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Old 09-08-2012, 08:17 AM   #1
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Rebuild of a whale ship, I thought I had a big project

Ran across this thread on the woodenboat site. A very interesting write up on a whaler refit. I read for hours.

Charles W Morgan Restoration; A Volunteer's Perspective-1
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Old 09-08-2012, 09:26 AM   #2
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Unbelievable! After so many years they can still make this boat sail and she still has her beauty intact.
They say that wooden boats have a soul of their own for a reason. There it is!
Thank you for the post
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Old 09-08-2012, 09:29 AM   #3
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Wow. I got thru "Page 1" and bookmarked the rest for later. The thing that amazes me is the fact that all the reconstruction of frames, futtocks, etc is being done with modern power tools. I cannot imagine how those things were fabricated over 150 years ago.
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Old 09-08-2012, 09:48 AM   #4
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Wow. I got thru "Page 1" and bookmarked the rest for later. The thing that amazes me is the fact that all the reconstruction of frames, futtocks, etc is being done with modern power tools. I cannot imagine how those things were fabricated over 150 years ago.
I spent most of my summers growing up at a yard that built and repaired wooden boats. There were so many yard made "special tools" and in the right hands...the chips flew I think as fast as today's average woodworker with a modern power tool.

The real trick is the eye that says "good enough" without measuring...and it fits perfectly after walking it over to the boat...the work of a true master (not me...I'm a hack that gets it right on the third or fourth try...)
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Old 09-18-2012, 11:15 PM   #5
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Couple of trawlers and/or wooden boats I came across around home this summer... ya probably wouldn't guess it but some of these fishermen are worth lots of $$.
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Old 09-19-2012, 01:03 AM   #6
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I cannot imagine how those things were fabricated over 150 years ago.
When I was in college I bought a copy of a book called "American Fishermen" by Albert Cook Church. It's a small volume but it's a coffee table book of sorts in that it's a big collection of photographs by a man who documented the "golden age" of the fishing schooners of New England and the Canadian maritimes. All the big names are in here--- Bluenose, Gertrude L. Thebaud, Elsie, Elizabeth Howard, Columbia, and so on.

But in addition to his Fishermen's Race photos he also has sections on actually fishing with these schooners and building them. His photos of the boats being built are fascinating. One of them shows a master shipwright literally carving a mast out from a tree using a drawknife and adze. I recall the caption saying that these men did this kind of work totally by eye. Obviously a long-lost art.

My wife and I went out on the Bluenose II a few years ago before it was totally dismantled for a complete rebuild. One of the things I learned from the captain is that the original Bluenose was the first schooner of this kind to have been built from actual plans. All the boats prior to this had been built from drawings but they were more "approximations" than plans. The boat's took shape because the shipwrights of the day had the ability to transfer what was in their mind to what they were doing with the wood.

To this day nobody knows why the Bluenose was so fast. Even her owner/captain didn't know. The Bluenose II was built from the same plans in the same Lunenburg, NS yard by some of the same shipwrights who built the original Bluenose. And even accounting for its axilliary engines and propellers, the Bluenose II, while fast, is not nearly as fast as the original. But nobody has a clue why.

Half model of fishing schooner. Schooner Elizabeth Howard.



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