Lymans, as well as any other antique or classic wooden boats depend upon their gunwales for structural stiffness. Gunwales gone bad translate into a hull that can flex in all the wrong places, get increasingly out of true relative to the keel and ultimately become unseaworthy.
The Lyman Cruisette should have oak gunwale framing comprised of laminated courses. This boat’s framework had been “restored” using chunks of softwood a varying lengths and widths that were pieced in, sometimes not even fastened to anything. We are replacing them completely.