Question (Red?) Rubber Duck progress

Mama H Chicago

Mother of sailboats
For my birthday this year, I bought myself Japanese pull saws and reverse turning bits to drill out RRD’s deck screws. Well, best paid plans and all that…. I don’t think those are screws on the edge of her deck at all. Of course they aren’t! They are most likely ring shank nails. So…because today is actually my birthday, and I really wanted to make good progress on the boat’s restoration, I removed all the deck and rudder hardware that I could, by hand, with a flathead screwdriver. I also went ahead and removed the handrails, as I’ve found my source for replacement deck plywood, so I’m not concerned about backer blocks that might fall - Fall away, I’ll have access to replace. In the cold 40 degree sunshine, I took a very close look at the deck, and I think it has a bow to midship hairline crack as it is, so I’m even more comfortable that the deck being out and out replaced isn’t a bad option.

My question now is, how do I break her open? To pry out all those brass nails from her deck is one option, but given that the gunwales are gorgeous, I don’t want to damage those in the process, so should I just carve the deck up with a jigsaw??

I tested the brass screws that are all along the sides, and frankly I expected them to be tighter. I was able to easily unscrew them by hand, making me worried that she might leak around them??? Argh!

I haven’t sanded the hull really at all to know if there are any repairs but based on my best guess and searching in sunshine, I don’t think she’s been patched in the hull. I didn’t remove the metal keel pieces yet (tiny tiny screws and cold weather) but the cracks in the paint lead me to think I’ll have to possibly replace the wooden strips beneath the metal keel pieces.

Does anyone have a recommendation on how to open her up? Removing the deck is a given I think, because I don’t think it’s structurally sound as I’d like, but are there any reasons why it would be better or easier to take out all the bronze screws on the sides and gain access that way somehow being less risky for preserving those? Or would taking apart the keel give me less destructive access to see what’s going on inside? One toy I did not bring with me to her today was my endoscope. I’ve taken out her brass drains at the bow and transom, so I can take a peek inside before I make any major entry…

If you’ve read this far, thank you! And if you have suggestions on next steps, much appreciated as well!

Here are some before pics from today.
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LVW

Active Member
The bottom actually looks pretty good. I'd sand the old paint until it's smooth, roughing the wood a little where it has lost its curled-up old paint edges. Use a small block of wood to hand-sand close to the metal pieces. Then, because nobody's going to critique the bottom, put some good white paint over everything!

To hide the presence of bare wood, brush an extra coat of thinned paint or primer over those small areas of bare wood before you start.

The deck, on the other hand, looks like a lot of work. Except for a tiny area above the starboard transom, it doesn't appear that you've sanded too deeply, so a varnished deck is "still in the cards". In that case, all of the deck hardware should be removed and finished separately. The seam, which would stand out as an anomaly, could get a band of paint to match a sail color.

The mast step is probably best left in place. Again, hand-sanding with a small wooden backing-block will be required. (Although there are chemicals that could work better--some harsher than others. Use gloves and a disposable "flux brush").

The second option is to paint the entire deck and reattach the removed parts. Since colors affect glare, something other than white might be considered: perhaps beige or baby blue would do the job.

Option three might be to adhere a durable wood-finish veneer of some kind, but I don't have any suggestions--as that's far beyond my sphere of knowledge.

Those would be my options, but I'll defer to Signal Charlie's advice on wood Sunfish.
 

Mama H Chicago

Mother of sailboats
The bottom actually looks pretty good. I'd sand the old paint until it's smooth, roughing the wood a little where it has lost its curled-up old paint edges. Use a small block of wood to hand-sand close to the metal pieces. Then, because nobody's going to critique the bottom, put some good white paint over everything!

To hide the presence of bare wood, brush an extra coat of thinned paint or primer over those small areas of bare wood before you start.

The deck, on the other hand, looks like a lot of work. Except for a tiny area above the starboard transom, it doesn't appear that you've sanded too deeply, so a varnished deck is "still in the cards". In that case, all of the deck hardware should be removed and finished separately. The seam, which would stand out as an anomaly, could get a band of paint to match a sail color.

The mast step is probably best left in place. Again, hand-sanding with a small wooden backing-block will be required. (Although there are chemicals that could work better--some harsher than others. Use gloves and a disposable "flux brush").

The second option is to paint the entire deck and reattach the removed parts. Since colors affect glare, something other than white might be considered: perhaps beige or baby blue would do the job.

Option three might be to adhere a durable wood-finish veneer of some kind, but I don't have any suggestions--as that's far beyond my sphere of knowledge.

Those would be my options, but I'll defer to Signal Charlie's advice on wood Sunfish.
Thank you! Actually, the owner very much wants to have a varnished boat unless it’s entirely impossible. Your points are well taken, and I’ll reach out and see what his thoughts are on a painted hull vs. the varnish appearance.
 

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