With visible signs of aging, some needed a mini facelift with a little nip and tuck here and there while others had to go full throttle and deeper.
“It’s just time. She’s been good to me, so I wanted to be good to her,” said Capt. Chris Kirby of his charter boat Backlash. "The old girl needed a facelift."
The Backlash was just one of about two dozen charter boats getting a new paint job at Fisherman’s Boat Yard, located on Hales Lane near Four Mile Creek in Freeport, before heading back to Destin last week.
“We’ve been busy since November,” said Mike Snell, manager of the boat yard.
“We have 22 boats right now,” Snell added, but it can hold more depending on the size of the vessel.
Last week, there were charter boats ranging in size from 39 to 65 feet, plus a commercial fishing boat on the boat stands.
This time of year, the number of boats in an out of the yard changes almost daily.
Snell splashed two boats on Thursday and was expecting to haul another one out later that day.
As for the ones in the yard perched up on the boat stands Thursday, they were undergoing various stages of a facelift procedure.
“We’re painting the hull and the house,” Kirby said of the Backlash.
Capt. Brantley Galloway of the Full Draw had to go a little deeper.
“We’re grinding all the metal down,” Galloway said as he worked underneath his boat.
He said they were basically redoing the bottom of the boat, then painting it.
“Just getting ready for another season. We hope to be done by the end of the month,” Galloway said.
For Capt. Robert Hill of the charter boat Twilight, he said they are painting the hull and bottom, stuff you can’t do while it’s in the water.
But before they get painter Billy Weldon to spray on the paint there’s a lot of work to be done.
“We prep it … sanding and filling for several days,” Hill said.
He said they hope to be back in the water by Friday, weather permitting.
However, Hill said, like most boat captains would echo, “you’re never done” with a boat.
For Capt. Chris Schofield of the No Alibi he and his crew, they just got to dry dock last Thursday.
“This is Day One … we plan on painting the bottom and getting back to Destin,” he said. “We try to do it every year … at least haul it out and look at it.”
As for Capt. Brandi Miles-Kitchens of the 5th Day, a wooden boat, her old gal is going to need a little more spackle and putty.
“We got to fix the damage on the bow of the boat,” she said.
The 5th Day got a few wholes knocked in it during Hurricane Michael when it was anchored up in Joe’s Bayou to ride out the storm.
Once the damage is repaired, she said they will be doing just “normal maintenance” on the vessel before splashing down and heading back to Destin.
For the most part, two to four weeks is all it takes for a little facelift, weather permitting.