How to Rout the Windshield Seal Dado Into a ’55 Lyman Windshield

1955 lyman runabout rout windshield seal dado

Our attention turns to a task on the 1955 20′ Lyman runabout that, in truth, has been hanging “heavy, heavy over our heads” for some time. The windshield glass on old style Lymans of which this one is an example was originally secured with extruded aluminum stops that are no longer available.

Since these stops were secured with small oval-headed brads, Lyman never cut dado channels in the rabbets. Indeed, this boat’s glass was secured with glazing points and some sort of window caulk that had been stained a “Lymanesque” brown when I purchased her.

Conversations with Tom Koroknay and members of the New England Lyman Group (NELG) all pointed to only one solution: rout the dado into the rabbet and secure the glass with standard, single-spade, white Lyman molding.
“All” we needed to do was rout the dado. The solution, we hoped, would be provided by a 3-fluke router bit slot cutter by CMT. We placed the bearing on the outer end of the shank, with the cutter inside it. Shim washers positioned the cutter precisely so that the glass fits behind the slot and the spade can be pushed into it.
Everything looked good on paper and also on the test piece we made, but that windshield frame, especially the top sections over the front sheets of glass, just looked so fragile. We hedged our bets by building a rough jig to which we could mount the frame using its mounting holes.

In the end, someone had to grab the router and go. John stepped up and masterfully guided the router around all four openings. We have now installed the two front sheets of glass and will install the whole thing on the boat before adding glass to the wings.

Phew! Fabricating an entire windshield would NOT have been fun.

1967 Century Palomino: Removing Bungs Flush with Planking

1967 century palomino removing bungs flush planking

This 1967 Century Palomino’s decks were completely released so we could gain access to the areas beneath. With all of the framework complete, and everything sealed and coated in multiple coats of Sandusky Paints Mahogany Bilge paint, the deck planking has been re-fastened with silicon bronze Frearson head wood screws

Next we inserted mahogany and Avodire bungs, making sure that each bung’s grain was aligned with that of the plank. Gorilla Glue ensures a waterproof bond is established

But then we have a sea of bungs standing proud of the deck. Each must be cut flush to the planking. This clip is a response to the many questions we have received about how we do it at SMB. Well, we tried all manner of high-end chisels, honed to a razor’s edge. No matter how carefully we sliced through each bung, some would break off below the plank’s surface, which meant digging them out and inserting new bungs

And then there would be the inevitable, “Oh s….!” Someone had slipped and gouged the plank. No matter how good you get at it, filling a gouge means a bruise remains, one that seems to jump out at anyone who looks carefully at the surface

And it was slow and tense.

Now we are standardized on the VERITAS flush-cut hand saw. It is incredibly sharp, and with zero offset to the teeth, these saws cut the bung off precisely at the surface without marring it. Time means cost to our clients, so the fact that we can excise 400 or so bungs per hour with these saws also makes us more competitive

We experimented with less expensive brands, like Stanley, but in every case rejected them because at least one tooth was offset just enough that we got scratches in our test planks.

1956 Century Black-Cowhide Palomino – As Found

1956 century black cowhide palomino as found

Once again David Irving and his Bone Yard Boats has proven to be an invaluable channel for helping owners of great old wooden boats find and move them to new owners who are committed to doing the heavy lifting required for comprehensive preservation of these elegant ladies of yesteryear.

Now, based on the Century Boats Facebook page and speaking with Dave at A&A Marine, it seems I erred in characterizing this boat as a Palomino. In fact, it appears that she is a Pinto with horsehide upholstery, which makes total sense given how Pinto horses are marked. And her hull number, P 5652, suggests that she was actually manufactured in 1956, not 1957.

Here she is in her as-found debut at Snake Mountain Boatworks. With her hull number stamped on her transom, and as complete and unhurt as a 55 year-old boat can possibly be.

1955 20′ Old Style Lyman Preservation Update

1955 lyman runabout restoration update

Lyman built 147 20′ runabouts in 1955, and this boat, complete with her original Chrysler Crown 115 engine, is among the survivors.

According to Tom Korknay’s Legend of the Lakes, she is “(t)he last vestige of the heavily built, prewar boats, they featured narrow strakes, a deep freeboard, and 13/16 inch by 7/8 inch white oak ribs placed 5 inches on center. They were constructed of plywood hulls and decks with a sold mahogany transom like the 18-foot version.” (pp 95, 96)

She has been featured in earlier clips as the boat from whom we removed over 95 pounds of paint from the topsides.

