Saturday, January 29, 2011

Rot Uncovered

Winter repairs: end of third week
Continue removing sheer strake – three sections per side. 
Some problems found this week. We expected this – otherwise why take off the planks – still, painful. No euphoria this week.

Chris cutting nails driven down through the plywood deck into sheer strake. Original builders saved money using nail fasteners instead of screws when boat was built – but they’re costing us big time now.

Detail - a handy saw for this particular job.

Second plank on port side is off. We’re finding some rot in deck nailers.

Forward most plank comes off port side. Lots of shape to this one.

Find more issues under forward plank as well.

These are the plank fasteners. First Chris drills head off, then extracts nail by drilling down around it with a custom hollow core drill bit.

Port side planks are off - starting starboard side. Chris is removing last of caulking cotton.

More rot in fashion piece just inside of transom on starboard side. 
“Better days are coming.”

Thursday, January 20, 2011

Under the Planks

Guard rails are off. Next step: white oak sheer strakes (top plank all round) need to come off - to repair or replace them. Depends on whether they are rotted or not – salvageable or not. Fasteners are big -  4 ½” x ¼”  galvanized nails and 3/8” carriage bolts at butt blocks (joints from plank to plank). Chris is drilling head off of a carriage bolt so we can drive it out.

Here are two nails with heads drilled off. Then Chris bores down around the nail shank with a custom tool which removes the nail. We’ll  refasten with lag bolts one size bigger.

To access nuts on carriage bolts the ceiling has to come off. On a boat the “ceiling” isn’t over your head, it’s the internal planking, on the inside faces of the framing. Ours is nailed on, so removing it means destroying it.
When we reinstall, we’ll screw the new ceiling on for future access.

This photo shows ceiling on starboard side. You can see that top three strakes are screwed on. We did that last year to access replacement of a thru hull for a new bilge pump installation.

This shows port side where Chris has removed ceiling. You’re seeing white oak frames and inside face of cedar planking.

After all the fasteners are out, which included cutting nails through deck ply down into top edge of sheer strake, the first section of planking comes off.

With plank off we can inspect frame ends, deck half beams and deck edge. The plank itself has a little rot, but can be saved. The rest looks real good which makes us two happy people.

I’m proud of the old girl. She was built pretty rough by fishermen in 1983 and there wasn’t a lot of finesse involved in her original construction. I guess she was probably expected to work a decade or so – maybe two?
She served the fishermen till 1990,  Riverkeeper since then. 
I’ve been with her since 2000.

Quitting time.

Friday, January 07, 2011

Winter Work Begins

I set up a frame building and the Westerly Marina crew put in a supreme effort to get it covered  just before the Holidays. It survived the “blizzard.”
Our 30’ X 8” construction trailer  has room for equipment, tools and materials. At the far end there is even a small office space. Deluxe.

My partner this winter is Chris Brennan – Brennan Boatbuilding. He’s out of Nyack. We worked together last winter as well. I’m lucky to have him.

Work starts

Chris removing name boards

Removing the oak guard rails / port and starboard for replacement

Section at bow on port side

Starting on starboard side