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Dumas Chris Craft Runabout wreck

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Old 09-27-2012, 09:28 AM
  #1
mickyb
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Default Dumas Chris Craft Runabout wreck

Hi foks,
My name is Mike and this is my first post. I have read many posts on building Dumas Chris Craft kits but I need advice on a salvage job please.

I have recently bought a Dumas Runabout boat on ebay. This kit was built many years ago and I am told it has traveled from UK to Africa, then on to Greece before returning to UK so you can guess the knocks and bangs it has taken. Now I have it stripped down in my shed I can see that the builder did not take great care during construction, and the finish is just a thin coat of varnish, which type I am not sure. Safe to say this model is a wreck and that is why I got it very cheap.

I think that I can save the model but I need some advice because this is the first plank on frame wooden boat I have worked on. I won't be able to recreate a Runabout of the quality and finish of the builds shown on here but I am sure I can fix things up so that the boat looks just grand out there on the water.

The varnish and paint show longitudinal cracks and the fittings are corroded. I have removed all fittings and sanded off the varnish to reveal that the superglue was not properly applied and so the planks have curved up at the edges in quite a few places.

My plan is to sand the boat down, apply a thinned coat of resin all over the hull in order to soak through and stabilise the planking, then apply a fine glass matting and several coats of resin to build up a gloss. Sounds simple but I bet it won't be. This boat is a wreck but I am sure it can be saved and enjoyed for many years yet even if it does look a bit well used when resurected.

I think I should apply a darker colour stain to the planking around the edges of the deck in order to hide the ravages of time, and fit mahogany strips along the edge where the deck meets the side of the hull in order to repair the damage. I would like to find a supplier of small scale "D" shaped alumimium strip to fix along this edge as a rubbing strip, it may also be a feature drawing your eyes away from my attemps at the repairs.

Attached are a few fotos of the "project" showing the damage and basic sanding to the hull.
Dumas are sending me a kit of deck fittings and decals to finish everything off nicely.

Why on earth is the model construted with superglue and not "real" wood glue? Surely superglue deteriorates with time.

Any advice will be truly appreciated.

Secondly, I would like to scratch build a 2 foot model of the Gar Wood speedster, any idea where I can get a set of plans or a set I can modify for the build please.

Quite a lot to ask from my first post so please forgive me

Many thanks

Mike

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Old 09-28-2012, 12:26 AM
  #2
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Default RE: Dumas Chris Craft Runabout wreck

First off, welcome to the forum.
As far as why someone would use superglue, also called CA, is a matter of time. Many people buy these kits and expect them to be simple builds. What ends up happening is they open up the box and, upon seeing a pile of wood, out comes the CA so they can get the boat done quicker so it's runable. Since time is not taken, build quality goes right out the window. That being said, what you may want to do is pick up some thin mahogany veneer and, after leveling out the hull's surface by sanding and filling as needed, apply the veneer as a top coat so you're working with new wood rather than old. The advantage of this is that the veneer will be fresh so any finishing product you want to use will work better than on the old wood
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Old 09-28-2012, 06:49 AM
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Default RE: Dumas Chris Craft Runabout wreck

Hi,
many thanks for your reply.

I quite understand the reason for the use of CA generally, but I guess I measure all modellers the same - patient! I always see a modeller who works with wood as someone who uses the hobby as relaxation rather than rushing to a conclusion.... specially when that person has just spent some $400 on a beautiful wooden model - why build a wreck?.

This boat has certainly been rushed and the builder has totally missed the point of the hobby I think.

I will certainly use your suggestion on the sides and below the waterline, but I will do all that I can to salvage the planked decking because it looks so good when finished properly. Today I found a model shop that stocks mahogany planking slightly bigger than the Dumas kit planks, so I will be able to remove the damaged water stained deck planks and replace them with new ones.

Here's a few more questions.....
Why rub down the surface to a super smooth finish, then apply a stainer. The fact that the stainer is a liquid means that the surface pores of the mahogany will swell so it will have to be sanded again. Why not stain the mahogany then sand smooth?

Why does the surface have to be super smooth. Won't the resin adhere better to a "not so smooth" surface?

Won't the surface look great under several coats of resin and laquer even if it is not perfectly smooth?

Does anyone know what colour stain is best for the deck and what colour is best for the king plank and side decking plank?
I realy like the 2 tone decking it sets off the model nicely.

The model is fitted with a Dumas 3 blade prop and a Dumas motor, (9 - 12 volt / 2 amp max, stock nmbr 2005) does anyone know how it will perform with this motor, or should I fit a different motor?

Sorry for the questions folks...I usually build model sailing boats so this is a first for me.

Many thanks Mike
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Old 09-28-2012, 07:28 PM
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Default RE: Dumas Chris Craft Runabout wreck

Mickey,

Get the book "Mahogany in scale", this book will help you tremendously in rebuilding this boat.

-Rich.
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Old 09-29-2012, 10:19 AM
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Default RE: Dumas Chris Craft Runabout wreck

From: Mickyb
"Here's a few more questions.....
Why rub down the surface to a super smooth finish, then apply a stainer. The fact that the stainer is a liquid means that the surface pores of the mahogany will swell so it will have to be sanded again. Why not stain the mahogany then sand smooth?"

