have to do something about the extra holes from the previous drive - currently sealed with copious amounts of white silicone). It looks like the prior owners (before the guy I bought the boat from) did a decent (if not pretty) job replacing the stringers. Seems that they did a reasonable job - it was just the guys installing the Mercruiser for the guy I bought it from that had no clue...

    Whoever put the Mercruiser in it for him a year ago actually bolted the front engine mount to a piece of spruce 2x3, and attached that to the stringers with three #8 deck screws (the green things). One screw on one end, two on the other. Apparently that should hold a cast iron engine in place just fine! As I mentioned earlier, they also mounted the thing about 2 inches too high at the front - no wonder the alignment was off... And then filled extra transom holes with silicone. Idiots.

    Anyway - I will be fabricating a new aluminum mount for the engine, rebuilding whatever needs to be done in the drive, and aligning it properly.

    I take great satisfaction in rescuing vehicles other people have neglected or given up on - this boat should be a fun project!
     
  10. vandal

    vandal New Member

    358
    Mar 9, 2009
    Brick NJ
    340 sundancer 2000
    7.4 MPI V Drive
    I had a 1971 180 with a 120 and had it for 10 years. On front of engine mount from serray they put a 3x4 peice of wood across front for engine mount. Got rid of it in 1991 stringers went and floor would flex up and down. Check out gas tank for rust on bottom they are 18 gallon.
     
  11. RH1

    RH1 New Member

    14
    Nov 4, 2016
    Ontario
    1969 SRV 185, 1974 SRV 240 Weekender (next project)
    Mercruiser 120/Pre-Alpha drive, Mercruiser 225/TRS drive
    This piece was just stuck between the stringers, suspended a couple inches above the bottom of the boat, with wood screws (only one screw at one end, two at the other) screwed in at an angle into the stringers. They weren't catching much more than 1/4" of the 2x3. It's amazing it didn't break loose just from hitting bumps while being trailered!

    Once I get the engine/drive mounting all sorted out, I'm pulling the gas tank. It appears to be a newer aluminum version - the label is scratched, and hard to read, but I think the manufacture date is 198_ (can't read the last number).
     
  12. RH1

    RH1 New Member

    14
    Nov 4, 2016
    Ontario
    1969 SRV 185, 1974 SRV 240 Weekender (next project)
    Mercruiser 120/Pre-Alpha drive, Mercruiser 225/TRS drive
    Had more time to work on the boat today. Got a front engine mount fabricated, and crawled into the bow, pulled out the steering gear and all of the gauges - the wiring was a mess and the steering wasn't installed very well. Going to re-do all of it. The gas tank came out too. It looks fine - it's a newer 24 gallon model.
     
  13. El Capitan

    El Capitan Member

    207
    Jul 9, 2014
    Chicago IL./Vero Beach, Fl
    1970 SRV 180 w 2.5L Mercruiser.
    2000 Ford Expedition Eddie Bauer
    120HP Mercruiser
    This past summer I purchased this nice little 1971 SRV180, has a cute 120 mercruiser. Boat runs very nicely, economical, and is quite heavy for this size. I plan on replacing the carpet, having the vinyl restored to original color, adding electronic trim tabs and a depth finder, complete top to bottom detail, then installing a brake controller on my expy and away I go to visit all the lakes and head down to Florida. Great little boat.

    Enjoy.
     
  14. cyclebuster

    cyclebuster New Member

    16
    Sep 9, 2015
    Michigan
    74 SRV220. nearly mint condition, garage kept and covered
    188 Mercruiser
    I am about to replace a 1984 Volvo 270 4cyl disaster with a mercruiser
    , can I see some pics of the transom work?
     
  15. Ike

    Ike New Member

    231
    Dec 17, 2011
    Pacific Northwest
    1972 Sea Ray SRV 190 I/O
    12 Ft Rowboat
    8 Foot Sailing Dinghy
    Mercruiser 165 6cyl inline GM 250
    Wow. Looks just like mine.1972 SRV 190 (actually only 18') Mine has the original Mercruiser 165. 6 cylinder GM 250. Runs really well. If you take it out in any kind of a chop you will appreciate right away that it is rather heavy for a boat that size. They ride really well. I too replaced the carpet and the seats. The carpet is holding up really well but the seats are going to h*** fast. I plan on yanking them and recovering them with a much more durable marine vinyl.
     
  16. RH1

    RH1 New Member

    14
    Nov 4, 2016
    Ontario
    1969 SRV 185, 1974 SRV 240 Weekender (next project)
    Mercruiser 120/Pre-Alpha drive, Mercruiser 225/TRS drive
    Been a while since I posted here - but I've done a lot with the boat over the winter. New transom, stringers, floor. Decided to repaint the whole thing. New interior (still need to finish the seat boxes and cushions). All new wiring, switches, etc.

    This is how the transom came out:

    [​IMG]

    And this is what it looked like with the rot removed:

    [​IMG]

    Preparing the new core for the transom:

    [​IMG]

    Months later, this is how the transom is looking from the outside:

    [​IMG]

    Refinished teak, new dash panel:

    [​IMG]
     
  17. RH1

    RH1 New Member

    14
    Nov 4, 2016
    Ontario
    1969 SRV 185, 1974 SRV 240 Weekender (next project)
    Mercruiser 120/Pre-Alpha drive, Mercruiser 225/TRS drive
    ... and another thing... since this boat is looking like it will be ready to run soon, I went and bought an old SRV 240 Weekender, just so I don't get bored once I'm done this one.
     
  18. NotHerDecision

    NotHerDecision Member PLATINUM Sponsor GOLD Sponsor

    594
    Jun 28, 2016
    Houston, Texas
    2001 Sea Ray 460 Sundancer
    2014 Seadoo 155 LTD
    2105 Seadoo 130 SE
    Cummins 6CTA 8.3L
    Man that is beautiful! Are you selling it when you're done or just keeping it and building another?


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
     
  19. RH1

    RH1 New Member

    14
    Nov 4, 2016
    Ontario
    1969 SRV 185, 1974 SRV 240 Weekender (next project)
    Mercruiser 120/Pre-Alpha drive, Mercruiser 225/TRS drive
    Way too much work to sell! I'm keeping it. Going to be my boat for going fishing for the day with my father, or just checking out a new lake, etc.

    The SRV 240 needs a LOT of work (at least a year's worth, probably two), as it needs all structural wood replaced (transom, stringers, floor). The interior has already been gutted by a previous owner - so I get to be creative and make it up as I go. My plan is to set it up as a modernized cruiser that I can use on the Trent Severn (or wherever else I decide to go).
     
  20. NotHerDecision

    NotHerDecision Member PLATINUM Sponsor GOLD Sponsor

    594
    Jun 28, 2016
    Houston, Texas
    2001 Sea Ray 460 Sundancer
    2014 Seadoo 155 LTD
    2105 Seadoo 130 SE
    Cummins 6CTA 8.3L
    Love the pics and story! Great lookin boat


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
     

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