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  #1  
Old 06-29-2010
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Irwin 39 restoration.

And so it begins. As I stated in my intro, my wife and I recently purchased an Irwin 39. Everything that makes the boat go is in fine working condition; itís the interior wood that needs the most attention.

Iím a woodworker of many years and feel Iím up to the task, but, as I mentioned in my intro, working on a boat isnít like building furniture for the home, and I could use a little help.

Right now I am refinishing the galley. This is pretty straight forward, sand and finish.

While sanding away in the galley, I often ponder what Iím going to do about the overhead. There is plenty of evidence to suggest that it was originally covered with a headliner. That had been removed and replaced with what has every appearance of a dry-erase board that one might find in a schoolroom today. Not suitable for the elements and now sagging in places, it simply has to go.

Looking at pictures of other boats, we came across one that had, or at least had the appearance of, planking on the overhead. This was painted white, looked great, and my wife decided that was the look she wanted. Mama gets what mama wants, and what mama wants isnít always synonymous with easy.

Two options as I see it:

The first is to use a paneling or plywood with the appearance of planking. My concern here is that paneling wonít hold up any better than the dry-erase stuff up there now, and that I have yet to find marine grade plywood with that pattern. Also, I would prefer to countersink and plug the screw holes, and plywood may not have enough ďmeatĒ on it to accomplish this while still having enough flexibility to fit the curvature of the overhead.

The second option would be to use wood planks (novel concept eh?), likely out of poplar for its stability, price and the fact it will be painted anyway. The question here becomes how much weight the overhead can safely supportÖin rough seas. Iím thinking 3/8 thick, ship-lapped, 3~4Ē wide (depends on overall look and how wide the final port and starboard pieces end up). Could go down to 1/4 if need be, but it doesnít leave much for the screws to hold on to.

My to-do list is longer than this post, but I am getting a bit long winded here. I would appreciate any advice, guidance, thoughts and suggestions you folks have.
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Old 06-29-2010
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While the results will not show i would first remove and rebed all the deck hardware as any small leaks will dammage your work

This will also insure you do not have any deck issues that would require you to take apart your upgrades
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If it was me, I would use beaded ply panel, like this stuff:

http://www.gp.com/build/product.aspx?pid=1401

It's flexible, so no worries about beveling planks to fit the curve of the overhead. It is an interior application, so I wouldn't be too concerned about he fact that it is not marine grade plywood... BUT, if there are some deck intrusions that will be hidden behind this overhead, such as line clutches, winches and organizers on deck that are through bolted, I would coat at least the back side of the ply with epoxy and a good coat of bilge paint to protect it from minor leakage.
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Old 06-29-2010
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There is a plastic bead board available at home centers. it's not wood at all and looks just like white painted wood. but then simple mahogany underlayment is waterproof enough to work too. You could cut or route lines in it to look like planking. I've had a piece of underlayment outside next to my shed for about 4 yrs now all twisted and curled up but not in the least way delaminated.
You may want to consider a dark wood for carlins and set the ply or planks between them to give it a real nautical look.
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Old 06-30-2010
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Thanks for the input folks.

Sounds like such a no-brainer to rebed the deck hardware, but I would honestly not have even thought to do so. Getting tunnel vision on projects like this is a bad habit of mine, Iím sure that tip just saved me a bunch of headaches down the road.

Good to know I donít have to use marine ply on the interior. I need to replace some of the mahogany ply along the ports which has rotted in a couple of spots. Probably from an undetected leak at one point, but the moisture meter shows it dry now.

I had planed to use the carlins in just that fashion. One for break between the galley and salon, a couple more reaching across the beam just fore and aft of the mast, both for a bit of contrast and easier access to the mast to deck hardware.

Appreciate the suggestions!
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If the deck is cored, make sure you check the status of the core around the deck hardware. If the holes through the deck were not potted, please do so by removing the core material for about 1/2" around each fastener and replacing it with thickened epoxy to protect the core from future water intrusion.

I'd recommend using BUTYL TAPE for any deck hardware that is through bolted and not regularly exposed to diesel or gasoline.
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Irwin 39 headliner

If you want the cheap easy way, just select the color of headliner material that momma approves of (usually white or off white) and sew it together so that the 1 inch long seams line up with the center of the beams on the overhead and then staple it into place. Irwin had headliners and also have trim pieces at the edges so removing the trim pieces and replacing them is pretty easy. It will then look original and will be better for resale value. It's a lot lighter and will last a long time if taken care of. Old headliners usually end being removed because of acumulated mold in very humid climates. If you have proper ventilation it should never be a problem.

Fair Winds..................

Jim
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