It has been a long time since I posted on this site and even longer since I updated the status of my restoration of a 19′ Bartender. In fact, I was still in the deconstruction phase of the project when I last shared any information on this blog. The project has been exacting and time consuming and a great learning experience.
I decided to replace all of the frames in the boat. This is kind of difficult. What I do is I obtain the shape of the inside of the hull at each frame using a compass and a board. The board is place on top of the frame inside the boat and the compass is used to scribe the inside shape of the hull onto the board. Now you have the shape of the bottom of the hull drawn on the board. This shape is transferred to a sheet of MDF and then from there re-transferred to a new, quality piece of stock. Voila. New cross member. The piece you see in the foreground has the shape of the hull drawn on it. Once the piece of stock has been cut an exact fit is obtained using either a planer or a angle-grinder.
My friend Bill helped immensely by showing me how to do this. He has also helped by fabricating the most difficult pieces (with the steepest and compound bevels) due to both his superior tools and skills. He also cuts the basic form of each side frame using a jig and his tablesaw and places the bevel on the side frames using his band saw. Thanks Bill. Tuna runs are on me! (When I’m done, that is.)
Speaking of side frames, we run the stock long to get the basic frame shape. I place the bottom of the frame in the boat and utilize a piece of wood that crosses the bottom portion of the frame vertically(ish) and also touches the side of the boat. I place reference lines on the bottom frame piece and thus am able to locate the outside of the sides of the hull on my MDF sheet so I am able to cut and bevel the bottom of the side rib and fit it in place in the hull. Reading over my explanation of this process, it is easier to demonstrate than to explain.
I have replaced eight of the twelve frames and in the process of replacing the ninth. I also need to replace sections of the keel and that is what is holding me up, at the moment at least from completing the frame replacement portion of the project.
You might notice the pieces of ply under some of the the frames. These pieces reinforce the hull because tough the ply was generally sound, there were portions that weren’t which were removed in order to prevent future issues.