Today, with preservation of her hull, inside and out, and from keel to gunwales complete, we moved her into our showroom for reassembly of her “furniture” and hardware, all of which has been preserved and plated by New England Chrome in East Hartford, CT.

1955 20′ Lyman Runabout Topsides and Bright Work Nearing the Finish Line

1955 lyman runabout topsides bright work

We are at the most enjoyable point in each of our restoration projects. Every bit of stripping and deconstuction is behind us. The lapstrake topsides and boot stripe have received their final coat of Totalboat Wet Edge polyurethane paint.

We could not be more pleased with the new-to-the-markiet paint line from Jamestown Distributiors’. Wet Edge is positioned to challenge Interlux Brightside. We have tested it on half a dozen topsides by now, and will standardize on this paint, one which trumps Brightside by every criterion, but especially in terms of gloss and a curing process that leads to a virtual complete absence of brush marks. (We roll and tip this paint, and have applied three coats over three of the primer.)

The bottom was scraped completely clean, before 3M 5200 was applied to seal every seam. She then received three coats of Pettit Tie Coat Primer, followed by three of Sandusky Lyman Tan Antifouling paint.

We have four coats of Captain’s Varnish Ultra Clear 2067 on the transom and two on the decks and covering boards as I type. The ceilings are next.

Using Captain’s grows out of conversations with several well-respected Lyman owners whose judgement I respect. Since she is a SMB-owned boat, she’s become our test vessel for purposes of bright work.

If you search back through the clips we’ve posted to this challenge, you will see the same boat being stripped of what ended up being 95 pounds of paint from the topsides alone. She was just as “crusty” below the waterline, but collecting and weighing those “leavings” proved impossible.

Stay tuned for more updates. Once we have the ceilings installed, her completely rebuilt Chrysler Crown engine will be installed, followed by her floor panels, which have been updated with new Nautolex in natural.

We are racing against the onslaught of winter, and it looks like winter will win. The sea trials we hoped to run this fall will likely wait until the ice leaves Lake Champlain next spring.

1946 Gar Wood Ensign Please Do NOT Fiberglass Wood Boats!

1946 gar wood ensign fiberglass hull

Here is the next installment on our 1946 GarWood Ensign restoration project. With everything removed from the hull, we have flipped her onto boat dollies in preparation for removing the planking, repairing all the failed, rotted and broken framework beneath them and then installing a 5200 bottom.

This boat spent most of her life on Squam Lake or Little Squam Lake in New Hamspire.

That these lakes have a well-earned reputation for unforgiving, rocky bottoms is evidenced by all the damage that this hull has suffered below the waterline. Indeed, the previous owner(s) installed iron strapping along the stem and forward sections of the keel. Then there is the through-and-through fracture of the keel just forward of the prop shaft tunnel.

Removing the fasteners and these straps was simple.

But then comes the fiberglass. Yes, someone fiberglassed the entire bottom, the chines and up the topsides as much as 8 inches. We “get” to remove all of it. Not doing so makes removing bungs and bottom plank fasteners all but impossible, never mind the fact that we are doing our utmost to preserve the original planks.

We have tried using chisels, which worked well along the keel and garboards, where sheets of fiberglass peeled off with relative ease.

However, the fabric-infused resin remained, and presents us with a challenge of much greater magnitude. It will be incredibly tedious and time-consuming, but using a combination of heat guns and sharpened putty knives seems to be the best solution. The challenge here is not gouging 60 year-old wood with the hot, sharp putty knife. We are also running into large areas of rot where water managed to breach the fiberglass skin and soaked the wood in a largely anaerobic environment.

We will soldier onward, but want to make a plea to all woody owners and preservationists, “Please, please do not fiberglass your wood boats!” Doing so is a lose-lose proposition, especially for these irreplaceable artifacts of the past.

SOLD 1948 18′ Chris Craft Utility Deluxe

Offered at $19,500: 1948 18′ Chris Craft Utility Deluxe  Hull # U18-550

Little Chief is on her way to Salzburg, Austria, where her new owners will enjoy her for years to come. 

We prepped her ahd her transport trailer for the voyage on October 30, 2013.

Little Chief’s loading into her 20′ sea container on November 12, 2013.

