Rescuing a Classic from Fire Damage

 

We started working on major structural repairs for Abaco in 2012, in close collaboration with her owners Tad and Cheryl Lippoth.  Abaco was built in 1966, and is the second to last Concordia yawl ever built, but unfortunately she suffered severe fire damage.  Tad is a talented craftsman and is completing much of the restoration at his home shop.  The current owners are passionate about restoring the vessel such that no evidence of a fire remains.

In 2012, our crew replaced the oak bridge deck beams and cockpit framing; replaced the Douglas fir shelf and clamps; and replaced eight, tight-seam mahogany planks.  The main mast was repaired, and the hull was long-boarded and primed.  The yacht then went “home” for the owner to continue working on the decks, cockpit, cabin and interior.

She came back to GIBY last fall for more structural repairs.  The keel and deadwood were removed – which involved the interesting challenge of getting steel bolts out of a steel keel.  Our carpenter Steve Chace milled and installed 18 floor timbers.  He also installed 10 new laminated white oak frames.  Matt Holbrook machined new keel bolts, and the keel and deadwood were re-fastened in December.  At that point, Abaco was ready to make the trip back to her owner’s home so he could continue the work on this classic in his workshop.

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6 Comments

Kevin

My name is Kevin, and I am originally from Newport RI. I have always had a very special place in my heart for ABACO. I worked at Dutch Harbour Boat Yard for 7 years in the 1990s. She was broaght in to have the years removed. I literally stripped the entire boat stem to stern, all the bright work and her decks. We repaired some of her hull planking and I spent months long boarding sanding varnishing and painting her. The next spring we pulled her outside in the sun to launch her and she was a site to behold. I distinctly remember after her launch, I was running her rig on the doc as people passed by to get on the launch. Everyone of the thought I was lying when I told them she was wood because she looked to perfect. I hope you save her and I will be looking for final pictures in the future.

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Kristin Peterson

Nice to know ABACO received lots of love as she made her way up and down the coast. I do not know the details of this project (as I joined the GIBY team after completion), but I’ll ask around and see if I can get you an update.

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Kevin

On a side note, I feel your pain over removing galvanized steel bolts from a steel keel. I had to do the same thing on another Concordia that I worked on called Hero. They were so rusted through when I got them out, many only had about a 1/8 thick bit of steel left. It was like the pressure from the expanding rust held the keel in place. “Fun” times….

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Kevin

One question, do you know if the bright work is untouched (other than an annual re coat) from the 90s. I would love to know that all work I did on it still looks that good after 20+ years.

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Kristin Peterson

Couldn’t say, but I’m sure it took committment to keep her Bristol finish!

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