It felt really good to get the salvaged pieces of centerboard trunk re-attached to the new mahogany keelson we put in. Again, I glued the salvaged pieces together with the added security of 8" dowels and a thickened epoxy mixture. As the glued dried, I was able to begin fitting the rest of the sole beams and cleats associated with them. In a few days, I had them all fitted and installed. The next step was to to bring out all the floorboards and see if I could figure out their order. It was pretty easy to find where each piece fit, since they are all unique in size and shape and after a little fitting here and there, they seemed to fit pretty well. They were then removed and the interior was given a final sanding before the first coat of Red Lead Primer was put down.
This was about as far as I got before we were kicked out of our shop space on Bartlett Road, and after an extra week in the shop (thanks Rick!) it was time to bring her outside again. Bringing her out into the light really revealed how much the boat had dried out in the heated shop. Some of the seams between the planks under the water line had grown to over a quarter of an inch. The plan was to put her in the water for a week as soon as possible to see how much those planks would swell up again.
While we debated the best course of action for launching, where we would put the boat, and wether we wanted to wake up at 5am on saturday morning for the high tide, I was able to get a few more coats of primer on the bare sole beams and thwarts. A new oak thwart was made to replace the one which had broken and an 1 inch cleat was glued onto the top of the centerboard box to take up for the salvaged wood shrinking.
We settled on a 5:30pm launch time on Friday and Alfie met me down at the launch ramp with Mike Pierce's boat to pull her over to the yacht club where she would sit for a week. She filled up with water right away which posed a small problem for getting her off the trailer, but after a little tug from the motorboat and a little muscle from me, she was pulled off without a scratch. Alfie towed her to the yacht club with about 4 inches of freeboard and I met him over there and tied her up to the dock where she would sit safe from wind and weather for the next week. I noticed tighter plank seams by the next day, and after a week, most of the boat had swelled up nicely. There are a couple areas with some minor gaps, but overall I am very happy with the outcome.
I put her on the hip and towed her back to the launch ramp where Pasquel met me with the trailer. It was more difficult getting her back on the trailer then it was getting her off, but with the help of 4 bilge pumps and some tricky trailer work, we were able to get her most of the way up onto the trailer and out of the water without putting too much stress on her.
Now that she is out of the water again, we will begin the process of putting new cotton and oakum in her seams and sealing them with seam compound. I have two more weeks before I leave to go sailing on the IMPALA in the Mediterranean and I hope to get most of the boat put back together and painted as much as I can.