Spar Alley Shuffle

Most of our winter maintenance work happens on the lower two floors of the museum:  in spar alley, the carpenter’s workshop, and the rig shop. Things are always crowded, but once Niagara is downrigged and all of her supplies are stored inside for the winter, there’s not even room to swing the proverbial cat. So on Thursday, when the ship’s carpenter pulled up to the museum with 3,000 pounds of lumber stacked in the back of a U-Haul, one of his first problems was figuring out where to put it.

In the end, a few crewmembers and volunteers spent Friday shuffling and re-shuffling spars and stacks of wood. We spent a lot of time staring at individual pieces of oak or fir and saying things like “Well, if we moved that short piece to the other side, and found a wedge for that angled plank, and re-stacked everything six inches to the left, maybe everything will fit?” And somehow, everything eventually did.

The rig shop crew spent the rest of Friday sanding spars to get them ready for fresh coats of varnish and stretching out the shrouds in the rig shop so we can do maintenance and repair work on them. Meanwhile, Team Carpentry was building a new and hopefully improved system for pulling the last of the fasteners left behind from the recently-removed deck planks. (Our best prybar had an unfortunate on-the-job accident.)


The good news: at least we know those fasteners were solidly in place!

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