Friday, October 4, 2013

A Tale of Two Boats, Chapter 2

The main focus of the shop continues to be two boats -- the 29 foot Ventnor "Misleading Lady," and the mid-1970s Beetle Cat.  The former continues to get more bright and shiny as her brightwork nears completion.  The latter has turned a corner, with disassembly nearly done, and reconstruction beginning.

The Beetle Cat's leaky centerboard case has been removed and she has been flipped.  The source of the centerboard case leak has likely been determined. The case was fastened to the keel with large copper nails hammered in from below.  Providing waterproofing between the case and the keel was a gasket made of canvas, probably saturated with bedding, which dried out over the decades.  The working of the case against the nails probably loosened the structure also. The case will be rebuilt and fastened in a more secure manner.

Once the hull was flipped, caulking could be removed, exposing seams that were much to wide.  

Removing the old caulk.

We will need to fix these seams!
Too many fasteners over too many repairs had left the keel around the centerboard slot looking a bit like swiss cheese.  Charles routed the keel out an inch wide and an inch deep around the slot, and replaced the holey wood with new strips of white oak.

Routing is complete
New oak strips glued in place.
The Beetle Cat's transom presented an unusual challenge.  It seems to have been oak, originally, but at some point a plastic pseudo-wood grain veneer was applied with what seems to be contact cement!  An unusual treatment, to say the least. The veneer has been removed, and slowly but surely the contact cement is giving its hold. If the oak comes up nicely, we will probably finish the transom bright.  Otherwise -- paint.

The transom with plastic veneer removed but cement very much in place.
Misleading Lady is fully in that iterative process of varnishing and sanding, as Newt works to build up a durable and brilliant smooth finish.  There is no substitute for slow, methodical, and careful work at this step, and quality and care show.

The transom has been restained and varnished.

The starboard side deck and coaming shine in the afternoon sunlight

1 comment:

  1. Is the Workshop on the Water open on the weekend? I'd like to visit the museum and talk with some of the boatbuilders but I can only make it there on a weekend.