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Julia and I spent a quick and very quiet week in Maine recently, staying at the Barn, about a mile or so from the Landing, our usual spot. No Eggomoggin Reach view, but quietly placed in the woods, at the edge of a meadow. At the top of the hill behind the Barn, there’s a view of the Camden Hills over a blueberry field. Very tranquil with no TV or wireless. Adequate 3G signal allowed contact with the outside world.

Our visit was timed to match the 40th Anniversary Celebration last weekend at WoodenBoat Magazine in Brooklin, Maine. After a boat yard tour and firemen’s barbeque on Friday, we went to a Lobster Dinner at the grounds of WB. The office, boatbuilding school and extensive meadows overlook Eggomoggin Reach and the Babsons. It was great to celebrate a long journey with Jon Wilson, Mike Murphy, Scott Bell and the rest of the WB staff and readers.

We went for a short sail on Monday in the harbor at WoodenBoat with Anne and Colin aboard Mimi Rose. She’s a 32′ Joel White sloop that’s near the top of my list for a perfect cruising boat. You can follow along with Anne, Colin and dog Maye at their blog, From Pine to Palm.

The Duckboat Worlds were a week ago, but the Easterlies were a bit much for this slow sailor. Last year I had a problem with what turned out to be a backwards mast step. The heel of the mast needs trimming as well. Now that Sjogin’s almost done, thoughts turn to more Duckboat sailing. A shallow draft rudder is next on the list for Speedwell.

Lots of recent progress on Sjogin. The first two of three primer coats is on and the planking looks better than expected. At this point she could pass a twenty foot test. There’s also varnish on the rails and the new teak hatch sealed and looking good.

Paul’s been busy installing a new deck prism, set between the mast and the mooring bit as well as reinstalling the vent plate forward. And there’s a new collar for the mast coat. Thens there’s Jeff’s work on the bottom. All the rivet heads have been cleaned and re-puttied and the bottom’s been painted. Very smooth. Progress on many fronts.

The Barn
Julia swatting gnats at our idyllic spot in the Maine woods. Very quiet. The outdoor shower in the back is enclosed only by the Maine woods. Private and delightful on a brisk morning.

Dave Tew
Dave Tew, WBF friend, at Brooklin Boat Yard along side a Frers 74. BBY was the first stop on the boatyard tour. The deadlights in the hull and deck are designed by Frank Gehry. Amazing effort by the crew at BBY. Extremely meticulous work.

John Brooks
John Brooks discussing his brilliant new Dragon Flyer design. She would be great on Stockton Lake.

Unique perspective
Here’s a Fisher’s Island 31 undergoing restoration at Brion Reiff’s yard.

R Boat
A new R Boat under construction at Reiff’s yard. The amount of boat building talent in the Brooklin area is incredible.

Harbor at WoodenBoat
Here’s the harbor at WoodenBoat, just off Eggomoggin Reach. Low tide with the Babson Islands in view. Ahhhhh…..

Thank you WoodenBoat for the boatyard tours, the hospitality, a great lobster dinnah’ and forty years of keeping the dream alive….

Sailing to Manto
On the way to MYC the day before the Worlds. The mast step issue seems resolved but still not sure how it would work in moderate winds. More testing needed.

New Duck!
One of the new Beaton Duckboats being launched for the first time. Where’s the Champagne?

The hull after two coats of Interlux sealer. This will help keep the moisture from the bare inside face of the plank from lifting the paint. We’ll see.

Second coat
Second coat of primer. After a bit of filing the worst spots a third coat will go on. Then the sanding, fairing and getting ready for the two finish coats begins.

Close up
Here’s a close-up showing the rediscovered waterline. A bit of creative tool use restored the groove that divides the colors. With a slight groove at the waterline it’s easy to get a crisp edge without relying on tape.

More soon. I promise Peter.

Save the date!

It looks like I’m running out of things to do. Not really but the end is in sight. Sealing, priming, filling all the thousand imperfections and then two coats of finish on the hull and installing the deck gear should take another month or so even at my glacial pace.

So for those who would like to share the return of Sjogin to the waters of Barnegat Bay (hopefully more benign that last time she was afloat), Saturday, September 20th is the date.

