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Thread: S&S 36 - Bits and Pieces

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Aug 2015
    Location
    Canberra, Australia
    Posts
    165

    Default S&S 36 - Bits and Pieces

    Hi all,

    Some may distantly recall my very patchily-updated thread regarding the purchase of my S&S 36 ‘One Ton’ design in NZ, and the subsequent move over here to Sydney, Australia (http://forum.woodenboat.com/showthre...at-Have-I-Done). I'll try to be more regular with this one.

    Kishmul.jpg

    Kishmul has now been back in the water for around 18 months, and much to my shame, has not moved from her mooring in that time. COVID and its interference with interstate travel has played a major role, as I was not living in Sydney until a few months ago when I finally carried out my plan to move here. Being 45 minutes' drive from the boat instead of 4 hours has been very helpful - until, of course, we went into another multi-month lockdown.

    A few rambles about my approach to this whole thing...

    At 31 years old and with a demanding career, owning an old wooden boat makes zero logical sense. I knew that from the outset. I was, perhaps, more naive about the anxiety/pleasure ratio - the costs and the enormous list of tasks can sometimes feel overwhelming. While I have been around, and worked on, wooden boats my entire life with my father, being the 'primary carer' is quite a heavy burden financially and, more unexpectedly, emotionally - particularly now that my father is older and not really able to help.

    I feel a strong obligation to take good care of Kishmul - at exactly 50 years old this year, she represents the sum of vast amounts of expert craftsmanship, history and ocean miles - not to mention a pretty significant investment. For better or worse, I'm also a perfectionist and would not be able to enjoy using her if I felt she wasn't being cared for. Consequently, I'm trying not to beat myself up too much about the rather one-sided work-sailing balance, and instead find satisfaction in getting on top of the 'job list' and making her beautiful and comfortable to be on as a cruiser rather than a racer.

    While not exactly on a shoestring I'm certainly trying to stick to a modest budget, meaning that purchases are made and professional assistance sought only when necessary and possible. Big, time-consuming jobs I have to do myself.

    A word of warning: this thread isn’t going to contain much in the way of master craftsmanship - mostly just a sometimes-rambling record of maintenance and small improvements. Advice will be gratefully received. I certainly won't be tackling anything structural. ‘Restoration’ would be the wrong word as Kishmul is in very good shape overall, but even at the time I purchased her she was overdue for some cosmetic work, as well as some niggling issues that affect her 'useability'.

    More to come...
    Sailing - the fine art of getting wet and becoming ill while slowly going nowhere at great expense.

    - Henry Beard

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Aug 2015
    Location
    Canberra, Australia
    Posts
    165

    Default Re: S&S 36 - Bits and Pieces

    While Kishmul hasn’t been properly used, I have tried to be a responsible boat parent. Over the last 18 months the following has been achieved:

    - Standing rigging replaced - probably not necessary but dictated by the annoying 10-year limit from insurers, so I thought I'd bite the bullet and get it done while the mast was down.



    - New inflatable tender and 10hp outboard acquired. The only way I can find to access the boat in Sydney’s crowded Northern Beaches without paying insane parking fees is to leave my car a few kilometres away and make a 10-minute dinghy trip. Besides the significant inconvenience of packing the tender and outboard into and out of my small sedan every trip, this has turned out to be a good solution. The tender is a ‘Navigator 300’ from NZ company True Kit – not romantic but light, stable, capacious and fast when conditions allow me to use all the horses (will do around 18 knots with one person aboard). The previous solution was to park closer and use a very dodgy plastic dinghy lovingly nicknamed 'Moet' for the cork I used to plug the leaky bung.



    IMG_2809.jpg

    IMG_2808.jpg

    - Acquired a very, very yellow 2kW camping generator – my main requirement for this was to be powerful enough to run a heatgun. Having it rumbling away on the deck must look quite the Rube Goldberg setup to passing boats but it works, and having the ability to run power tools onboard is a huge plus. It's a bit noisy but not obnoxiously so.



    Generator.jpg
    Sailing - the fine art of getting wet and becoming ill while slowly going nowhere at great expense.

