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'93 Party Cruiser 32 Rebuild

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Morganh View Drop Down
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    Posted: 08/15/2015 at 5:35pm
Hello folks.  Im new to the forum, but I've seen soooo much great information here, that I am inspired to document the progress of my old 32 Party Cruiser.  I have been especially inspired by Scott's (SunBlocker), '92 Party Cruiser rebuild.  If mine comes out 1/2 that good, I'll consider it a success.  Here are some photos of my gal when I purchased her in March of 14.  A complete mess, but the boss (wife Heather) had vision, and I have some skills.  Actually, just enough to mess it up before someone tells me how to fix it properly.

Delaminating sides, and awful aqua awnings








This is how she started.  I will upload some new photos of the remodel so far, but walls, rails, and exterior are on the schedule for this winter. Cry



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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote SunBlocker Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 08/15/2015 at 6:04pm
Wow. She's almost a spitting image of The 'Blocker when I first brought her home! The only big difference is that I started with blue canvas and gray carpet.
1992 SunTracker Party Cruiser 41ft
18' Cobalt, 13' ElDebo E-Pontoon
-- Okauchee Lake, WI --
The `Blocker Build
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Morganh Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 08/15/2015 at 6:06pm
Here are some pics of progress so far.

I have no trailer, so this is my floating shop.  
New seats, carpet, generator table top, and speakers.
New couch, cabinets, microwave, glass door fridge, and wood ceilings with recessed led lights.

New couch on other side.

Grass on the roof for comfort

New Yamaha 150 four stoke.



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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Morganh Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 08/15/2015 at 6:10pm
Sorry.  Posted two pics of the same couch.  Here is the one on the other side.  Makes into a bed.
And one more angle


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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Morganh Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 08/15/2015 at 6:13pm
Scott,
The rear swim step / slide support, and motor cover. Did you fab that or purchase somewhere?  That is exactly what I have been planning, all the while thinking I was crazy, but here you've done it and it looks great.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote SunBlocker Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 08/15/2015 at 7:12pm
I built all that using "bolt together" aluminum extrusion, composite decking, and pre-painted aluminum skinning. I'll get you the private link to my build soon....
1992 SunTracker Party Cruiser 41ft
18' Cobalt, 13' ElDebo E-Pontoon
-- Okauchee Lake, WI --
The `Blocker Build
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote SunBlocker Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 08/15/2015 at 7:15pm
Your rework and build quality looks amazing. Very well done!

Oh those poor walls......    
1992 SunTracker Party Cruiser 41ft
18' Cobalt, 13' ElDebo E-Pontoon
-- Okauchee Lake, WI --
The `Blocker Build
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Morganh Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 08/16/2015 at 12:44pm
Poor walls is right.  What the heck was Tracker Marine thinking when they used that material.  Im blown away at the lack of quality in that area.  We love our boat though.  Its our dinner cruiser every weekend, and down here in Atlanta, we get cruising weather about 6-8 months out of the year.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Morganh Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 08/17/2015 at 2:10pm
As you can plainly see, with the installation of the new Yamaha 150 four stroke, which is heavier than the Johnson 150 2 stroke that was on the girl when I bought her, her attitude in not level, and she rides very low in the back.  I am considering moving the fuel tank and fresh water tank into the aft, under the front seats, as well as move the two batteries from the stern to somewhere in the aft.  I would also like to add additional flotation to the stern if possible.  I saw where SunBlocker added flotation in the form of some type of black floats to go between the side pontoons and the transom.  Any idea where those are from and how it is done?  Blocker also added extensions onto the side pontoons to help support the stern swim platform, but that looks like quite the daunting task.  It may be my only option with such a heavy power plant.  Advice?

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote SunBlocker Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 08/18/2015 at 1:40am
Yeah... The early 90's PC's sit low in the stern and tend to list to port, especially if you have the Onan generator option. But yours looks particularly low, and I'd be concerned that you might have some leaks in your logs. It's not uncommon.

There are a few manufacturers that make the modular plastic logs. The company that made mine apparently was bought-out and now are sold under the "Nautilus" brand. They'll bring your stern up just fine, but they can introduce a lot of drag and hurt the fuel economy and top speed. I'd look at other options first. Relocating ballast is probably a good place to start. Fuel, water, batteries, it all adds up. The closer you can get those things to the bow, the better.