We’ll have drinks and snacks from three to six at David Beaton and Sons in Brick, New Jersey. The launching will be at four. If you’re near (or far) come by to share in Sjogin’s launching.

Here are a few pics from the last few weeks:

Rail down
Two coats of finish on the toe rails.

Seattle Gray deck color by Kirby. It was like painting sand paper and not easy under the rails. Don’t look too close.

The view aft. It will never look better than this.

Swelling the garboards
Starting the swelling process. Sjogin’s in a slightly bow down position which allows water to sit and soak in all along the garboard. She’s been out of the water for almost two years and will need time in the slings to return to normal. We hope the new normal will be dry bilges eventually.

As if I didn’t need more boat work. Speedwells deck is ready for a fresh coat of finish. The Duckboat Worlds are on August 22nd, a few short weeks away.

Duckboat Frenzy at Beaton’s.

New ones
Meanwhile, the new ones are being completed in the wood shop. A fine tradition going back almost sixty years.

Small craft
Interesting neighbors for Sjogin. Looks like a museum exhibit. The lapstrake skiff is the Herreshoff Columbia Model Dinghy that I helped Tom Beaton built about 30 years ago.

Irene and Serena
Irene Tasay and Serena dancing in a nice six knot Easterly.

Let me know if you can join us on September 20th.

Boatbuilding at Beaton’s

The two new Duckboats at Beaton’s are coming along nicely. The first one’s off the jig and already primed. The second one’s being planked. I expect at least one of them will be ready for the Duckboat Worlds on August 22nd.

One of my favorite boats at Beaton’s is back in the water. She’s the catboat Irene Tasay, same model as Frances, the Crosby cat at Mystic, as I learned from her owner Tom. After a few years on the back row, she’s been caulked painted and made ready for another Summer gracing the inner basin at Beaton’s.

New Duck
Fresh off the jig with her deck and hull faired and ready for finishing. That’s a catboat mast in front.

Fairing frames
Here’s Pete fairing the frames on the second Duck.

Sealed and ready for primer.

Deck beams fit forward and the planking continues. Last Winter, Pete made parts for two boats so this one is going together pretty quickly.

And then the painting starts. Paul’s getting ready to install the coaming and trim.

Irene Tasay
And here’s Irene Tasay, in Sjogin’s slip for now. She’ll be on a mooring the next time I see her.

I’ve always admired the Crosby cat Frances, on permanent display in the boat shed at Mystic. I now know why Irene Tasay struck a chord. Both are fine examples of the Cape cod catboat.

More Sjogin updates as progress warrants.

Back from Mystic

and making steady progress on Sjogin. First a few pics are from our visit which also featured the celebration of forty years of WoodenBoat magazine. Hard to believe all that time has gone by. I started following the traditional wooden boat revival with John Gardner’s monthly column in the National Fisherman. That lead to the Sea Bright skiff Puffin, which lead to the tabloid cruiser Caprice, then to the Bullseye Caroline and then finally to Sjogin in 1985.

There’s been real progress on Sjogin, with the second coat of primer to the new wood applied last week. After sanding and another coat of primer, then two coats of finish complete the above deck work. Once the rails, house and coaming are finished, then the deck gets two coats of finish paint. And then on to the hull. And on and on.

Lots of Duckboat building activity at Beaton’s. The first one’s off the jig and work is started on the second one. One of my favorites at Beaton’s, the catboat Irene Tasay, has been rescued and launched.

Don’t forget to check the Flickr feed and FaceBook for other Sjogin pics and news.

Julia and the Silent Maid. Barnegat Bay was well represented at the show with Myth and Vim also in attendance.

Not at the show but at a coffee shop on the way. Looks like she works for a living.

Vim in all her glory. Looking forward to seeing her under sail on the Bay. She sports a rather large rig.

Schooners at Sunset. Taken during the 40th Anniversary Party for WoodenBoat Magazine. Fine event with lots of stories.

I found out at the party that Jon Wison, founder of WoodenBoat Magazine is a regular reader of this Blog. Delighted to learn this. Who knew. And thanks to all readers of Hove to off Swan Point. Still posting as slow as I can.

Brand new Arey’s Pond Catboat out for her maiden sail. Very happy owners on board.

Another fine WoodenBoat Show at Mystic. Hope to bring Sjogin next year. It would be a treat to heave to next to the Morgan.

