Stoopid Newbie Issue #64: Nails or Screws?


As I cut through all the nails holding the inwales onto what used to be my 1940 Old Town Yankee, the thought occurred to me that using screws would make the next rebuild so much easier?

I can see that you may have to countersink them so that they'd be flush to the ribs, and that it may add a bit more weight to an otherwise hefty boat, but what do you think about using screws instead of nails when I install my new inwales?

Too stoopid for words, or minor stroke of genius?

All the restorations I have done where someone went in and used screws to shore up the rib/gunnel interface has led to the ribs cracking lengthwise. The head of the screw acts as a wedge it seems and BINGO!- split rib. Nails work just fine, especially when bronze ringnails are used.

My .02 worth.

Thanks! That's something I wouldn't have anticipated. It makes sense, and was worth much more than the $.02 advertised price!
You also must keep in mind that they will be putting two staples or two tack in each rib top when you canvas.. You will than put an even larger screw in every other rib top when you attach the outwale.

I'd stick to the ring shank nails.

Good luck,


consider all the fasteners that must go into the inwale. One screw through the outwale. Two staples, or tacks, two bornze ring nails. That's alot of stuff and an inside screw would get in the way of the outside screw. And cost more.