With the decline of the east coast fish stock, more fishing boats are being retired. This longliner, designed and built to work the ocean, is a good candidate for conversion and worthy of consideration. A character boat such as Misty Girl will attract the seasoned boater who want a solid boat under their feet and something out of the ordinary. Imagine passive stabilization and a steady sail, how traditional is that.

Converting a fishing boat for another application requires some up front thinking. Maximizing and optomizing space and spending the right money on a mid-life re-fit must be purposeful and economical. A note of mentioning a mid-life re-fit is not a repair or overhall. It is a complete investigation, evaluation and implementation to return the vessel back to it original state of life.

Structural consideration and interior arrangement work hand in hand to achieve the best solution for converting a commercial boat into a live aboard ocean cruiser. Scaled drawings help in visualizing what the boat will look like. The foward cabin has existing 3 bunks, table and sink. The rest of the boat was completly gutted and re-purposed. The main cabin "the wheelhouse" is to be pivotal to all cruising and social activities. Navigating, dining, entertaining and lounging takes place here. The aft master cabin to be finished with a queen bed or 4 bunks and with a stern cargo hold, 4 feet deep and the width of the transon, for all the provision and equipment needed on a long passage.

The aft deck and trunk cabin, the wheelhouse, side decks with vestibule and the forward deck are fixed structures. The interior is unfinished, basically open space, although we have a suggested interior arrangement, all this can be changed to suite your particular needs and wants. This boat is an ideal size for a family of five or a cruising couple that need an on board office and a few extra bunks. This boat is still registered as a commercial vessel and can be retained as such and be finished to suite a specific use such as training, research, diving, whale watching or charter.

After evaluation that included an inspection by the original builder and a survey with appraisal, we decided to purchase the boat. Here the boat is ready to be moved to the boatshop, stripped of all deck gear and and hardware.

Part of a mid-life re-fit includes the complete work over of the bottom. We installed a fiberglass shoe, one inch thick made of solid FRP, screwed/glued and heavily glassed to the bottom.

With the bottom prepped and inspected it was painted with two coats of epoxy barrier paint and two base coats of bottom paint.

To efficiently transfer HP into a forward thrust, the flow of the water into the propeller must be smooth. Waterways are built into the stern post to insure laminar flow. With an over amplified propeller clearance, low shaft rpm, large propeller (36 inch diameter) and proper propeller design, all work together to keep energy losses at an absolute minimum. This installation is about the best you will find. The stainless steel rudder, large, heavily built with stiffeners and removable coupling is solidly supported with a skeg. Trawlers usually travel in a straight line, however for manuvering in close quarters, this rubber will provide the turning moment when you need it.

The forward cabin, the original living area, has three bunks, table and sink. Keeping this arrangement will suite a small family or guests. Some cleaning and painting and this cabin is ready to go.

The table can be used for such activies as games, cards or possible an office. This area can also be re-built into a second head, with toilet and sink.

The space to the right of the steps had the galley cooking stove. Now it is a good place to build in a large wardrobe/hanging closet. Storage on board a boat is always a premimum. Under each "flip up" step is a storage compartment.

This picture taken from the wheelhouse dash shows the large cavernous interior space of this boat. Further back and down is the aft cabin. You can also see one of the two side wheelhouse doors.

Standing in the aft cabin and looking towards the bow, the mock up of the helm shows a centerline installation (ship style) the doorway on the left is the entrance to the forward cabin. The interior has been sanded, filled, sanded again and ready for the primer paint. Center and below is the open floor hatch with steps down to the engine room.

To give you a perspective aft, this picture taken through the center wheelhouse window, far aft is the back cabin. You can also see the two wheelhouse doors and vestibule.

A mid-life re-fit means every inch of the boat is scrutinized for defects. To ensure the discovery of concerns, the inside of the hull was ground to the bare wood, then we plastic wrapped the entire boat, installed dehumidifiers and for a month removed moisture. For the final treatment, we gave the inside of the hull an alcohol wash. The hull was now ready for an inspection.

