Sunday, February 28, 2010

Week 4

This week I was a little bit all over the place. Throughout the week, I was able to attach four rings of 6oz fiberglass cloth, doubling up the center, to act as chafe gear for the gaff boom. That was sanded, and I was finally ready to coat the mast. By Sunday, I had the sixth and final coat of varnish, 3 of allspar and 3 of epiphanes, and it shines.

Inbetween sanding and coating the masts, I finished sanding inbetween all the frames, floor timbers, keelson, deck beams, and the underside of the deck in the forepeak. I got my fingers in the tightest places I could and all the way forward that I could muster. This warranted many days of picking out paint chips and dust from my eyes. It felt good to get the sanding finished, and im trying to hold on on sealing it as long as I can and try to get some rebuilding done. With the sanding finished, I sat down in the bow with my pad and pen and recorded every problem I could find that needs fixing. My list in a page and a half long.

I started by pulling out the rotten floor timber at station six, and chiseling out the rotten frame heels. The frames are in good shape from about 10 inches out of the keelson to the shear, so thats where I cut them and new heels will be scarfed in to slightly larger specs for added sturdiness. The old fasteners mostly had to be removed from the inside using vice grips to twist them out or a hammer to bang them out. A new floor timber was cut from 1" thick white oak as well as a new frame heel for the STBD side, but these are not in place yet. There is still some shaping to be done.

As a final duty to the week, I installed two new 1/4"x2" bronze machine screws into each forward chain plate. These were loose before, but are now as sturdy and tight as anything, and it will be reassuring when sailing to look under the deck and see those 1/2" bronze nuts.

Week 4

Throughout the week, I was able to remove the sole and finish sanding between all the frames, floors, and forepeak.

After bleeding from my fingertips, I adopted the old technique of wrapping them in tape for protection.

I was able to adhere some fiberglass cloth on the mast for chafe protection from the gaff.

First of six coats of varnish go on.

Chafe gear, after all is said and done. Not too visible.

I remove the stem shoe to get access to the carriage bolts holding down the floor timbers.

A rotted out station 6, floor and frame heels.

The new against the old.

Roughly in place.

Also roughly in place. These are not installed yet.

New fasteners get put through the forward chain plates.

It makes you feel good to look inside and see shining new bronze bolts and nuts.

Saturday, February 20, 2010

Week 3

I spent a couple days this week playing around with my spars. I got the 6th coat of Epiphanes on and wire wheeled down a couple pieces of hardware for the main boom, and installed them with some bedding compound. The polished bronze is really a sight after seeing the progression from old to new. Although I do prefer the look of weathered bronze, but I felt it was appropriate to clean it up since the varnish is so pretty. I am still waiting to figure out where the chafe gear will go for the mast, so it hasnt gotten any varnish yet, but I did manage two coats of primer and two coats of Hatteras Off White paint to the top.

Now that the big hole is cut out for the open cockpit, I was able to really go to town on the interior. I removed all the ceiling planks to expose the frames and inner planking. I backed out the fasteners holding down the teak sole to expose all the floor timbers, keelson, keel bolts, and frame heels. Then I got out the heat gun and scraper and scraped off all the old paint on the planks, frames, floors, keelson all the way up into the bow as far as my hand could reach. Then I went onto my back and scraped all the old paint on the remainder of the under decking and deck beams. I now have a callous on my hand i've never seen before. Its sort of a swooping arc that follows the line in my hand from the scraper.

Then, I found the courage to get the circular saw out and begin removing the deck aft of the mast step. I knew I was going to need to remove it to inspect and replace where necessary the sheer clamp and carlin. The deck came off pretty easily. I could pretty much pull it off and the screws just pulled out of the old clamp and carlin. This revealed a carlin and sheer clamp that needs to be replaced completely because of some iron fasteners that have split the wood wide open. Also, the top of the oak sheer plank is a little soft, and when the deck was pulled up, a little bit of oak came with it.

This week was my discovery week. After exposing all the nooks and crannies of the boat, I am finally able to compile my "list" of work. This ranges from repairing frame heels, floor timbers, chain plate blocking, sheer clamp and carlins, old thru hull fittings, sanding, painting, and new construction. Of course this is subject to change, and im sure as I go through it, more things will get added. But it is reassuring to 'know' what i have to do and to be able to start crossing things off the list.

Pompano needs to move out of her spot the first couple weeks of May in order to get another boat out that im blocking in for a spring launching. So that means Pompano will have a spring launching as well. Unless something gets in my way. All I can ask is that good vibes keep getting sent my way.

Week 3

The finished mast cheek blocks.

While still waiting to place the chafe gear, I got a couple coats of paint on the top.

The toe rail and chock is off, and here I am beginning to take the port rub rail off.

After cleaning up some of the bronze hardware, it is installed to the main boom.

The difference a little wire wheeling can do to old bronze. I kind of like the look of the old bronze better.

The ceiling before removal.

And after removal.

I expose some of the old cedar decking underneath an 1/8" of ply and old canvas.

A self portrait crammed up in the bow with the heat gun and scraper going.

And the pile grows!

