Advice on owning an Uffa Fox International Fourteen, please?

share hints, tips and experiences
Pat
Posts: 2428
Joined: Mon Sep 27, 2004 1:42 pm
Location: West Wiltshire (Wessex)

Re: Advice on owning an Uffa Fox International Fourteen, ple

Post by Pat » Thu Aug 10, 2017 12:23 pm

And I am worrying about the garboard strake/hog area, not because I can see anything wrong there - I can't, at least, not yet - but just because I don't see any way of keeping the boat safe except to painstakingly dry the whole of the bilge with a sponge whenever one sails her, because there must be a puddle left between every pair of ribs...
Which is why Chris Barlow is always long in the dinghy park syringing out Blue Peter after racing!
(Half Cut and What a Lark Removals Ltd)

Aquarius
Posts: 105
Joined: Thu Jul 13, 2017 11:08 am
Location: Woodbridge Suffolk

Re: Advice on owning an Uffa Fox International Fourteen, ple

Post by Aquarius » Thu Aug 10, 2017 12:59 pm

Pat wrote:
And I am worrying about the garboard strake/hog area, not because I can see anything wrong there - I can't, at least, not yet - but just because I don't see any way of keeping the boat safe except to painstakingly dry the whole of the bilge with a sponge whenever one sails her, because there must be a puddle left between every pair of ribs...
Which is why Chris Barlow is always long in the dinghy park syringing out Blue Peter after racing!
I am early on the learning curve...

Project is to get Galatea (which seems to be in remarkably good original condition) on the water next year. I shall be taking Chris's advice about taking a long time scraping.

Tonight was bath night for Galatea. A prolonged session with a hose, sponges, microporous cloths and then the whole boat dried with kitchen paper. No more mouse droppings, but my word she was filthy. And I still cannot find anything

Next idiot question- what are the jam cleats under the mast thwart for?
Last edited by Aquarius on Tue Aug 15, 2017 10:15 pm, edited 1 time in total.
CVRDA eligible:
1962(?) Firefly F3163 "Aquarius"
1946 International Fourteen K478 "Galatea"
Not CVRDA eligible:
1991(?) Nethercot IC K229, "Ogaf the Unbearable"
Squib. possibly number 251, "Squirt"

Aquarius
Posts: 105
Joined: Thu Jul 13, 2017 11:08 am
Location: Woodbridge Suffolk

Re: Advice on owning an Uffa Fox International Fourteen, ple

Post by Aquarius » Mon Aug 14, 2017 10:32 pm

Tiny brass screw questions...

1. Is it a good idea to try to remove the brass keel band, and the gudgeon and pintle on the transom, for varnishing?

2. Should one try and remove the brass hood end screws and replace with bronze?

since Photobucket are playing silly beggars, the photos are all here:

https://postimg.org/gallery/n5rkr4a6/
CVRDA eligible:
1962(?) Firefly F3163 "Aquarius"
1946 International Fourteen K478 "Galatea"
Not CVRDA eligible:
1991(?) Nethercot IC K229, "Ogaf the Unbearable"
Squib. possibly number 251, "Squirt"

Aquarius
Posts: 105
Joined: Thu Jul 13, 2017 11:08 am
Location: Woodbridge Suffolk

Re: Advice on owning an Uffa Fox International Fourteen, ple

Post by Aquarius » Sun Aug 20, 2017 10:51 pm

Varnish stripped externally. The easiest way to get rid of "n" coats of copal varnish is to dry scrape as using a heat gun makes it sticky!

One cracked strake, starboard side, some trolley scuffs, one rather nicely fitted graving piece and just as I was congratulating myself I found some rot in the hog! Luckily only a small soft patch about five inches by less than two and it doesn't seem to go through, though yet to be fully excavated.

The garboards are not Honduras mahogany and I fancy they are wych elm.
CVRDA eligible:
1962(?) Firefly F3163 "Aquarius"
1946 International Fourteen K478 "Galatea"
Not CVRDA eligible:
1991(?) Nethercot IC K229, "Ogaf the Unbearable"
Squib. possibly number 251, "Squirt"

Aquarius
Posts: 105
Joined: Thu Jul 13, 2017 11:08 am
Location: Woodbridge Suffolk

Re: Advice on owning an Uffa Fox International Fourteen, ple

Post by Aquarius » Mon Aug 21, 2017 10:53 pm

Last week - port side "as found", starboard side after first scraping

Image

The state of affairs tonight... first 50% thinned coat of Epifanes.

