March 22, 2023
The FishingNosara Build Team has started a new project. The Fishtastic XL is a 38-foot Eduardono Corvina-style hull, and upon completion will be the only panga of this size in the US.
The hull was completed in the Eduardono factory in Medellin, Columbia and shipped to our shop in Jacksonville, FL.
April 11, 2023
We are three weeks into the build an the Fishtastic XL is already taking shape. We are building from the bottom-up, so the first task is a series of floor panels and their affiliated hatches.
April 22, 2023
Progress continues on the Fishtastic XL at a breakneck pace.
We have completed the fabrication of the floor pieces and coated both sides with multiple layers of fiberglass.
We invested a lot of time to perfect these stringers so that their are no high spots; a bad spot could potentially warp the deck panels if they aren’t properly flattened BEFORE installing the deck.
We gathered up all the ballast we could find around the shop to hold the panel in place while a thick bead of 610 epoxy cured.
We are stoked with the progress and are looking forward to installing more panels in the coming weeks.
May 9, 2023
We have finished installing the front deck panels on the Fishtastic XL, and are now plowing through the installation/perfection of the deck portals.
These are all one-offs, made of pure Coosa wood and fiberglass. Also these boxes will utilized Gem Products hinges and latches.
May 22, 2023
The Fishtastic XL team reached a major milestone this week; all of the major custom floor pieces are fitted and in place.
Getting here required a lot of attention to detail. The subfloor in the fish box required a lot of custom cuts and ballast to hold it in place while the epoxy cured:
All the floor hatches have three Gem Products hinges, and each required a custom-fit hinge pocket to be routed into the floor.
Each carve-out will be topped with fiberglass and gelcoat before the hinges are permanently installed.
Also the three holes for the ocean water pickups have been drilled in the floor of the hull beneath the transom. These holes will be epoxy-sleeved and sealed with fiberglass cloth.
June 1, 2023
We’ve made a bunch of progress on the Fishtastic XL Build.
The bench seat in the front V-berth is starting to take shape. We are using an old-fashioned carpentry method with this ultra-modern Coosa Wood; The curve is being achieved after removing parallel slits of material.
A big plus is that we get to wrap this single piece outside of the boat on sawhorses.
We are finishing up the foamcore board linings of the below-deck fishboxes, and the associated lids.
Also, the variety of floor hatches have been fully fiberglassed and the fits have been perfected.
June 21, 2023
We are into the meat and potatoes of the build on the Fishtastic XL. Here you can see the the early phase of the installation of the front seat:
Aft of this seat, we have finalized each of the below-deck fishboxes and dry lockers. The fishboxes are lined with 3/4″ thick 6lbs. foam boards.
Each hatch lid is custom fit and wrapped in fiberglass.
We have also begun permanently joining the deck panels to the stringers and the hull
We are plowing ahead with more fit-and-finish on the front seat and will continue moving aft with the deck panels.
July 19, 2023
Big milestone on the Fishtastic XL build; we can announce that the custom front seat has been fully fitted and installed.
As we have built more and more hatches for this boat the quality keeps improving. We are really pleased with the tight fit on these forward hatches.
August 3, 2023
We have had a blistering couple of weeks on the Fishtastic XL build, with our progress only being matched by the 100+ degree temperatures.
Now that the floor pieces are fully built and wrapped in fiberglass, we are doing the painstaking work of perfecting all of the edges and corners so that the floor pieces are flawlessly flat.
Some of the spaces are so tight that special tools are required; here is our brush extender:
Here is our advanced epoxy spreading tool.
It’s all smiles over here. We will finish up the floor soon and then move on to the consoles.
August 18, 2023
The Fishtastic XL build continues with lots of good progress. The rear floor panel is now permenantly secured, thanks to a lot of ballast from around the shop:
We also have perfected the hatches and lids for the boxes throughout the boat (forward seats, in-deck fishbox).
Now that we have a solid floor, it’s time to build the consoles.
September 21, 2023
This month has been solely focused on finished and perfecting the twin consoles for the Fishtastic XL.
After our last update, the basic shape of the consoles were cut, round fitted, and the edges were wrapped in fiberglass. Then we proceeded to affix lips for the hatches. Once the lips were perfected we set them in place for a test fit.
We are satisfied with the fit, so now it’s time to finish the interiors of the console shelves. They already have a layer of roven woven, biaxial, and chopped strand fiberglass. The next step is to ‘hot coat’ the pieces with activated resin; in the past we’ve used a lightweight body filler puddy for this work, but the hot coat method is more pure.
We are looking forward to the final sanding of these hot coats, and to continuing progress on the Fishtastic XL.
November 16, 2023
The Fishtastic XL‘s twin monster consoles are almost complete. It’s been a grueling couple of weeks of fiberglassing and grinding, interrupted by our annual trek to the Ft. Lauderdale Boat Show.
The first layer of Roven Woven gives these pieces their strength, and then subsequent layers of biaxial and chopped-strand fiberglass add more rigidity.
Each console features a whole galaxy of corners, edges, and recessed lips; everywhere you look is more corners! On the driver’s side console we have made this nifty cut-out which will function as a footrest.
The inner layers of the consoles is complete, and we are itching to finish up the outside layers.
Once this is done we will start eyeing the final installation into the Fishtastic XL.
Anyone want to build a snowman?
January 3, 2024
We rang in the New Year by settling some old business…installing the consoles into the Fishtastic XL!
It took most of December to get all the nooks, crannies, and crevices layered with fiberglass and sanded smooth.
The consoles were installed in concert with these forward facing seats.
The next phase of the build will be the rear-facing seats and the transom livewell. We are excited about the progress so far and are pumped up for a great 2024.
January 24, 2024
Christmas came late for the team on the Fishtastic XL build. The site was buzzing with excitement when two large boxes showed up:
Taco Metals outdid themselves with pair of custom 25″ Capri Helm Seats.
Taco Metals aka Taco Marine aka Taco Seating has been very supportive of FishingNosara over the years, and keen-eyed readers of this report will recognize their quality rod holders, rub rails, and outriggers from our previous boat builds.
Our buddy Tom Antonelli guided us through the customizations, including incorporating the same fabric we will use for the rest of the seats. We will have more stuff from Taco coming in for the rigging process, but these seats are a great start.
Meanwhile, we need to finish up the landing pad for these seats. Check out the rapid progress on these seat pedestal/cabinets:
The seats are going into storage for a month or so until the rest of the boat is ready, but we couldn’t resist see how they will look in place:
Stay tuned for more progress on the Fishtastic XL build as we wrap up the rear seats and start eying the construction of the livewells. You can catch up on the build so far at blog.fishingnosara.com/fishtastic-xl/
February 15, 2024
We are moving forward (figuratively and literally) on the Fishtastic XL build. We finished the split consoles and are proceeded towards the front of the boat with a pair of bench seat/storage boxes in front of the consoles.
These will provide extra passenger space and storage; two things that are always nice to have!
We are replicating this process with a pair of cooler seats; these will get installed to the aft of the currently in-place consoles.
Notice the contour edges…these will mate directly to the hull to save space and increase strength. Inside of these consoles is a matrix of lips for the hatch lids.
Fitting the shelf in was a bit of a ‘ship is a bottle’ trick.
Right now we are in the process of finalizing the final layers of fiberglass. Once we are done it will be time to install them into their final home in the cockpit of the Fishtastic XL.