Removing Keels on a Berwick
Method of Keel Removal and Relacement on a Berwick (by Ian Bartlett Pure Joy)
Chock the boat firmly under the centre line
Keel to remain attached supported by blocks underneath to steady the boat.
Form an 8 x 4 to match the profile of the hull just inside the keel stub.
If the ground is not perfectly smooth place an 8’ x 4’ sheet under the keel for a hand pallet truck to roll on.
Jack up the 8 x 4 with 2 strong Jacks (In this case 1 x10 ton and 1 x 20 ton Railway jacks were used) to lift the keel (with hindsight have the keel to be removed vertical and 12 inches off the ground)
Fabricate, from metal or strong wood, a frame for the keel to rest in when removed.
Place frame in position and chock the keel to prevent it moving in the frame.
Locate pallet truck under the frame and adjust to hold the weight.
Remove the locking half nuts on the keel bolts.
Slacken the nuts holding the keel a little on each. Continue to slacken each nut a little in turn, DO NOT REMOVE THEM AT THIS STAGE.
When the nuts are at the top of the keel bolts gently let the pallet truck down by about 2 inches. (Leaving the nuts on as security in case the whole keel suddenly drops)
Hardwood wedges will probably be needed to break the seal between the keel and stub.
When free remove the nuts and lower the keel into the frame, on the pallet truck then pull the keel away.
Replacing the keel is opposite of the removal method. Ensure it is correctly aligned before jacking up or the holes for the bolts may be damaged.