New life for an American classic down under

The crew at Gold Coast City Marina and Shipyard (GCCM), Australia’s leading refit and repair facility, recently added another weapon to its arsenal – in the form of a 25-foot Bertram support vessel.

Overhauled Bertram 25 going into the water

As the unofficial President of the Bertram Appreciation Society’s South Pacific Chapter, Trent Gay, CEO of GCCM, who was looking for a suitable marina assist vessel for the yard simply couldn’t pass up the opportunity to own the 1983 model of this classic American cruiser.  The boat was in need of a little love and where else would be better than GCCM to give her a transformation?

This is exactly the type of the project that the GCCM yard excels at delivering – where a multitude of highly skilled marine trades are required to work together seamlessly to achieve exceptional quality outcomes on time and on budget.   And so, under the watchful eye of Kevin Altera (General Manager Shipyard Operations & Project Management), the collective GCCM contractor team set about refitting her to exacting standards.  Don’t be fooled into thinking a small boat got a small refit – there were major changes to be made requiring skill, a passion for the project and, above all, expert craftmanship.

Stage One Performance & Functionality

Firstly, and perhaps most significantly, the sterndrives were to be replaced with twin 200HP Mercury Verado outboards which were expertly fitted by My Marine Service Centre.  This required the hull to be modified and the transom to be rebuilt to ensure the performance and trim of the boat was optimum.  A project that Scooter (Graham Eaton) and the crew from Australian Marine Enterprises (AME) managed with precision.  The electrical system, electronics and plumbing were upgraded by the crew from South Pacific Marine Group and new underwater lighting and an aft deck floodlight were provided by the crew from Gold Coast based Aqualuma LED Lighting.

Bertram 25 in refit shed ready for major overhaul

Transom cut down, making way for new engine well

Mould for new engine well

New engine well being glassed in

Dry fit of twin 200HP Mercury engines

Stage Two Design & Aesthetics

There were also a host of aesthetic changes to the 25-foot Bertram.  Her new interior finishes were provided and installed by the marine trim specialists at Pacific Trim.  Paul Selby from Black Marlin Towers constructed and fitted a custom aluminium hardtop plus new bow rails and a push bar and Wicked Fabrications & Engineering installed stainless steel trim on the new transom.  The entire hull was sandblasted by the team from Bradford Marine and her superstructure was then prepped for the striking corporate wrap completed by Wrap It Marine.  To complete the project the team then applied Micron Extra 2 antifoul in black (from International Paints) for long lasting protection and Propspeed to keep the running gear clean.

Recondition of complete interior

Dry fit of new hard top

First sea trial

New interior

Hull with new wrap

The Result

The GCCM crew recently attended the Fort Lauderdale International Yacht Show and had the pleasure of sharing the final result of this project with Bertram CEO, Peter Truslow.

“This is another great example of a fantastic refit of a classic hull. The design of the original Bertram 25’ looks and performs as well as any modern design. What is neat about this project is that GCCM modernized the boat by going to a new propulsion system and customized the boat to suit their specific work needs. She’s as pretty as she is practical,” said Peter Truslow.

“Our project management team and onsite contractors are living our promise that each boat is special no matter the size and deserves the very best care and attention.” – Kev Altera

“It’s another great result from our team in that there was so much to be done by so many different trades on a relatively small boat in a short period of time.  It was all done quickly, professionally and with remarkable results.  Our project management team and onsite contractors are living our promise that each boat is special, no matter the size, and deserves the very best care and attention.” explained Kev Altera.

It is collaborative efforts such as these that the GCCM yard has become renowned for and the onsite partners (from a staggering 80+ marine businesses) get a great deal of pleasure out of using their combined skills and expertise to achieve exceptional results no matter how large or small the project.

Bertram 25 being stored in Dry Store facility

Bertram 25 being used to tow vessels into position for lift

Bertram 25 in wash cradle outside Dry Store facility

Bertram 25 being lifted into water

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