Saturday, 13 July 2013

Rob Roy Update

Is it a restoration or is it a repair?

Repairs to the Rob Roy sailing canoe's hull have started and over the last few weeks Shaune has replaced or repaired any broken ribs and beams using left over oak from the restoration of Shamrock's work boat. 

The original plan was to replace any broken or split planks. On closer inspection it was found that to replace all the affected planks would entail completely rebuilding the canoe, which could easily result in the loss of its present shape. Also the planks are made of pitch pine which is hard to come by and can be very expensive. The use of pitch pine helps explain how she managed survive the 30 years or more exposed to the elements. 

Plan B is to replace the one broken section of plank (done), tape up the split planks on the outer hull and then apply a layer of glass-reinforced plastic (GRP) on the inner hull. (GRP!! Gasps of horror from the purists.) By using GRP the majority of the hull will be the original timber and keep its original shape. More importantly it should be watertight as the intention is to sail the canoe on completion. Future maintenance will also be easer as drying out won't be such a problem.    

To replace the missing section of plank a small amount of pitch pine was acquired, but this was not long enough. To overcome this two lengths have been scarfed together, shaped and then steamed into place.

Currently Shaune has turned his attention to renewing the stem post as the original disintegrated when the large screws, used in a previous repair, were removed.

A decision is still needed on the sails and rigging layout with a simple lugsail currently favourite.    

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