    - Henry Beard

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Aug 2015
    Location
    Canberra, Australia
    Posts
    165

    Default Re: S&S 36 - Bits and Pieces

    - Staunchion bases removed, some soft wood drilled out, the holes soaked with CPES and then refilled with thickened epoxy. I’m really hoping I caught these in time. The bolts go through the sheer clamp – fortunately it’s easily accessible from the inside so I figure I’ll give the timber some taps regularly and keep an ear out for any suspicious hollow sounds.

    No pictures of this undeniably fascinating job due to hands being completely covered in epoxy.

    I managed to drop one of the staunchion bases in the drink while prying it off so there’s another few hundred in custom stainless work. In my weaker moments I have considered not re-installing the staunchions as my destinations will be coastal at best in the short term and the absence of lifelines makes for extremely easy access to the boat, but ultimately I need them as attachment points for covers.


    - I made up a mesh dropboard for the companionway to encourage ventilation on her mooring by sandwiching the mesh between layers of 6mm ply. It seems to be doing its job as there’s minimal mildew below and no smell of damp despite Sydney’s humid climate. It’s also an absolute necessity while staying onboard in the summer months too, for mozzie protection. Yet to be painted.

    Mesh Dropboard.jpg

    - Next was a friction-fit mesh insert for the forward hatch. No fine carpentry here but it will do the job once it has some rubber strips glued onto the edges. Trial fitting was a serious chore as the rubber strips had to be attached with masking tape, fit tested, some timber planed off (with no decent way to clamp the piece onboard), strips re-attached with masking tape, rinse and repeat.

    Hatch Insert.jpg

    The mesh dropboard and hatch insert have already made a huge difference to the liveability of the cabin, and sleeping comfort.

    - Making a start on the acres of brightwork, I stripped all the varnish from the inside of the cockpit, which was starting to allow water penetration and blackening of the timber in a few spots. Once stripped it became more obvious that the timber is teak – I suspect some kind of stain had been applied prior to the varnish as it appears much lighter and less reddish after some sanding. This was a tedious and uncomfortable job as there were many corners where neither scraper nor sander would fit, and I had to scratch away carefully with the tip of a screwdriver and a sliver of sandpaper.

    Stripping.jpg

    First coat of finish re-applied. I'm replacing the varnish with Awlwood MA, which has been discussed a couple of times on the forum. Originally an NZ product (bit of a theme emerging here) it relies on a primer overcoated with a single-pack clear gloss. I've chosen to use yellow primer (it also comes in clear and red) to give the timber more UV protection and fade resistance. It's brushed on and then rubbed off with a clean rag a few minutes later. I hadn't used the coloured primer before and I'm very impressed with how evenly it goes on.

    Using the 'Multi-Climate' gloss, it can be applied over the primer once the primer is touch dry. This is with primer and a single coat of gloss. Excuse the poor photography - it looks great up close, with minimal obscuring of the grain. This is the first of at least 8 coats.


    Awlwood First Coat.jpg

    From what I've heard, with a brief rub-down and extra coat every year for the first few years, the system should be good for 15 years - hopefully more with full covers, which this will have. It's also very elastic so I'm hopeful it will cope better with the dings that cockpits tend to receive.

    The intention here is to strip and re-do the brightwork in sections to avoid leaving wood exposed for too long.
    Sailing - the fine art of getting wet and becoming ill while slowly going nowhere at great expense.

    - Henry Beard

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Aug 2015
    Location
    Canberra, Australia
    Posts
    165

    Default Re: S&S 36 - Bits and Pieces

    One of the upsides of mooring in Pittwater - a substantial waterway north of Sydney - is sharing it with a substantial number of quite lovely wooden boats. 'Kintail' is one I saw recently - a striking and, to my eye, unusual design. I haven't been able to find out much about her. With her semi-flush deck, hollow bow and square portlights, she has an almost 1920s look.

    Kintail.jpg
    Sailing - the fine art of getting wet and becoming ill while slowly going nowhere at great expense.

    - Henry Beard

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Mar 2011
    Location
    Annapolis, MD
    Posts
    142

    Default Re: S&S 36 - Bits and Pieces

    Beautiful boat! I just love that kind of tumblehome. I'll be watching with interest. Looks like you're doing good work.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Aug 2015
    Location
    Canberra, Australia
    Posts
    165

    Default Re: S&S 36 - Bits and Pieces

    Completed a very satisfying project with my girlfriend's help - a cockpit awning for use while moored/at anchor.

