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Hello Socrates,

I would go for a jointed option or maybe a laminated option.

I have not done much in the way of boat building other than small mine ply construction, however I do work with hardwood often. 

Planks of the width you have are bound to warp and maybe split over time, the window cut outs will not help and could be a weak point in the construction. I would use thinner planks and laminate them to provide extra strength to the construction, this would allow you to use a smaller planner. A lot more work for you but maybe more manageable.

Please let us know how you get on.

Regards

Alan  

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Having left Beccles with our friends, we crossed Breydon and proceeded to Potter a number of overnight pub stops. This was the first time we had been on the northern rivers on Grebe, previous times had been on hire boats. Whilst moored at Potter we met up with another owner of a Ripplecraft and where able to exchange ideas and view the two boats. I am not naming him or his boat, just in case I breach the rules of this group, except to say he knew a lot more about the boats than we did. This was a very informative and enjoyable day and we were able to borrow a wealth of material about the Ripplecrafts. Going under the Bridge in our won boat was exciting to say the least, (ok, small things amuse small minds). Our main fear was that we would exit the Bridge minus our rotten cabin sides, as we hurtled through at full throttle. The only issue was an encounter with an over zealous volunteer ranger who threatened us with a thousand pound fine! The reason for this was because we had very briefly gone alongside a de-masting mooring in order to let a struggling hire boat leave her mooring. The guardian of the River would have none of this and insisted on giving us an entirely un-necessary, and somewhat over the top talking to. Having left the riparian job's worth behind, we returned to Stokesby where we purchased fresh, live eels from the eel catcher. Whilst eating an evening meal of fried eels, we crossed Breydon that evening and moored overnight at the Berney Arms wind pump.

During the night we couldn't help noticing that our bilge pump was running almost constantly. You may know that sinking feeling? Not wanting to cause alarm or distress to our guests, we said nothing but returned to Somerleyton (slowly). Subsequent investigation revealed that there was a large section of our temporary plywood patch missing. We had put a patch over the starboard side of our hull in the hope that we could get one more season of cruising before replacing the planks. The patch was two feet square and had around 180 screws holding it in place.I have taken pictures but can't find them to show you. It is pretty impressive! 

We managed a week in October with a very good bilge pump and then took the boat into the shed to replace the offending planking. Now for the technical bit, I don't know if you are aware of how the Ripplecraft was put together? The planking is very unusual and a nightmare to get out. I know some of the people who read this have replaced this sort of planking so you will have sympathy with our boatbuilder. All in all six planks were replaced during the winter. The boat was also rubbed down and painted again. This was in order to eventually create a perfect finish (not yet achieved). The transom was rubbed down and varnished with a further three coats, there was no sanding of blue boats this year. 

Inside the boat, we replaced the lamps with LED, re-wired and had a shower fitted ready for the following year when we plan to put in a new water system. The wiring inside the boat was a  snakes party of wires everywhere. There was so much redundant wiring left by the previous owner, it appeared that he/she had not taken any old wiring out the boat and had simply added new wires to everything. We also had a temporary repair to strengthen the cabin sides.

Once again we were back in the water on time and on budget. Our boating season began in May and did not end until the beginning of November! For reasons I need not go into, I decided to take very early retirement - let the future begin! One of the many good things about spending so much time on the River is that we got to meet a lot of really good people.  Again, no names, but we have made several very good new new friends who have boats. We look forward to seeing you in 2018.

Broadland Grebe went back into the Shed on 1st November 2017, as planned. This year we are replacing cabin sides and decks. I will provide an up-date shortly.

 

Grebe at potter 2.jpg

grebe at potter.JPG

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4 hours ago, socrates said:

We managed a week in October with a very good bilge pump

You woodie (or is it woody?) owners are made of sterner/braver stuff than I :7_sweat_smile:

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Great thread, loving it.  :default_icon_bowdown: So much looking forward to meeting you on the river as and when.

We had to replace 'B.A's cabin sides entirely.  They were originally mahogany, they are now Iroko.  We managed each side in four large pieces no laminating solid single thickness throughout.  They were cut horizontally then biscuit jointed down their lengths, the vertical join is around the centre of the wheelhouse.  The forward section had to be bent into a curve nearest to the foc'sle, that was some job, far too big to go in our steamer so we did them cold over a period of weeks teasing them round, I seem to remember we did use hand held large wall paper strippers to steam locally on some sections, needles to say it worked!

Anyroadup, keep up the good work and more importantly, keep us lot informed :default_beerchug:

Griff

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I read the bit about Beccles with a heavy heart, first time we turned up there, was in the dying days of the Vintage Wooden Boat gathering, five years of pouring money into our project and looking forward to being there. Turned up at Beccles late friday evening, hardly a soul spoke to us never mind a welcome. Next day the same, we just couldn't understand it, it was like we had turned up on a gin palace and expected to be welcomed.