Image
CVRDA eligible:
1962(?) Firefly F3163 "Aquarius"
1946 International Fourteen K478 "Galatea"
Not CVRDA eligible:
1991(?) Nethercot IC K229, "Ogaf the Unbearable"
Squib. possibly number 251, "Squirt"

Keith66
Posts: 88
Joined: Fri Oct 30, 2009 12:10 am
Location: Benfleet
Contact:

Re: Advice on owning an Uffa Fox International Fourteen, ple

Post by Keith66 » Thu Aug 24, 2017 6:07 pm

I love these old 14's, we have one in the roof of our club house she is Destiny no 526? built in 1947 by Souters apparently the last one built the same way as yours. She had sat outside in the open & her bottom planking was nearly rotten & badly distorted aft of the plate case. No way of fixing her to sail again without a total rebuild which with one of these is not really practical.
Trouble is the mahogany goes brash & punky with age & degrades to the point it loses strength, In a worst case scenario you can scrape the timber away with your fingernail, i had this on my old Saunders launch (built 1905) & the honduras mahogany on her bottom resembled an old weetabix. Yet the yellow cedar planking underneath was perfect.
Once the inside is stripped of varnish i would seriously consider a good soaking in boat soup, linseed oil & clear cuprinol. Its about the only way to put some life back in the timber & preserve it.

Aquarius
Posts: 105
Joined: Thu Jul 13, 2017 11:08 am
Location: Woodbridge Suffolk

Re: Advice on owning an Uffa Fox International Fourteen, ple

Post by Aquarius » Fri Aug 25, 2017 2:54 pm

Keith66 wrote:I love these old 14's, we have one in the roof of our club house she is Destiny no 526? built in 1947 by Souters apparently the last one built the same way as yours. She had sat outside in the open & her bottom planking was nearly rotten & badly distorted aft of the plate case. No way of fixing her to sail again without a total rebuild which with one of these is not really practical.
Trouble is the mahogany goes brash & punky with age & degrades to the point it loses strength, In a worst case scenario you can scrape the timber away with your fingernail, i had this on my old Saunders launch (built 1905) & the honduras mahogany on her bottom resembled an old weetabix. Yet the yellow cedar planking underneath was perfect.
Once the inside is stripped of varnish i would seriously consider a good soaking in boat soup, linseed oil & clear cuprinol. Its about the only way to put some life back in the timber & preserve it.
This one is basically in very good order; I am not sure that she has sat outside for more than a few nights in her life. The only problem area so far found is this patch in the hog. In relation to the inside of the boat this is under the centrecase extension that forms the mast step, but a little forward of the mast step. There is no sign of trouble internally. The outermost eighth of an inch had "gone" to the point of being rubbed off with a fingernail, but chiselling a little way in found wood that was discoloured, but very hard. I plan to cut back a little more and glue in a teak graving piece.

Image
CVRDA eligible:
1962(?) Firefly F3163 "Aquarius"
1946 International Fourteen K478 "Galatea"
Not CVRDA eligible:
1991(?) Nethercot IC K229, "Ogaf the Unbearable"
Squib. possibly number 251, "Squirt"

Aquarius
Posts: 105
Joined: Thu Jul 13, 2017 11:08 am
Location: Woodbridge Suffolk

Re: Advice on owning an Uffa Fox International Fourteen, ple

Post by Aquarius » Mon Aug 28, 2017 11:19 am

Ribbed 14 horror story from a well known boatyard in Aldeburgh; a customer of theirs having a boat in similar condition to Galatea as found took a belt sander to get the old varnish off and took off the heads of the copper turned nail fastenings. She has to be refastened throughout.

Aargh!
CVRDA eligible:
1962(?) Firefly F3163 "Aquarius"
1946 International Fourteen K478 "Galatea"
Not CVRDA eligible:
1991(?) Nethercot IC K229, "Ogaf the Unbearable"
Squib. possibly number 251, "Squirt"

Michael Brigg
Posts: 1653
Joined: Fri Jul 06, 2007 7:11 pm
Location: Gosport, UK

Re: Advice on owning an Uffa Fox International Fourteen, ple

Post by Michael Brigg » Tue Aug 29, 2017 1:21 pm

And I am worrying about the garboard strake/hog area, not because I can see anything wrong there - I can't, at least, not yet - but just because I don't see any way of keeping the boat safe except to painstakingly dry the whole of the bilge with a sponge whenever one sails her, because there must be a puddle left between every pair of ribs...
My personal theory is that you can work to hard on keeping the boat dry...

Moisture is absorbed into the wood during the "taking up" process, by slow transpiration through the (natural) varnish, or directly trough the unvarnised parts of the strakes where they overlap, and is in fact an integral part of the build formula.

As the wood expands (approx. 6x more laterally compared to longtitudinally) this process naturally tightens the copper fittings and pulls the three dimentional structure tight as all the wooden parts and fastenings bed into one another.

A dry, "non glued" boat needs this to become stiff, and until the boat has taken up, it can feel alarmingly wobbly. As the structure tightens it reaches a "locking point, at which stage the stiffness and cleverness of the engineering becomes apparent. It is like pumping up the air bag around a rigid inflatable boat.

The same can be said for any longtitudinal crack or "shake" in the hog or any strake. These will pull together and become water tight provided they are bridged by ribs that are in good condition and well fastened.
Michael Brigg

Aquarius
Posts: 105
Joined: Thu Jul 13, 2017 11:08 am
Location: Woodbridge Suffolk

Re: Advice on owning an Uffa Fox International Fourteen, ple

Post by Aquarius » Tue Aug 29, 2017 3:17 pm

Michael Brigg wrote:
And I am worrying about the garboard strake/hog area, not because I can see anything wrong there - I can't, at least, not yet - but just because I don't see any way of keeping the boat safe except to painstakingly dry the whole of the bilge with a sponge whenever one sails her, because there must be a puddle left between every pair of ribs...
My personal theory is that you can work to hard on keeping the boat dry...