Sadly a center toon isn't going to do anything for your current issue.
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-- Okauchee Lake, WI --
The `Blocker Build
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Morganh Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 08/18/2015 at 1:41pm
Thanks Blocker.  I put in a center tube in, back in march, but only butted it up to my transom tube, and it raised the front in a ton.  I also installed it 2 inches lower than the outside tubes.  During that installation, was when I also put the new motor on, and that lowered the back a ton.  Between the new front tube and the new haevier motor in the back, it knocked me way out of level.  No leaks in the tubes though.  I thought the same thing before I pulled her.  While it was out getting the new tube and motor installed, I had all tubes pressure tested,   checked for leaks and pin holes, and a few dents taken out.  

I was going to pull her again, take the transom tube off, put on a new one that is about three inches larger in diameter, and one that sticks out the back about 4 feet further.  Then I would mount a back swim step on the new longer transom tube, with the motor mounted on the back.  That way, I dont have the motor in the way of the swim deck and I wont have to build a motor enclosure like you have on yours.  Do you think the motor, running 4 feet behind the current location will cause me any issues?  I know the new, bigger, longer tube will definitely raise the attitude closer to level.  Thoughts?
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote SunBlocker Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 08/18/2015 at 2:14pm
I think your plan for the new transom tube is an excellent one.  As you mentioned, it will not only help with the fore-aft attitude of the boat.... it will open up some space in the rear and lend itself to a rear anchor platform.

And... it will actually help with the handling of the boat.  While it will increase the overall length of the boat, it will most likely reduce the turning radius (perhaps by quite a bit) and help to get the engine "up" to the correct operating depth.

With a 4' extension you are talking about a pretty serious cantilever load.  I'd make dern sure that the new transom log is stout and properly secured to the cross-members (you probably want to add at least one new cross member at the existing transom location... where the notch currently exists) and you'd want to create/extend center bunks on your trailer to support the load.  You might have to move the trucks on your trailer back (there should be alternate mounting holes in the frame rails) to get your tongue weight back.

I'd love to see/follow your efforts in this area.  At the end of the day I ended up putting too much buoyancy in the stern of The `Blocker and over the next winter I am actually going to eliminate some, or add some configurable ballast (Phat Sak) to the stern.  I run into trouble if a lot of people want to sit up in the bow.. and I hit rough seas.
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-- Okauchee Lake, WI --
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Morganh Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 08/19/2015 at 2:23am
Thanks for the encouragement Blocker.  I am going to draw out the platform configuration and swim step and post it in advance so you can give me some feed back as to structural integrity.  Can you give me a name of where I can look to buy that bolt together extruded aluminum that you built your paltform with.  You dont have any drawings, sketches, or close up photos you could share do you.  I would hate to start from scratch and reinvent the wheel when you did such a fine job.  
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote SunBlocker Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 08/19/2015 at 12:59pm
I have a rough CAD layout that I did before I started the fabrication... but for the most part it was "cut to fit, trim to match".  Sadly I didn't do any "in process" pics of building that rear platform (I started that long before I thought anybody would have any interest in my deranged ideas).... so almost everything that I have is "completed" pics (many of which you have already seen).

There are quite a few manufacturers and vendors for that style aluminum extrusion and connectors.  I personally used Bosch 30x30 and 30x60 rail stock.  But there is also Item, 80-20, Mitsumi... and others.

If you have ready access to a good aluminum welder, you can easily make a lighter and stronger unit out of welded rectangular aluminum tubing... but the bolt-together is certainly convenient, easy, and doesn't require exotic skills.
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-- Okauchee Lake, WI --
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Morganh Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 08/21/2015 at 2:54pm
Thanks Blocker.  I do have access to a good aluminum welder, and will probably have him just fab it, although I have been looking throughly at extruded and I like the erector set qualities of that stuff.

On another note, what did you use for the floor of the platform.  Some type of non skid coated aluminum?

Thirdly, my main issue is parking at busy docks, (and we are on the busiest recreational lake in the US, see photo below of a typical Saturday, about 10 minute boat ride from my house), especially when the wind is blowing a little.  This thing acts like a sail.  All of that being said, I absolutly love the thruster set up you did.  Can you share with me what type of little thruster motors you bought, are they lowered electronically, hydrocally, or numatically?  Obviously, they run like a trolling motor off of 12v.  Where can I buy something like that?  Would you do anything different if you were reinstalling that system again?


Gets a little harry in this mess if there is a light breeze.


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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote SunBlocker Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 08/21/2015 at 9:12pm
The floor of the bow and stern anchor platforms are composite decking that I got from Menards.  It's a bit heavy, but it is easy to work with and doesn't get chipped or marred if/when I drop an anchor on it.  And the non-skid qualities are pretty good.  I have thought about replacing them with the AridDeck (or LockDry) aluminum decking that I used for the main floor... but I know that as soon as I do that I'm going to put a big dent in it.