She has a Sole!
Cockpit sole progress. One inch scant teak boards. There will be more pieces added to match the planking. The new seats will cover the forward corners and be a place to store gear.

The new wood looks great with a coat of sealer but it will all be painted to match her pre-Sandy look.

The new hatch sits on the deck. Sanding is next.

It's called boat sanding, not boat building.
Sanding between coats of sealer. It’s all been done by hand so far. Zen like work so far.

First coat of primer on the new wood. She’s starting to look like her old self.

The white really sets off the bright rub rail. Julia to start sanding and varnishing the rail soon.

The painting will continue until all of the house, coamings, rub rails and such are done. Then the pleasure of painting the deck. When that’s done, the hull painting and lots of sanding will begin.

I think we’ll be able to schedule a launch in late August. The spars still need refinishing, the cabin sole needs to be re-installed, the cockpit sole and seats need fashioning etc, etc. With all of that we hope to set the date for a commissioning party in mid September.

Next post will have an update from Beaton’s. Till then…

Another month’s gone by

and I’m feeling guilty about the lack of of a new post.

Here’s a few quick pics of Sjogin in the shed being very slowly prepared for painting. I’m starting from the house down because if the hull get’s done first there’s always the temptation to finish the deck and house painting “when it’s in the water”.

Sealer has been applied to all the bare wood. (From the deck up so far.)

Though the new wood looks fine bright, it was always meant to be painted. The hatch frame will remain varnished.

The only new wood to be varnished will be the rub rails. They have two coats of sealer on them now and will have a few more coats of varnish before the bronze half oval is installed.

New sole
Heres the first two planks of the cockpit sole, more to follow.

And more progress pics as well. Eventually….

Recent Beaton’s Pics

I hope this Post makes you happy Peter. Lot’s of activity at Beaton’s this off season from rehabbing a pair of Elco electric launches to a new mast for Ghost.

Little recent work on Sjogin by the yard other than Paul working on her new hatch. When we get near a launch date they’ll finish some details like installing the bow vent and round deck light/prism. The later will make the forward section a lot brighter. Look’s like painting season is upon us.

New Duck
Here’s Tom a few months ago with the new Duckboat. Most of the planking’s on and the deck beams are being fit.

All that glitters
All that glitters is in fact, occasionally, Gold. A few microns of plating make this boat a true “Gold Plater”. The dozen or so coats of varnish show it off nicely.

Lightning in for a bit of paint and varnish. The 100th BBYRA Season starts on June 21st. I plan on seeing a few of them from the comfort of Sjogin’s new cockpit. Maybe even down Bay!

Mystery Tool
Shop made tools like this show up now and then. I think it was used to form a Penguin or Duckboat fitting.

Eight sided
New mast for Ghost by Pete Schell. There are eight sides after glueing up the birdsmouth staves. Astonishing progress. Pete’s made about ten A-Cat masts to date so that should be no surprise.

Old mast end
Here’s the lower end of the old mast. Note how the eight pieces are glued together. A lot more efficient way then in my days at Beaton’s.

16 sided
Here’s Pete planing the mast to sixteen sides.

And then round
And here it is fair and almost ready for varnish.

Landscaping in progress. When done there’ll be picnic tables and enough room to fold sails and such.

Back to Sjogin progress next. Enough Beaton’s pics Peter?

Small bits of progress

The cold continues with a few breaks here and there when it’s warm enough for gloveless work. Last week provided such a day and allowed for some real progress.

Before all the sanding and painting on deck and the cabin can take place, the cockpit sole needs to have the beams installed and at least a temporary sole in place. The cockpit beams have been installed and I’m now figuring out how the sole will be laid out. Tried using the old ones but they don’t work out. Decided to go for the gold and gave Paul an initial cut list for teak planks.

Along with the cockpit work I continued with a bit of mast scraping and rounding over the toe rails. Once the rails are faired and smooth, the sealer, primer and paint can be applied….once it warms up. Even when it’s in the 60′s inland in can be in the 50′s along the coast if the wind has any East in it.

One good thing about the continuing cold and damp is the way it helps Sjogin re-hydrate. When the frost danger is over I’ll start wetting the garboards and such to get her ready for an eventual launch. When you say? Probably later than I want, but soon enough.

