1987 Alumacraft Super Bandit Restoration


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Aug 5, 2020
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Bigfork, MT
Hey everyone, new here but thought I would join up and share my restoration with anyone that may be interested. I have done a lot of searching on this site in the past for reference on my project and it has helped me out, so I figured why not post some of mine as it just may help someone else down the road. It does not seem that my boat is very common, at least as far as anyone fixing them up, it is very difficult to find much on them. I have a 1987 Alumacraft Super bandit. It is a MOD V, 17' 8'' long and 72" beam. It is powered by a 1987 Yamaha 70 oil injected 2 stroke.

I have had this boat for several years now and it got to the point that a lot of the wiring was going bad, the old flotation foam was holding water and it had a few leaks. So, I just decided to do it all. Stripped it down to a bare hull, literally everything. Put a new transom in, had some holes and a crack welded up and am now in the process of putting it all back together. I will add a few pics to see the before during and current state.

I would like to thank you all for sharing your knowledge here and it seems to be a great site.


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Thanks guys. Its been a fun and frustrating process. It's not like working on a car or something. I did not realize how much forethought needs to go into a lot of this. I have learned the hard way that you can't finish one thing without looking ahead to make sure there isn't something else that needs to be completed first. Like right now, I am going to town today to get a few things. I can't finish the last couple rivets in rear deck until I get some teflon paste for the threads on tank vent. It wont spin all the way around where the framing will be. A ;ot of trial by fire!
New seats showed up today and carpet was shipped today. Ordered both through bassboatseats and seemed to be a decent price. Not really ready for the seats but i need the carpet so that i can put a piece down on the floor before getting the console secured in place. But it is pretty cool to have the seats and see them. Makes the whole project seem that much more real


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Another update on progress. Had a pretty nice day yesterday so I decided to finish the paint. Just needed to do the bow and top rail and just below rail on inside for where the carpet will not cover. Did the bow and had just a bit of the red left over so decided to paint the rear corner caps. It's a very pretty color with flakes in it and sort of expensive so didn't want to waste it. Then, in my hurried state while the weather was good, I taped it all off to finish the black. Well, that was a mistake. Painted the black and uncovered the red in hopes to clear coat it. It wasn't quite dry enough apparently. Felt dry enough but i'm thinking the plastic i covered it with may have trapped some moisture inside and it left lines in the paint. So, with pretty crappy weather the next few days I will have to wait to do a light wet sanding to remove the lines before clear coat. Here's a few pics. The last pic doesn't show it well but you can sort of make out the lines in the paint. The paint looks really red in the pics but it is the same as the more maroon looking from first post.


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Well, I had to take a break from the boat for awhile. Had to put new head gaskets in my pickup and then timing chains in the car. soon as I thought I was going to get back to it my grandfather passed away so its been a little bit. I have been plugging away slowly at it again lately and its coming along at a snails pace. Now its just almost to hot to be outside to do much, at least for us northerners.

I attached a few a few pics of the few things I did manage to get done. Gatorskinz on the bow, livewell pump installed and some wiring ran. Hoping that this weekend I can get a bit more knocked out.


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Happy Friday all!

I took the day off from work today to get a few things done and then went out to work on the boat. Fisrt thing this morning I dropped off my lower unit to get the anti cavitation plate repaired. I didnt think to take before pics of it but both sides had broke off it. One side was broke when I bought the bought 120 years ago and not sure what happened to the other side but I kind of suspect the kids of my old neighbor😤. Hopefully that will be done next week sometime.

Got a few things done today. Carpet is done in all the compartments and a little bit of the EVA foam put in the floors of compartments. I think the carpet is basically done with the except of the actual deck. I have not yet done the area whre the seats will mount as I haven't quite decided whether I will just put carpet down then the seats or build some wood lids to carpet and mount the seats to those. I have seen both and on different boats out there. I kind of like the idea of the seats being mounted to a "lid" to add a bit more rigidity to the base but it also adds weight. So, not real sure just yet.

This dang carpet glue has a knack of being a lot like grease....just look at it and it gets everywhere:oops:

Here's a few more pics of progress....


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I guess I misspoke in my earlier post. Sitting here going through pics on my phone I realized I did take a couple before pics of the lower unit all busted up. It was in a sad state of affairs. Sort of scared to see the bill from fab shop but will still be cheaper than a new or even used lower unit. None of the prop shops in my area do lower unit repairs anymore. Apparently, its becoming a lost art.


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Got most of the engine sanded and primed while I was waiting for the lower unit is in for repairs. Went out of town for the weekend and they called saying it was done so excited to see it all fixed up. Will go get it Monday and sometime next week hopefully get it sanded so I can paint it all at the same time. Just doing a rattle can job on it to try to save a little money where I can


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