View Full Version : The joy and the madness

06-09-2006, 04:10 PM
So the Master Mariners race has a tradition of knocking the stuffing out of my boat. Last year the clew on the mains'l blew out and we had to run the race with one reef. This year we broke a couple of frames near the chainplates and started a seam. Luckily, we had a whole mess of boyscouts on board and could assign them to the pumping while we paid attention to the race. We docked after the regatta and had to miss most of the great party after while we heeled the boat over and slapped some Slick Seam over the leaker. This stemed the tide enough to let us think Pearl wouldn't sink in her slip that week. Knowing that nothing we could do to the seam would fix it untill the frames were sound again, we made plans to fix it up. I spent the whole week searching the forum for info on temp/permanent fixes and decided that sistering was the way to go. I had some good sized pieces of white oak left over from replacing the tabernacle last year, so I ripped those down to laminating size and went down. Since the ceiling planks would have to come off, we decided to redo the chainplate while we were in the general area. The old chainplate was 4 feet long but a full foot had rusted out of the bottom:eek: . I was really glad to be replacing it when I saw how much was just crumbling into the bilge. Then it was time for the frames. With the boat heeled over by a halyard tied to the dock, we could reach down to two planks below the break in the old frames. We decided to fasten the sisters with bronze machine bolts through the hull and nuts on the inside to hold them together. This way, they are easy to remove if we want and they help hold the laminations together as the epoxy cures. I don't know if anyone has done it this way but it seemed to work pretty well. It all seemed to go well until about 9 o'clock. There were a few planks that were below the waterline so I got into my wetsuit and over I went. My dad would drill the whole from the inside and I would hand drill the countersink, but in the bolt, hold it still with the screwdriver while the nut was pulled tight and the press the bung in. The frame turned out really nice.

Then, the seam had to be recaulked. It was late, but living three hours away from Pearl, you can't just leave a project and come back the next day.http://www.imagestation.com/picture/sraid207/pedd630e85dd52053434e93d8acac63f3/ee9997b2.jpg
I got out the irons and was going to re-set the cotton when the iron went all the way through the hull:eek: . There wasn't any cotton in that section of the seam!! That is why it leaked so badly once the pressure from the frames went away. I stuffed it up with new cotton and we were good to go. It was a 16 hr day but it feels good to know she is sound for sailing again. What a fun thing these boats are. If I had bought a f!@#$&(#$s boat I don't think I'd still be sailing. The work and the care that goes into it make the sail so much more rewarding.