Picton Clinker & Classic Boat Club
Late October we conducted a home workshop on planking a clinker dinghy. Most of us have clinker dinghies that have the odd split plank and while we usually bog a crack up with various formulae of sealant, eventually we have to confront replacing a plank or 5. Generally we try to dispose of the boat before then but one member was hoping to renovate his lovely little 13ft clinker split planks or not. He asked Roy for some suggestions but then it was realised here was an excellent opportunity to demonstrate to anyone interested, how to remove and replace a clinker plank.
It turned out there were 4 planks all told so Roy took the craft home and fitted 3 of them and also completed the 4th one ready for installing during a hands on workshop.
One Saturday we assembled and Roy explained the procedure and we all set to affixing the last plank of the 4. As the final plank was already shaped and fitted it only required applying the Sikaflex 291 sealant to the lands, then placed in position before drilling the nails where required, riveting & roved.
We all had a go at the required tasks and once shown how to go about it, most of us there were reasonably comfortable with the tricks and technique involved.
As the craft is upside down, it requires two people to fasten so holding the dolly is a drudgery but is a vital and somewhat skilled
When building a new craft, the planks are fully riveted as the planks are fitted, it can be done quite easily singlehanded as the planks creep up from the garboard. The only job requiring two people are the ribs, as the centre nails cannot be reached when leaning into the boat from outside while holding the dolly outside.
Roy had previously undercoated the lands when he had fabricated the planks so it was ready to fit with the sealant. He used Sikaflex 291 as it has the best specs for flexibility and underwater performance in this situation. In the old days, it was rare for planks to even get a coat of red lead between the lands but then boats were only expected to last 15 – 20 years so why bother? Now days we look for craft to last our lifetimes.
All in all it was a great day with everyone going away having learned something... not least was that we were provided with some excellent Chocolate cake for morning Tea!!
We will have to do more of these.