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DIY Electronics Install


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Purchased the Marlin about 5 months ago and since the weather hasn’t been ideal, thought I’ld utilize my time and work on the Grady.

Since purchase, I have:

Replaced all batteries, cleaned every cable and wiring in the boat, replaced all fuse blocks, breakers and fabricated a new breaker face plate.

Buffed out the hull, re-manufactured the T&T units.

Installed a bunch of SCUBA tank racks, rebuilt the pooper pump & repainted the lower units.

Electronics Face Plate Fabrication

The boat had “OLD†Northstar GPS, SI-TEX Radar and fishfinder.

First step was to figure out what was needed for mounting purposes.

First I made a template.

Cut all holes necessary, take to boat & double check the layout and adjust accordingly.

Then I transcribed the template to the blacked out plex.

“Do Not cut the radius corners until lastâ€.

Once the template has been traced out drill all corners with a paddle bit.

Take Your Time and clamp the material down.

After all holes are drilled take it to the table saw.

Find the center of your saw blade and mark the corresponding to the material.

Center, back and forward.

Such marks should represent the center of blade & where the saw blade will stop to prevent over cutting.

When cutting out the MFD cutout, you want to place the material firmly against the fence.

Slide the material against the fence and position the material with the saw blade.

Set fence accordingly.

Slide material along fence until the material it aligned with the (closest) mark to you.

Firmly pushing down on the material start the saw and ever so carefully raise the blade until it p*** through the material until the kerfs are just above the plexigl***.

Very carefully, pull the material back towards you until you have your channel cut up to the drilled out corner.

Then push the material forward and finish cutting.

Proceed with cut out for the 3 remaining sides.

Once all cut outs have been made and there is nothing else to drill out or bore,

Then the radius corners can be cut and sanded.

Sand with 400, 600, wet sand 800, 1000, 1200 & 1500.

Once all this was done off to the Grady I went.


Installed the 4G radar and quickly realized my fabricator screwed up the base.

It was a Friday he fabricated the base which explains why it had a 9* offset on the base and a 30* offset for the top plate.

A new one is being made with a 3-1/3* base plate offset and a 2* downward off set for the top plate.

So after installing, it came back off quicker.

Then I opened up the back deck and pressured washed and degreased the bilge.

Drilled my pilot hole, bored out a 3-3/4†hole from the bottom of hull wiped the area down with acetone, sanded the area down a little, wipe again with acetone, applied lots of 4200 and installed the B175 ducer.

3D Structurescan Install

Drilled and attached the ducer to the center of the transom and then found out the cable wasn’t long enough to reach the electronics box. Grrrrr

Called Simrad and they tell me about this 10’ extension cable for the 3D SS ducer but it’s not currently available. Really, WTF?

So, will be installing the sounder box in the back of the hull and running a Ethernet cable to the front.

After all this I finally decide to install the new NSS12 face plate.

When starting to take dimensions and prepare a layout for a template always find the center and measure from center outward.














Simrad NSS12 Evo2



Dirty Bilge


Pic got flipped somehow,won't flip back.

Airmar B175M Transducer


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Aren't these little projects so much fun.

It's not the labor part that kills ya,

it's the cost of everything.

When did everything seem to double or triple in price over the last 10 yr.'s? :confused:

And yes, I do enjoy doing this kind of stuff plus it I get to know how the entire system is laid out and get to know where everything is.

Win Win. :content:

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There's always issues.

I will say that if a radar is installed on the hard top that the bumped elevated section has a 3-1/2* to 4* backward offset.

If a base mount is used, which is a good thing,

(more transmission clearance) the base will need to have a 3-1/2* to 4* forward/upward tilt for the base & the top plate needs to be set at or around 2+* @ a downward pitch.

If more elevation is required due to running on plane you can always shim the back with washers to achieve the proper elevation for running.

Only other issue I perceive is if it's a 30 footer you will need to store it close to the water or in the water.

You'll also need a big bad truck to tow.

Fully loaded the GW weights in around 14K lb.s.

Clearance w/ new radar & base is right at 14'6" on the trailer.

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I see your bilge is much cleaner in the before and after pics. What did you use to clean it. Mine looks as bad as the first pic. Looks good btw.

Concentrated purple degreaser and a pressure washer.

Thanks Lurem

Still not done, fabricated the trim piece for the NSS12 face panel bottom.

45ed the corners, routered the edges with a 1/4 round over and polished out the edges as well.

Since it's suppose to be pouring tomorrow it looks like a day out in the shop to finish up a few loose ends.

It's all coming together, just not as fast as I'ld liked.

Oh well

It's a dang boat, what did I expect?

Nothing done at a professional level is ever easy or done quickly.

Had to end up installing the 3D Structure scan in the back area of the hull because the dang 3D ducer cable is only 20' long.

Additionally, I have to order or make a power supply extension cable.

If it ain't one thing it's another.

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Here's what the top of the fuel tanks looked like when I pulled the deck lids.


After Cleaning


Before & After


Can you say Trashed, Gone, History or FRIED???


Old Breaker Panel


New breakers, face plate & cleaned battery switches


Here's a few pics of the entire boat.

Simrad NSS12 Evo2, 4G Radar, 3D Structurescan, B175M Thru Hull Ducer, VHF Radio, Stereo system, sleeps 4, 5Kw generator, AC/Heat, hot water, full bathroom, fresh water shower, cook top, frig, microwave, raw water transom shower, 35 gal baitwell, HUGE fish box, built in tackle box, deck sink & faucet, search flood light, center out rigger.


Of course this was with the old electronics box doors still on.








Rear Deck


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  • 3 weeks later...
Looks awesome!

Mighty fancy for a row boat :P


Yah, all my deck hands ran off screaming something about unfit work conditions in the bilge and row sector below deck. :confused:

I was throwing food down in the hole at least once a week.

Guess I'll have to break out the TM.

Dino, did you guys finally finish off your boat project?

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Thanks guys.

We went out 25nm's yesterday.

A little choppy in the AM (3'+ chop) but laid down in the afternoon.

Caught a crap load of squirrel fish, blue runners & one mean nasty 7'+ shark.

We were out playing with the new electronics and searching for new spots more than anything.

On a side note:

I did finally get time to take the flats boat out fishing with my 26yr. old son last weekend.

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Well folks, apparently the GW didn't like the black instrument back panel as it ended up starting to crack even though I drilled out all corners with a radius which usually prevents the corners from cracking.

Back to the drawing board.

Added a switch panel for future whatever.

Store only had 4 switches if your wondering why one of the holes are empty.


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