Is this boat to far gone?

by Tom

I may have the opportunity of taking on a restoration of a wooden boat.

I’m a bench joiner so I’m pretty handy with wood and not shy of a bit of hard work.

But I have not experience of boat building.

I've bin thinking about it a lot and would love to do it.

But would like a bit of advice from an expert.

Can any one help and send me in the right direction.


Comments for Is this boat to far gone?

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Aug 12, 2014
Is it too far gone?
by: Eddie Jones

I am a furniture restorer who loves wooden boats so we may have similar skill sets.

The boat is a biiiiiiigg project, but it is only TOO big if you think it is.

Get a boatbuilder to give you what we here in Australia call a 'scope of works'.

It will give you an objective line on how big the job really is.

Second. Make sure that you have a 'cheer squad' of reliable friends who can come along at regular intervals, drink your beer, and tell you what a legend you are.

Keep away from nay-sayers, and if they turn up, put vinegar in their beer.

It can be very lonely [and expensive] out there in Restoration Land, so friends who can enthuse, and occasionally lend a hand, are a treasure.

Jun 28, 2011
Wooden Boat Survey
by: Mike

Hi Tom,

As you are a joiner and not afraid of hard work then I would say that you are already well ahead of the pack when it comes to wooden boat restoration.

When I started work on Mignonne I knew only a little bit about wooden boat construction and I wasn't by any stretch of the imagination a woodworker.

And she did look to be in a similar condition to your project.

However, looks can be decptive, the paint may be peeling, but it all depends on the condition of the wood underneath.

Just going on the photographs she looks to still have her shape, she doesn't seem to be hogged or have any unusual bulges.

In theory any wooden boat can be rebuilt and rotten or suspect wood replaced.

But in reality it is preferable to start with a structure which has a sound foundation.

The foundation of a boat is the keel, this is the first part to be laid down when she was built.

If her keel is rotten then you are more or less going to have to dismantle the whole boat to replace it.

So you will need to get down in the mud and have a good prod around, then crawl around inside prodding the wood to find out how sound it is.

Be especially suspicious of any areas where rain water has collected.

Ribs/frames and bulkheads are also structural elements but as you progress upwards and outward from the keel replacement becomes amore realistic project.

Of course it all depensd on how much time effort and cash you want to spend on her.

If after a good prod around you decide to take her on, before you do anything else check out how you are going to get her out of the water and where you are going to work on her.

You need to find somewhere where you can have her hauled out and work on her without being wrapped up in all sorts of bureaucratic health and safety, and legalistic red tape.

The East Coast used to the ideal place for this kind of work but I havent been around that way for a long time so I dont know how much has changed.
She is a real classic.

If you get her restored and afloat again she will be a real joy to sail in and she will admired wherever she goes.

They just don't make em like that in plastic.

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