Some questions on an AK gillnetter rebuild

5akman

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40' Snowball gillnetter
Doing some off season planning and prep for my 40' glass gillnetter. I'm going to be pulling up the 10'x11' aft work deck to raise it 12" and make a flush deck from the cabin bulkhead to stern roller, making the deck 11 x 20'. I'd like coat this deck with the toughest coating possible, so would that be gel coat or ? Non skid would be nice but I have to remember that I'll be dropping salmon out of the net onto the deck and then pushing them up to 15' or so into the fish hold so I don't want to damage the fish with a really rough non skid surface. Any suggestions?

I also plan to break up the 11 x 12 fish hold into separate compartments for the use of RSW and brailer bags. What is the best material to use for the dividers between brailer holds? It won't really be a structural panel but more of a "partition wall". Would blue board insulation with a layer of glass work or is there something premade that would be easier to use in this situation?
 

steveinak

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Doing some off season planning and prep for my 40' glass gillnetter. I'm going to be pulling up the 10'x11' aft work deck to raise it 12" and make a flush deck from the cabin bulkhead to stern roller, making the deck 11 x 20'. I'd like coat this deck with the toughest coating possible, so would that be gel coat or ? Non skid would be nice but I have to remember that I'll be dropping salmon out of the net onto the deck and then pushing them up to 15' or so into the fish hold so I don't want to damage the fish with a really rough non skid surface. Any suggestions?

I also plan to break up the 11 x 12 fish hold into separate compartments for the use of RSW and brailer bags. What is the best material to use for the dividers between brailer holds? It won't really be a structural panel but more of a "partition wall". Would blue board insulation with a layer of glass work or is there something premade that would be easier to use in this situation?

Phillyclad is used on lobsterboat decks and as far as i know its pretty tough stuff. Put non skid where you'll be picking from and leave a smooth strip up the middle and under the reel so you can slide fish up into the holds.
I gillnetted PWS for 20 years and one of the best things i did to my bowpicker was to divide the fish hold into 3 watertight bins so i could slush fish in one or all of the bins, that way i didn't have to flood the whole hold to slush fish and push around all that extra water and ice weight. I used 2" roofing foam covered with fiberglass to make dividers in the hold, the resin will melt blue board. You could also get Nomar in Homer to make slush bags for you hold if you need to use the boat for halibut or just need the room for something else.
I had 4 brailers in the center hold, two were back under the cabin and i used a slide/chute to fill those, and a single brailer in each side hold. With the tender service in PWS i just about never needed to use the 2 rear brailers, we'd see a tender every 6 or so hours to deliver to.

3 bin fish hold.jpg

I did fill'er up/deckload a few times and had to limp to the tender !!
bow down dogs.jpg

3 bin fish hold.jpg

bow down dogs.jpg
 
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steveinak

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That last photo there really makes me think about a little reserve buoyancy

Maybe self inflating bladders or something akin to that

I was up over my knees in deckloaded salmon that day, fish hold was plugged full !! As long as i slowed way down for boat wakes i was fine and the tender was on his way to meet me, i was a tired boy that period i picked 25,000lbs in 24 hours fishing. My carpnal tunneled hands still haven't forgiven me for those years of abuse !!
 
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steveinak

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How much does your boat hold? I was thinking 8K or so on a bowpicker of that size? That was a few trips to the tender!

I could cram in 5000 in the fish hold the rest goes on deck. The tenders in the Sound are always cruising around looking for business so it always easy to deliver. I always tried to have a empty boat so i delivered whenever one of my tenders went by, you never knew when the fish would turn on and you'd sink the net with them. Did you know a guy named Larry Hall that used to fish the inlet, He had a 38 or 40' bowpicker forgot the name. Poor guy had some kind of minor surgery/operation and it ended up killing him,RIP Larry.
 

5akman

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40' Snowball gillnetter
Sorry, haven't heard of that name. I'm the "new guy" in this business. I've been set netting for 8yrs and just this last year thought I had the set net operation sold and bought the 40' Snowball. The sale fell through so now I own both and both are up for sale (set net operation and Snowball). Based on which ever sells first, I'll keep and fish the other! I feel that drifting will be my best bet as I'm marketing more and more of my fish back here in CA and you can certainly get a better looking fish out of a drift net as opposed to set net.
 

steveinak

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Sorry, haven't heard of that name. I'm the "new guy" in this business. I've been set netting for 8yrs and just this last year thought I had the set net operation sold and bought the 40' Snowball. The sale fell through so now I own both and both are up for sale (set net operation and Snowball). Based on which ever sells first, I'll keep and fish the other! I feel that drifting will be my best bet as I'm marketing more and more of my fish back here in CA and you can certainly get a better looking fish out of a drift net as opposed to set net.

