Swelling Wood Prior to Launching

by Curt
(Forked River NJ)

New wood boat owner here.

I am restoring a 1960 Shoup Princess.

I don't have a boat slip available so I would like to remove the boat from the water after each use.

I am also not comfortable with having the boat sit in salt water all season.

I am really worried about the challenges involving wood swelling and the amount of water I will be taking in after each launch.

Has anyone ever tried wrapping the hull in a waterproof tarp and surrounding the hull with small amount of water by filling the inside of the tarp, and letting the boat sit for a week prior to launching.

Sounds like a crazy idea but perhaps this would help to avoid taking in excessive amounts of water every time I use the boat.

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Double skinned bottom?
by: Michael

I’m not familiar with the 1960 ‘Shoup Princess’ but most runabouts of this vintage were built with a double skinned bottom.

That is two layers of planking with a waterproof membrane in between the layers, to eliminate the need for taking up.

swelling wood
by: Anonymous

Hi there.
You are probably worrying more than you need to.

Take up is very scary until you have done it a few times.

You get to know your boat and after a few times it becomes very intimate.

If it helps any I can tell you that here in England in an area known as the Broads where fresh water sailing is at it's best, Owners who are perhaps not as conscientious about maintenance as they should be face the same worry and over the years have realised that it is simpler to do it the other way round.

They take old towels and blankets and wet them and place them all round the inside of the hull wetting them regularly with a watering can.

This is obviously easier than your suggestion but has the same bad effects regarding mould and rot spores.

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