Kennebec Gunwales

Dave Osborn

Hi All!
I just pulled an early 20's long decked Kennebec into the shop. Looking at the gunwale attachment method, it appears that they used finish nails going from the spruce inwale to the mahogany outwale, then again from the outwale to the inwale at each rib. Dave McDaniel showed me a nifty tool to pry off the outwale a couple of years ago. My question is about re-attaching the outwale when it is completed. Should I just nail it on again, or is there another better method? Also, since I don't have a nifty tool, how were any of you successful in removing the outwale?
Dave O.
nifty tool

Hey Dave;
I believe that I sent you a pic of the tool, did'nt I.
I don't use the nails because they don't hold very well.
That is why alot of Kennebecs have an extra strip under
the gunnel to hold the canvas. I use wood screws from
inwale to outwale.
Later Dave
Hey Dave,

Depends on what your goal is - if you want True Historical Authenticity for your restoration, then you should put it back on in the way it came off (I would substitute stainless steel finish nails, though...). But if you aren't as concerned about maintaining historical accuracy, do it better, like Dave suggests. Using screws will be stronger in the near term, and make a future restoration easier.

Thanks for the replies!
Yes, Dave I think I have a photo of the tool in this computer somewhere.
I really don't have a means to make a tool like that anymore, Any other suggestions for removing the outwale?
Kennebec gunnel

Do you have any C4 plastic exposives lying around?
Seriously a couple of strong puddy knives and small piece
of oak or ash will work, but the tool works much better,
Do think we could sell a few if I were to go into production?
Later Dave
Looking ahead - even though I don't know what you are talking about- if it is something you find useful and since I trust your judgement- sign me up for one!
After prying with a stout putty knife and tack puller against a piece of oak with virtually no success with the damn rusted nails, I'd be willing to buy one!!
Before the C4 arrives

Try a five in one. It's alot stronger than a putty knife. Thinner than a pry bar but strong. Not very expensive. Maybe I'll buy one for myself and then you can borrow.
McDaniel Pry Bar

Let me know when you go into production on the MPB......I'll buy the first off and be your Midwest marketing guy! Or maybe we can work out a rental agreement!