The first thing we do for any boat we are going to
have in the shop for the winter is build a cradle
that is on wheels It has to fit the boat perfectly
and give it maximum support so that it will not
change shape. This boat is 21 feet long and 11
feet wide and really weighs a lot for it's size.
The cradle is on four very strong casters. This
cat boat weighs about eight thousand pounds.
This poor old boat is in really tough shape and
will need a lot of tender loving care. There is hull
damage and deck damage on the port side. A
plank and frame are damaged on the starboard
side. The rudder is broken. The cabin top is
rotten and the hatches are rotten. It's not all bad
though, the owner is going ahead with the
repairs while the wood is still good enough to use
as patterns. The seventy year old Sea Pup
should be ready for spring launch.
We repaired the frames and then installed the
new planks on the port side. The next repair was
to replace crushed and rotten wood on the deck.
Eighteen feet of new rub rail was also installed to
finish out the repairs to this side. About three
hundred screws were used to hold it all together
nice and neat. The repair was fairly easy but very
The next project was to carefully remove the
cabin top in one piece so that we could use it as
a mould for the bending form on the new cabin
top. A sawzall was use to cut all the nails and
rods that held the top to the deck. Some type of
rubber glue was also holding the top down so we
had to use wedges to finish the separation. Even
though there was a lot of rot the top was still
Well here it is on the shop floor ready for
measuring and set up for mould work.
The top was flipped over and then secured to the
cart so that a very sturdy mould frame could be
made for bending the new cabin side wall.
The eighteen foot long side wall panels were
laminated with epoxy and put into a vacuum bag
twenty feet long and two feet wide. Getting the
flat panels into the bag was child's play. Bending
the panel around the mould was fast and easy.
Getting the eighteen foot bent panel out of the
bag was like a three ring circus. Vacuum bags
work great for this type of assembly and only
require a minimum of clamps. The results are
almost always perfect glue joints. This is a very
strong panel and it will need to be.
Shop Phone (978) 618-4854
Cat Boat Restoration Project
More to come soon
A hook was made to go down trough the side
panel, deck and deck frame then threads were
put on so all could be pulled together snug.
The top edge of the panel was routed out so
the hook could be recessed below the edge.
This will make it easier to fit the cabin top on
without interference from nuts and washers.
As you can see everything looks snug
on the inside to.
The face plate is now secure on the deck. The
next step will be to cut and install the top