Pocock Classic Cedar Singles
Restoration of 1960 George Pocock Single
Apr 14, 2015

I am not sure if I've spoken to you or not, but I have a single we are guessing that was built around 1960. You can see what it looks like from this YouTube video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aL902rU8Pkk

I am reading your instructions and are you still recommending adding #104 glass over the hull?

It seems so contrary to restoring a wooden boat..

Do you know anyone who has restored a wooden boat in Minnesota, where I live?


Randy LaFoy
651 485 1952




Your boat looks a little rough but certainly worth restoring. I copy Steve Chapin, the master boat builder and expert on restoring Pocock shells. I would defer to his suggestions. I think you are about right on the 1960 date. Did you just get the boat? Do you know it’s history?

The #104 glass cloth was used on all new wooden Pocock shells starting about the 1970’s. It’s not epoxied but varnished in so it really is not incompatible with wooden boat traditions. What it does is help prevent the longitudinal cracks that often plague wooden shells. You can't see it and, since it is varnished in, it is easily sanded off if any future repairs are required. Looks as if your boat has quite a few longitudinal splits and I would recommend it. I used the gossamer cloth, as it is sometimes called, on my 1975 shell restoration

I don’t know what your skills or interests are but I would recommend that you bring the boat to Port Townsend and work with Steve to restore it.

    Steve Chapin, Master Boat Builder
    Point Hudson Boat Shop, LLC
    360 385 6863
Steve is from Minnesota, by the way.

Jim Buckley


Apr 14, 2015


Thanks for the super-prompt reply.

This clears up the fiberglass and it sure does seem like it would make it stronger. How long did it take you, and how much did you work on your boat (weekly, etc)?

My skills...I am a mentee. Hopefully, I will have a wood shop that is restoring wooden sailboats boats, use their expertise and tools. I have been volunteering there fall/winter and have been picking up a lot.

I cannot take it to Port Washington as I live in Minnesota. But, this is how small a world it is, Steve's brother was in the shop two weeks ago; I emailed him pictures of the boat we are working on.

I got the boat last spring from a man who rowed for the U of Minnesota Rowing Club before they became a U of M team sport. He bought it from a fellow rower...and my friend cannot recall the previous owner's name. Which ends the trail.



Randy, My shell may have been in worse shape than yours is although your hull looks pretty beat up. Steve made new splash guards and half-round deck bead and helped with and supervised my sanding, varnishing and installing the deck, although I did a lot of the grunt work. I did have some prior experience helping to restore other shells. But rowing shells are not very much like sailboats. They are more like model airplanes.

Anyway, let me encourage you to get in touch with Steve. I think he can give you some consultation over the phone and maybe make parts, like splash guards and half-round bead that may be hard for you to make. You can probably repair and deck the hull with the guidelines and examples on Steve's website.

But don’t rule out bringing your boat to Port Townsend. The restoration would probably go faster and be more fun working among the many of us who love and have experience working on wooden Pococks. And you could row with us too.

Jim Buckley

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