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40+ tonnes of Boatshite - engineshite update 9/5/20

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Will the spares boat be striped for its rudder and then weighed in?


Not scrapped so much as left as a blank starting point for a new owner to do a proper conversion on it. The idea that its just a spares boat is probably a bit unfair as its actually a great starting point for someone who was looking for medium size boat as either a home or to re engine and use on rivers / inshore waters.


When it gets sold a new owner will probably do one of the following things to it:


1, Install a new smaller engine up aft under the cockpit floor / in aft cabin. This would free up all the space in the engine room for accommodation. I would mean the boat could still be used inshore waters and would have the added benefit of better economy. The downside is it won't be capable of towing frigates anymore, and re-engining is a bit specialist and will be costly to do.


2, All the engine gearbox and prop are permanently removed this means that the entire space can become living accommodation, this is the ideal scenario if your going to moor it up somewhere on a semi permanent basis. Ie as a home or to let it out as holiday accomodation for mass profit. Downside is it will have to be towed away to a new location and will still need money spending on it to make the insides presentable.


3, Someone takes it on as a brave restoration oriented job like Dave has done with his, the downside will be that we are removing a lot of the difficult to source original bits for use on his boat.

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I actually wrote this post out yesterday but just as I was about to add the reply firefox crashed and ate the message...! Sorry there are no work in progress photos this time.




Since my last post Dave tried running the engine in gear and had discovered that the propshaft was seized, which meant getting the engine, gearbox out in order allow the intermediate shaft to be removed for investigation.


The plan was formed to bring it out on the slipway and to remove the propeller, propshaft and Skeg (bronze bracket which holds the rudder) Dave had already lifted the rudder and the engine out the week before.


While out on the slipway the plan was to inspect the bottom, evaluate the copper sheaving, make any repairs needed and then give the whole boat a decent coat of paint.



The prop came off easily but the prop shaft was seized solid and repeated effort with the slege hammer would not dive it far enough inboard to get it out. The white metal bearings had spun at both ends of the stern tube. The propshaft had also badly de-zincified around the bearing carrier which effectively meant it was scrap. In the angle grinder was the only thing that was able to get it out.


The copper turned out to be in very good condition, it needed only minor repairs to get it up to a decent standard. The timber underneath has been protected amazingly well illustrating that copper over teak construction method really does last.














The final task was painting her up in the traditional buff and black of the Royal Fleet Axillary which I hope you'll all agree looks much better:
















Aft Cabin








Engine Room (former)




















And finally a shot of her ready for relaunch...






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I was in awe of the whole project when I first saw this thread. Nothing has changed, except that I now want the " spares " boat to live in.

Can you put the sail back up and deliver please!

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Great thread. I've really enjoyed reading - and learned a bit about boats too!


What's the difference between a boat and a ship then?


Edit: I just Googled it so, on second thoughts, let's not get tangled up in that debate :D

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Brief update, the spares boat has left the island... It was towed away to the mainland by a towage firm on behalf of her new owner. I believe the plan will be to make her into a live aboard with a hope to refit a new engine of some description.


The next update will either be on the subject of galley / fore cabin work...

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Love this thread. Should have been a tv program really.

"Next time on Boatshite..."


Just got up to date with this myself and they make a handsome pair moored up together. Glad a buyer was found though.

This is one of the best Autoshite threads ever.

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Mould overload on that interior before you got cracking, the must have had a breathtaking aroma quite literally.


Cracking stuff happening as expected in this thread, and quite a transformation on the 'spares' boat from where you started.  Only one question, how on earth did you get the engine out?  It's not like you can drop the subframe so I can only assume you either lifted it out the top somehow or manhandled it through the entire boat.

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Mould overload on that interior before you got cracking, the must have had a breathtaking aroma quite literally.


Cracking stuff happening as expected in this thread, and quite a transformation on the 'spares' boat from where you started.  Only one question, how on earth did you get the engine out?  It's not like you can drop the subframe so I can only assume you either lifted it out the top somehow or manhandled it through the entire boat.


