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When To Replace Planking?

Discussion in 'Wood and Canvas' started by vtwoodworker, Oct 28, 2018.

  1. vtwoodworker

    vtwoodworker Curious about Wooden Canoes

    So the ot I picked up is in remarkable shape, some stem repair and ovious planking where there was impact.

    But....what about the planking that is just split from drying out? Is it OK to leave this??? There is a lot, this canoe has been in a barn for over 50 years.... it feels kind of btittle. Thinking once cleaned up and varnished it will have more pliability. I actually left it in the rain yesterday b to clean some of it up and see if it rehydrated a lttle. Might have been a bad move, not sure.

    Thanks!
     
  2. MGC

    MGC Paddlephile

    I usually aim to leave as much original wood as possible when I repair/restore. Splits may not affect structure depending upon where and how bad they are. You should post some pictures to help us assess what you are concerned about. More of a concern (in my opinion) is re-clenching the tacks to make sure that the hull is tight before you canvas.
    WRT re-hydrating...once a boat is totally it tends to stay that way. All that leaving it in the rain does is to make it heavier for a while and discolor the wood.
    Most of us will put a blend of oils or varnish on the outside of the hull once repairs are done and then prep the inside with thinned varnish or shellac before finishing it. None of these treatments truly penetrate very deeply. Experiment on a piece of old wood to convince yourself of that.
    Don't get too worried about how dry it is. By the time you have canvassed it the hull will feel much more viable than it does now.
     
    vtwoodworker likes this.
  3. OP
    OP
    vtwoodworker

    vtwoodworker Curious about Wooden Canoes

    Thanks! Other than one stem completely splot vertically in to like 10 pieces, and a few small impact "cracks/holes" in the planking, a section of inwhale split off where a thwart was attached (guessing someone sat on it!) Nad a splot off corner of one deck, it really doesn't seem that bad. Lots of stripping in my future...lots...looks like it was painted green in the 70s, based upon the fabric used to cover the seats!

    I'll pot some pics tonight thanks everyone! My goAL is definitely to use as much original wood as possible.
     
  4. MGC

    MGC Paddlephile

  5. OP
    OP
    vtwoodworker

    vtwoodworker Curious about Wooden Canoes

    Thank you. So at what point do people say, strip and refinish the interior vs. just a cleaning and light sanding, revarnish? Lots of goodpatina and a very dark interior for this beautiful 108 year old boat makes me think twice about strippings its heritiage and battle scars. There are a lot of spots where what I considre a danenberg(wood boat guy) restoration appropriate to keep it more original in appearance- epoxy/filler injection and a good sanding. I'm still amazed how good a lot of the boat looks, other than one shotty repair with through bolts and square nuts!
     
  6. OP
    OP
    vtwoodworker

    vtwoodworker Curious about Wooden Canoes

  7. monkitoucher

    monkitoucher Canoe Curious

    I replaced all of the planking on my Charles River. The main reasons were that it had been fibreglassed and was used as a Livery boat when it was first bought. Nearly all of the planks were marred with significant gouges. I really like the end result although I think I could have spent a little more time fairing everything before the canvas. It also gave me the opportunity to use quartersawn western red cedar.

    Your canoe looks like it's in a lot better shape than mine.

    If patina is your thing then I don't refinish it. Couple things to keep in mind though. An older finish like yours is probably a failing finish. Not taking the time to restore it will in all likelihood allow it to continue its decline. Also if you strip it you will have a better time seeing possible cracked ribs and stuff that you will need to address before the canvas.

    I think you'll be happier if you try to do it the best you possibly can in the long run.
     
  8. OP
    OP
    vtwoodworker

    vtwoodworker Curious about Wooden Canoes

    Thanks. I appreciate the input. Is the dark interior probably just from exposure over time, or could it have been stained from the factory? I'll probably strip the whole interior- good point on exposing any hard to see damage. I hadn't thought of that, thanks.
     
  9. Benson Gray

    Benson Gray Canoe History Enthusiast Staff Member

    Old Town did not usually stain the interiors of their canoes (except when trying to get different types of mahogany to match better). I suspect that sun exposure has darkened the interior of yours.

    Benson
     
  10. OP
    OP
    vtwoodworker

    vtwoodworker Curious about Wooden Canoes

    Thanks Benson!
     
  11. MGC

    MGC Paddlephile

    Boy...that stem is interesting looking....Mr. Twister. You might be replacing all or most of that.
    Most of the planking that you showed looks really good. Repair the places where it's been poorly repaired or where there are splits..re-clench all of the tacks after you strip and sand it.
    I use the most evil caustic stripper I can find and then use TSP and then Snappy Teak to prep for sanding, lot's of sanding followed by more sanding and then yet more sanding..........you'll get the color back with varnish. I don't like to finish an old canoe with high gloss varnish so I use Epifanes Matt varnish for the final coat.
     
  12. OP
    OP
    vtwoodworker

    vtwoodworker Curious about Wooden Canoes

    So what about warped/cupped planking? should that be ripped out? some of it is pretty wrinkly...how much fairing should I do on the exterior hull prior to covering?

    Right now my plan of action is probably this:
    -Strip interior
    -Clean entire boat as much as possible.
    -Mark and make list of repairs
    -Stem repair
    -inwhale scarph
    -pull inwhales
    -Rib repairs
    -planking
    -install inwhales
    -pull exterior gunnels
    -pull keel
    -then start the big rebuild/refinish steps.

    Thoughts?

    Thanks!

    -
     
  13. MGC

    MGC Paddlephile

    Warped and cupped wood should be replaced if it is not solid structurally or if it will not tack back down to the ribs. It's a judgment call. You can do some amount of faring to sort things.
    WRT to the order of work, just make sue that you form your replacement ribs over the hull while it is still holding it's proper shape.
    I usually remove the outside rails and keel while the hull is being stripped although on a recent clodhopper I left them on so that it would hold its shape....there are no hard and fast rules. You go as you go. As you work through it you'll decide how you might approach the next one you do. Like taco's, one is never enough.
     
  14. OP
    OP
    vtwoodworker

    vtwoodworker Curious about Wooden Canoes

    Thanks, there's a LOT of cuped wood, especially in the bow between the last rib and the stem. The bummer is it is solid, just not flat:-( I'm sure reclenching will help a lot in some places, but the wood is obviously flat sawn and the last 70yrs in a dry barn/garage rafters has sure taken its toll on moisture cintent to the extreme.

    Thanks for the feedback. I figures I'd leave rails on to begin with for shape, and one needs a good 2 foot section repaired. Figured this would be best achieved on the boat for shape.

    Yes, this is number 2 already. I have an ancient em white guide with long decks and curved stern seat waiting on the rack. I ripped it apart after realI zing the bow and stern has been spray foamed yeas ago and it is stI'll covered in glass.....not a pecnof sl wood left in either end. I have a thread with pics here somewhere. I've been letting it dry out. FouND thus OT locally for free and decided it was a better boat to start with. Though I have a 1956 Lyman and have restored other wooded boats. These are a little different, and I really want to do it right!
     

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