1902 West Cork Fin Keeler.

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Here’s a look at the latest project here at Roeboats. She is a 30′ long, on deck,  Gaff Cutter designed and built in Schull in 1902 by the present owners Great Grandfather. Unusually for this area, and the time she was built, she has a fin keel. Over her first hundred years she had quite a reputation as a fast boat, winning many races against better known boats such as the William Fife designed Cork Harbour One Designs.

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The first order of business was to get the keel off her and move her to a more accessible position. The second goal was to get the ill fitting and ugly coach roof off her. Luckily most of her Hickory backbone timber and Canadian Red Pine planking is in reusable condition. She had been originally framed with sawn Hickory frames but was later reframed with steam bent oak. Both the frames and floors are not original and will be replaced with new.

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As you can see from the bent bolts of the whisker stay plate this boat was raced hard. I found bent and strained fittings throughout and the oakum caulking that was used on her was up to 1/2″ wide on the inside of the planking. One would hope when building a boat that the planks would be touching on the inside. This gives a very good idea of how she was slowly torn apart over the years. She was still winning races. It’s pretty hard to beat a flat sterned boat with a massive mainsail downwind. The new owner is hoping to show his fellow competitors  how it’s done.

This is a long term project so expect to see updates sporadically in the future. If you would like your family heirloom built, repaired or restored don’t hesitate to contact me, Tiernan Roe, +353 86 158 6937 or you can use the contact form or email.

Roeboats, Ballydehob, Co. Cork, t:+353 (0)28 38973 m: +353 (0)86 158 69 37 e:tiernan@roeboats.com

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Uh Oh! Where has the year gone?

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Well here’s how the micro-cruiser looked just before she was finished. Unfortunately for some reason I don’t have any photos of the boat when she was completed. Unfortunately the client passed away soon after he took delivery and I don’t think he ever got to sail her. You can read his obituary here, he was a very interesting guy and a great client. The raised deck really increased the livability of the interior. I was also very impressed with the cleverness of the Junk rig. We set it up, to position blocks etc., in the yard before delivery.

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So what else was I up to over the last while. Well quite a lot actually. Above is an 1930s Swedish launch that I look after and last spring we took the windscreen off and refinished the deck, It had been covered in a textured palstic coveing sometime in the distant past and this was now lifting and shabby looking. When I peeled it off it revealed a deck made of three massive planks of mahogany. It had looked like plywood from underneath as the seams were covered. After a few repairs to a couple of spots of rot she was received 8 coats of varnish all over.

I’ll have more about what’s going on here at Roeboats in coming posts so that’s all for now. If you’d like to discuss having your own boat built, repaired or restored don’t hesitate to contact me, Tiernan Roe, +353 86 1586937.

Roeboats, Ballydehob, Co. Cork, t:+353 (0)28 38973 m: +353 (0)86 158 69 37 e:tiernan@roeboats.com

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16′ Micro cruiser coming together.

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Here’s more progress with the exterior panels now cut and shaped they were dry fitted for client approval and in preparation for glueing.img_0267

All of the parts were epoxy coated and painted on the inside before assembly. They’ll get a final coat once the interior is finished. It’s hell of a lot easier to do the painting now as opposed to inside the boat.

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If you would like to have your own beautiful wooden boat built, repaired or restored please don’t hesitate to contact me on +353 86 1586937 or you can email or to ensure I receive your enquiry use the contact form.

Roeboats, Ballydehob, Co. Cork, t:+353 (0)28 38973 m: +353 (0)86 158 69 37 e:tiernan@roeboats.com

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16′ Sharpie Microcruiser rebuild.

Cabin trunk deconstruction

Out came the skil saw and off came the cabin sides and top. We’re keeping the sliding hatch and grab handles which will save a good bit of work. The cabin will also be shortened by about 18″ or so.

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Here’s a quick mock up of how the new sheer will look when the remodelling is finished. The forward raised section will be a well for an anchor and give good footing for working on the foredeck.Cabin top framing.

Above the new framing is being dry fitted before it gets epoxy coated and glued into position. The old side deck will now become and internal shelf and the overall feel inside the cabin will be much less constrained.

