The current project on the East Cowes Clarence Yard slipway is the twin screw motor yacht ‘Somerset’ (1954). She is of teak planking on steel angle iron frames, a composite construction. The major refit work involves replacement of the deck.
The above photo shows the new steel deck beams fitted and primer, with new steel plates fitted to replace the old corroded material.
Teak being very difficult to source in larger sizes, and the desirability to prevent deck leaks as often found from a caulked deck, we opted to use plywood, sheathed in epoxy, and then 8mm teak to be bonded down to give the look of the original deck. Above we can see the plywood being laid, all joints scarphed and glued to form very strong joints. Timber on top of the steel beams was fitted to allow for the deck shear angle, and that no voids be present between the deck plywood and steel beams….
Aft deck just after timber deck removed, corroded beams removed to be replaced. All steel work to remain is being cleaned up by descaling guns and painted…..
Haul out day
Below, the old loose splines between planks have been removed, the vessel re-caulked, new splines to be fitted, and all fastenings have had the lugs removed, and the fastening heads shot blasted and treated to prevent rust. The next level would have been to replace all fastenings, which would not have been desirable, for not only cost but the condition of the fastenings is good. With large rebuild jobs, it is essential to know what can be left, and what needs to be replaced.
Somerset on the slipway, stripped of paint, works just starting
Re-Caulked, Re-splined and fastenings plugged up. Faired in and ready for the first coats of paint. Here we see the teak hull after first coats of clear epoxy sealer as we want to protect the hull and get a high gloss finish. 2- part epoxy paint systems will be used on this vessel.
The below photo shows the foredeck undergoing the process of removing the old teak deck. Unfortunately too decayed to save much. The interesting photo shows the steel angle iron deck beams of the composite construction method. This photo gives an indication of what condition projects get into.
Below,Covered with a shrink wrap tent to protect the hull and deck work from the poor winter weather. The hull has been re-caulked-re-splined, and undergoing fairing and finishing work in preparation for paint.
Below shows the Somerset as new, in the Yachting world 1957 annual…..
ConstructionTeak on steel frames
PowerTwin Gardner 8cyl
BuilderR A Newman & Sons, Poole