I wanted to post this work in progress. Before I moved to VT, I started restoring a boat with an old buddy who is an engineer and wooden boat builder. (If you are interested in seeing his stuff, send me an email or message. I don’t want to appear to be advertising for him. He builds 18’ wooden fishing boats that could be mistaken for being 100 years old, but he hides a lot of modern materials and techniques in them to make them hold up better.)
Anyway, last winter I was thinking of doing a kit boat and I asked this buddy which kit company he would recommend. He said, “Naw, don’t do that. I have a 1935 Old Town Square Stern that I stripped and never restored. It is worth about $75 in its current state. I will help you fix it in my shop.” So I couldn’t say “no” to such an offer from a real wooden boat guy and before I knew it I was buying 1950s era Sea Horse motors to restore along with it.
In fairness, this isn’t some kind of museum restoration. My buddy’s family bought this boat in 1968 for $10. When they picked it up, they had to dig the transom out of several years of mud. They fixed it and caught Muskie in it and wore it out. My buddy stripped it and got busy with kids and it sat in an outdoor shed for 20 years! The wood was brittle like straw when we pulled it out. So we are renovating more than restoring. Mainly, this is evident in the choices for hull covering: fiberglass rather than canvas, polyester in lieu of more traditional potting compounds and self-leveling gel coat for a very tough covering. And instead of a strict spar varnish interior we went with more durable finish.
Anyway, the pics are over at picasa:
Here it is after a lot polishing on the gel coat.
This is about where we started.
After some work to bring the wood back.
Big front end repair work.
Refinished and polished (original) seat.
There is now a whole bunch of follow on wood work with rub rails and the skeg and then bright work. And many thanks to my buddy who has kept working on it in my absence.