Wood working in general, the smoother the wood is, the better the final finish will be, especially if you're looking for a glass smooth finish. Sand it smooth, then stain it. Wait for the stain to dry, this is more important for oil and water based stains. Oil stain takes time for the oil carrier to evaporate. The same holds true for water based stain. Solvent based stains dry quicker, but can sometimes affect the glued joints. After the wood dries wait another day and sand the wood smooth again.

"Why does the surface have to be super smooth. Won't the resin adhere better to a ''not so smooth'' surface?"

Again here, the smoother the wood is the better the final finish.

"Won't the surface look great under several coats of resin and laquer even if it is not perfectly smooth?"

Try sanding a scrap piece, stain it, sand the left hand side only, then coat it with resin, sand the left hand side only, apply your finish lacquer coats. Do you see enough of a difference to bother you? That will give you your answer.

"Does anyone know what colour stain is best for the deck and what colour is best for the king plank and side decking plank?
I realy like the 2 tone decking it sets off the model nicely."

Only you can be the judge of what colors are best. Try looking at classic wooden boat pictures and find a color scheme you like. Then you can attempt to reproduce it on a scrap piece before you commit to doing your boat. Fater you stain the scraps you need to resin coat them to see the final color. The resin will darken the colors some.

"The model is fitted with a Dumas 3 blade prop and a Dumas motor, (9 - 12 volt / 2 amp max, stock nmbr 2005) does anyone know how it will perform with this motor, or should I fit a different motor?"

I would suggest you try it the way it is. You may like it enough to keep it like that. After you run it a while like that, you can all ways change it later.

"Sorry for the questions folks...I usually build model sailing boats so this is a first for me."

Don't be bashful, ask away.

I will second what Rich said about the book "Mahogany in Scale".

http://www.amazon.com/Mahogany-Scale...ogany+in+scale

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Old 09-30-2012, 12:34 AM
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Default RE: Dumas Chris Craft Runabout wreck

Hi John,

thanks for the reply.

great advice, many thanks.

Resin and glass cloth below the waterline should cover up the damage and splits and the use very thin mahogany veneer on the deck to patch the poor bulid mistakes and the edge damage should do the job topsides. I think I can retain the deck planking areas with some careful repair work and stabilise the lifting planking with CA. I will use a very small drill and drill through the mahogany planking where they butt up to each other then inject CA between the plank and the balsa sub planking. Hopefully this will stick them down again. My big problem is that the builder used a lot of filler rather than spend time making joints fit properly. I will have to dig it all out and try to make invisible repairs or the stain will look awful.

I should have looked harder at the boat before I bought it, it is a real bad build.

Does anyone know of a supplier of 5mm D shaped aluminium or brass moulding to fit alond the join of the deck and sides as a rubbing strip, it will protect the corners.

Should I post pictures of the repair work?

Have a great week

Mike
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Old 09-30-2012, 06:58 AM
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Default RE: Dumas Chris Craft Runabout wreck

Pictures are good.
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Old 10-02-2012, 10:42 AM
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Default RE: Dumas Chris Craft Runabout wreck

Here are a fotos of the project.

You can see that removal of the varnish has revealed a horrid mess. Joints have sprung here and there, and over zealous sanding on the original build has left wafer thin planking and masses of filler.

Today I have purchased a selection of veneers to re surface the deck area and repair the hull, now I await delivery of glues and resins in order that work can begin.



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Old 10-20-2012, 07:26 AM
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Default RE: Dumas Chris Craft Runabout wreck

Hi,

here are a few fotos of the restoration so far.

I have replaced 1 x plank on the transom. 2 x planks on the foredeck. 1 x plank on the engine cover. 2 planks on either side of the hull have been covered with veneer and 1 side deck area has been covered with veneer as well.

On the foredeck you can see 4 little holes between the planks. I poured Magic Dust through these holes to fill the void then pumped thin CA glue through.
Under the hull the planks were a mess but I did the same as for the foredeck. A row of holes was drilled between planks then glue syringed through in several places.

I used a sandbag and lots of weights from my tackle box to hold the planks and veneer in place while the glue set.

Several coats of wood die has been used to blend in the repairs so now it.s on with the glass fibre cloth as soon as the weather changes.

I will resize the fotos and post next

Mike


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Old 10-20-2012, 07:36 AM
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Default RE: Dumas Chris Craft Runabout wreck

Here are the fotos.

Mike
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Old 10-22-2012, 05:43 AM
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Default RE: Dumas Chris Craft Runabout wreck

Mike,

From what can be seen thins are looking very good.  Maybe leave the photos larger next time so they are larger when clicked on giving more detail to the viewer?  Great restore job.

Bob

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Old 10-23-2012, 11:17 AM
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Default RE: Dumas Chris Craft Runabout wreck

Hi Bob,

I tried to post the fotos full size but I overloaded my allowance. I had taken the fotos at maximum resolution on my camera so I need to lower it a bit next time.,

Thanks for the reply, it was appreciated

All the best Mike
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