    I had previously bought an off-the-shelf 3x3.2m 'Oceansouth' awning to drape over the boom. To my complete lack of surprise, it was a terrible fit and prevented easy access along the side decks. We jammed a dinghy oar under it as a makeshift spreader batten, which helped but looked hideous.

    Tired of the sea-hobo look, we bought a heavy duty domestic sewing machine and some UV-resistant polyester thread, and cut the cover down to fit the boat's fairly dramatic aft taper. We hemmed it, added more tie-out points and reinforced pockets for 4 fairly stiff timber battens (30x20mm). We also cut the sides with mild concave shapes between batten pockets to decrease fluttering. The centreline guys along the boom are VB cord to achieve tension and the side guys are bungee/shock cord to minimise shock loading and keep it all firm. The battens will stay in permanently and the whole 3m bundle will be rolled up and stored when not needed. Once I put snap hooks on the guylines, the whole thing should take less than 5 minutes to set up

    While I'd prefer it a little longer (up to the mast) and perhaps marginally wider, we both felt pretty smug about our first attempt at canvaswork. It keeps the sun and most rain off, stands up to decent gusts without batting an eye, and looks pretty good if you don't peer too closely at the stitching (the machine struggled at times until we got the needle sizing and thread tension correct). It also makes the cockpit feel much cozier in the evenings, and should even be usable under power since it doesn't obstruct visibility.

    The material isn't Sunbrella so its lifespan won't be unlimited, but I'll likely get the urge to make a second, better version long before it wears out.

    IMG_4014.jpg

    IMG_4015.jpg

    IMG_4017.jpg
    Sailing - the fine art of getting wet and becoming ill while slowly going nowhere at great expense.

    - Henry Beard

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jul 2007
    Location
    Wongawallan Oz
    Posts
    16,635

    Default Re: S&S 36 - Bits and Pieces

    Good to see you posting here, S&S 36 is one of my favourite designs and Kishmail looks lovely. I’d be interested in hearing more about Kintail and her refit if you find anything out, she looks very interesting and her size is a bit deceptive. She’s done a few Sydney Hobarts, starting in 1948 I think.
    Nice job on the awning by the way and I look forward to following your updates
    Greg
    Last edited by Larks; 10-28-2021 at 03:38 PM.
    Larks

    “It’s impossible”, said pride.
    “It’s risky”, said experience.
    “It’s pointless”, said reason.
    “Give it a try”, whispered the heart.

    LPBC Beneficiary

    "Keep away from people who try to belittle your ambitions. Small people always do that, but the really great make you feel that you, too, can become great!"

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Apr 2011
    Location
    Brisbane, Australia
    Posts
    2,834

    Default Re: S&S 36 - Bits and Pieces

    At the risk of being off-topic, but in answer to above, I'm posting my drawing of Kintail from the Hobart 2013 show. I met the owners, a delightful family, and spent a bit of time on the boat, and was later offered a place on her to sail down to Hobart the next trip. Unfortunately I couldn't make it. Designed by Walter Wilson and built in their Tasmanian yard.

    Details here: https://www.woodenboat.com/impressions-hobart-2017

    kintail wb.jpg
    Flat bottomed boats, you make the rockin' world go round.............

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Aug 2015
    Location
    Canberra, Australia
    Posts
    165

    Default Re: S&S 36 - Bits and Pieces

    Thanks Larks. Johnno, really appreciate that link - great to find out more about Kintail. Interesting that she’s classed as a ‘motorsailer’ - now that I look at her again, that hollow bow and flush deck are kind of motorsailer-y.
    Sailing - the fine art of getting wet and becoming ill while slowly going nowhere at great expense.

    - Henry Beard

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Dec 2001
    Location
    Connecticut, of the newer England.
    Posts
    12,284

    Default Re: S&S 36 - Bits and Pieces

    Gorgeous boat. I was moored near one for a couple of years and she was positively drool-worthy.
    What color are their hands now?

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