See how we fit a fuel tank, improve storage and prime the dash for new Raymarine electronics.

Our Haines V19R project boat was really starting to take shape. Now christened the Nautek N19R, she’d already been stripped and fitted with a new transom and workstation. Now it was time to look into the fuel tank and update the boat’s primitive storage. The dash would also be readied to receive some amazing new Raymarine electronics.



One of the great beauties of the N19R is the freeboard. It’s created by the deep hull sides, and also a low floor, which aids stability by creating a low centre of gravity. The downside of the low floor is that it doesn’t give much room beneath, so our new fuel tank could only be 120mm deep giving around 150L overall capacity. While this is nearly double the original, we would have liked around 200L for long offshore journeys.

Our old friends at Melbourne’s JJJ Welding in Seaford built us a ripper tank made from 3mm 5052 alloy and fully baffled to stop sudden weight movements, with a breather front and rear as well as auto level gauge and rear fill for easy access at service stations. The entire fuel tank cavity can breathe and is fully sealed to help minimise corrosion from salt water.

In front of the fuel tank, Nautek built an underfloor wet storage/killtank. It’s easily big enough for a few large snapper and has a drain that spills all the way back to the bilge with its own bung plug. If you haven’t killed any fish it’ll make a great ice box as well!



The original N19R had virtually no storage other than an anchor retainer and short enclosed bunks for strength under the bow. Nautek came up with the idea to install dash-to-floor bulkheads either side, plus internal sidepockets, a glovebox and hinged storage in the short cabin area under the bow. It’s very handy to have dry storage out of the way of the action, and a much better environment to protect the expensive dash-mounted electronics and switch gear.

Tucked right up in the bow is another access-hatch, this time as a service point for the Lone Star Marine G3-1400D anchor winch.



When the N19R was originally built, all we had were depth sounders with little red light spinners giving a rough idea of depth, but our boat soon became the showpiece for an amazing range of Raymarine electrics — 12in colour depth sounders, GPS with full-screen chart plotters, radar, VHF and 27mHz radios.

After what seemed an eternity to those waiting, the Nautek N19R eventually took shape. We had built the foundation of a fine sportsfishing machine from the remnants of an old fishing/ski runabout from yesteryear. The project was well and truly on the move and now that we had the foundations and the framework we had to start building the exterior. That’s when the work really began …


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