Van Dam Custom Boats – Part Two

By Bruce Niederer — GBI Technical Advisor

EW-42 LG cover

Cover Photo: Nokomis, the sister ship to LUV N IT. Photo by Michel Berryer.

In the previous issue of Epoxyworks, we looked at the start up process employed by the craftsmen at Van Dam Custom Boats as they built LUV N IT, affectionately referred to as the Limousine in Van Dam Custom Boats-Part One. We ended our “tour” of this build with the hull stained and pre-coated with WEST SYSTEM® 105 Resin/207 Special Clear Hardener, and the custom-built stainless steel cutwater being fitted for installation.

Let’s pick up the build with the cabin top being installed…

Our photo gallery picks up this build with the cabin top being installed and ends where the boat is delivered to its proud new owners.

1. The Team at Van Dam often pre-stains and then coats components with WEST SYSTEM 105 Resin/207 Special Clear Hardener before installation. Here the pre-coated and sanded cabin sides are being fit.

2. The cockpit coamings in place. The multiple pre-laminated curved pieces that make up the aft corner of the cabin have been installed.

3. Seating and storage are built and finished before they’re installed in the boat.

4. The cabin trim, door jambs, and window trim installed, and the cabin top primed.

5. Dave Snyder fitting the ceiling boards on the interior.

6. The engine room is wired before the engines are set. Van Dam does all wiring to ABYC standards with team members who are ABYC certified.

7. With the shaft logs installed and the bilge area painted white, the first engine is lowered into place and set on custom aluminum mounts.

8a. Now the focus becomes hours and hours of finish work. On the left Trevor Brazell and Justin Halteman work on finishing the interior of the cabin.

8b. The dash, steering wheel seats, and sliding windows installed.

9. The neat installation of the engines and the shop-made exhaust pipes. The area under the engines is isolated, covered with 6 oz. cloth and WEST SYSTEM Epoxy, then painted white.

10. Van Dam is comfortable with multiple finish approaches and finish products. In this case, as on many of its new boats, Trevor Brazell sprays an automotive clear coat over the top of the WEST SYSTEM 105/207 on the exterior.

11. Trevor Brazell pulls the tape on a freshly painted waterline. The boat’s name gleams under the new clear coat.

12. Van Dam does its first of multiple sea trials with engine hatches off and all mechanical and electrical systems accessible. This allows for ready monitoring of all components, assuring a trouble-free experience for the customer.

13. This piece of mahogany was carved to fit custom engraved crystal glasses and decanters—a good example of the level of detail Van Dam provides for their clients.


LUV N IT is a great example of Van Dam Custom Boats’ dedication to fine boatbuilding and complete customer satisfaction. EveryVan Dam boat is a result of sound engineering, high-quality materials, excellent craftsmanship and long experience in boat building. To learn more visit their website:


Cover Photo: Nokomis, the sister ship to LUV N IT. Photo credit: Michel Berryer