The plan and our decision-making behind that plan has been covered in previous stories I’ve shared here on our website. These weekly articles are to give you the opportunity to see things unfold as I saw them. It has been a remarkable project to watch come together, and it has been fun watching Mike figure his way through all hurdles that rose along the way. We have also been in contact with Brodie McGregor of the Concordia Yard in Padanarum, Massachusetts (an old friend of Dan Moreland's) where they have overhauled a number of the 41’s.
Taking Tosca’s bottom down to bare wood gave us an idea of the condition of her planks, and then removing those planks gave us our first clear view of the was lurking beneath them. As you can see from the photos below (what we found, while not anywhere near as bad as what it could have been, credit due to Abeking & Rasmussen for the quality of the design & build, and her loving care over the years) was not particularly ideal. As you know, the decision was made that everything from the waterline down would need to come off to get at the frames and will be replaced with double planked mahogany. The bronze screw heads were mostly gone as well Right now Mike and Patricia are spiling and fitting the first layer of planks, so in addition to the old planks, I’m able to share a photo of the brand new under-planks below.
You will also note in the photos the many small screw holes in the frames from the screws that were taken out when the old planks were removed. Mike and Patricia have whittled tiny mahogany plugs to fill those holes. Why go to that trouble? Well, they need to be filled so that the new planks have solid wooden frames to be screwed into, and filling them with at the same type of wood means the entire frame - original wood and filled holes - will react equally to cold, heat and moisture. So the plugs will remain in place instead of getting loose and falling out, or swelling up and cracking the wood surrounding it. It’s a lot of work, but it’s important work and it’s being done right.