Moisture is absorbed into the wood during the "taking up" process, by slow transpiration through the (natural) varnish, or directly trough the unvarnised parts of the strakes where they overlap, and is in fact an integral part of the build formula.

As the wood expands (approx. 6x more laterally compared to longtitudinally) this process naturally tightens the copper fittings and pulls the three dimentional structure tight as all the wooden parts and fastenings bed into one another.

A dry, "non glued" boat needs this to become stiff, and until the boat has taken up, it can feel alarmingly wobbly. As the structure tightens it reaches a "locking point, at which stage the stiffness and cleverness of the engineering becomes apparent. It is like pumping up the air bag around a rigid inflatable boat.

The same can be said for any longitudinal crack or "shake" in the hog or any strake. These will pull together and become water tight provided they are bridged by ribs that are in good condition and well fastened.
Thank you. This boat is VERY dry, but is still remarkably rigid.

I can see that the garboard strakes, which I think are wych elm - they certainly are not Honduras mahogany! - have shrunk a bit more, laterally, than the mahogany strakes. We also have a couple of cracked strakes which I am leaving severely alone, as I am expecting them to "take up".

To my very considerable surprise, all the brass screws that we have had to deal with have come out intact. I am very inclined to replace all the screws in the boat with silicon bronze, in the interests of the long term health of the boat, because, as we have the family Firefly in the same shed, getting her long overdue overhaul with the help of a nice sheet of colour matched Agba veneer- thank you Robbins Timber - I am very well aware that brass screws are not immortal, and I suspect that GALATEA has yet to taste salt water, and has only been sailed in fresh...

Image

Image
Last edited by Aquarius on Wed Aug 30, 2017 3:48 pm, edited 1 time in total.
CVRDA eligible:
1962(?) Firefly F3163 "Aquarius"
1946 International Fourteen K478 "Galatea"
Not CVRDA eligible:
1991(?) Nethercot IC K229, "Ogaf the Unbearable"
Squib. possibly number 251, "Squirt"

suffolkmerlin
Posts: 118
Joined: Sat Mar 27, 2010 1:00 pm

Re: Advice on owning an Uffa Fox International Fourteen, ple

Post by suffolkmerlin » Wed Aug 30, 2017 2:58 pm

I do hope you will bring this beautiful boat the short distance to Aldeburgh for next years classics weekend

Aquarius
Posts: 105
Joined: Thu Jul 13, 2017 11:08 am
Location: Woodbridge Suffolk

Re: Advice on owning an Uffa Fox International Fourteen, ple

Post by Aquarius » Wed Aug 30, 2017 3:45 pm

suffolkmerlin wrote:I do hope you will bring this beautiful boat the short distance to Aldeburgh for next years classics weekend
I shall. I promise!

Now if someone were to cast their eye on the For Sale section they would find her sister ZEUS, newly posted for sale by Bill 123, and we could have a race on level terms...
Last edited by Aquarius on Wed Aug 30, 2017 7:55 pm, edited 1 time in total.
CVRDA eligible:
1962(?) Firefly F3163 "Aquarius"
1946 International Fourteen K478 "Galatea"
Not CVRDA eligible:
1991(?) Nethercot IC K229, "Ogaf the Unbearable"
Squib. possibly number 251, "Squirt"

Chalky
Posts: 41
Joined: Sat Sep 05, 2015 8:57 am

Re: Advice on owning an Uffa Fox International Fourteen, ple

Post by Chalky » Wed Aug 30, 2017 7:35 pm

Hopefully we will get a calm weekend next year. Aquamarina (871) will be sailing again unless I can find a new owner for her. I'm only about 10 miles up the road if you want to have a laugh at my latest project...

Aquarius
Posts: 105
Joined: Thu Jul 13, 2017 11:08 am
Location: Woodbridge Suffolk

Re: Advice on owning an Uffa Fox International Fourteen, ple

Post by Aquarius » Wed Sep 06, 2017 2:51 pm

Here we are after the first five coats of Epifanes Gloss Varnish:

Image

Nail heads still standing proud

Image

And the seams in way of the wych elm garboards are still gaping. The bronze rubbing band has been removed for varnishing and replacement of the slot gasket:

Image
CVRDA eligible:
1962(?) Firefly F3163 "Aquarius"
1946 International Fourteen K478 "Galatea"
Not CVRDA eligible:
1991(?) Nethercot IC K229, "Ogaf the Unbearable"
Squib. possibly number 251, "Squirt"

chris
Posts: 2416
Joined: Sat Sep 18, 2004 7:43 pm
Location: somerset

Re: Advice on owning an Uffa Fox International Fourteen, ple

Post by chris » Wed Sep 06, 2017 3:13 pm

Looking good!
Is that a bronze roller just visible at the rorward end of the centreboard slot?

Post Reply