Ken and I bought Teal in Kent in November 2011, We had been toying with the idea of having a
wooden boat with quite awhile. Ken had a 19ft Mirror offshore and I had been working my way
up to bigger and better pleasure fishing boats with 7 or 8 years.
The Mirror was our first real introduction to sailing and after a few seasons we wanted something
that was a real sailor and after having my fishing boat stored in Hegartys for a few Winters the ilur
of wooden boats was becoming very apparent, not to mention Leo's 'Sile a do' becoming what she
is today in the tent next door to where Teal is now.
Thankfully we couldn't get the money together for quite a while so we did a lot of looking, Eventually
the Mirror was sold and I got rid of my van and that gave us enough to go looking in earnest.
We could just about afford Teal when we spotted that she might be for sale. We had come across
her previous website and history before that so when we saw we could afford her I flew straight to
I knew I didn't have a great idea of what I needed to look for in a wooden boat but "you have to look before you buy". I may as well not have bothered. Anyway we scrounged the rest together to transport
her back and from there she systematical proceeded to force the sale of any other hobbies we had to fund her restoration.
We were always open to the idea that there could be a lot of work ahead but we did hope that she
wouldn't need too much, for a while at least but the word "can of worms comes to mind". Thankfully
not so many worms tho just old age.
Teal had become a sorry state when you scratched beneath the surface, the fact that she had survived is testimony to how heavily built she is. She was gone beyond patching up as most of her structural timber
had surcome to age and rot and had to be dealt with. The planking was generally good but the bronze
fastenings were failing, thankfully the copper rivets were mostly quite good.
The deck was perfectly water tight because it was glassed over and the timber underneath only had
localised rot but the whole lot was changed to be thorough as was the cockpit.
The lower futtocks of the sawn frames were mostly poor, some rotten, the iron floors had thinned.
The transom had rotten patches but could have been fixed, easier to fully replace with one in hardwood.
The centerline structure was held together with Iron dumbs which were rotten and and the deadwood, sternknee, keel and false keel were no longer bolted up tight and the aft two foot of the keel was rotten and broken which was letting the stern drop and was opening up the seems in the lower aft planks.
The rudder was rotten, the stem was half way through some previous repair, the sternpost was a disaster as were the stern and bow knees.
For all this she had held her shape and was still looked good and thankfully she is now very strong once again. What we've done is all here in the blog so I'm not going to list is out.
We never had intention of owning anything nearly as good as Teal is now, so its just reward for all the work.
I have to add that it is a hell of a lot of work, far more than I ever envisaged and although I'm sure some day I'll have some fantastic idea to start another one, I'd love to be able to say "never again".
Full info on the boats history is now on the 1913-2013 page instead
This information came from the following sources :
Percy Woodcocks book : Looking Astern ( a ditty bag of memories)
She was Featured in Yachting monthly 1914
She was featured in Classic boat June 2007 (Baltic trip)
National maritime museum Cornwall
Lloyds register of yachts
www.midsummerenergy.co.uk (Andy Rankin)
Teals voyage to the Baltic in 2004
What I said at the start.
As I said in my introduction this is our first wooden boat and the first
time we have worked on one, so we have and will continue researching
and learning through out the restoration.
Something which I have learned at this stage is that although there
are numerous books, sites, blogs and forums it is very hard to get any
detailed information about any one job in one place.
I have bought a few books which are very helpful and can be cross
referenced with what the forumites will tell you is right,
The down side to just reading about it is it can make it
sound a bit clinical and I always get the impression the authors are
repairing varnished racing yachts. Ours is not.
What I want to do is help gather up what we are learning, whether it
is from books, the internet, the shipwrights or the people who have
experience and gradually from our own experience and post it
up on the blog with enough images to make it very clear
for anyone who might be considering doing something similar.
We haven't got far at this point but by the time Teal takes to the
water again there should be fairly comprehensive information
here for anyone who wants it, hopefully more of it right than wrong.
For anyone who is currently thinking of taking on such a project
it might be helpful to know that :
Our budget is limited and we have to deal with that as we move along
(the kitty rarely has anything in it)
We have experience with boats, just not wooden ones.
I am a joiner by trade and have a small workshop and tools which is
obviously a big help.
We are in a traditional boatyard with expert advise at hand
And I guess most of all we have real enthusiasm for the project
and boat itself.
Although I have a book on my lap which states all you need is
free time and a modicum of patience, the rest can be acquired
Also if anyone would like more detail about any job after it has
been done I have a huge amount of unposted images and am
happy to help if I can, just get in touch or leave a comment.