by Glynn Wortham

HI, I'm bringing my boat into a large warehouse for the next few years to work on it.

It’s a 25ft white oak hulled day boat, weight about 2 tons.

The working place is likely to be too dry, as we all know a certain amount of moment is inevitable,

I want to keep it to a minimum by highering the humidity,

Question 1:- any ideas as to a ideal humidity for white oak?

Question 2:-is it feasible?

Question 3:-am I being to careful?

Would welcome a few comments.

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May 09, 2014
Good luck, and have fun!
by: Chris Laes

I read somewhere that wood should not have more than 25% moisture content in it.

I'm only guessing that you're bringing her in because its probably been some time since she has been overhauled due to deformation.

It's inevitable with these older boats cuz we all know they were never intended to last more than 50 years, or so I read that somewhere too.

Good luck, and have fun!

May 09, 2014
by: Mike

It sounds as though she is slightly “hogged”.

As you say this is probably as a result of not being sufficiently supported while on the trailer.

Your idea for correcting this might just work but check the keel first to make sure there is no structural damage.

You could keep her moist by laying some damp absorbent material such as old sacking along the keel and keeping it moist.

Your offer of expert furniture restoration help will I’m sure be much appreciated by everyone.

We get plenty of questions about how to restore the ‘finish’ on antique boats.

May 09, 2014
thanks for the reply
by: Glynn

HIi Mike thanks for the reply.

Just finished preasure hosing the boat down,

There seems to be quite a sizable concave movement of the hull directly under the engine,due most likely to too much weight directly on the keel.

The problem being nobody knows exactly how long she's been trailer bound.

I intend to put her up on jacks as soon as she's inside and remove the engine and let the keel hang loose ;do you think she'll reform if she doesn't dry out to quickly?

Maybe accuratley placed sand bags along the backbone and just wait.

I'll try and reduce the weight as much as possible ,doing a complete strip down inside,refurbishing all the wood work in the workshop.

Maybe I haven't mentioned it, I'm an antique furniture restorer,and this is my retirement project,meaning if any club members want tips on restoring furniture I'm very willing to assist.

May 09, 2014
moisture content
by: Mike

Hi Glynn,

I don’t believe that you need to worry too much about the humidity.

She will dry out of course, and she will need to take up again when she goes back in the water.

And as you say there will be a certain amount of movement.

But I think that as long as she dries out slowly and naturally there shouldn’t be any problems.

You might get some ‘shakes’ in the timber but these should close up when she eventually takes up again.

It might help if there were some open buckets or troughs of water nearby or under the boat that are simply allowed to evaporate in her vicinity.

And keep her away from any heat source.

On the plus side, if you intend to use some of the ‘modern’ sealants, caulking or paints many of them require the timber to have a very low moisture content.


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