Our Thompson Brothers Runabout Part 2

Well we have owned this little vessel for a shade more than one month.  My wife and I have stripped it and rid it of all the old paint, replaced the paint above the spray rail that runs the length of the boat with walnut stain, followed by many coats of Clear Penetrating Epoxy Sealer (CPES) to cure any issues with rot and/or stengthen the old wood.  I found some rot at the transom and chiseled out the old wood and filled the area back in with epoxy filler.  Then I used fairing compound to re-seal all the fastener holes and and other voids, scratches, and dings in the hull.

My wife was a bit put out at first by use of the respirator, which was a must for this project!  She had trouble breathing at first, as anyone who has worn one knows, they take a bit of effort to keep air moving.  She did a fine job a cleaning up the bow with a sander and following behind me as I stripped the boat and she would get the little bits left behind using her putty knife.


Here’s me in all my bibbed splendor scraping the old paint away from the hull.  Very messy work this!

The various Michigan registration numbers were challenging to remove. But we found some surprises under the paint too. The letters "CC" which seemed to be orignal to the vessel, but no idea what they mean.



We also found the original "Thompson" decal remained under the paint.

We also found the original "Thompson" decal remained under the paint.

Along with the “Thompson” logo we also found the awful spearment green paint that Thompson called “Sea Mist Green”.  YUCK!  We knew right away we were not repainting this boat this color.

The internet being a place to find every thing, I found reproductions decals for our boat to replace the originals.  More on that later.

The boat is stripped down to the cedar planks in the above photo.  The wood was in fine shape with no signs of rot.  In fact most who visited during this phase seemed shocked that the boat was so “tight” and solid for a nearly 60 year old boat.

I knew that we were going to be able to “make this happen”.  A life long dream of restoring an old wooden boat was actually happening!

This photo shows the rot that was removed.

This photo shows the epoxy filler has been applied and will be sanded later.




The Walnut stain has been applied to the sides above the spray rail and fairing compound applied to all the fastener holes and seams as needed.

Since the area above the spray rail was to be varnished, I needed to drill out every fastener hole with a Forstner bit to create a small round area over the screw and then fill each hole with walnut colored putty.  The holes were not deep enough to use wooden bungs, so putty was the only option since the area would be varnished.  It turns out to be a very effective answer to a minor dilema.

Each hole for everyscrew above the "spray rail" had to be drilled out with an 1/8" Forstner bit.


Some local boat restoration guys suggested using walnut plastic wood putty to fill the holes.

The bottom was repainted with red antifouling paint.  One of us rolled it on while the othe rused a brush to "tip" the pain and even it out.

The bottom was repainted with red antifouling paint. One of us rolled it on while the other used a brush to "tip" the paint and even it out.

Well that’s enough for now, but there is still much work to be done to finish the outside “brightwork” and “fitting”.  But we’ll move on to the question of “To caulk or not to caulk?” in the next edition.

3 Responses to “Our Thompson Brothers Runabout Part 2”

  1. July 28, 2008 at 11:11 pm

    It should be noted that the vast majority of this work was done by you!
    Your Wife

  2. July 29, 2008 at 8:14 am

    Having known you for a long time I have no doubt that this little boat will look better than it did when it came from the factory. Next will be a 49 Chrysler stationwagon to with which to tow it.

  3. 3 Dad & mom
    July 29, 2008 at 9:43 pm

    It already loks like a different boat.

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