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Old 11-09-2009, 04:44   #1
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Old Wooden Boat

Hello all!

I am a new member of the forum but have spent considerable time reading many interesting and educational posts.
This week I an opportunity to purchase an old wooden boat opened up to me. It ‘s a 9,5 m LOA, 2,2 m beam boat built in 1929. It has a Volvo Penta MB10a engine, which according to the seller works fine. (Hopefully my added image will appear).
I think I can get my hands on her for $ 1000-1500.
What do you think?
I realize it’s a lot of work but that’s fine, as long as the hull is structurally ok, I think I can handle it.
All reflections from more experienced forum members are greatly appreciated!
Thanks
Goran
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Old 11-09-2009, 05:21   #2
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She has lovely lines and when I quit sailing I might buy one to stop me getting bored.

While wooden boat owners love them the ones I know spend more time fixing them than sailing. How long has she been out of the water? the wood dries out and they leak when they go back in. She might have to be left on the trailer, in the water, for 24 hrs for the timbers to swell.

You need 'on the ground help' from someone who understands wooden boats.

Good luck
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Old 11-09-2009, 06:47   #3
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See the
USCG Guidance on Inspection, Repair, and Maintenance of Wooden Hulls (NVIC 7-95)


http://www.uscg.mil/hq/cg5/nvic/pdf/1995/n7-95.pdf

A Partial Wooden Hull Checklist:

Check for fairness; for hard points where butt- blocks (mechanical connections between short planks) may have failed. How many butt blocks are there in the hull? Are there signs of rust on the exterior planking? Rust stains are usually indicative or iron or steel fastenings which are to be avoided in a wooden hull. A boat constructed with iron or steel fastenings will have a much shorter life than a copper or bronze fastened hull.

Is there evidence of hogging in a motor cruiser’s hull; that is the centre appearing to be pushed up while the fore and aft ends droop down? Hogging is a possible pointer to light construction, advanced age, and/or deterioration in fastenings.
Hogging is not a good sign.

Timber will always move to some extent in response to changes in temperature and moisture content. This is one reason why wooden hulls tend to do poorly in hot climates.
Hull colour can accentuate this. A dark painted hull while it might look spectacular will attract the heat and depending upon the boats location may go so far as to destroy the hull.
Visible indications that the planks are moving may be due to the influence of tropical heat or it may be due to fatigue and fastening sickness. This can be an indication to the need for re-fastening.

If the hull leaks, it can be important to know where.
The obvious starting point is the garboard plank (the first plank set into the rabbet joint into the keel/stem). In a wooden yacht the mast is forcing the keel down and the chainplates are pulling up, which has the effect over time of pulling the stem up from the keel and opening up the garboard seam. This is usually why a traditional carvel built yacht may tend to leak when close hauled in a sea way.

A sure sign of owner ignorance is a (traditional construction) wooden yacht set up for racing with a high tensioned rig. High rig tension will quickly destroy a traditional wooden yacht. If the boat has too much tension in the rig and it’s not yet leaking… give it time. It will leak!

The floor components of a wooden boat are transverse members holding both sides of the hull together (somewhat analogous to “joists” in a building). They can be constructed of heavy timber or constructed in metal.
Cast bronze floors are possibly the strongest and most durable solution, affording the most flexibility in the placement of the cabin sole in relation to head-room. They are also far and away the most expensive solution.
Metal floors constructed from galvanized steel are absolutely to be avoided. The most obvious problem is rust and corrosion of the metal and loss of strength in this vital area of the hull. Less obvious but possibly more insidious is the degradation of the timber around the floor fastenings caused by the galvanic action of dissimilar metals in a wet bilge.
Yachts having galvanized floors need to have these members replaced. It’s a major job.

While in the area of boat floors check the limber holes. These allow bilge water to move from high points in the centre of the bilge to the low point. Inadequate limber holes or limber holes that are blocked will cause problems.

Dry and wet rot are the most common problems to be found on timber hulls.
Dry rot, being a fungus that attacks lignum, needs moisture to grow. Take away the moisture and you eliminate most of the potential for rot to establish. Accordingly the biggest problems with a wooden hull are usually associated with the ingress of fresh water.
In your pre-survey inspection of the hull, try to identify areas where leaks are in evidence and follow the leaks, testing for mushy wood in any areas that look suspect.
Solid wood that has been properly dried (which eliminates much of the lumber available today) is generally less prone to dry rot than is ply wood.

