12 ft row boat restoration

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12 ft row boat restoration

Postby Car Topper » Sat Aug 18, 2012 6:04 pm

I have a 12ft thompson row boat that was fiberglassed in the past. I removed the fiberglass with some effort but it came off of the hull. Now I find that I need to replace a rotted stem, and numerous ribs from about the middle of the boat forward. The fiberglass was old, probably polyester?

Question: how did they bend these ribs in the first place?

I think they are made of cedar? I do know that the ribs were bent over a form of the boat with metal bands, and when the planks were nailed on the copper/brass tack would contact the metal and cinch into the wood rib.

Were the ribs steamed and then bent over the form?

I plan on applying canvas. [/url]
Car Topper
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Postby LancerBoy » Sun Aug 19, 2012 5:20 am

Welcome aboard,

Yes the ribs were steam bent. As was the stem. Yes, they were bent over a form or jig. The photo below is circa 1962 at Peshtigo showing the form/jig and ribs being bent. This is a lapstrake boat. But the basic principal is the same for your boat type.


Ribs may be northern white cedar or western red cedar. They may also be white oak.

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