2022.11.24 - Task 1 Removing the Sampson Post

Since this is the start of the work on Naiad I decided that perhaps the best way to proceed would be do carry out a few of the easy, smaller jobs and the task I chose was to take out the sampson post. Should be easy right? Remove the bolt under the foredeck, loosen the sealer around the hole on top of the deck and lift it out. Easy.

I've mentioned if before but there is a Yiddish proverb that goes "Mann Tracht, Un Gott Lacht" or "Man plans and God laughs" only it doesn't rhyme in English.

Such was the case yesterday. The post was not coming out. I used sealer on the top and figured that I had also used sealer on the foot to prevent water from sitting in the mortise in the keel and rotting the wood. I figured that the sealer was so good, and it is really good, that I couldn't get enough force lifting the sampson post to break the seal. In the end I cut through the post near the keel and lifted the top section off. Then I tried to remove the foot section and it still would not come out.

So I left it for the day and thought about it. During my lunch break today I thought that there was a small chance that one or more of the screws holding the bobstay fitting onto the stem was long enough to reach through the stem and into the foot of the post. I determined that I would remove that fitting, since it was one of the small tasks on the do first list, and see.

That was not an easy job, the screws were well bedded with, you guessed it, sealant, in this case epoxy, and didn't want to move. In the end I used a heat gun to heat up the fitting and the screws to soften the epoxy, an impact driver to shock the screws to try and break any bond and then a screwdriver bit in a brace to take the screws out. Surprisingly this worked and the four screws came out without too much fuss.

So did the foot of the sampson post.

The bobstay fitting and screws.

The two-part sampson post.

The two screw holes where the foot was being retained by two of the screws from the bobstay fitting.

Still, the post is now out, the bobstay fitting has been removed and the chain locker has also been taken out of the boat. Three of the tasks done although I now have to add a new task, that of making the sampson post one piece again.

This is the chain locker and I now have to decide whether to make is shorter from the top or the bottom or to do away with it entirely and use a strong plastic bucket as is used in Shoal Waters. 

Three steps forward, one step back !

Time for a tea break.

Tea break over it's time to glue the sampson post back together again. Four 6mm holes drilled, two in each of the cut end of the two pieces.

These were widened to 8mm by using 6.5mm, 7mm, 7.5mm and 8mm bits one after the other.

Two short pieces of Ash 8mm dowel cut to ft into the holes.

The dowels will not only help to locate the pieces but twop them from sliding whilst the epoxy is curing. The pieces don't quite line up but I can either leave that as it is or do a quick job with a plane to make it all smooth again.

All the surfaces were coated in neat epoxy, thickened epoxy then spread on one end after a few minutes to allow the neat epoxy to soak into the wood, the two pieces put together, the excess epoxy scraped off and the whole thing stood next to the warm Rayburn in the kitchen to cure.

So, a fairly good start to the project even though it went off in an unexpected direction. Task 1 ended up being tasks 1, 2 & 3 !