Help Restoring a Comet Sailing Dinghy

Discussion in 'Wooden Boat Building and Restoration' started by Lazyfisher, Jul 28, 2012.

  1. Lazyfisher
    Joined: Jul 2012
    Posts: 2
    Likes: 0, Points: 0, Legacy Rep: 10
    Location: Shenandoah Valley, Virginia

    Lazyfisher New Member

    Hi All!

    I'm Eric and just discovered this site. I've been flitting through threads and trying to get a lay of the land...or water. I hope I made this post in the correct fourm?

    I am the proud owner of a Comet One Class sailing dinghy. When it was given to me I was told to just sail it. However, after a closer examination I found that almost all the canvas that was applied over the wood hull had delaminated. After removal of the canvas and inspection of the wood, I was pleased with its overall condition.

    It has several layers of paint to be removed. I will most likely have to replace the mast and sails. Although they are original to the boat. I also have most, if not all, of the original hardware.

    I know this Class was designed as a racing dinghy. I also know that it leaked until the wood swelled to seal out water.

    I'd like to restore this ship to a condition to use as a simple day sailer. Not necessarily true to class. No racing. In and out of the water, most likely, the same day. The original mast was configured with a 5 stay/running back stay. I think to simplify things I'd like to convert it to a 3 stay system; as in current Comets.

    My first question is: What do I do about the hull? What do I cover it with? Do I have to cover it or can I put epoxy over the whole thing?

    Does anyone know where I can research Comet hull numbers? I've left several messages on the Comet's web page and have never heard from anyone.

    Any advice, direction, questions, and comments are appreciated!


    Thanks in advance!
    Eric
     
  2. PAR
    Joined: Nov 2003
    Posts: 19,133
    Likes: 474, Points: 93, Legacy Rep: 3967
    Location: Eustis, FL

    PAR Yacht Designer/Builder

    A lot depends on the era Comet you have. The early boats where mostly home built and considerable variances where permitted until the 60's when they started to control the class better. If you can post a photo or three, we can tell you what era it's from and go from there. For example does it have a bronze or aluminum centerboard, does it have a boom vang attached to the mast. If it's a "Scotch" boat, then it might be valuable restored, rather then just fixed up.
     
  3. Lazyfisher
    Joined: Jul 2012
    Posts: 2
    Likes: 0, Points: 0, Legacy Rep: 10
    Location: Shenandoah Valley, Virginia

    Lazyfisher New Member

    Par, thank you for your reply. I've included several pictures and have more if you need them.

    The hull number of the boat is 1093 as shown in the photo called 'Hull Number - 1.jpg) That number should put it around the WWII era, I think. Before this boat came into my possession it belonged to my uncle who has lived in North Western New York for as long as I can remember. It was stored in a barn for many years until a snowstorm caused part of the barn to collapse.

    The centerboard is bronze and is starting to show some pitting. Is there anything I can do to stop or slow down this process?

    Regarding the boom vang: I don't know. Mainly as I am not certain what to look for to make that determination and I have not taken any pictures, yet, of the mast, boom, and all of its associated parts.

    I do not know what a "Scotch" boat is. Is that a builder or a sub-type of the Comet Class or something else entirely?

    The hull sides are plywood. The bottom is made up of planks with caulking; which is virtually gone.

    If you need further information please ask away. I will do my best to answer them for you.

    Thanks,
    Eric
     

    Attached Files:


  4. PAR
    Joined: Nov 2003
    Posts: 19,133
    Likes: 474, Points: 93, Legacy Rep: 3967
    Location: Eustis, FL

    PAR Yacht Designer/Builder

    That's one of the "grandfather" boats and no longer permitted to compete in class. Judging by the building details, she doesn't appear to be one of the Scotch built, but possible a home build that once received classification. She's been updated with the longer foredeck, which wouldn't have been typical of a 1940's era boat. This modification came around in the late 50's early 60's and would be indicative of a sailor trying to stay competitive. She might be of value to those in the class looking for an old grandfather to restore, so see if you can get some response from them. The bronze board was quite an expense for the home builder and are sought after, not because they sail better (they don't), but because of it's age.

    The board can be removed, blasted and filled, but unless you're racing, I wouldn't bother. The class has considerable documentation in regard to history and common modifications. The rigging mods might be a place for you to do some research.
     
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