Alcohol wash highlights questionable areas. These were marked, inspected and evaluated. Repair procedure were prepared and the work was implemented. The hull was restored back to its original specification and now ready for another life. This example shows the workmanship of one repair. Planks and laminated ribs were fitted, fastened and glued together with epoxy resin. The outside of this repair included a double layer of fiberglass boat cloth glued together with epoxy resin.

Here we are building the new laminated deck beams. Each is made of six layers of selected wood, epoxy glued and clamped in a forming jig. A carved beam from a solid piece of wood was considered, however the advantage of stronger engineered composite construction was preferred.

Here is the final fit in the deck of the back cabin, beams nicely notched into the longitudinal stringer. Wood beams in a boat add to the warmth and character of older style boats. Maintaining this feature preserves some tradition that has since been lost in production built boats.

The wheelhouse floor is also a new construction, triple longitudinal beams with a raised center to receive the floor panels with fitted cross members notched into place. This floor was partioned into three components, one over each fuel tank and the center over the engine.

This picture shows the fitting of the floor beams onto the new laminated shear clamp.


LOD 40 feet
LWL 39 feet
Draft 5 feet 6 inches
Beam 15 feet 10 inches
Engine Cat 3306 Cat, 10.5L, 250HP@2200 RPM
Hours on engine 3700 (rebuilt in 2003)
Cruising speed 9 knots @1700 RPM
Reduction MG 509 Twin Disc, ratio 2:95 to 1
Propeller 4 blade, 36 x 28
propeller shaft 2.5 stainless steel
Rudder, stainless steel, 41 x 20 with 1.5 stock
Approximate tank capacity:
Fuel 800 gallons
Water 400 gallons
Waste 80 gallons


"Misty Girl" is a full dispalcement boat. She was used for fishing off shore of Nova Scotia in the Atlantic Ocean. She was built to commercial scantlings, a tough standard for sea duty, designed by Spencer Lincoln and built in 1987 by Covey Island Boatworks who are recognized at an international level for quality of construction. For more background on the original builder, go to their web site at www.coveyisland.com.

They exclusively build cold molded wood epoxy constructed vessels. As quoted by Covey Island Boatworks, "wood, the oldest boat building material remains one of the best. Wood is light and strong, pliant yet remarkably stiff. It is warm, quiet and does not sweat...the combination of wood, epoxy (the strongest man-made adhesive) and the various fabrics used in composite wood/epoxy construction, optimizes wood's strengths and eliminates its weaknesses. By creating a barrier to moisture, the strong, light and durable wood/epoxy structure is stabilized, and leaks, blisters and rot are no longer a concern."

Misty Girl is now available to purchase "as is" in an unfinished state, or we can finish to any stage of completion. The following is a suggested finished package, with the boat ready to put into the water and move on board. As described in the above and equiped and outfitted as detailed below.


All new inside, furniture, systems, equipment. New painted, inside, outside and bottom. New tanks for fuel, water and waste. Fuel system with filter, lines, valves. Fresh water system with hot water. Waste system with over board and pumpout fittings. Propane system, sniffer and controls. Wiring inside, outside, tinned wiring throughout, DC panel and 8D engine start battery. Lights, interior, exterior, navigation, spot light and horn. Wheelhouse galley has stainless steel ship stove with oven, electric fridge, sink with hot/cold water. Wheelhouse lounge with table and helm chair. New windows, rubber mounted, tinted safety glass. Side wheelhouse doors with windows. Aft cabin with queen bed or quad bunks. Aft cabin shower stall and head with electric toilet. Swim platform with ladder down. Hand rails on wheelhouse and trunk cabin roof. Keel cooler for main engine, straight dry exhaust. Existing mast and stabilizer arms, stantions with lifeline on bow, staple on bow, 4 mooring cleats, deck mounted anchor with chain and rope.

If you are interested in this style of boat and you would like to learn more and discuss in greater detail, your options and selections, please give us a call.

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