Building a replacement mahogany windshield for my 18' White skiff

Discussion in 'Boat Design' started by Downeast450, Sep 17, 2013.

  1. Downeast450
    Joined: May 2010
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    Location: Seal Harbor, Maine

    Downeast450 Junior Member

    An unfortunate accident ripped the windshield off my 18' White skiff. The po tried towing it with its full cover in place and the wind's pull yanked the whole windshield off. I have the hardware and one of the triangular side window frames. The original windshield had two side frames and three front facing frames. The middle front facing frame was narrow and opened up with a hinge at its top.

    I have the mahogany I need. I have the side window frame to see how the triangular frame is joined. It also gives me the profile of the shape of the grooves that held the glass and the vinyl molding. The "footprint" is still on the deck.

    I want to build a replacement that is as close to the original as possible. I may just take it to a shop that restores Lymans and have them do it. I like working with wood, too and perhaps with some good advice I can reproduce it.

    It strikes me that the sequence of steps is critical. The triangular frame is tightly fitted. The inside edges are smoothly shaped and the groove is continuous all the way around.

    I expect to start by cutting the three pieces that make up the frame with angles I take from the original piece. Step 2- join the three pieces to make a rigid triangular frame. Biscuits I expect and W.E.S.T.?? It looks like I will want to wait to finish the sizing and shape of the interior edge until the frame is together? Tips on doing this will be helpful? Then using a shaper cut the profile for the glass and the vinyl?

    I have never done a piece like this. The rest of the windshield is roughly rectangles. Getting the two triangular side wndow frames right probably would benefit from experience.

    Does anyone have suggestions?

    I will have to Use a shop at the high school to do the shaping. I do not have a shaper.

    The estimate I have from a reputable shop is $350.00 per panel wo glass or finish It is a 5 panel windshield. It will get restored one way or another. I have the hardware thet the old windshield used including the w wiper motor. It is a beautiful boat.

    Thanks,

    George
     
  2. PAR
    Joined: Nov 2003
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    Location: Eustis, FL

    PAR Yacht Designer/Builder

    Hi George, I just replied to your MessingAbout post. Forget about biscuits - which are for puppies, not windscreen frames. Dowels and mortices are a better choices for alignment, with half and hidden laps preferred on these types of assemblies, because of the movement.

    Can you post a picture?
     
  3. Downeast450
    Joined: May 2010
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    Location: Seal Harbor, Maine

    Downeast450 Junior Member

    Thanks for this good advice. I will probably have a Shop here in Maine, that specializes in Lyman restorations, do it for me. I don't have the shop I would need. There are surely some complex angles that join the sections of the windshield that someone experienced with building these things would understand.

    It is a beautiful old boat and it deserves to be done correctly. I am "negotiating" with the shop now. Very nice folks and I think I will be able to afford them if I eat nothing but rice this winter.;)

    George
     
  4. alan white
    Joined: Mar 2007
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    Location: maine

    alan white Senior Member

    If you want to see a similar windshield replacement, I am close to Dedham (Lucerne) working and can show you the boat. I used mahogany and the top of the triangles are curved. The windshield is vee shaped of two pieces. I can show you what I did about seven years ago. It has held up well. The corner joints where the windshield meets the sides is the critical place to keep water out of so it requires pre-assembly epoxy coating and assembly with 3m 5200. The window detail is a rabbet on the outside with stops added to hold in the windows (seal with 3m 4200).
    If interested in driving out to see my windshield job, send your tel no. to vagabond172@gmail.com.
    I can build anything you want. My shop is in Eddington (close to Bangor).

    Alan
     
  5. PAR
    Joined: Nov 2003
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    Location: Eustis, FL

    PAR Yacht Designer/Builder

    As I mentioned previously George, there are a lot of complex, yet subtle angles, bevels and joints in the assembly. See what you can work out. It's enjoyable work, though having the right tools and some mill work experience is very helpful. Give Alan a call, his skills should shine on a job like this and I'll bet his overhead isn't anything the Lyman shop has. I wouldn't use 3M-5200 or 4200 to seal the glass, but silicone instead. This is one of the rare places silicone is useful and actually works the best. Of course you have to be really careful with it, taping off everything it might touch, so it's only in the the rabbit and on the glass.
     
  6. alan white
    Joined: Mar 2007
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    Location: maine

    alan white Senior Member

    Thanks for the plug, Paul. I hopr that I can build for less than the registered and approved Lyman guys.
    The windshield has a few complex joints. Everything shows so it's a real piece of joinery.
     
  7. missinginaction
    Joined: Aug 2007
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    Location: New York

    missinginaction Senior Member

    Alan has always given me great advice here on the forum and I've always been one to think that how people behave online reflects how they behave in general. I'd certainly seek his council.
     

  8. PAR
    Joined: Nov 2003
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    Location: Eustis, FL

    PAR Yacht Designer/Builder

    I did one along with a transom a few years ago on a buddies White. I've been trying to buy it from him ever since, because it's a fine example, but he can't budge (prick). It's not bad for a skilled wood worker, though it'll challenge him a bit with fits.
     
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