The worst kind of deck, from the viewpoint of leaks, is a traditional sprung deck, which is sad because nothing looks quite so good on a traditional boat as a beautifully bleached sprung timber deck. This form of deck construction is increasingly rare, being mainly found on classic boats of the pre-war era.
The most common deck is constructed from plywood fastened over deck beams, and usually sealed with a light glass cloth or Dynel. Plywood provided it is of first quality, marine grade, will give satisfactory service for many years, provided fresh water is kept out of the hull. Once dry rot takes hold in a ply deck, it tends to wick through the end grain quite quickly. Plywood cannot be resurrected form the dead once dry rot takes hold. The only solution is to remove the deck and start again. This is going to be an expensive yard job.
Frequently, a teak deck will be laid upon a ply substrate. On the face of it, this solution offers the best of both worlds, combining the waterproof qualities of plywood with the look and aesthetic appeal of timber. The problem, however, is that when water ingress starts to rot the ply, the remedial solution becomes quite complex, and even more expensive.

Problems with leaks occurring, via stanchions, tend to be less prevalent on timber boats compared to GRP boats, probably because a timber boat typically offers greater deck rigidity, and less tendency to flex in that area under load.
Nevertheless, stanchions are a common source of deck leaks. As such, the areas beneath stanchions are more likely to be prone to dry rot.

Chain plate leaks are difficult to eliminate on a timber boat, at least where chain plates are fastened inside the hull, thus penetrating the deck. Obviously long term ingress of water, in these areas, can cause rot. Often the presence of plank movement in the vicinity of the chain plate can provide a clue.
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Old 11-09-2009, 08:20   #4
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you might get more enthusiastic response on a site called "wooden boat forum." I think most knowledgeable cruisers on this site are going to take a look at the boat in the picture and say, "Hmmmm. Not a cruiser." Not that it's a bad boat, certainly, but with those sleek lines it's not designed to transport a lot of weight (water, fuel, food, spare parts, a life raft, et cetera) from point A to point B, especially if point B is on the other side of an ocean.
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Old 11-09-2009, 08:48   #5
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Check the frame heels for softness,and check for cracks (usually mid frame around the mast step)
Are the floors (frame to keel connection) in good shape?
any sprung or feathery planking? check the butt ends
Pull some fasteners (garboard) and check for wastage
If she's dry, look at the seams for loose caulking and check to see that the plank edges are fair- she may be loose now but if it's all there it'll tighten up when you soak her.
Another place to check for rot is inside around the transom- venitlation usually isn't as good there.

PM me if you want more specifics but she looks worthwhile from the pic.

Ignore the maintenance naysayers. All boats are work.
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Old 11-09-2009, 09:52   #6
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She looks like RumbleSeat that Bruce Schwab use to race on S.F. Bay. Pretty lines that's for sure. Rumble Seat won the Single-Handed Transpac in the late 90's.......i2f
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Old 11-09-2009, 10:19   #7
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This vintage wooden boat has "beautiful bones!" I think you should tackle this job. Best of luck.
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Old 11-09-2009, 12:56   #8
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Hi Goran,

If you love this kind of boat and working in the wood, go for it.

-- Volvo Penta MB10a engine, which according to the seller works fine --
>> well, presume it guilty untill proven otherwise,

-- I think I can get my hands on her for $ 1000-1500. --
>>cheap for a boat, expensive for a pile of wood - make sure which one you are getting,

-- as long as the hull is structurally ok, --
not likely at this age unless very well and professionally maintained - wintered in the shed, too,

Great price, great looks, if you are sure you can make her sail again, go for it. Because even if you are wrong in your judgement you will be able to use (expensively) gained knowledge in your future projects.

PS Make sure what the cost of keeping the boat are - you will need a lot of time at the boatyard before you can launch her.

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Old 11-09-2009, 14:07   #9
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If you want to be a sailor....Run... simply run.... as fast as you can..... Unless you want to be a boatwright.
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Old 11-09-2009, 14:22   #10
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Cheechako ! Why don't you let other people do their projects while we have all the sea left to ourselves ???

;-))))
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Old 11-09-2009, 15:01   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Cheechako View Post
If you want to be a sailor....Run... simply run.... as fast as you can..... Unless you want to be a boatwright.
Quote:
Originally Posted by barnakiel View Post
Cheechako ! Why don't you let other people do their projects while we have all the sea left to ourselves ???

;-))))
b.
Speaking from experience I presume...
Have either of you ever owned a wood hulled boat?

I guess bad gelcoat, osmosis, delamination,soggy cores etc,etc, doesn't count as boatwright work. LOL.

As barnakiel says above, which is fair, if she's in decent shape it's worth it, if she's shot, it's not.
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Old 12-09-2009, 11:08   #12
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I had.

Now GRP.

Future steel or alu, funds permittin'.

b.
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Old 12-09-2009, 11:29   #13
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The wooden boat looks alot like a Ketenburg which were famous for racing
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Old 12-09-2009, 19:43   #14
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I had.

b.
Cool! What kind?
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Old 13-09-2009, 14:53   #15
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A Cadet, bit like Mirror.

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