DEBEN 4 TONNER : LEADING WIND : progress report

The story of my DEBEN 4 TONNER “LEADING WIND” continues . . .


Above : the 2018 Birdham Pool Marina classic boat festival.  “Leading Wind” was in Tim Gilmore’s workshop in September – with luck she will be afloat in time for the next festival in SEPT 2019 !  Tim and his team are doing the lions share of the serious work and then the Wood family will take over to sort out the interior and the multitude of cosmetic work.





Devoid of her interior, and badly degraded Floor Timbers Leading Wind is ready for some new oak replacements.



Tucked away from the glare of publicity, in her new home, in Tim Gilmore’s workshop, Deben 4 Tonner, “Leading Wind” has begun an epic restoration – she is also the inspiration behind an art project that will document her Renaissance.


“Leading Wind’s” old knee is cut back and cleaned up.


















Below : the stem has been cut back further and a replacement laminated stem and floors have been dry fitted. 22.9.18


































Update 29.9.18 : the antifouling has been peeled to reveal the condition of the pitch pine planking, which was surprisingly good. In order to gain access to the one remaining keel bolt (which was cut with a sabre saw) and a floor timber near the stern, we decided to remove the garboard. The fastening holes were then pegged and sealed.

In the photo below the new floor timbers (horizontal components that hold the keelson and the sides together) have been primed in battleship grey and they will be re-introduced to the boat next week.


Scary photograph with the garboards removed for repairs and priming. Copyright Chrisnwood All rights reserved

Repair to end of port garboard. A nice recycled piece of pitch pine. All old fastening holes are pegged with the same piece of pitch pine.

Repair to sternpost and deadwood


New floors fitted and fastened

sternpost and deadwood repair complete and both garboards returned to their rightful places.

and the other side – 21.10.18.

UPDATE 2.11.18 : The white primer indicates the number of timbers that have been removed and shortly will be replaced with new green oak ones. Once they are in place their neighbours will be taken out and also replaced. The idea being that the shape / form of the boat won’t change during the process.

NB : it looks healthier now the garboards are back !

Another area of interest is the top section of the transom which was repaired but not successfully as not all the rot was cut out and in later years it returned – this has now been rectified by removing half the transom !



Above can be seen the knees, which were beginning to degrade and it was deemed prudent to replace them before sorting out the transom. The new knees can be seen in the photo below (painted grey) and gripped in the vice is the replacement for the top half of the afore mentioned transom.

Update 21.12.18 The transom is whole again.

Nearly all the new green steamed oak timbers are in, nailed and riveted up. There’s a couple of short planks that were butted up to existing timbers (where two thin planks become one)  but some new properly scarfed replacements will fill the gap very soon – so she will be better than the original ! Those new grey floor timbers will certainly hold her in shape for the next 80 years !

About chriswoodartist

painter, print-maker and illustrator

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