This is my one of my projects that I did back in 1999, to fully restore a 1978 Capri Coronado 15. The idea was to prevent a piece of trash from going into the landfill and turn it into a piece of wealth by putting effort, skill and labor into it. And it worked, I eventually sold it for $250 more than I invested in it. That's the basis of a free market economy, to create wealth from something that no one else wants.

The Coronado 15 was a really hot racer in its day. It's worth restoring and I had nothing but time on my hands in the depths of winter. I got the boat from my brother who was pretty much done with it. This picture shows the rats nest of rigging, lines and other junk.

junky sailboat

This is right after I finished washing the boat out and removed all the lines and hiking straps.

washed sailboat

I used some 3M fiberglass polish and wax to shine up the colored sections of the hull. Here it is half finished.

half polished boat

In this photo I have finished polishing and waxing the whole inner hull.

polished boat

Here you can see the condition of the old centerboard and the rudder. They are pretty much shot. I thought I was going to have to fabricate these, but Catalina still sells all the parts for the Coronado 15. I just called the factory (818-884-7700) and asked for the parts department. When I need parts now I just send a fax (818-704-6612) to Greg with the picture of the part I need (thanks to my trusty fax modem).

The new foils are fiberglass, so they are much stronger and will last a lot longer too.


The finish was pretty bad everywhere, but I bought a foam polishing pad and using my drill along with the 3M Fiberglass polish I was able to polish up both sides in one weekend. Using the drill saved me a lot of hand work.


The tiller was in really bad shape, but this was easily within my woodworking skills. Actually a shovel handle would have worked fine, but I wanted to do it myself. After searching around I found a really nice fine grained piece of clear Douglas fir and shaped it a bit with my handy dandy little block plane.


Here is a closeup of the wood, the grain is almost straight enough to make a pool que. Pretty decent for $6.00! I decided to use a teak oil finish. It should last OK and won't peel like Varathane will with exposure to the elements.

tiller closeup

The opening to the storage area under the bow is covered by a hatch, originally a wooden hatch that had degraded over the years. I have heard of people using plexiglas for the hatch so I bought some and tried it out. The only downside is that it would sink if it wasn't secured. Not bad eh?

wood hatchplexi hatch

After another washing to get rid of the dirt the cats tracked on the hull. It's starting to look pretty nice.

frontal view

The sun finally came out so I decided to paint the trailer. I washed it, then used one of those 3M abrasive wheels (you'd think I worked for 3M!) to grind off the rust and roughen up the old paint. This is the second boat trailer I have redone, and I like the 3M wheel much better than a wire wheel. Anyway, I brushed on a gloss black paint and recovered the trailer pads with a closed loop synthetic outdoor carpeting. I stapled and glued it on, so it won't ever come off. I already installed new bearings and rebuilt the Bearing Buddies so that's taken care of. Whatever keeps you off the side of the road, do it. Here's the obligatory before and after pictures.

trailer beforetrailer after

OK, OK I know this is a little much, but the winch was ugly so I decided to clean it up and paint it. I could have bought a new one but I am way ahead of schedule, so why not spend an evening on it and save $40?


I loaded the winch up with 30 feet of 3/16" vinyl coated cable and put loops on both ends, terminated with ferrules rather than clamps. For the bow hook I used a stainless steel thimble in the loop and finished with a snap hook. I plan on using the winch to assist in mast raising as I did on my previous boat, so I need hardware I can trust.

bow hook

Here's a view of the forward part of the cockpit with the new centerboard and hatch cover installed.

forward cockpit

I bought some new line for the rigging and ran it around the new hardware. Here is a nice shot of the front edge of the centerboard which came with the new blocks you see here.


And then I sold the boat!

The time was right, the buyer was right so it had to go. Here are some parting shots.

left side

transom mast rigged

And to Bill, I hope you have some wonderful days plowing the lakes.