The roof of the engine room unbolts, and was slid backward on some scaffold tube the engine was then removed by crane. In the spirit of autoshite I'd like to assure readers that the crane was an Iron fairy, Guaranteed to be 100% crane shite very similar to this one:






What an absolutely brilliant thing for a 17 year old to buy, how did you come about it anyway? How much was it to buy back then?


I believe Dave bought his boat primarily as somewhere to live, he grew up living on boats and lived on a similar HSL in Penryn cornwall before moving to the island I suppose by the time he was 17 he was looking for his own place. I don't actually know how much he spent to buy it... and i darent think how much has been spent on it since! I can however guarantee its a lot less than you'd spend either renting or buying a house.

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Hooray for Iron Fairy cranes, one of the stranger names for heavy machinery.


Was going to say 'Seriously?' - then I googled it and found out it was true!!! Great name.


As others have said, not that into boats myself but this is terrific, thought I was something special when I was 17 and had my Mini 1000, but to take on this at that age takes some stones that I didn't have/still haven't got.


Well done, nice job and congrats on sticking with the project when many other older and supposedly wiser folk would have quit, a nice retort to those who run the youngsters down all the time.

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I've been getting on with quite a bit since my last post:


Hardwood for the stern has been bought (£830 +vat) so I can make a jig up and laminate the fashion pieces (frames) for that up in the workshop over the winter.


220ft of 6"X1" Iroko has been ordered for the top rubbing strake (£900 +vat) Currently waiting for long enough pieces of timber to come into the country as theres a shortage of anything over ten foot at the moment.

Should be here this month and will go into storage in the loft at work until the spring when it will get fitted.


Timber slats (larch) have been bought for the hull side lining (or ceiling in nautical terminology!) (£300 +vat) now machined, painted and fitted. No photos showing completion though -sorry.


Starboard side bunks/seats have been built - as with the port side these are pretty much identical to the originals just slightly better made. the originals had been hacked about quite a bit over the years. New navy blue cushions and backrests have been made up by the upholsterer and look very smart - again no photos yet.


Lighting mast/flag mast that goes on top of the wheelhouse is pretty much ready to fit, This came off the spares boat and is a very nice fabricated alloy mast but had been moved off the wheelhouse and mounted onto the foredeck at some point. it was missing the stays and flanges that are meant to hold it upright. Replacements have now been fabricated out of 10mm alloy plate and 1.3/4" tube. will get some photos before I fit it.


Various other little jobs have been done inside and out. will try and sort some photos soonish.




Starboard Bunks during construction:





Detail shot showing attachment of (dirty!) slats to tripled up frame:





I've also finally got round to fitting the lining pieces around the cabin sides, these cover up the join between the steel coachroof, plywood deck and oak carlin. 

I bought the timber to make them about 3 years ago, roughly machined them to size two years ago and trimmed them closer to size and painted them in primer about 8 months ago. 


Since then they've been sat behind the stove being ignored - every one is a differant size and shape, the ends are bevelled in several directions to fit against the steel frames and theres various cutouts on the back to go over bolt heads and steelwork. fitting and fettleing was a tedious job! Theyre glued in place using polyurethane adhesive (tiger seal/panel bond type stuff)



Fitted (also given this one a quick coat of the eggshell finish paint I'm intending to use on all the interior steelwork) :






Other side of cabin prior to fitting (or cleaning!) :






You can never have too many clamps! (provided they're british made)






After glueing and cleaning up, hinges fitted:






This shows the general construction of the lids:






Detail of locker lid corner-joint:






Locker Lids all finished:






Finished Bunk Top, (fiddle rail/edging has since been fitted to stop the cushions sliding off):



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Am I right in thinking these bunks are below the waterline and if so, does it get pretty cold in there as a result?  I've often wondered about the practicalities of living on a boat all year round, I imagine it's pleasant enough in the warmer months but not so nice in the winter.

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