I used a circular saw to cut away the deck planks where I am going to begin removing the deck.

Off comes the old decking.

Here is the deck removed aft, exposing the carlins which mark where the coaming will go. This will all get ripped out and replaced with new wood.

Friday, February 12, 2010

Week 2

This week was largely interrupted by three visits to the dentist in Hyannis, but inbetween those, I was able to get 3 coats of Allspar and 2 coats of Epiphanes varnish on the booms. I am still waiting to hear back from Roy Downs who is making my sails to figure where the mast's gaff chafe gear will go before I varnish it.

I gained the courage needed to start cutting out the previous cabin house/cockpit layout. I took a closer inspection and found the old carlins which mark where the coaming use to be. I checked my drawings from MIT to confirm before I did any cutting. I marked out with a batten a few inches inside of the carlins and began cutting. I removed the cabin house roof first, so I could get in and move about with ease. Then I installed a cross beam in case she changes shape. I worked aft from the middle, cutting away at the cockpit. Then, with another cross beam in, I turned around and finished off the cabin house.

This work revealed what needs to be accomplished with this project. The area from center aft is in pretty rough shape. The carlins were attached to the sheer clamp with iron bolts, which over time rusted and expanded, completely splitting away the wood around it. I will need to remove the deck from the 10# deck beam (starting aft) working aft to expose the carlin and sheer clamp. After removing the toe rail and rub rail, I will be able to access and remove the split clamp and carlin on either side and install new ones. Then, the ceiling will come out of the boat, frames inspected. The frames aft of center are all sistered, and given my scope of this project, and without wanting to go into replacing planks, I intend to keep them if they are structural. If not, I will remove the sistered frames and add new ones.

Week 2

An unsuspecting cabin and cockpit.

All it needs is a little jig saw/ sawsall work.

I open up the cabin roof so I can move about easier.

Then comes the cockpit.

The remains.

After 3.5 hrs with the sawsall, I had the entire structure out and cross beams in place in case she springs in.

Another view.

5 coats of varnish. 3 Allspar, 2 Epiphanes. One more coat needed.

General deck arraignment, courtesy of Hart Nautical Collections at the MIT museum.

Detailed construction drawings.

Thursday, February 11, 2010

week 1

The first week was spent getting a feel for the work ahead of me. I was a little nervous to delve into the real issue at hand, changing the cabin layout to an open cockpit, so I started with what I know best; scraping, sanding, and varnishing.

Very soon, the entire topsides were scraped as well as the rudder. The boatyard was kind enough to let me move my spars into their paint shed to get the varnishing done inside while there is space available. Very quickly, I had every piece of hardware off the spars, labeled, and stowed in a box. The one thing I was anxious about on the mast was the 3 foot section that had fiberglass cloth wrapped around it. I was worried that perhaps the mast had split here, and this was the remains of a cheap yet effective repair. I was already thinking of the scarph I would have to cut in when I started to work the cloth off. I used a chisel to strike a line down the center of the cloth, and found it easily lifted from the wood surface. In seconds, the entire piece was off, revealing beautiful and fresh Fir underneath. I recently learned that it is quite traditional to place a piece of fiberglass cloth on the mast where the gaff tongue rests and potentially chaffs. Copper flashing can also be used, but fiberglass cloth is a very effective material for this purpose, and I think I will replace this old heavy cloth with a layer or two of 6oz. cloth so that the wood with shine through and it will barely be noticeable.

With the rigging out of the way, I was able to sand first with 80 then to 120 and finally 180 grit paper. The result was a very smooth and soft surface. All of the spars are Douglas Fir as far as I can tell, though the original plans call for spruce booms. Right away, I got a coat of 2/3 Allspar varnish and 1/3 Pease Boatyard Elixir mix, which is mostly lineseed oil, to seal the wood. While I had the Elixir mixture out, I detailed the rudder, removed the hardware, removed the bottom gudgeon that was loose, inspected the bronze fasteners and re-bedded and installed it with epoxy, added some new bungs, and sealed it. Since it is oak, it has the potential to dry out much quicker then Fir or Cedar.

Saturday, February 6, 2010

First Week of Work

Pompano's Hull is completely stripped, ready for sanding and sealing.

Port side bow. The planking is cedar except for a oak sheer strake.

STBD side. The planks have been fairly peppered with fasteners over the years.

Mast with all its gear on in the paint shed.

From the bottom.

All the hardware and rigging was taken off and labeled. The ropes and stays will be replaced with new.

Mast and boom hardware.

The fiberglass chaffing guard on the mast is being taken off with a chisel.

A lighter 6 or 8oz. cloth will be put in its place.

Beautiful Fir is revealed under the old varnish.

I set in old bronze screws left over from the old sail track.

A loose gudgeon is removed from the rudder.

The rudder, sanded and sealed.

The booms stripped and sanded from 80 to 120 to 180 grit ready for sealer.

The bare mast suspended from the ceiling.

The first coat of sealer, a mixture of 1/3 elixir (mostly linseed oil with some diesel fuel, etc) and 2/3 Allspar varnish.

The booms get coated as well.

A detail of the gaff gooseneck, the outer fingers are teak.