Next day, late afternoon, as I walked down the quay looking at boats, somebody I vaguely recognised shouted over, "When is she off to the Thames then ?" well I was quite puzzled by this and said as such, seems the rumour had got out that we were taking our restored broads boat and putting her where she didn't belong. well I put him right and the half a dozen or so within hearing range. Next morning, and all of a sudden we were welcome, bit late I thought, you can stuff this !

Now Dave, the organiser of the present meet, asked us to come along, I told him we were not that bothered and explained the reason, still he persevered and we went. What a brilliant weekend, lovely people, lovely boats.

Do give it another chance, don't think you would regret it.

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The original Vintage Boat crowd were a strange bunch. We turned up to a rally once on a Broads sailing cruiser built in 1908. We felt like fish out of water! We didn't bother after that. However, in its new guise it's a totally different animal.  Lots of aged fart boats though :10_wink:

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9 hours ago, JennyMorgan said:

Lots of aged fart boats though :10_wink:

lots of aged farts with them :default_gbxhmm:

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I go to the NBN summer meet at Beccles and apart from the members here and the staff in the office I have always found the other boaters there to be a most unfriendly crowd, critical of boats and their owners. Apart from the meet, wild horses wouldn't drag me there. Pity, Beccles is a nice town.  

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32 minutes ago, MauriceMynah said:

I go to the NBN summer meet at Beccles and apart from the members here and the staff in the office I have always found the other boaters there to be a most unfriendly crowd, critical of boats and their owners. Apart from the meet, wild horses wouldn't drag me there. Pity, Beccles is a nice town.  

Gosh, I don't recognise Beccles in that! Personally I always enjoy my visits there. 

Sitting on the bank, slurping ice creams, criticising all around me, great!! No, just not so. Of course there are some critical buggers about, but they are not endemic to Beccles, they could be just about anywhere, the miserable buggers! 

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Just as a little add on, I thought I would show a few pictures of the hull. You can see the hole where the patch was and the lovely rotten planks. This gives an indication of the state of neglect and overall lack of general maintenance over the previous years. The bilges were filthy and had not been cleaned or painted for years. The lack of care resulted in an accumulation of what can only be described as "crud". This "crud" held moisture which, of course, provided a breeding ground for rot. This rot appeared to have worked from the inside out. Several soft spots were found, the previous owners had patched them from the inside using an interesting variety of materials and methods. These included car filler, lumps of wood cut from old furniture, bits of copper and a huge piece of rusty iron! All of the offending patches were removed with varying degrees of difficulty and the loan of a grinder. 

The picture of the new planks show how the hull planks run. An additional butt strap has been fixed at the bottom of the transom. On completion the planks were treated with wood preserver and anti-foul. The hull had been tar varnished at some point, there was little evidence of any recent anti-foul or preservation of the hull. Grebe had spent been kept in the water all year by the previous owners

grebe rotten hull.JPG

Grebe new hull planks.JPG

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And I was fretting over an osmosis blister or two! :default_rolleyes: Astounding the boat never sank.

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5 minutes ago, Regulo said:

And I was fretting over an osmosis blister or two! :default_rolleyes: Astounding the boat never sank.

We had a decent bilge pump and a crew of four with pans! We cruised from Stokesby to Somerleyton with this

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15 minutes ago, Regulo said:

And I was fretting over an osmosis blister or two! :default_rolleyes: Astounding the boat never sank.

It’s a wooden boat ...right, wood floats.   :default_coat:

 

Doug.

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15 minutes ago, MauriceMynah said:

As proven by the Mary Rose.  :-)

And she, like Vasa, was to rise from the sea-bed thus proving the durability of wood!

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Wouldn't like to cruise from Stokesby to Somerleyton in either of them though . . . even with a good bilge pump and four crew with saucepans! :default_biggrin:

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Apparently, the Ministry of Defence has confirmed the Royal Navy's brand new £3 billion aircraft carrier, HMS Queen Elizabeth, has a leak #HeartNews.

At least there's plenty of crew with their own tin cups.

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Hi socrates,  loving the write up! Ignore the armchair admirals I know exactly how you feel Rosalind is over the other side of the marina from you and I have had to replace almost all the interior, cabin and sliding roof sides on a tight budget, and still more to go  :default_icon_cry:

Just have to say though that I have always loved the ripple craft style , they have a look and class all their own, I'm not envious at all ! Much :default_coat:lol

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Broadland Grebe went into the Shed at the beginning of November 2017 for the winter 2017 restoration work. Top of the list are the replacement of cabin sides, deck, sliding roof and hatches (not being too ambitious), then there is the matter of fitting two new water tanks and a pressurised water system. There will also be the usual deep clean, strip, varnish and paint.  If tie permits we will start stripping and re-varnishing some of the centre cabin. We aim to back in the water for the middle of May as usual. 

