Adding a hardtop

Pighunter

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Looking at grady 228 and 232 for sale. Is it feasible to add a hardtop to one of these models? I relize it wouldn't be cheap. Would a person have find a used hardtop or is it something that can still be bought new?
 

Lite Tackle

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Looking at grady 228 and 232 for sale. Is it feasible to add a hardtop to one of these models? I relize it wouldn't be cheap. Would a person have find a used hardtop or is it something that can still be bought new?
Think “Holy Grail”. Many have tried, most have failed. Possible, but plan on 6 to 10 grand and lots of failed adventures before any possibility of success. Will have to be found used or there are aftermarket options.
411D1CC1-38A2-4BDF-B846-B683F58A23CB.jpeg
If your heart is set on a boat with a hard top, my recommendation is hold out until you find one already together.
 

Fishtales

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A couple of things come to mind. First is cost, this won't be cheap and if you go to anyone far away you have to deal with shipping cost which will be high. WMM is NC is the factory supplier, they can make one that will definitely fit the boat and look stock. You have to ask about shipping and mounting. You likely want backside access for backing plates vs screwing into fiberglass and maybe wood or coring material. Not sure if these are installed prior to hull, deck joining or not.
Next is a local a pipe shop. The negative is that they likely don't know the boat , will design custom (which could be good or bad) and will have to come up with a pipe design that stands the test of time. Access could be an issue too. No easy answer.
 

Pighunter

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Think “Holy Grail”. Many have tried, most have failed. Possible, but plan on 6 to 10 grand and lots of failed adventures before any possibility of success. Will have to be found used or there are aftermarket options.
View attachment 11485
If your heart is set on a boat with a hard top, my recommendation is hold out until you find one already together.
I agree
I saw a old post, a guy was trying to buy a used hardtop and it got me curious.
 

Pighunter

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A couple of things come to mind. First is cost, this won't be cheap and if you go to anyone far away you have to deal with shipping cost which will be high. WMM is NC is the factory supplier, they can make one that will definitely fit the boat and look stock. You have to ask about shipping and mounting. You likely want backside access for backing plates vs screwing into fiberglass and maybe wood or coring material. Not sure if these are installed prior to hull, deck joining or not.
Next is a local a pipe shop. The negative is that they likely don't know the boat , will design custom (which could be good or bad) and will have to come up with a pipe design that stands the test of time. Access could be an issue too. No easy answer.
More than I want to get involved with, Thanks
 

Fishtales

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Can always investigate and decide when you have the info.... Good luck with decision.
 

SkunkBoat

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Aside from trying to get a Grady top...and they are nice...

You didn't say where you are but in the Northeast there are plenty of experienced companies out there that can make a really good hardtop.
Look around, look at work they have done.
Its best to get someone close by and let them have the boat.

Its been many years but I had a really nice hardtop(honeycomb cored, glass/gelcoat) made in NJ for a V20 Steplift for $3200 with 6 rod holders. You could tap dance and do backflips off that top.
Really made that boat something special. Then an enclosure was $1500.

If you fish the ocean, and don't have to deal with low bridges to get to it, I wouldn't own a boat without a hardtop and enclosure.
Its a step up.

BUT>>>> getting a used Grady with an original top is always a bargain compared to one without.
 
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wrxhoon

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If I wanted a hardtop, I would buy a boat with hardtop, end of story. If you are thinking that you will save money buying a vista top then adding a hardtop forget it it will end up costing you more unless you make one using ally tube then put a canvas on top even then by the time you make front and side clears....
 
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kirk a

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If I wanted a hardtop, I would buy a boat with hardtop, end of story. If you are thinking that you will save money buying a vista top then adding a hardtop forget it it will end up costing you more unless you make one using ally tube then put a canvas on top even then by the time you make front and side clears....
This is spot on.

I had a mako 230 with bimini. Decided to replace with a hard top. Had a local guy make it for me, including fiberglass top, 4 rod holders, radar and outrigger backing plates. Was approx 6k in 2014. Never came close to making that money back on the boat. Unless you KNOW you are going to have the boat for the duration, move to next boat with one already on it.

That said, if I ever need one again, or other metal work for a boat, I'll go back to him in a minute. Custom allowed for some nice additions not added on the stock tops.
 

coverguy

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I can send you info and pricing on hardtops for the boat. Email me and I will send you info and pricing: darren@pmwinterboatcovers.com. I rep Atlantic Towers and we can send you a really nice discount with a discount.
 

RussGW270

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I bought a 2004 270 with a bimini....I had a top made by WMW Marine and shipped to me. 10k, cash up front. I then installed it with help.

If you try to go that route, they do not go back much further than 2004, I think, so ask them about that first....before you buy the boat.

R
 

freddy063

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my boat was hardtopless when I bought it, loved the boat and added the hardtop later, and added a glass windshield. There are many good custom hardtop builders out there. Not sure where you live but shop around and you'll find someone.
 

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Many of us have tried to find the holy grail only to come up short or never to be heard from again . LOL
After all the research, post reading, commenting, photo comparisons, etc , I have found only one place (other than custom) that looks to be the place that will have what we seek.



In full disclosure - I have yet to speak or see any individual that has gone this route.
 

Fishtales

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Many of us have tried to find the holy grail only to come up short or never to be heard from again . LOL
After all the research, post reading, commenting, photo comparisons, etc , I have found only one place (other than custom) that looks to be the place that will have what we seek.



In full disclosure - I have yet to speak or see any individual that has gone this route.
Agree, this is a can of worms but if you are going to do it, a professional is required.