To cut down on future maintenance (varnishing) Shamrock's bowsprit, rigging blocks, masts, booms and gaffs are being stripped of varnish and coated with ‘Woodskin’.’ Woodskin’, a product combining varnish and oil, penetrates deep into wood, leaving a thin surface film that will not crack or flake. The advantages of Woodskin over varnish are: it's a lot easier to apply, scuffs and chips can be quickly repaired and simply requires a clean before applying a new coat when required. The disadvantage is that it's not quite as shiny as varnish.
John Habgood has joined Shamrock's repair team and is working with Shaune in the production and fitting of oak knees including a double knee on the starboard side. They have also been extracting the old Danish (square section) boat nails from the port side frames without damaging the existing wood. After initially driving the nails deeper into the frame, breaking the seal, most have been removed using a crowbar with a section of scaffold pole giving extra leverage. The remainder have had a section of threaded bar welded to the top and then using a tube, some drilled metal plates, some nuts and an impact wrench to draw them out. Removing the starboard side nails had been easer as most of the top section of frames has been renewed. There is a lot more working space on that side and tapered boat nails where used. With Shamrock's starboard side sheer line marked out Shuggs and Josh have faired the frame ends to the line and faired her beams to the sheer and camber to insure the new covering boards and deck planks will lay flat. They are also progressing with the repairs to her port side frames.
Shamrock's conservation work has been progressing well over the past few weeks with the following oak items cut fashioned and fitted.
Forward cargo hatch coaming main beam.
Extra forward beam. While not only providing extra strength this will also allow Shamrock's deck winch to be bolted through the deck and a beam at both ends. It was originally bolted through the deck and beam at one end with the other end through the deck and a loose reinforcing plank beneath.
One aft beam.
Aft deck shelf.
Aft deck shelf extended around warping horse and deadwood. This will prevent the deck moving around the deadwood and warping horse uprights helping to maintain a watertight seal.
Aft beam knees.
A total of four beams ended up being cut from the naturally curved oak tree originally acquired for the main beam.