Here are the beams in place. They were fastened with 3/8″ galvanized bolts. By the time they rust out like the originals, it will be the next stewards problem.

Progress 2
Looking aft you can see the length of wood resting on the aft frame. This will be the approximate height of the aft deck. It will be the same height as the seats forward. Should make for a comfortable lounging area.

Rail work
Pleasant work with a block plane. After scribing lines about 3/16″ from the corners the plane takes it down so there’s a flat at 45 degrees. The those corners are removed and then rounded with 80 grit sandpaper. Can’t wait to start painting. (After a lot more sanding!)

Speaking of painting, since the rub rails will be varnished the only green will be the moldings around the cabin. I think I’ll just paint them with the deck color. Any comments?

I’ll have some Beaton’s pics for my next Post. Soon, I promise.

Happy Spring all.

Terrapin Tales

This post highlights a very fine Blog from the Pacific Northwest as well as makes up for a long unanswered email.

I heard from Bruce last April via email praising Sjogin and Hove to off Swan Point. He also told me a bit about himself and supplied a link to his blog. I promptly filed it in the Good Intention folder and started on a response. And there it sat. I came across it again to day and thought the best thing I could do was share his delightful Blog with my readers.

Happy Skipper and crew

Here’s the link to Terrapin Tales. Another member of the Water Tribe. Enjoy.

Thanks Bruce.

Tools are being marshalled, lists are being made and actual construction has resumed with the fitting of the cockpit sole beams. Also the last demolition took place when the old sole beam aft was removed cave man style.

As mentioned previously, the new sole will be about three inches lower than its predecessor. This will allow more comfortable seating forward. I want the seat height low to allow sufficient support from the coaming and new angled bulkhead trim piece. Comfort in all things.

The sole will end at the frame where the thwart used to be. In it’s place will be a raised sole/seat about a foot higher than the old sole. This should provide a nice seat when leaning against the aft end of the coaming. I guess you could drive from there too. In any event it will make sitting on the deck while steering more comfortable. (There’s that word again.)

It may turn out that the aft sole may be the same height as the seats. That leads to thoughts of some sort of cockpit berth arrangement. Perhaps a boom tent and a mosquito net for Summer evening lounging? Hmmmm…..

We’ll see.

Cave man style
Here an old beater chisel is used to free the old sole beam. No idea why it was so massive. I know it’s Sjogin we’re talking about, but still.

Just about ready to come out. The new sole will be about three inches lower.

The old bolts will be ground off. The other iron bolts will remain in place for another fifty years hopefully.

That’s it for now. Another pending cold snap will keep us close to the hearth. But it’s just a bit more winter and then we will see painting weather. (And far more sanding weather.)

Very minor progress

Beaton’s moved the mast into the shed next to Sjogin and I actually put tool to wood. A few feet of very old varnish was scraped off before your frozen fingered friend was sent running to the wood stove. The varnish is very old; it seems to leap off the mast when touched by a reasonably sharp scraper. Very satisfying work. After scraping, a bit of planning will be done to try and fair up the lumps. Then it’s through the grits with a final 120 grit sanding. Then as many coats of varnish as I can manage. Same for the boom. Scraping lessons freely given.

Slow and steady and it’s down to bare wood. It will take time for the deep color return but well worth it. No signs of rot or punkiness yet. (Types with fingers crossed.)

It's a start
It’s a start. Taken in early January, before the current bout of freezing weather. There’s something to be said for having one’s boat ashore and in a shed in Winters like this one.

Cockpit work!
This is a bit more recent. I figured out the length of the cockpit sole beams and had Paul mill some from his private stock. A needed step in the right direction.

Here are a few more pics to fill out this Post. When the weather turns there’ll be more about Sjogin’s finishing touches and eventual Launch Party.

E-Scow half hulls
Beaton’s made a half dozen new E-Scow half hulls and backboards for club trophies.

Winter fresh marsh
Fresh snow on the marsh behind Beaton’s. There needs to be a bench of some kind at this spot.

Spartina patens
Speaking of marshes, here’s a pic from our own tiny bit of salt water heaven. It’s Spartina patens, common marsh hay, taken in late fall when it turns color a bit.

It's a Nor'estr
This was taken from our beach when one of the recent Northeasters was brewing.

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