I like my thrusters.  They are based on 12V trolling motor units that I got on eBay.  I found somebody that was just selling the replacement motor/shaft combo at a nice price and I bought a bunch of them.  Since I have a compressor system on The `Blocker it was easy for me to rig up some pneumatic actuators to do the deployment, and a simple relay/joystick setup for spinning the props.  There are "deployment indicator" LED's and it's interlocked so the motors can only run when they're in the deployed position.

The motors run Kipawa props... which is a night-and-day difference compared to stock Minn-Kota.

If I had 24V readily available I certainly would have gone with the higher voltage and higher thrust motors.  More is better.  I have, at times, considered doubling-up the existing motors.... but it's just not a high priority since the existing setup works well and gets me out of trouble most of the time.  But more is still better.  If I was to really go crazy I'd buy one of the commercially available thruster setups... or build a new 48V system based on something like the Torqeedo 4KW that I installed on my wife's electric baby pontoon.  Sexy as all heck..... but stupid expensive.

And... if you don't have compressed air on the boat you can certainly use electric-cylinders for the actuation.  They work well, but you need to pay attention to actuation times.  You don't want to be waiting 5 seconds for your thrusters to deploy.
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-- Okauchee Lake, WI --
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Morganh Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 08/22/2015 at 1:00pm
That's awsome Blocker.  May I ask what you do for a living?  Amazing "McGiver" skills in so many areas.  You should be a boat designer / engineer for the DIY community.  Discovery Channel would have a hit show on their hands.

What all do you use air on your boat for.  Thrusters.  Ladder deployment?.  Anything else?  I have a small compressor like yours, and that little area where you have it mounted is not good for much due to size and shape, so I might mount one there as well if the need is worth it.  

Your thrusters,  50 lbs of thrust each?  I assume the prop switch out increased that as well?  You wouldn't happen to have a couple of the motor shaft combos left over that you want to sell would you?

Lastly.  Walls again.  In all your studies on this subject, what have you determined is the best 1" solution for stability, and marine application.  I am about the pull the trigger on two 1/4" seaboards, sandwiching a piece of 1/2" Celtec expanded PVC foam board.  Agree or disagree?  If you were doing it again, what would you use?
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote SunBlocker Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 08/22/2015 at 2:51pm
I'm an engineer.....  that's probably a bit obvious...   Wink

The primary compressor that I currently use is the Jun Air (115VAC dental compressor) in the stern of the boat.  The larger 12V PUMA is still on board up front, but I think this is the last season for it on-board.  The Jun Air has been rock solid and the PUMA never runs.

The compressor is used for the air horns, pressurizing the logs, and actuating the flag/TV antennae so we can get under the bridge.... and the thruster actuators.  The ladders are hydraulic (self contained systems).

Yes, the thruster motors are rated for ~60lb of thrust, but the Kipawa props really up the performance.  Sorry, no spares available for sale!

I like the walls that I went with and still feel that they are a good solution considering cost, weight, and durability.  But keep in mind that I modified my boat so that the walls no longer provide structure and load-bearing for the top deck.  If I had to do it over again I might look into a similar wall that has aluminum cladding on the exterior.  But frankly, I'm not 100% convinced that it's worth it.... at least for my personal application.

Seaboard is pretty dern expensive and pretty dern heavy.
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-- Okauchee Lake, WI --
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Morganh Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 08/29/2015 at 6:12pm
I just bought this Minn Kota trolling motor, and I mean motor only, to use as one of my new thrusters like Sun Blocker did.  There are only two wires coming out of the motor, red and black.  Question.  Without the brains of the unit, the top end, and only the motor, can I assume that hooking up the motor to the 24 v battery bank one way will run it in forward, and swapping the wires will run it in reverse?  Dont want to fry the motor if I'm wrong.  Can anyone offer any insight here?


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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote SunBlocker Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 08/30/2015 at 12:57pm
If it is a 2-wire only unit, then yes....  that's correct.
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-- Okauchee Lake, WI --
The `Blocker Build
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Reel Kahuna Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 08/30/2015 at 12:59pm
 

Here's how to wire your 6 pin toggle switch to get the forward/reverse on your trolling motor.

BTW I too am fabricating a bow thruster for my Party Hut using a 70# 24v Minn Kota trolling motor.

To raise/lower the thruster, I bought a 12V 200# load Linear Actuator.


Edited by Reel Kahuna - 08/30/2015 at 1:02pm
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote SunBlocker Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 08/30/2015 at 1:14pm
Fair warning:  Trolling motors can draw a lot of current, and you might have a tough time finding a DPDT switch with a high enough contact rating.  Double-check!!

