Last year, Rayglass was staring down the barrel of a level four lockdown with over 25 staff to support. To make sure we could take care of our people and keep our staff busy, we purchased a Protector 410 Chase with plans to fully refurbish it. 

The vessel was built by us for Team Origin - an America’s Cup challenger at the time. Soon after purchasing and starting the refurbishment, the boat was purchased by a boaty who wanted us to make a range of high end customisations. 

We spoke to Matthew Wheeler, a Rayglass marine refurbishment technician, to find out more about what went into this huge project.

THE TRANSFORMATION BEGINS

During the average day, Matt handles everything involved in the work that Rayglass’s premium restoration department does. That includes cutting and polishing boats, grooming, electronic upgrades, installing minnkota's, refitting upholstery, renewing sea decks and more:

“There’s no limit to what we can do in the premium restoration department - if a customer asks for something we make it happen. And because I’m involved from start to finish, every day’s different for me,” Matt said.

After years as a super yacht tender, the vessel was in relatively good condition when it came in (except for deflated tubes and other minor issues). But the client wanted to fully transform the vessel by changing and adding a number of major elements including:

  • Removing the existing open cabin and adding a 410 Targa hardtop.
  • Installing new sliding windows on both sides of the new hard top cabin.
  • Creating custom storage in the cabin and under deck.
  • Installing a wet bar with recessed BBQ and fridge.
  • Custom anchor locker.
  • Installing a top of the range Fusion sound system.
  • Creating a black theme throughout the boat including on rocket launchers.

It’s fair to say with that list of changes, Matt and the team had their work cut out for them!

FROM CHASE TO TARGA

From start to finish, the refurbishment took 10 months to complete - with a few months added in due to COVID-19-related delays. Matt says it was an awesome challenge:

“It was not a straightforward job at all, the entire project was a little challenging. We hadn’t done anything on this scale before.”

There was a massive amount of hard work, skill and organization required to get the job done - but Rayglass had the right people to make it happen:

“Me; Steve, our operations manager; Tony, our service manager; and others from across every department all put our heads together to make it happen. Being able to draw on that amount of experience and skill makes all the difference,” Matt said.

Almost every day during those 10 months Matt would come into work, jump into the vessel and get to work. Each job would take from a few hours to a couple weeks, so he was always doing something different and enjoyed the opportunity to work on such a big project.

THE HANDOVER

From day one through to the end of the 10th month, the owner of the vessel was involved in the entire refurbishment process. When COVID-19 restrictions allowed, he’d drop in to check on our progress and chat to Matt about what he was up to.

When it finally came time to hand the boat back to its owner, Matt says he was reluctant to let it go:

“After 10 months working on it, I was a bit sad to see it go. But it was awesome to see how stoked the client and his wife were with how good it looked. They were blown away.”

After months in Rayglass’s HQ transforming into a brand new boat - the 410 Targa is being used regularly for family trips, overnighting and fishing. We’re told it gets a lot of use, which is always great to hear.

Have you got a vessel that’s in need of anything from a cut and polish to refurbishment? Thinking about buying an older boat? Get in touch with our premium restoration team to find out what we can do for you.

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