Restoring my new boat

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Lopez Mike
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Restoring my new boat

Post by Lopez Mike » Fri Dec 09, 2011 12:38 am

Steam launch ‘Folly’.

I think a report on this project boat in the ‘before’ condition will make me feel better when things improve.

I know little of the origins or design of this boat. What I had from the seller is that it was built in about 2000 by his father who then passed away. The son, with the help of Rod Muller of Strath Steam, plumbed things together temporarily and went for a couple of hours of steaming in about 2004. The boat then was placed in storage until I discovered it on Craig’s List this Summer (2011) and dragged it home to Lopez Island here in the San Juan Islands of Washington State in the U.S.

Probably the best that I can say about the hull is that it is a bit ‘esthetically challenged’. It is purportedly built of marine grade plywood and bonded with Gorilla Glue and galvanized stove bolts. It looks stoutly if not precisely put together. I got the boat and trailer for a song so I’m not complaining about the price but marveling at the results. If anyone recognizes the design and can pass on any information, please contact me. At first I thought it might be a Bolger design but I’m completely in the dark. The seller knew nothing.

It is 24 feet long overall and has a beam of 7 feet. The waterline is perhaps 20 to 21 feet. I haven’t floated it yet. Displacement unknown. A ton or so? The engine is a 3” by 5” piston valve single. A Warrego by Strath Steam of Australia. The boiler is a VFT30 from Beckman. Wood fired at present.

The hand and engine driven feed water pumps of unknown origin. The present prop is an 18 x 20 and I have just bought an 18 x 23 in case I need a bit lower cruise r.p.m.

Because of the apparent inexperience of the builder, I find myself engaged in a restoration of a new boat. I’ve started by removing the shutoff valve between the boiler and the safety valve(!) My next project is to replace all of the schedule 40 box store nipples and plastic(!) handled valves so that I can keep things under control during the first water test. I’ve hydro tested it and steamed it up on the trailer with only mild alarms and diversions.

The steering gear has to go. The prop shaft is mild steel. The shaft log is home made from plumbing fittings. The deck is not fair. Even the African Queen had a nicer sheer. I’m planning on some simple heeling moment tests when I get it in the water to see if it will stand a cabin and canopy.

Again, I am searching for any information about this boat and hull or any tales about the building of it. With some luck and hard work this Winter I hope to use it next Summer.

As soon as I figure out how to upload a picture I will do so.

Mike Colyar
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Lopez Mike
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Re: Restoring my new boat (old picture)

Post by Lopez Mike » Fri Dec 09, 2011 1:10 am

It looks much worse than this closeup!

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artemis
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Re: Restoring my new boat

Post by artemis » Fri Dec 09, 2011 5:59 pm

For what it's worth:
You could improve the look of the sheer by:
Adding cockpit coaming that projects about 4 to 5 inches above the deck;
Add a "toe" rail (about 3 to 4 inches high) in the bow and a buffalo rail (about 2.5 to 3 inches high) in the stern.
Do a sketch; you'll like it.
Ron Fossum
Steamboating Magazine Editor
http://www.steamboating.org
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Lopez Mike
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Re: Restoring my new boat

Post by Lopez Mike » Fri Dec 09, 2011 8:23 pm

Good advice, Ron. As it happens, my partner, Barbara, on purchase of Folly (her choice of name) promptly downloaded every launch picture on the web and started drawing both sheer line improvements and proposed superstructures with the ideas of getting us in out of our only occasionally beautiful weather, perhaps being able to spend a night anchored out and getting me to look at the boat without being slightly ill.

My first reaction when it rolled out of the mini storage was to buy it for the machinery and give the hull a rousing viking burial. That may yet happen but first I've got to get it running well and then go from there.

As you know, both Uno and Gizmo share this island and neither of the skippers has been allowed down here to the South end to view and marvel.

Yes, McConnell is only perhaps fifteen miles from the beach in front of my house so if I'll make a serious effort to show up if only to make everyone else feel good about their boats.

Mike
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fredrosse
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Re: Restoring my new boat

Post by fredrosse » Fri Dec 09, 2011 9:12 pm

From a previous reply under the “Stupid Question” thread on this forum, for the rail that is an upward extension of the hull at the bow,

Bob Cleek:

A "bow rail" is as properly descriptive as any term, I suppose. However, the more colorful nautical term for such rails is "buffalo rail." This is opposed to, I suppose, "monkey rails" which are at the stern rather than the bow. Whether the "monkeys" and the "buffaloes" are related is anybody's guess, but a buffalo rail it is.

Is there a consensus as to the name of this "bow rail"?
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artemis
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Re: Restoring my new boat

Post by artemis » Sat Dec 10, 2011 1:56 am

fredrosse wrote:From a previous reply under the “Stupid Question” thread on this forum, for the rail that is an upward extension of the hull at the bow,

Bob Cleek:

A "bow rail" is as properly descriptive as any term, I suppose. However, the more colorful nautical term for such rails is "buffalo rail." This is opposed to, I suppose, "monkey rails" which are at the stern rather than the bow. Whether the "monkeys" and the "buffaloes" are related is anybody's guess, but a buffalo rail it is.

Is there a consensus as to the name of this "bow rail"?
And a rose by any other name is still ... a rose. :lol:
Ron Fossum
Steamboating Magazine Editor
http://www.steamboating.org
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