Here is Trevor cutting the joint between the two central base planks. In the original this seat was packed with moss and a lathe driven home tight over the top. The moss would expand as it got wet until it sealed. Because our replica is half scale and the lathe seat half as thick we don’t think that it will be possible to waterproof it with moss and for the sea trials we will use mastic then replace with moss when it goes on display in the museums.
This shows the four bottom planks, there is much debate about how such complex boats evolved, they are so very different to the dugouts of the time and there is no parallel anywhere else in Europe. One theory is that they developed from the dugout canoe tradition. Bronze age and neolithic dugouts are surprisingly common finds no less than six have been found on a single site currently being excavated at Must Farm
Some dugouts split and are repaired with laths and stitching, the theory goes that its not a huge step from there to cutting a dugout down the middle and putting an extra bit in to make it bigger, hmmmm.
Anyway back to our boat, the next step is to get the upper planks ready, this needs us to assemble the boat and scribe the top line and transfer that line onto the rough hewn planks. Plywood makes this easy, wonder how they did it originally.
Then it’s time to cheat and rough it out with a chainsaw. We could hew all this away with bronze axes but it wouldn’t prove much and we are running behind time with a tight deadline, all the finishing will be done with bronze tools.
Roughed out top planks ready fro steaming.
Here is an index for all blog posts on the Dover boat project
woodworking-marathon-continued-just 18 hours to go.