Improvements Made to My Formula 330 SS

Posted By: tpenfield

Improvements Made to My Formula 330 SS - 04/20/21 11:36 PM


I have not seen many improvement project threads lately, so I thought I'd post a few things I've done to my current boat over the years. I've owned my Formula 330 Sun Sport (33 footer) for about 9 years and have done a bunch of improvement projects to make the boat more usable/enjoyable.

I wanted to share those projects for those who may be interested. I've loaded up photo albums in the Gallery for each project, so take a look if you would like.

1) My first project was installing closed cooling systems on the engines (twin Merc 454's). The boat was originally used solely in fresh water, and I was going to be using it in ocean waters.

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Here is a link to the closed cooling album. >>> Closed Cooling Album

2) The boat did not have an anchor roller or a windlass. This was pretty much a necessity and after a couple of years, I installed a self-launching anchor roller and windlass.

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Here is a link to the windlass album >>> Windlass Album

3) After a few more years, we were getting tired of the standard built-in swim platform. The issue being that even though the platform extends beyond the transom, the outdrives extend even further. The boarding ladder is smack-dab in between the outdrives. Bumps and bruises were common when boarding, children usually fared the worst.

My Admiral asked,"what would it take to get an extended swim platform?" I said "IDK, let me think about that." I decided to take a stab at making a swim platform of my own design. I used a process similar to that of boat companies, making a mold and then building the platform from the mold. Over the course of the next 10 months (or so) I built this platform out of fiberglass and foam core.

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Here is the link to my album about building the platform >>> DIY Custom Swim Platform

4) After another few years, the boat was now over 20 years old and the the vinyl seating in the cockpit was becoming brittle and starting to crack. So, I got myself an industrial strength sewing machine and set about making new upholstery for the boat. I changed the design up a bit, adding some of color and texture here and there.

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Here is a link to the re-upholstery album >>> Re-upholstering the cockpit

5) I also used my handy-dandy sewing machine to make a new mooring cover. (I'm not a fan of sewing Sunbrella canvas. It is a lot harder than I was expecting.)

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Here is the mooring cover album >>> Mooring Cover

6) Finally, the carpet in the cabin was getting pretty ratty. So, I did a make-over and installed vinyl plank flooring. . . much better and does not soak up water like carpet.

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Here is the link to the album >>> Cabin Floor Make-over

I am thinking of selling the boat and 'upgrading' to a 38-ish footer with Triple Outboards. If I were to keep the boat, next up would be a helm make-over, upgrading the gauges, steering wheel, and changing out to performance throttles. Maybe that can be a project for the next owner idn

Anyway, this boat has been great for us, really fits our boating style, with a few exceptions, and I have enjoyed improving it along the way.
Posted By: captkevin

Re: Improvements Made to My Formula 330 SS - 04/21/21 12:54 AM

Wow those are some impressive self improvement projects. Swim platform is amazing that you did your self. Redoing the interior is impressive. Where did you learn to do all of this? Whoever ends up buying that boat will be getting a great boat.
Posted By: WayWeGo

Re: Improvements Made to My Formula 330 SS - 04/23/21 01:51 AM

Nice mods -- that swim platform is really nicely done!
Posted By: tpenfield

Re: Improvements Made to My Formula 330 SS - 04/23/21 10:52 AM

Thanks Guys,

The swim platform was my most challenging project. It had both structural design challenges and fabrication process challenges. . . Lots of learning along the way.

I sought advice on various Internet forums - mostly for the swim platform and the upholstery projects. I tend to learn by doing and seek guidance along the way - mostly online. Of course on forums, there are some who know what they are talking about and others who don't (but that doesn't stop them facepalm ). So, I had to sort that out along the way.

I also used 'vacuum assisted resin infusion' for much of the fiberglassing. It is part 'art' and part 'science', which makes it difficult for a 'one-off' type of project, but having done it, I could probably do a whole lot better if I ever needed to going forward.
Posted By: Justified Too

Re: Improvements Made to My Formula 330 SS - 06/07/21 03:54 PM

These are all very impressive! Nice work and nice boat!
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