If you would like to have your own boat remodelled, restored or perhaps a new one custom built for you don’t hesitate to contact me, Tiernan Roe, at +353 86 1586937. You can also email me or use the contact page form to ensure that your message isn’t lost in cyberspace.

Roeboats, Ballydehob, Co. Cork, t:+353 (0)28 38973 m: +353 (0)86 158 69 37 e:tiernan@roeboats.com

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16′ Sharpie Micro cruiser returns for new cabin.

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Pictured above is a boat I built for a repeat client about 4 years ago. It started life a gaff yawl and since then the owner has refined the rig a couple of times. He finally settled on the Chinese junk rig seen above. He has found that it easy to handle and performs well. The only problem he has now is that fully battened lugsail has a different centre of effort than an unbattened lugsail and as a result the mast has to be moved back. This would also stop the mainsheet fouling the cockpit. You can see how it would in the photo above. 16' Micro Cruising sail boat

So as he had decided to move the mast back he could tackle the cabin top that he had designed initially. It gave full sitting headroom and plenty of liveable space below. Unfortunately if cut off access to the bow of the boat. Not a problem for sail handling but when dropping a mooring or weighing anchor it meant that when retrieving the rode from the cockpit the boat was broadside on to the wind, even with the mizzen sail, and the strain on the line was too much.

So the boat will be getting a new cabin top in the next coming weeks. I’ll retain the existing hatch and grab rails and build new sides to the cabin to create a raised deck layout that will provide nice and wide decks to the bow.

If you would like to have your own boat remodelled, refitted, restored or a new one built, give me, Tiernan Roe, a call a +353 86 1586937 to discuss your project.

Roeboats, Ballydehob, Co. Cork, t:+353 (0)28 38973 m: +353 (0)86 158 69 37 e:tiernan@roeboats.com

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Rankin Dinghy in for Repair.

Rankin Dinghy repair restoration

At the end of September this rather tired Rankin Dinghy came to the workshop. It had spent the previous two years or more outside under an ill fitting tarpaulin full of water. As you can guess this wasn’t good for the boat and the bottom panels were badly de-laminated. I was able to peel the top layer off, in the photo above, very easily.

Bottom planks removed from Rankin Dinghy

The first job was to get the old varnish off and cut out all the bad plywood. This meant removing most of the bottom. It came out easy enough, I just hoped it wouldn’t be too difficult to put the new stuff back in.

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Here’s the new planking in the process of being stained to match the existing plywood. Luckily just one bit of planking on the port side needed replacement.

Stripping the inside of a Rankin Dinghy

Then it was stripping the inside of all the old peeling varnish. Most of it came away easily but of course there were a few awkward places were it stuck on like limpets.

Interior varnished

I hope you’ll agree it was worth the effort. She’s now ready to bring many happy hours of fun and memories to another generation.

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Here she is ready to go. If you’d like to have your own boat restored, repaired or perhaps a new boat built don’t hesitate to contact me, Tiernan Roe, +353 86 1586937 or you can email or use the contact page.

Roeboats, Ballydehob, Co. Cork, t:+353 (0)28 38973 m: +353 (0)86 158 69 37 e:tiernan@roeboats.com

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1930’s Launch repair complete.

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In the photo above you can see that I’ve scarfed in two new frame heels to replace the old ones which had dissolved due to the de-lignification mentioned in the last post. The area where the frames meet the stern post are sloping forward to make sure they shed any water that might gather there.

img_0139And here the new piece of tramsom is fitted. I purposely made the piece narrower at the ends to that it would be easier to lever into place without having to steam it as the transom has quite a curve. The the top sea is backed with a batten and the sloping down shape of the repair helps to shed any water.img_0167

And after many hours of work the transom is repaired the straightened propshaft is and I just have to re-fit the rudder blade.

If you would like your own custom built, your current boat repaired or your next boat restored don’t hesitate to call me, Tiernan Roe, +353 86 158 6937 or you can email or use the contact page.