Best of Show, Utilities, 2012 VT Antique & Classic Boat Show

  • Watertight, 3M 5200 bottom
  • All fasteners released and replaced with silicon bronze
  • Sixteen coats of hand-rubbed Epifanes varnish
  • Original CC 95 HP Model K engine rebuilt by Restoration and Performance Motorcars of Vermont
  • Original hardware chromed by Mickey Dupuis D&S Custom Plating, Holyoke, MA
  • New, custom-built Sea Lion Trailer

Watch Little Chief’s post-preservation debut on YouTube:

SOLD: 1968 Lyman 19’ Runabout

1968 Lyman 19’ RunaboutOffered at $24,750: Super Rate 1968 Lyman 19’ Runabout

Teca (P-1127) is one of only 17 19′ runabouts powered by Ford 289 V8 Interceptor engines (Model 165) built by Lyman Boatworks in 1968, She’s been on Lake George since being delivered to Morgan Marine Service, Silver Bay, NY, May 5, 1968. Still 95% original, she has now been comprehensively rejuvenated by Snake Mountain Boatworks and is ready to give decades of pleasure to her next owner(s).

Meet Teca as she emerged from the shop in October.

Enjoy watching Teca romping on her maiden romp across Lake Champlain, November 16, 2012.

  • Original Ford 289 Interceptor V8 engine –Mallory electronic ignition & Edelbrock 4 bbl carburetor installed.
  • Original varnish on interior of planking, on ceilings & related surfaces cleaned & buffed.
  • All bright work cleaned & buffed to 9,000 grit; includes original splash rails still in their original varnish. Bilge cleaned & painted with multiple coats of Lyman Tan bilge paint.
  • All hardware either plated or polished to show standards.
  • Original upholstery & bimini is in as-new condition. New Nautolex in “natural” was installed.
  • Topsides sanded, faired & finished with 4 coats of Interlux Epoxy Primekote, followed by 6 coats of Interlux two-part epoxy topcoat. – Snow White topsides & Rochelle Red boot stripe. The solid mahogany bottom planks were sanded, faired, primed & painted.
  • All electronics tested for good running.
  • New custom-built, galvanized Sea Lion bunk trailer.

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1955 20′ Lyman Runabout Deconstruction Continues

1955 lyman runabout deconstruction

She is a 1955, 20′ Lyman Runabout, Hull #1028 that we are told was at one time used as a commercial fishing boat off the coast of Maine. The intriguing aft steering mechanism supports that contention.

If you have ever seen a steering unit like that detailed in this video, please let me know! We have everything but whatever protruded through the floor and functioned as either a tiller or a steering wheel.

But she had been in Vermont for almost 20 years when we found her; at least 10 of which were spent sitting on a wood cradle crammed into a barn.

She is the Lyman introduced in an earlier clip that reported us having stripped over 85 pounds of paint from her topsides.

That was then. We are well into the deconstruction phase of her preservation, what with another 18 pounds of paint having been removed and virtually everything having been stripped from the hull’s interior.

We will offer periodic updates as the preservation project continues.

SOLD: Mid-1940s Old Town Dinghy

Cutter Jet de VilleOld Town Dinghy1968 Lyman 19’ RunaboutOffered at $3,850: Mid-1940s Old Town Dinghy, 16’ Canvassed Cedar Strip w 1946 HD-25 Johnson Sea Horse Outboard and Yacht Club Bunk Trailer

This painstakingly-rejuvenated, exquisite example of the Old Town dinghy can be yours. Watch as she as she glides through the water. Isn’t she reminiscent of On Golden Pond?

  • New canvas & transom finished in period jade mist green.
  • Original ribs, cedar strips, outwales, inwales, keel.
  • Exterior wood surfaces, cleaned, sanded & sealed with two coats of CPES.
  • Interior surfaces were cleaned, sanded lightly and varnished with multiple coats of Sikkens Cetol Marine Original.
  • Four coats of Interlux Pre-Coat and six of brilliant Sea Green Interlux Brightside Polyurethane, the most technically advanced one-part epoxy on the market today, were applied to the canvas and transom.
  • The 1946, 2.5 HP, direct-drive Johnson Sea Horse engine is in original paint and decals, has been serviced, starts & runs smoothly.
  • Extra NOS prop & water pump impeller included.
  • Yacht Club bunk trailer is in excellent condition.


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