When I did mine I went with contactor/relays.
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-- Okauchee Lake, WI --
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Morganh Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 08/30/2015 at 1:26pm
Thanks guys.  Exactly what I needed to know.  As far as a 24V power supply.  Im a bit new to DC power, but would like to know more.  I need to google "12v power for dummies"  Do I need to have two 12v batteries in line to make the 24v, and then have them isolated from all other 12v things in the boat, or is there a way, if I have 6 house batteries, to isolate 24v just for the thruster motors, while still using all six batteries in the overall house system.  I would hate to have two perfectly good batteries sitting there isolated for only use during thruster use.  Thruster use won't be often and seems like a waste of two perfectly good batteries.  Advice?
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote SunBlocker Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 08/30/2015 at 1:44pm
If you have 6 house batteries and they are all wired in parallel to make a 12V house system, then there is really no way to generate 24V.

Yes, you can get a "boost convertor" to create 24V from a 12V source.... but you're going to have a tough time finding one that generates enough current to run a trolling motor.  It will be expensive.

And that's why the thrusters on The `Blocker are 12V.

(So to answer your question... yes, you would need to have two batteries in series to generate the 24V for your thruster.  They would essentially be isolated from your 12V bank and will require their own charger or charging system)


Edited by SunBlocker - 08/30/2015 at 1:46pm
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Reel Kahuna Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 08/30/2015 at 2:04pm
Originally posted by Morganh Morganh wrote:

...  I would hate to have two perfectly good batteries sitting there isolated for only use during thruster use.  Thruster use won't be often and seems like a waste of two perfectly good batteries.  Advice?


No way around it...I'm in the same boat (pun intended) LOL .
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Morganh Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 11/11/2015 at 1:13pm
Alright, summer is over here in Atlanta, and time to pull the boat and start the tear down and rebuild of the walls, rails, extended pontoons and swim platform in the back, new stereo and TV, new thrusters, and a few other goodies.  
I found this old pontoon and bought it for $800 to harvest the pontoons and the aluminum parts for fabrication.  Tore it down in one evening and one morning.  
Half way torn down


To this pile of parts


and this



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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Vigness Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 11/18/2015 at 7:24pm
Kahuns, Blocker.

If you want to make sure it will never have amperage problems I have the ideal setup for your reversing switch for your thruster based on the over kill is underrated theory. My dad used electric winches on his tow trucks and our reversing switches were four Ford starter solenoids wired as follows. I have to do this as a description as I am not much for drawing on the computer, Feel free to add on.

Picture for solenoids arranged in a square with the main posts on the left and right sides. Bring your Positive and Negative feeds up the middle, crossing from side to side forming an X like you would for the simple DPDT arrangement. Your feeds to your motor come off the outside posts straight up.

Then using a heavy duty SPDT switch, Momentary ON-Off-Momentary On, you power either the top two solenoids or the bottom two giving you forward or reverse.

We used this arrangement for many years. Even with nearly constant use it was the SPDT switch we replacxed most often and then only once every other year or so unless one of the guys drove over the controler.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote grouser Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 11/23/2015 at 4:27pm
You can run that 24 volt motor on 12 volts,,,,,, it will just not run very fast,,,, may or may not suit your needs, but if you don't need full power then out might work for ya!!!
Life is good,,,love your kids,,,be kind and Honorable.
2001 Sun Tracker 30 Party Hut
130hp Mercrusier I/O
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Reel Kahuna View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Reel Kahuna Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 11/24/2015 at 8:16pm
I've been using 30amp 12v toggle switch from Radio Shack for my bow thruster 24V MinnKota motor and so far, so good.  BTW I also replaced the 12v actuator to a 24v using a separate 30amp 12v toggle switch.  I've been cautioned that these toggle switchs will eventually burn out so I have several replacement on board LOL.
It was also suggested that drum switches wil support the 24v 50amp trolling motor and actuator so I bought two but have yet replaced the toggle switches.

http://static.grainger.com/rp/s/is/image/Grainger/4UYE8_AS01?$mdmain$









Edited by Reel Kahuna - 11/24/2015 at 8:20pm
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Morganh View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Morganh Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 12/09/2015 at 9:13pm
I found two 12V motors and bought them, and will use your 30A 12v toggle.  Can you tell me more about the actuators?  This will be the first time dealing with them, but I think I can figure it out.  Obviously, must be waterproof, 12V, and should have an arm reach of ????? and rated for what load?  50lbs?  Any suggestions for what I should purchase?
93 SunTracker Party Cruiser 36
'86 Ski Supreme
'34 Ford Ratrod
'64 Harley Panhead
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