I'd sell both operations and then just buy and sell fish. Just offer 25 cents more a pound and you'll get all the fish you want, just high grade them so you have a primo product to sell back in CA. The set netters sure got a raw deal this year. We should team up, i could get you all the nice PWS reds and chums from my buddies still fishing just set up my boat as a tiny tender to run out of Whittier. Do you have the fish processed by somebody in Kenai or Soldotna ? or do you do it yourself. We could even take the ferry to Cordova and buy those Copper River reds ???
 

5akman

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40' Snowball gillnetter
I've dealt with 4 different processors in the last 6 yrs of direct marketing. With two, they went out of businss (Kenai River Seafoods and R&J Seafoods). In 2011 I went with Snug Harbor but they were just too big to be bothered with me bringing in a few thousand pounds at a time and repeatedly turned me away at the unloading dock. This last season I went with a small mom and pop shop which I'm happy with but then we only got a few days to fish so I came home with much less inventory than I wanted.

The problem with buying fish from others is that I have to have a rather large bond posted with the state and, at my price point of $10.00lb for sockeye fillets or portions, the profit is small unless I'm using my own catch.

Do you have someone in your area who does custom processing? If so, maybe I need to move into PWS or SE and start fishing there....
 

steveinak

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I've dealt with 4 different processors in the last 6 yrs of direct marketing. With two, they went out of businss (Kenai River Seafoods and R&J Seafoods). In 2011 I went with Snug Harbor but they were just too big to be bothered with me bringing in a few thousand pounds at a time and repeatedly turned me away at the unloading dock. This last season I went with a small mom and pop shop which I'm happy with but then we only got a few days to fish so I came home with much less inventory than I wanted.

The problem with buying fish from others is that I have to have a rather large bond posted with the state and, at my price point of $10.00lb for sockeye fillets or portions, the profit is small unless I'm using my own catch.

Do you have someone in your area who does custom processing? If so, maybe I need to move into PWS or SE and start fishing there....


I bet if you figure your time and costs of permits, keeping boats and gear running you'd be better off just buying the fish ?? I don't know about the bond but i'm sure there is some way around it like using the processors bond ?? you'll only need a transporters license then ?? I know you can head & gut fish without to much of a hassle from the state. If you interested let me know and we can talk , like i said my boat would make a nice mini tender i could probally get 2 full size totes on deck and still have room for another 1/2 tote or two. Spend a day out there getting fish from a couple of boats as soon as they get done picking the net we pull up and they pitch the fish off their deck into my boat, super fresh high quality fish in slush tanks.

Here's a couple of processors,
Fees processing www.feescustomseafoods.com in whittier does custom processing for some friends of mine the owners name is Ed Fee nice guy, 10th & M Seafoods in anchorage might do some, There's a outfit in wasilla that makes the best smoked/jarred salmon Welcome To Smoked Alaska Seafoods!. I can't think of the owners name right now but it will come to me.
Let me know if you want to BS on the phone. Who do you have your rigs listed with ? Margaret at Cooper River Boats & Permits Copper River Boats & Permits LLC, Located in Cordova Alaska, on the Prince William Sound is a go getter and has just about all the PWS permits and packages listed with her check out her site, she's good people.
Steve
 

5akman

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40' Snowball gillnetter
I'm sure you're correct on the actual cost of doing business but then again where is the fun if I don't do most of the catching myself! :D

I do have 3 teenage boys so right now its cool to spend the summers working the fish site with them (or perhaps on the SB?) and then they run the farmers market booth for me the rest of the year.

I have the site listed with Permitmaster and the boat is just word of mouth for the moment. I'd really rather keep the boat, hence the plans for the flush deck and RSW but then agian, if someone is interested, perhaps I need to seriously consider selling.

Thanks for the info on the processors in the area. Maybe I should look into buying some early season fish to keep the market going in May/June when I'm typically sold out.

Lance
 

steveinak

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I'm sure you're correct on the actual cost of doing business but then again where is the fun if I don't do most of the catching myself! :D

I do have 3 teenage boys so right now its cool to spend the summers working the fish site with them (or perhaps on the SB?) and then they run the farmers market booth for me the rest of the year.

I have the site listed with Permitmaster and the boat is just word of mouth for the moment. I'd really rather keep the boat, hence the plans for the flush deck and RSW but then agian, if someone is interested, perhaps I need to seriously consider selling.

Thanks for the info on the processors in the area. Maybe I should look into buying some early season fish to keep the market going in May/June when I'm typically sold out.

Lance

Yeah choking reds is a lot of fun especially when your running schools of them into the net and they are tailwalking !! but then the work of picking them starts so its good you have a built in crew with you.
When i was selling my boat and permit i had it listed with Margaret, Dock St in Seattle and Alaska boats & permits in homer, the only one that brought me any buyers was Margaret and she did all the work, if your serious about selling list with her. You know with all the political BS involved in the inlet maybe you should sellout both operations and buy into PWS ?? its a great fishery with less political BS, the copper river has been going great and the sound is a dream to fish plus they get way better money for pws fish than cook inlet. Its a long season mid may till end of aug but those guys have been making really great money the last couple of years.
Only problem with buying early fish is the high price for copper river fish.
Steve
 
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