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Thread: Restoration of BC Salmon Troller "Petrel"

  1. #1366
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    Default Re: Restoration of BC Salmon Troller "Petrel"

    Quote Originally Posted by Garret View Post
    OK, so I'm late to the party. I knew this was a thread that I'd get totally sucked into & that it'd take time away from work (of all types), family, friends, and even strangers. Now that I've read the thread Chris, it'll be your fault if my kids go hungry. Oh wait - no kids in the house as they have kids of their own. Well then, the grandkids will suffer. Whoever suffers - it's your fault!

    A great thread. Trials, tribulations & successes, all rolled into a sprawling web of boat stuff, rabbit holes, and dreams/fantasies.

    A couple of thoughts/meanderings: [for those not familiar, my boat is a 52 ft. Seaborn/Blanchard sloop launched in 1941 on Lake Union]

    I worked much as you did on my boat (though with more skilled help) for the first 5 or 6 years. Enjoyed the heck out of her, but there was a niggling little thing in the back of my head that I needed to pay attention to some bigger things. Being very good at ignoring such boring thoughts, I cruised on blithely. The awakening came on a trip up from Provincetown MA (end of Cape Cod) to mid-coast Maine. The forecast for 10-15 knots from the southeast had turned into 30-40 from the northeast & the predicted 3-5 ft seas were actually 9-10 & very confused. The direct route takes you well out into the Gulf of Maine where you are definitely on your own. I had been at the wheel for about 6 hours & was getting pretty darn tired. I went below to catch a quick nap on the cabin sole - as that's a spot where you can't fall any further. As I lay there, I heard creaking from below me. Not just a little bit, but loud creaks, groans & some thunks. If I hadn't known she didn't have a centerboard, I might've thought she did. Needless to say, sleep escaped me - which was a good thing because Michele was literally getting thrown around by the wheel. I took over at the wheel & we made landfall about 10 hours later - both exhausted & me hallucinating towards the end. In case you ever wondered, seeing green & red spots all over the water does not help locating buoys!

    This was towards the end of the season, so we only did a few more short trips & those were in better weather. Hauled the boat, prepped her for winter (Maine, so below zero F is likely) & started planning work. Long story (somewhat) shorter, she had been glassed from the waterline down & I got a call from my friend where the boat was stored that a crack had developed near the horn timber. I guess!! I could reach my hand in from the side of the boat & touch the prop shaft. Seems I'd not drained a bay between frames & the water had frozen & split the timber. Ignoring weeks of recrimination, worry, frustration, etc. - I decided that the glass had to all come off & really check things thoroughly.

    This ended up in a new horn timber, over 90 frames rebuilt and/or sistered, new keelbolts and floors, new planks from the waterline down & a new rudder. Oh yeah - add 5 years of her being out of the water as Lex & I worked on her & I tried to earn the $ to pay for all this.

    So - the reason I went into all this sob story? Mostly to make you feel better about the $5K. Mere chicken feed sir!

    Next thought: Engine. When I bought Neoga, I knew the engine was bad. I planned on rebuilding the 4108 Perkins, but it turned out that the engine was fit for use as an anchor & little more. Looking around at options, I decided to bite the bullet & go with a new Yanmar. Probably the single best decision I've made. Way better fuel economy, and even more important, quiet. Lex had spent quite a bit of time on her with the FO & even with carefully installed sound-down, you had to shout to be heard in the cabin with the engine running. With the Yanmar, you can literally stand right on top of it & carry on a conversation in normal tones. Yes - the engine bay is carefully insulated - but it's remarkable what a difference a quiet engine makes. Jimmies are probably the loudest diesel known to man & I can't help but wonder if a modern, quiet engine might transform Petrel into a far more pleasant cruiser. Yes - a different personality - but possibly one more conducive to fun family cruising.

    Petrel is a beauty & you have a chance to really make her your own. I think she could be a fabulous boat for more extended cruising when you have things sorted out. Of course, you'll have all that done in the next 15-20 minutes...

    I'll shut up now (oops - I mean for now) & let you get on with your tale.
    Thanks for these thoughts Garret. I have my own story of a multi-year restoration (Perihelion, a 50' Huckins that I wrote about in a thread last year) but mine didn't end well. Did you have a thread for Neoga? Sounds like a story worth reading. But yes, I was very happy to get away with a $5k bill this time around. A new engine though? Several times as much. I'm still tempted and it may be the thing that we need to make Petrel really cruiseable, but that's a project for the future. For now, cabin paint as Wojo says.
    - Chris

    https://fvpetrel.wordpress.com

    Life is short. Go boating now!

