plugging old planking

Seagreen

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Old pitch pine planking, now a bit soft, nominally 1" thick..

So I've been filling in these old nail holes, but the holes are a bit ragged where the nail heads were knocked back out of the hull, leaving pits of broken planking about 1.5" wide by 0.5" deep.

Do I:

A) fill back with epoxy?
B) Chisel out and epoxy in a big wood plug (my fav idea so far)
C) Screw and sikaflex a hardwood patch - the wood is very dry.
D) Something else.

If D), please specify. Thanks in advance
 

Peterduck

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Option B is what I would go for too. The 'big wooden plug' is called a graving piece. Ideally, it should be in the shape of a diamond [as in playing cards, not the jewellery] with the major axis in the direction of the grain. The grain of the graving piece should be parallel to the grain in the planking. There should be a slight taper to the edges of the graving piece, so that the further in it is pressed, the tighter it gets.
Peter.
 

Seagreen

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Great idea! I'd thought about doing it square to the grain, but the diamond method seems more logical. Hardwood or pitch pine? I've plenty of oak but I'm not sure if oak and pine are that compatible, or doesn't it matter with the epoxy? I suppose the areas affected are relatively small.
 

old_salt

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I have ground up a 3/8" drill to a tapered end and turned up tapered plugs (I have a Myford lathe which has helped in restoring my boat more than anything else) after removing the nail or drilling out a screw with the hollow sharpened punch drill the old hole with the tapped drill then tap in a gulled ( Balcotan or Cascafen) plug.
Photo of the tools and turned plugs. The sharpened hollow punches are for cutting out screws. Use the same wood as the planking. I hope this helps.
ToolsMerciaIII001.jpg

ToolsMerciaIII002.jpg
 

vona

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I have a 72' LOD 51ton displacement ketch that I did a max refit 2005 including recaulk and screw fix /wood plug every carvel plank per frame. I thought about sheathing with 2 layers of thin mahogany to stiffen and protect the hull in warmer waters. She was Black Sea built for cold seas, I'm sailing to Australia. Has any one thoughts on the best method with a vessel this size.
 

Peterduck

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While you could usefully sheath the hull with veneers, as Tim and Pauline Carr did with 'Curlew', much of the stiffening of the hull should be achieved by the caulking. Much of the other preparations for such a trip depend on which way you plan to come; around The Cape, through the Panama Canal or through the Suez Canal?
Peter.
 

Peterduck

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As a general rule, it is best to match the species of the planking with your graving piece. For those which are likely to be immersed, this is more important, to match rates of expansion due to water take-up.
Peter.
 
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