3 Tonner 





Restoration:  Sue of Solway


Some time last Autumn, 2014 Graham and his daughter joined some of the Essex section for a meal at the Duck Inn at Writtle and told us he was looking at a sad Golden Hind for sale on EBay.  it was being sold by Preston Marina.

Shortly afterwards he told us he had gained possession and had arranged with the Marina to work on her there.  In the conversation that night at Writtle he revealed he was now a boat restorer, having restored a few over the years, so we felt this boat should sail again.

We eagerly awaited the pictures and now February 2015, here they are!


 'Sue of Solway' on the Hard at Preston and looking rather sad.








As you can see from the assorted pictures above she has areas of rot and or holes in the deck and cabin top.  The paint is lifting all over the place and the topsides have been patched with Gaffer Tape!

Quite a project!

However as with all our ply boats, with patience and a little hard work and sensible craftsmanship they can be repaired.  Hopefully the rot has not extended too far and is not into frames and stringers, but even then these can be repaired in situ with epoxy and laminated layers of iroko.  Joining ply halfway between deck beams or frames with large butt joins and epoxy will cure a lot of the problems!

I suspect the first part of this restoration will be as disheartening as any other, large areas to be sanded back removed and destroyed, before sound foundations are found to start the rebuild.  Can take a long time to get to this stage and many never make it.  We are hoping Graham and his daughter Evie, and son Richard, who sent in these pics are made of stronger stuff!







These are just ramblings in no specific order.



We have made the decision to get SOS into a seaworthy condition and move her from Preston to Wisbech this summer. The yard fees are less in Wisbech and the yard is only 5 minute walk from our house and workshop. Then we can finish the refit and beautification next winter.

The cold has stopped any real wood working from happening we are waiting for Epoxy weather.

We have removed fittings that were hiding rot and removed other areas of rotten ply.

The holes left by the surgery we covered with cheap plywood patches bedded down on sealant. This was to stop further rot and stop more rain from getting in.

Seems every time we get a new boat the first thing we do is drill a hole in the bottom to let the water out?

You can see from the early pics the high tide mark inside SOS from the rain getting in.

The good news is there is very little rot and she is pretty much original no one seems to have messed her up much.

The SABB model G is up and running and in very good condition and only needs painting a good service and new alternator.

Richard stripped the bow thruster and rebuilt it. Two new relays and a bearing to get it serviceable (thruster replacement would cost more than the boat, about a 1000 ).

The sails and rigging are all good the furlex is almost new. The anchor windlass is working and there is a lot of chain and good anchors.

The cascover is in really good condition and will be kept with only minor repairs.

I have done some research on how to paint Cascover and come up with a company called 'Kolorbond', you can find them on the intertwitterweb. I will stop by and talk to them they are not far from where we keep the narrow boat.

I will send more ramblings when I can



As you can see the port side is much worse I had to remove most of the rub rail and trim.

The rail had rotted down the centre out of sight.

I will be replacing all the rail on both sides and the trim.

Can't do the repairs the same as the other side will have to do it the old fashioned way.

There is not enough good wood left to work with.

The stbd side is ready for the second veneer of ply the first is very fair.

I will veneer the stbd side the same after repairs, just to keep things even.

The final thickness will be about 3/4" not a bad thing and very little extra weight.

Graham Evie & Richard.





New windows in topsides?

This is the all the damage on the stbd side.

The port side is a little better, I will send pics of the port side once I have opened it up.

I have decided to have the paint removed by low pressure blasting, its quick and should not damage the sheathing. It will also remove all all the rust from the keels.

The boat is now dry inside and really only needs cosmetic work, even the cooker works.

The electrics will all need replacing, the sea toilet needs a overhaul (love that job).

Engine is running super smooth.

Graham Evie Richard.


The paint we are removing, seems the boat was faired with some sort of Bondo that did not stick to the cascover so water got behind and lifted it.

Easiest paint strip I ever did.

Found some other small areas of rot nothing serious, will have to replace some rubrail on the stbd side as well it has rotted from below.

Will send more as we progress.

Graham Evie & Richard.



Took the screws out of the ply this morning very fair .

Will send more pics as we progress.

Evie is a real enthusiast she has been learning everything, she did most of the work while was the gaffa, love having someone to do the hard work Graham Evie Richard




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