View Full Version : Wood boats and fresh water
10-02-2005, 02:06 PM
I'm considering building/restoring something in the 12'-15' range, and I would, in all probability, mostly lake-sail it. (Currently, I have a 17' 'glass daysailer that I keep on a local lake here in Connecticut.) What's the story on mooring a non-glassed woodie in fresh water for the season? Some tell me that salt would need to be sprinkled in the bilge to prevent the onset of rot, others say not to worry because the seasonal mooring would only be for three to four months (there's a 20' wooden cat on the same lake, but I haven't been able to find out how its owner handles that).
I'm new to this so any input appreciated.
10-02-2005, 02:16 PM
The Sea Scouts kept a 19 ft wood Lightning #352 in a Ohio lake all summer in the 50's we didnt know anything about salt except it was used on the eggs in the morning and the roads in the winter. They still have that same boat in the same lake today.
10-02-2005, 03:47 PM
Rot spores flourish in wood which has the right balance of moisture and air. They don't like salt, so salty WOOD (not WATER) prevents rot. HOWEVER, salt water evaporates just like fresh water, and condenses as FRESH water, leaving the salt behind. Thus, salt water which condenses on the overhead, for example, of a boat's interior, or leaks from above from rain, will promote rot no differently than fresh water doing the same. No matter whether the water is salt or fresh, rot is best prevented by providing lots of ventillation, which inhibits wet wood. Simple as that. No more problem with fresh water than with salt.
Peter Malcolm Jardine
10-02-2005, 05:18 PM
They say some woods last longer in salt... Mahogany for instance, but my 40 year old CC is doing fine. What Bob said is the basic truth.
10-02-2005, 09:22 PM
A cockpit cover to help keep rain water will also help.
10-02-2005, 09:25 PM
I missed the out in the last post. I should fire my editor.
10-03-2005, 06:05 PM
My 1961 Owens just went through a survey and has surprisingly little rot. It's been in fresh water it's whole life.
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