Boat shed reconfiguration continues

Today was productive, even if a little depressing. Turns out that dismantling something I built less than two years ago with great optimism isn’t much fun – who woulda thought? At any rate, progress is being made, and in the big picture I’m very happy about the move, so once I’ve gotten through this part and onto the actual moving and setting up in the new place, looking back will be easy.

On to the details, for any who are interested.

I managed to get the shape back into the front of the shed with judicious use of a mainsheet tackle and some cheap polypropolene line followed by some buttress-style bracing of the knee walls (like that which was there when I built it – then forgot about). Next step was figuring out how best to dismantle prior to reassembly – I wanted to minimize work, minimize danger, and minimize damage, which weren’t all necessarily compatible desires, but I think it’s all worked reasonably well so far.

We (Dad came out to help) started by removing the diagonals from the front half of the shed, having decided previously to keep the back half with the rear gable end intact. Dad did that while I removed the bolts which connect the bows to the knee walls. And I took lots of pictures.

Next I went up and down each side, cutting the horizontals and the ridgepole, letting the bows fall – at first individually, then in pairs for the last four. This made a right proper mess, but achieved two goals: minimize work and minimize danger. The third goal of minimizing damage wasn’t as well respected, although the fallen bows are certainly reusable – it’s just the horizontal elements which suffered in the process, and that I can live with.

When I came to the middle bow, which I had intended to un-bolt so that I could then bolt it to the front gable end, I realized that the effort involved, while suspended on a now relatively unstable structure, wasn’t worth it, and that simply cutting things off as close to the middle bow as possible was completely acceptable. It means that the shed will be 3” shallower than planned (17’9” instead of 18’), but the 3” just wasn’t worth it.

At the end of the session we had an impressive pile of fallen bows, looking like a boat that had come to grief, or a whale’s carcass after many years on a beach (and consequently lots of work ahead to tidy up, of course), and a much reduced shed that was nearly ready to be lifted off by a team of able-bodied and willing people – that I hadn’t yet lined up – two days hence.