Preparation began last May with the sourcing and purchase of yet another large quantity of timber, and other necessary items. This was stored over the summer months when continued plans and discussions were had. The essential job is to replace the decks and cabin sides, these are in an horrendous state and we have been pushing our luck with regard to the sides actually staying on the boat. A torrent of water comes into the boat when it rains, usually soaking our guests on the rear bunk. The rear hatch is a disgrace, the previous owners paid money for some bodge job which looks like an old table top. The hatch has warped to such an extent that it will not close and it is an ugly mess. Consulting with a friend, it was agreed to replace it with a lifting hatch rather than a sliding one using good quality ply. Thus, allowing ventilation, easy access, and ventilation; the hatch will have gas struts and be varnished. 

In early November we set about the task of removing the decks.The toe rails and top rubber was removed, then work began to take up the deck. This was a more difficult and slower task than anticipated for several reasons. Not least of these was the amount of car filler used to hold down the track mark. The track mark had been badly laid and did not overlap at the edges, so it leaked. Instead of fitting the track mark correctly, the previous owner had filled the gaps with car filler and other assorted gunk in order to try and prevent water getting into the boat. This attempt at damage control had the opposite effect, water simply found another way in and gathered in the piles of gunk causing rot to the wood under the track mark. Hacking away for 4 days made little impact, so we resorted to a jigsaw. A friend took a further 4 days to complete this task.

Another week in the Shed eventually saw the starboard cabin side removed. We took our tie with this as we needed to use the old side as a pattern. One thing about these boats is that they were not designed to come apart easily, every screw fought against attempts to remove it. Using a grinder, we removed the side from the roof, and slowly wedged the side apart from the boat. To our surprise the beam shelf is in not too bad condition, a clean up and a few coats of preserver will enable most of the original wood to be kept. The frames are not in bad condition, again a coat of wood preserver and paint should be enough. 

nasty track mark.jpg

under track mark.jpg

frames and rot.jpg

cabin side rot inside.jpg

wood pile.JPG

decks removed 2.jpg

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On 12/19/2017 at 10:22, High6 said:

 

From the above pictures, you can clearly see the damage caused by years of neglect and bodging. The port side of Grebe is the worst, the reason being this was the side moored to the bank at her previous mooring which was under trees. A combination of this and the lack of general cleaning contributed to the sad state of affairs we are currently sorting out. Poor choice of materials for repairs including bits of old furniture and the ubiquitous car filler did not help.  

The wood of the aft cabin had split and was filled with sealant and car filler in order to stop water coming in, it didn't work and water dripped onto the back bunk. When the wood was removed, we noticed that yet more filler had been used to "diret" the water into the bilge, this only served to create a large grot spot beneath the rear bunk. This grot spot turned out to be the cause of the hole mentioned in the earlier post. 

The deck had been laid so that any water accumulated in corners (as illustrated), over time this had rotted the corner of the forward bulkhead and can be seen in the second picture. This will be cut out and replaced before being covered with epoxy. This time the deck will be angled correctly in order for the water to run off the decks. Clearly, whoever "repaired" the decks had little concept of the basic laws of physics. 

 

aft cabin view.jpg

grebe stb rot.JPG

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Incredible. You're doing a fantastic job and I take my hat off to you making sure that such a beautiful craft can be preserved. Its fascinating to see the work as it unfolds.

Yes, the one at Potter is fairly well known and if the owner is who I think he is, then he certainly knows his stuff!

Keep up the good work. :default_beerchug:

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Very pleased to see this old tub being lovingly restored. You have mentioned a boat builder,  you are lucky to have him. Has he ticked the 'no publicity' box?

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6 hours ago, Samuel said:

Very pleased to see this old tub being lovingly restored. You have mentioned a boat builder,  you are lucky to have him. Has he ticked the 'no publicity' box?

Thanks for your comment. The person who did the planks is a close friend, he has the experience and skills needed for such as task. The cabin sides are being made in Somerleyton by someone who has worked on Ripplecraft when they were in the hire fleet, and some other work is being done by someone who has worked on another Ripplecraft boat. We are doing the rest ourselves. We want to ensure everything is done properly first time, as we have seen a lot of DIY work which , with the best intentions, is pretty poor. We are indeed fortunate to know such people. No names are mentioned in order not to inadvertently fall foul of forum regulations regarding advertising etc.We are very particular who does work on Grebe, apart from ourselves there are only three people. The engine was fitted and is maintained under warranty.All our wood is sourced from the same supplier in Wroxham.

We believe that this is the best way to ensure a high level of quality control is maintained throughout the process of restoration. 

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Hi Socrates total respect to you in this restoration! Fascinating reading would say more but. My springer spaniel has launched herself into my lap so makes typing difficult :-) keep up the good work and upda

IMG_-ycbuv7.jpg

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