Fiberglass Rowing Boat Restoration by Dale Skidmore

This week we look at the restoration of a 12ft Long Fibreglass rowing boat by Dale Skidmore.
Dale took on the project after rescuing it from a friends garden in Canterbury, United Kingdom. The fibreglass hull of the boat was intact but the woodwork was looking shabby, to say the least! Dale wants to eventually build a boat from scratch so he thought the rowing boat restoration would be a good introduction to boat building.

The boat was stored under tree cover meaning that over time falling leaves and water had eaten away at the woodwork. On inspection of the boat, Dale decided that the main problem was with the bad application of gloss paint and the rotten woodwork. Knowing he needed the woodwork experience, Dale went about cleaning and stripping the boat using a jet wash. The rotten wood was removed, and so the hard work began! Check out the progress of Dales’ rowing boat restoration below and follow his mistakes and successes!

PArt 1 – A Boat Building Introduction

Part 2 – Finishing the boat stripping

Coming to the end of the boat stripping, Dale shares some thoughts on how he will tackle the new flooring of his rowing boat.

Part 3 – Boat restoration Top Edge Rails

Dale adds a transom plate to the boat and shows us how he plans to attach the rails to the rowing boat, by steaming the wood ready for the top rail and bending them into place.

Part 4 – Attaching the rails

Dale realises he doesn’t have enough clamps to hold the rail in place before fastening, so he creates some wooden clamps from some 1″Plywood to do the job instead.


Part 5 – forgetting the harder

With any boat restoration project, there will be triumphs and failures, but it’s all part of the learning curve. Dale attempts his first laminating job unfortunately,  it doesn’t quite go to plan.

And so the boat restoration project continues! To follow Dale and see where he’s up to, check out his YouTube channel at the link below.

Dale Skidmore’s Channel

Do you have a boat building/ restoration/ renovation/ liveaboard project you’d like to share? If so we’d love to hear from you! Email us at [email protected].


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