Monday, January 31, 2011

Steam Rising! And The Planking Continues

The Plank is put in place

Steam coming off the plank

Plank coming out of the steam box

Plank is clamped and trunneled in place

Plank coming out of the box

There has been a lot of great work going on this week with planking underway on both sides of the boat. The steam box has and necessary fire has kept the crew a bit warmer as there is a hot fire to warm up by. The process of planking in the snow is a little more easy to do with the warm wood coming out of the steam box. This past Saturday as frames went up the crew was able to stay work for up to 12 hours - staying warm by the steam box!

Sunday, January 30, 2011

Planking Is Underway At a Steady Pace

The First Plank is On!

A Whole Lotta Planing Going On. Thanks in particular to our friends Matt, Alex and Steve from the Heritage Center

It Takes Time to Get the Fire Right but the New Steam Jenny is Great! Thanks to Eric B. and Tony F. for contributing all the parts.

Daisy is Pleased that the Project is in the Planking Phase

Churck Redman

Steam Bos and the new Steam Jenny

The Steam Jenny is working well
On Tuesday this past week we started planking. We hung the starboard aft garboard first which was sponsored by Jim Lane, Zach's grandfather. (See our website for plank owner details). Despite all the snow it has been a great effort with so many people lending a hand. We have been able to get a lot done in the past day or so and slowly the schooner is starting to take shape. Last week, we had a great new arrival both to Essex and the boatyard, Justin Ingersoll who worked with Harold on the restoration of the schooner Ernestina at Boothbay Harbor shipyard in 2008/9. Justin is a graduate of the Landing School and is a skilled shipwright. When we saw him arrive in the yard in his 1973 Oldsmobile Cutlass we couldn't get over our good fortune to have him here. He is a determined worker and a great help.
A Snowy Scene

Henry S. and Harold Carrying a Plank

Thursday, January 20, 2011

Winter Wonderland Shows No Sign of Stopping

Beautiful scene but enough snow already

Another storm coming tonight!

Chuck Redman makes the best of it.

Dan Tobyne has been busy photographing what has become a kind of winter wonderland around here. However, it would make work progress a bit faster if we didn't have to dig out every day!  This is boatbuilding in January at its finest..and in Essex it was always done outside so shipwrights are used to it...however they welcome their mug of coffee in front of the wood stove just the same.

Friday, January 14, 2011

Digging Out and Getting Ready

Todays Photo of the Ardelle

Harold and the Drill ... what a job!

Harold has more oil on him these days than a down duck

The scaffolding and staging is part of the challenge of boatbuilding in winter

Harold still at it here...but the bolt is in now

Steve Willard of Marblehead

A great panorama (before the recent storm)

We had over a foot of snow on Wednesday so besides digging out, Harold and the crew are getting ready to start planking. Harold was up in a nearby tree yesterday afternoon and when asked what he was doing up there, well, he was eyeing the sheer line and he has already started attaching thin battons to the frames and there is a real shape to the boat that the naked eye or passerby can clearly see.
Even though we are under a foot of snow, somehow spring does not seem so far off now and with the planking set to begin at the weekend or just after we are definitely turning a corner. Thankfully this last storm did not include high tides so the Ardelle is just snow covered but the crew can get around her. It is cold building a boat outside in the winter and thankfully we have a wood stove where everyone comes in for a mug up of coffee and lunch. A lot of people have been bringing over soups, stews and chili for lunches to feed the crew. It is a great way to help out and we heat it up on the wood stove and presto!  Sorry to the Fortune Palace (the local Chinese restaurant) for becoming infrequent customers for the lunch specials but thanks to everyone who has brought us lunch!)
Chuck Redman and Zach Teal

Thursday, January 6, 2011

Hitting the Ground Running in 2011

The tidal river keeps the ice flowing
A great view of the Ardelle from across the creek

Pinky Maine and the Lewis H. Story in the creek

The snow certainly makes work a little more challenging.

Harold had a tough holiday week driving a stubborn bolt that nearly did him in. But, it is in now!

Hopefully the snow won't stay in here permanently.

The scale of this boat is BIG. Standing under it  gives a sense of its size!
It seems that the post holiday blues are non-existent around the boatyard as the crew have been energized by the "coming soon - like by the end of this week" next phase of the project - planking.  Harold has been readying the steam box and today he has some college-age fellows coming by to help out along with our very devoted regular crew of Chuck R, Bernie P., Dan T. Steve W. Zach T., and our new arrival Bruce of Gloucester whose wife kindly brought the crew some chicken soup for lunch today. So, the place is energized as we get ready to begin planking. The recent snowstorm set Harold back a day or so but the pictures that Dan Tobyne has taken here do illustrate the stillness of the brand new year. Alas, as the 12 days of Christmas wrap up today, it is like we are hitting the ground running into 2011. Come on by!