70' Ex-U.S. Army Raised PH 
with Flush Deck
Image Courtesy Wahkiakum Eagle




Boat Conversion



§   Location: Seattle, WA

§   Hull Material: Steel  

§   Engine/Fuel Type: Single Diesel

We are periodically contacted regarding converting a commercial boat to recreational, and maybe living aboard.

In the bad U.S. economic times now and ahead for many years, there’s an uptick of interest in these alternatives.  There are some us who believe it is a great idea especially for proven vessels to have a 2nd life.  And in a world of increasingly expensive resources, it is arguably a great way to recycle.  And finally, even more arguably, you may end up with a superior vessel at a fraction of the cost.  <Don Casey> wrote the bible on upgrades, etc, he is mostly referring to repair and upgrade of already existing fiberglass boats.  Nonetheless, if you are new to this sort of thing - his book, will be one you will go to regularly.  And there are many Excellent books on new metal boat construction (lots of carry over to repair work) – see Bibliography at bottom.

Hobbit (a steel vessel), is presented here, as one most successful conversion.  A subsequent << survey >> writes the resulting work to be of highest commercial workmanship standards - equal or better than new commercial construction.  In a lifetime, I have never seen an equal or higher Survey rating (but I‘m sure there are probably a few out there). 

EYS has been fortunate and priviledged to be the broker in recent times buying, .., and then selling Hobbit.

The first conversion took Hobbit from commercial tug to a combination tug and liveaboard yacht.  The marine publication “Passagemaker” chronicled the conversion <here >. 

The second major effort was a further yacht upgrade.  The result (see pictures below) show these results.  I apologize that my pictures do inadequate justice to the beautiful results. 

Some additional comments regarding Hobbit.

Hobbit has great attributes.  It is comfortably, single handedly sailed.  In heavy seas, it is more comfortable than most.  Inside and Out, it looks and feels like a beautiful sea-going vessel.

The now immaculate, well organized, very comfortable engine room and shop is discussed in the above article.

 Not highlighted is the degree of cleanliness - literally one can eat off the floor. This WW-II era, DD 2-cycle Main Engine has tell – tale white towels placed under the engine – no leaks or dribbles. And, in freezing weather, it starts within about 5 sec -achieved with a 24/7 running hot water circulating pump.

 "HOBBIT" is a HEAVY DUTY Corten-Steel LRC Passagemaker Yacht. Built 1954 and finished rebuilding into a Yacht in 2004.  First conversion occurred during early nineties converting from a tug to a combination tug and live-aboard / cruiser <see details and pics here>. 

 Then a major updating renovation occurred about 10 years ago taking Hobbit to a most beautiful conversion <<discussed here>> that it is today.  The resulting effects are shown in the pictures below.

 Summary Statistics

Year 1954 Hull Material Steel
Type "T" Boat Max Speed 12.8 knots
Model Cruise Speed 9.5 to 10.0 knots
LOA 70 Engine/Fuel Type Single Diesel
LWL Engines(s) GMC 8V-71-N-325 SHP
Beam 17' Gen/Set
Draft 7' Gen/Set
Displacement 220,000 Lbs. + Fuel 1700 U.S. Gallons*
Builder U.S. Army Ex. Govt. "T" Boat Water 450 U.S. Gallons
Designer National Steel & Shipbuilding Holding 150

* Approx - a 2000 mile range.


07/04-New Galley

Pilothouse from
SB to Port

Walk-A-round Eng. Room 6'5 Headroom

#2-Gen/Set 20 KW
 #1-7.5 KW


Master Stateroom Looking Aft

Total Enclosed Aft Deck or Open

Salon Skylight

07/04-New Paint
Keel & Up


07/04-Bow Thruster Tube Painted

07/04-New Salon Installed

07/04-New Wiring
 & Ships Computer

07/04-Self-Tracking Antennas


Master Head &
 Stall Shower

Guest Head &
Stall Shower

Master Stateroom 
Looking Forward

Guest Stateroom
Full Queen

Click here for Fall 1997 Passagemaker Article proceeding the Hobbit's Conversion in Adobe PDF format..  This file is quite large and may take some time to load.  

To read  a Text Only version re-released July 23, 2012  Click Here


For Details or History of the Hobbit, Click one of the following links:

Specifications/Detail      Hobbit History