Before I began stripping the outside I decided it would be best to carefully remove the Stem bands.
These look like they have worn quite thin but I think they may be original so on that basis I am going to clean them up first and make the decision to refit them or not when I have done more of the work.
They do not run the whole length of the hull and have been nailed in place with the exception of one short section that is screwed.
I prised them off carefully.
and noticed curiously, that both lengths have a short piece at the bottom end.
with the pieces removed I cleaned them up with a bit of scotchbrite.
Where they have been removed doesn't look pretty. I think I might cut away all the filler and fit a neatly cut and shaped piece of timber to close the gap before re-finishing and fitting the stems.
Next I decided to begin stripping the varnish off the outside. I have discovered that using a piece of plastic to cover the stripper whilst it works its magic is a good idea to prevent it drying out.I began at one end.Here it is with stripper applied and plastic in place.
After 20 minutes I reapplied stripper.
Then as before I lifted most of the gunk off and then finished off with scotchbrite washing it over with a bit of detergent in water.
I did a few more similar sized sections and observed that with the stem cleaned I can see it is made of Oak ,and that's where I'll leave it for now.