Roeboats, Ballydehob, Co. Cork, t:+353 (0)28 38973 m: +353 (0)86 158 69 37 e:tiernan@roeboats.com

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1930s Swedish Launch Repair

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Last winter while I was building the 18′ Faering and the 8′ Punt I was also slowing repairing a beautiful 30′ Swedish Launch from the 1930s. When the owner contacted me he said that the boat had suffered some damage from a grounding.dsc_0180

Well there was certainly damage from a grounding the rudder and its attendant gear were bent over to port. More interesting was the vertical crack in the transom. It is very unusual way for the wood to break and I was worried that it could mean rot in the transom area.img_0073

After opening up the boat it became fairly quickly apparent that the culprit for the weakening of the wood wasn’t rot. This was a good thing as it meant the problem could be easily contained. The reason for the loss of strength was electrolysis caused by the locating of galvanised bolts close to the bronze rudder tube. Over time water had gotten in the joints in this area and created an electrical circuit between the two different metals. This produces chemicals which break down the lignin (the glue that holds wood together) and leaves just the unconnected fibres. You can see above the characteristic black in centre of the horn timber above. img_0022

The easiest way to repair this was to remove the entire horn timber and make a new one. The old galvanised bolts were replaced with silicon bronze so hopefully there won’t be repeat of the problem. In the upper left of the photo above is a vertical pipe that I’m not sure of its function. It connects the red tube in the photo that has a strainer at the end and the vertical pipe ends outside the hull with a T section. I ‘d be delighted if some reader could enlighten me. I’m guessing it could be a self bailer of some kind but stand to be corrected.

If you would like your own custom built, your current boat repaired or your next boat restored don’t hesitate to call me, Tiernan Roe, +353 86 158 6937 or you can email or use the contact page.

Roeboats, Ballydehob, Co. Cork, t:+353 (0)28 38973 m: +353 (0)86 158 69 37 e:tiernan@roeboats.com

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8′ Pram punt Painting and Launch.

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The first coat of Primer going on. The client wanted the paint to match the mother ship which I built for him in 2013. The white underside should help in reducing the effect of the sun heating the boat up and drying out the planking, if and when she is stored upside down.img_0092

We decided to put fairly hefty bilge runners on bottom as the boat will no doubt be dragged up and down a lot of beaches and slipways. I made the bilge runners into hand holds that can be used for moving the boat about, strapping her down to a bigger boat or if you do capsize her some how you’ll have something to keep a hold of to get her right side up.img_0095

The oars just fit diagonally in the boat and when both of them are in there the lock in place so they won’t fall out when she’s being towed or left on the mooring. The oars have traditional leathers and Turk’s Head Knots for the buttons.img_0178img_0177

Here she is on launch day, I think it was the first dry calm day that I’ve launched a boat in the last 7 years. You can see in the photo above that she sits upright and clear of any stray stones when out of the water. And she floats in just a couple of inches so you can get right up a beach without having to get out into the water.

If you would like your own custom built boat whether it’s 8′ or 48′ please don’t hesitate to call me, Tiernan Roe, +353 86 158 6937 or you can email or use the contact page.

Roeboats, Ballydehob, Co. Cork, t:+353 (0)28 38973 m: +353 (0)86 158 69 37 e:tiernan@roeboats.com

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Planking and Framing out 8′ Pram Punt

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The 8′ Punt is now planked up and ready for a good soaking in oil. I did this before framing out to make sure that every piece of the boat soaked up as much oil as possible. The oil will help stabilise the wood so that it won’t move as much as the boat dries and gets wet during use. It also looks lovely.

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All the frames are in on 6″ centres, copper nailed and roved. I was just about able to reach around the boat to buck the clenching iron. The mahogany capping on the transoms is tougher wood then the fir and will stand up to more abuse when the boat is turned upside down. It has yet to be shaped to a pleasing curve in the photo above. Next up was the inwale, riser (a stringer supporting the thwarts)  and quarter knees then I fitted the thwarts and rowlock blocks.

If you would like your own custom built boat whether it’s 8′ or 28′ please don’t hesitate to call me, Tiernan Roe, +353 86 158 6937 or you can email or use the contact page.

Roeboats, Ballydehob, Co. Cork, t:+353 (0)28 38973 m: +353 (0)86 158 69 37 e:roeboats@ymail.com

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