About a month ago, I went down to Mobile to look at the 1918 Lawley Yawl, 68' LOD, called White Wings. It was truly impressive, sitting there in her slip, despite her sad state. It was mostly gutted, leaking visibly in spots, rotted decks, rotted thru in some of the massive double sawn frames. Prior to this, I had never entertained the notion of buying a wooden boat, for all the sensible reasons. But going thru her, examining the construction details, smelling the rich damp odor of oil and wood, I was awakened to the tremendous degree of skill, design, beauty and history the boat represented. I spent the next couple weeks feverisly trying to assess the rebuild effort. At first, I was shocked an surprised to find a complete derth of information regarding wood boat restoration. I found a couple relavent books at the library. I talked to a few friends with admittedly little experience w/ wood boats. In the end, after agonizing, I decided not to make an offer. I has sold since.
This long preamble leads up to this question: does anyone have any experience working on truly big boats? How do you fit and bend 2" thick strakes? How do you do keel work on a 35 ton boat? Is this size renovation completely outside the realm of possibility for a determined amateur?