117 Years Young

2020 Jan restoration

This year tall ship Alma Doepel will be returned to the water after a massive 10-year restoration inDocklands.

Come down and follow the excitement as the hull reaches completion and the ship is readied for the water by shipwrights and volunteers who are dedicated to Alma Doepels future work in youth development.

See here for case studies on how she has impacted the lives of past voyagers.

In 1903, Orville and Wilbur Wright, made the first successful flight in history, in a self-propelled, gasoline-driven, bi-plane which stayed aloft for 12 seconds and covered 120 feet. It was in the same year, thatAlma Doepel was launched on a riverbank in northern New South Wales..

Since then she has carried cargo along the cost of Australia and troops during World War II. She has hosted hundreds of young people, on sail training cruises and youth development programs designed to build self-reliance and leadership.

This month, ten years ago, an intrepid skeleton crew sailed Alma Doepel  through the Port Phillip Bay heads, a shadow of her former self.

She had been rescued from an almost certain watery grave in Port Macquarie, almost 1,000 nautical miles away, where she’d been languishing for seven years.

She’s been undergoing restoration on a floating platform in Docklands ever since.

This year she will be returned to the water.

Progress so far!

  • Framing of the hull has been completed.
  • Planking on the hull has been 25% completed – 10 weeks for completion (assuming the bush fires have not damaged logs at sawmill and that sawn timber can be delivered).
  • Hull to be “faired” – planing and sanding of all external planks
  • Hull to be painted
  • Belting (sponsons or rubbing strake) to be fitted
  • Joins between planks to be caulked to make watertight – approx. 2 km!
  • Rudder, chain plates, propeller shafts and supports, through-hull fittings, anchoring gear to be fitted

On our “to do” list

As always, progress at this rate depends on continuing supply of funds – please help!

Work will recommence on 13 January after the summer break and we will be working 6 days a week.

Exciting times as the hull reaches completion and the ship is readied for the water. Come down and follow the progress.