Refits come in all shapes and sizes



Refits come in all shapes and sizes

Returning boats to their former glory, upgrades, general repairs and maintenance – more commonly know as refits – is an important growth area for Taree boat manufacturer, Steber International.

 Here are two examples at both ends of the spectrum – one a 40-year-old 17-foot fishing boat, the other a modern 30-foot cruiser. Both have benefitted from brief visits to Steber’s  Elizabeth Avenue factory.

 A Stebercraft 17ft traveller boat, built in the early 1970s for its Kiama owner, will be making the return trip home later this month after undergoing its major refit.

 The pride and joy of its recently retired owner, the boat had been held in storage for a number of years and the initial plan on retiring was to sell it through a local marine centre and buy a new one. However, as Steber general manager, Alan Steber recalls, the owner remembered the old boat had always performed well in all weather and why get rid of a perfectly good boat when a refit could give him the best of both worlds.

 The rebuild has included a new engine and the installation of positive foam flotation, a new safety measure introduced since the boat’s original construction. It even boasts a brand new trailer for the trip home to Kiama.

 Alan reports the boat passed its trials on the Manning River with flying colours. It provides a stable fishing platform and with a top speed of 45 knots, can quickly move between favourite fishing spots.

 At the other end of the spectrum is the Mustang 30-footer, which was on the way from its old home in Melbourne to Forster-Tuncurry.

 Within a week the Steber crew had the vessel in and out of the factory doors, sporting a new bow thruster, which will make the vessel more manoeuvrable, particularly when docking.

 After several areas of the vessel were re-wired and some hydraulic repairs, the vessel was given a complete detail.

 The boat’s new owner used the experienced services of Steber International to give the boat a “once over. As Alan said: “It can avoid getting egg on your face when something doesn’t work. Quite often the transport truck can drop the vessel off and a week or two later collect it and continue the delivery”.