P.O. Box 91
Gloucester, North Carolina
Notes from the Field - "Cherokee" Huckins Restoration Project
May 20, 2001
After a thorough investigation of boatbuilding practices
in Lake Titicaca, Fish Doc is back online with Cherokee.
Much has happened in the space of two months. The rope locker, along with its
bulkhead, are now in place, fiberglassed and awaiting paint. The bow thruster tube is now in place. It
fiberglassed, and one hundred percent structurally ready to go! The
propellor have been removed for safety, and to allow for painting.
Jeff has completed the pilothouse
windows, short of the glass frames. He has also raised the galley
windows six inches. Jeanette has built a staging to accommodate removing
toe rails and to sand the sides of the pilot house structure. The
have been fit to the bottom by John Stein. The 8-V92's have been
and run for several hours. The beds for the fuel tanks have been put
in place as well. Norm has fit all of the decking forward, including decking over
the rope locker. The "coffin" has been built to contain the poly-holding
tank for the black water. The thermapure arrived on the scene, and
half the portlight frames have been built and permanently glued in
place by Jim and John, with all bolt patterns completed. After most
of the fiberglassing in the engine room
was done, the transom was then put in place.
This lends a certain closure to Cherokee, as
her aft is no longer hanging in the breeze.
Casey Giving Tom Darden a Warm Welcome, Pre-transom
Barking Orders at Leonard, the Emerging Transom
View from the Inside, View from the Outside
Leonard at 4:30, May 21, Transom Completed!
Port lights are being fitted and installed, a process that includes
making jigs, routing frames, and fitting lights within new frames.
John Routing Portlight Frames, Framed Site
Outside and Inside View of Portlight
The waterjets arrived, and the crew hoisted them up and temporarily fitted them
into place before the new transom was begun.
Two Views of the New Prop Placement
Meanwhile, Jeanette and Brooks (Jeff's son, who is working after
school until the shrimp show up) have not only been hard at work building
staging and removing stantions and toe rails, they have also started
sanding the starboard side of the pilothouse and trunk cabin.
Jeanette and Brooks Making Staging for Toe Rail Project
Reed Boat Construction in Bolivia - Can You Find the Gringo?
Even without a coast, the Bolivian boat building business
is alive and well. Porfirio Limachi is the nephew of Demetrio Limachi,
one of the four Aymara boatbuilders from the Lake Titicaca island of
Suriqui who were enlisted by Dr. Thor Heyerdahl of Kon Tiki fame to
build and crew the Ra II. "Dr. Heyerdahl wanted to test his theory
that long migrations occurred among ancient people," Porfirio
explained. The crew successfully navigated the totura reed ship
from Morocco to Barbados. Porfirio's family constructs totura
boats today, gathering and drying the reeds, collecting the dried
reeds into four fat bundles, and lashing them together with grass.
They sometimes add a reed sail to the canoe-style craft. You can
have a totura boat made for about $20.00, but they only last six
months before they rot and sink...Signing off for now,
Barbara "Fish Doctor" Blake
Blake Boatworks Archive Page
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