Bruno & Stillman 55

jim

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I am new to the forum and I joined to find out some info on the Bruno Stillman 55. I have heard the horror stories wrt to delamination and balsa core but this is a solid glass hull. I have also heard(mostly 3rd hand) of the problems with the keel. I still see many of these around and working.

I am looking to pick the brain of a former owner or deck hand who has experience with one of these boats. There is one up for sale where the owner has recently rebuilt the deck,engine,wheelhouse,etc and it is the perfect set up(with some added gear and work) for how I intend to use her. Any help I can get here would be much appreciated. Thanks. Jim
 

CaptDave

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I thought the issue was the stuffing box failing. When I was young and my early days in the Coast Guard we pumped one out that had a problem and taking on water on a mooring back in 1978. The cause was not the stuffing Box but a raw water hose that was cut with a hack saw. The boat was huge and carried lots of fish. There are some still around gill netting and dragging here in the NE. I also fished as a mate on a 42' Bruno that I believe was hull number 7 or 14 if I remember right by the name of Utopia. It had a Cat with a large mast and stand for sticking fish. The owner was meticulous about cleaning and took it to Fl to charter in the GOM for king mackeral in the winters and out of Newburyport in the summers.

Dave
 

Sailorgp

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CaptDave, a raw water hose cut with a hacksaw? Was someone attempting to scuttle or otherwise sabotage the boat? Anyone get arrested?
 

jim

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Dave,

Thanks for the reply...I have heard that also about the stuffing box/shaft log. If I do decide to make an offer I will have the surveyor take a close look at that. Dont want to be out on Georges and have the shaft fall out of the boat. The vessel is a 1980 and I believe the problem was in the earlier models but not sure. Anyway thanks again for the info.
 

fishinwishin

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From what I heard, you wouldn't want to take a Bruno 55 out to Georges. You would be better off in the 42.
 

jim

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What have you heard? That is why I am here. I read an article written by a mate on a 55 that longlined Tilefish at Hudson all winter long and hes alive to write about it...LOL Just trying to get the pros and cons down so I can make a more informed decision. Thanks. Jim
 

CaptDave

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The cut hose was a case of sabatage and no one arrested, another night down there we had to get underway as the multiple draggers and gillnetters tied to each other were let loose after some drunks threw the lines off the pier. We held them in place with the CG boat as the harbormaster ran the owers out to fire them up and moor again. Lots of strange gremlins down there back then.

Dave
 

petrel

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I have never seen one and I don't know anything about those boats, but there are a couple of them operating as small headboats/big charter boats (T boats), which means they have to get a USCG drydock inspection every two years. I can remember stumbling across them on the web a while back; I think one was out on Long Island. If you can find them, then maybe you can get up with the guys who own or run them and see what sort of service they have gotten from them and how they take a sea. It won't be the same as one working as a dragger or offshore lobster boat, but it would be a start. I also recall seeing a thread about that hull on another forum somewhere. There were not really any specific issues brought up, but some of the comments were something like "there's a reason why you don't see many of them around," "there's a reason they are for sale cheap" and "it is not a hull to duplicate." Does any of this sound familiar?
 

jim

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Petrel,

Plenty of threads with the one liners but no one who actually owned or worked one. Im going to head up to Scituate and start asking around. There are a few gillnetters working out of there running the 55s so I should be able to get an idea if its an option for me. Selling cheap after 30+ years of commercial fishing doesnt raise a red flag with me. LOL Surviving 30 years of commercial fishing speaks volumes BUT I want to know exactly what Im getting myself into. Thanks for the reply.
 

petrel

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I understand your situation. I just though you might want to talk to the charter boaters b/c if there were problems w/ the fiberglass it might have been an issue w/ the T boat inspections. The 42' hulls are highly regarded and there are a few of them working as charter and commercial boats down here in NC. But the 42's also had some problems, somewhere down the line, and I don't know the vintage or if that only involved the cored hulls. Unfortunately there is not much to choose from when it comes to bigger fiberglass hulls. I've got a 56' DMR, which is a pretty good boat, but it was built as a spec boat and you can tell. But being light does save fuel.....
 

jim

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Funny I was looking at a DMR thats been on sale for awhile but it has a cored hull and Im looking for solid. I would love to have a dixon built but dont have 400k layin around. LOL Also lookin at steel offshore lobster boats but they tend to run in the high 200ks for a boat built in the 70s and the maintenance would eat a nice chunk out of my bottom line. Im going to be patient and see what comes up for sale this winter. What do you use the DMR for?
 

jim

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Petrel Good point about the inspections...I will look into that also. Thanks alot.
 

jim

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The LazyBones(head boat) out of Montauk is a Bruno 55 maybe Ill head out and ask the owner a few questions Anyway thanks for the tips, much appreciated. Good luck to you. Jim
 

CaptDave

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Call Steve at New England Industrial Marine in Marshfield, MA. I am pretty sure he fished on the boats out of Scituate.

294 Ocean Street Marshfield, MA 02050-5217
(781) 834-9301


Dave
 

tashmoo2

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Jim Dandy on site is an expert. He and his brothers owned 3 35's and
1 42 with 6-71's, 3208's, Volvo's, and 6-92's. I know he would not hesitate buying another. Nauset built the best boats. Bruno did a poor job installing stuffing boxes and fittings through balsa core. Check shaft diameters if you want to use higher HP motors.
 
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