  2. #1367
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    Default Re: Restoration of BC Salmon Troller "Petrel"

    Quote Originally Posted by 2dogsnight View Post
    New, quieter, reliable motor ??......Sure!!
    .........in the meantime - paint cabin
    Have a week off coming up - let me know if you need a second roller/brush operator.......
    Thanks for the offer Wojo! Not sure what my schedule is going to be there unfortunately. I have to be in San Francisco next week and then we are traveling to Charlotte for a family visit. So Petrel might sit for a few of weeks before I can get back to her.
    - Chris

    https://fvpetrel.wordpress.com

    Life is short. Go boating now!

  3. #1368
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    Default Re: Restoration of BC Salmon Troller "Petrel"

    Quote Originally Posted by cstevens View Post
    Thanks for these thoughts Garret. I have my own story of a multi-year restoration (Perihelion, a 50' Huckins that I wrote about in a thread last year) but mine didn't end well. Did you have a thread for Neoga? Sounds like a story worth reading. But yes, I was very happy to get away with a $5k bill this time around. A new engine though? Several times as much. I'm still tempted and it may be the thing that we need to make Petrel really cruiseable, but that's a project for the future. For now, cabin paint as Wojo says.
    Nope - no thread - in need of a round tuit. I get that an engine ain't cheap - just adding my 0.02 to the mix for thinking about.
    "If it ain't broke, you're not trying." - Red Green

  4. #1369
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    Default Re: Restoration of BC Salmon Troller "Petrel"

    Quote Originally Posted by Jay Greer View Post
    I have epoxied AYC and teak staves to plywood and other woods in the past. I used box nails with a tiny patch of wood under it to clamp the staves to the surface. Later the nails were pulled and the holes were filled with a, plug on one job. The wood was then varnished and the plugs gave the illusion of it being solid stock.
    Jay
    Thanks Jay. Nick suggested something like that as well. My left brain says that's an eminently practical approach. The stable substrate eliminates the biggest problem in building a boat from a bunch of little sticks, and the cosmetic surface keeps it looking like a wooden boat should. But (and here's where I diverge into a bit of philosophy) it's a *modern* solution. Well-engineered, sound practice, dependent on chemistry.

    In my day job as a software developer/UX designer/business consultant/whatever-pays-the-bills-technologist I deal with modern every minute. And it's always changing. Work that I did last year is already obsolete. I like my job very much. It's usually challenging, rarely boring and I'm almost never doing the same thing twice. But that can pace also be mentally exhausting so using techniques that are decades or hundreds of years old is something of an antidote.

    Hence the dilemma. I acknowledge that the modern solution is better. And better is just, well, better. Less likely to leak. Easier and faster to build. Certainly stronger as well. For a professional shipwright I suspect those goals are paramount. Good work means using the best techniques available, just as I would in my profession. But for an amateur there are other things to consider. And so I ponder. And work on other projects to put off any decision for a while.
    - Chris

    https://fvpetrel.wordpress.com

    Life is short. Go boating now!

  5. #1370
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    Default Re: Restoration of BC Salmon Troller "Petrel"

    And on the subject of old techniques, a follow up to the earlier discussion of the cabin structure and the harpin. I took a closer look at the harpin on Petrel yesterday and in most respects it follows the design that Tad described. It's a sawn timber about 2" x 8" that supports the deck and cabin in place of a carlin and deck beams. However unlike all of the other examples I managed to find - including the one shown in the photo of Accolade under construction that Jim/chas posted - it is not notched around the frame ends but sits inboard of them on top of a clamp or shelf. In other descriptions of the harpin it is described as a mold as well as a structural member, and was used to set the position of the frames at the sheer, so it would have been built before framing. It's possible that Petrel was built that way as well, and the frames are fastened directly to the harpin, but no way to tell without pulling off the sheer plank.
    - Chris

    https://fvpetrel.wordpress.com

    Life is short. Go boating now!

  6. #1371
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    Default Re: Restoration of BC Salmon Troller "Petrel"

    Quote Originally Posted by cstevens View Post
    And on the subject of old techniques, a follow up to the earlier discussion of the cabin structure and the harpin. I took a closer look at the harpin on Petrel yesterday and in most respects it follows the design that Tad described. It's a sawn timber about 2" x 8" that supports the deck and cabin in place of a carlin and deck beams. However unlike all of the other examples I managed to find - including the one shown in the photo of Accolade under construction that Jim/chas posted - it is not notched around the frame ends but sits inboard of them on top of a clamp or shelf. In other descriptions of the harpin it is described as a mold as well as a structural member, and was used to set the position of the frames at the sheer, so it would have been built before framing. It's possible that Petrel was built that way as well, and the frames are fastened directly to the harpin, but no way to tell without pulling off the sheer plank.
    I think that the Rale Original Friendship Sloops used sawn harpins instead of beam shelves, and yes the frame timbers were notched into them. I think that those in Petrel were fitted after she was timbered out and the beam shelf / clamp was spring into place.
    It really is quite difficult to build an ugly wooden boat.

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