The Rising of the DAWN

Posted: August 10, 2004

July 31, 2004, DAWN is finally put in the water where she belongs.

Posted: June 9, 2004

Friend and K-38 "FLARE" owner, Scott Wild came down to San Diego on business, and spent some time at KoehlerKraft watching us struggle with moving DAWN out of the building and onto the hard. Scott took some GREAT shots and was kind enough to send them to us.

Posted: June 1, 2004

DAWN on the hard, suspended from the overhead I beam
Dawn is now in the cradle and has been spun 90 degrees toward the building door
The tow motor is pulling the cradle out of the building
C F Koehler shows sheer delight on his face from working with Rish
Scofield Bonnet (original owner of DAWN in 1935), supervises CF Koehler, Rish and the Koehler Kraft crew while they wrestle his baby out of the shop and into the yard

Posted: April 15, 2004

As of today, April 12, 2004, DAWN is well under way. The Koehler Kraft crew has made good progress. Here's where we are:

Deck on and sealed
Toe rails on
Interior work completed but unfinished. Pieces have been fit, then removed for a final checking and clean out of the interior. The interior pieces and settees are being finished and epoxied. They will go back in after final varnishing.
Hull has been long boarded. Blue paint can still be seen from the fairing process.
The interior is still filled with dust from repeated sanding of the deck and hull; however the interior has been sealed with epoxy.
New keel bolts are in place so lifting rings are secure.
New mast and boom are finished and ready for clear epoxy and varnish.
Hardware complete, except for a few pieces that have yet to arrive via mail.
New boom crutch is underway.


An original PC Tiller taken from PC # 24 has been bleached and refinished.
Rudder has been cleaned up and epoxied. The stern post hollow has been fitted with a " length of plastic pipe (cut in half lengthwise) to take up slack and protect the wood and rudder shaft. Same for the end of the tiller handle.
The boat will have the look of the original "pre war" (1934) PC with mahogany covering boards. New "minimal" mahogany toe rails have been placed the length of the deck to keep the deck man from sliding off the edge. Silicon bronze hardware is being used when I am able to find it. The blocks and cam cleats are all new silicon bronze (with Delran ball bearings and stainless springs ( ). Jib blocks and cars are LVJ ( ). I had a problem finding the closed dock line cleats I wanted, so I had to order them from Toplicht in Germany . I must say that all these people have been extremely helpful and easy to work with. My German is not the greatest, but they have a wonderful woman who is most helpful. Orders are completed via email and/or fax. They are very timely and professional. They also have a GREAT catalog, but it is completely in German. The catalog carries items produced by many companies..but after a while you figure out who makes what.

I have arranged for the new North sails, standing rigging, boat cover, interior cushions, paint and gold leaf stripe and signage. I already have the new dock lines, anchor, etc. piled in my garage. The expected splash date is the second or third week of May, when I get back from France. I confess to getting a bit more excited. I have attached two photos showing a bit of the progress. Keep in mind that the hull and interior is covered with about 1/8" dust from CONSTANT sanding! I expect her to be painted within two weeks, at which time we will move her outside to complete the detailing while the rig is finished. . Stay tuned for more photos soon!!

Posted: February 5, 2004

Kettenburg PC #16, DAWN, was built in 1934. The first owner was 16 year old E. Scofield Bonnet. Sco was one of the early members of the San Diego Yacht Club PC Fleet. He sailed with the greats such as George Kettenburg Jr., Paul Kettenburg, Doug Giddings, Wally Springstead, Joe Jessop, George Jessop, Hilyard Brown and many others. Before the club docks were built, "Sco" remembers the guys tying their boats up to bay buoys before San Diego's "Shelter Island" came into being. Sco sailed DAWN for several years until he left for the war to become a pilot.

Dawn in 1935

She changed hands a few times over the years, until accomplished SDYC sailor (who would later complete medical school and passed on in 2003 due to a cardiac event) Chuck Eaton. Chuck was the youngest skipper ever to win the PC Nationals. As proof of his skill, you can read Chuck's name on the PC Nationals Trophy 11 times!! Of those successes, Chuck sailed DAWN (then WHITE MYTH) during 5 trophy winning years.

Eventually DAWN fell into disrepair. Owners sailed her regularly, however money spent for maintenance and/or improvements was sparse. In 1999, in a blow, DAWN suffered a common PC injury. Fasteners gave way and she lost two chain stays, resulting in the breaking of the mast and some hull damage. The owners of the boat were frustrated with the condition of the vessel and unwilling to pay for restoration, thus #16 was purchased by Richard S. "Rish" Pavelec. Rish, with the help of friend C. F. Koehler (and his crew at KoehlerKraft in San Diego), has been instrumental in saving many of the derelict PC's. His first boat, #63 PUFF, restored by Koehler in 1998, continues to be a lovely yacht. Anyone who has seen her will understand why she has a shelf full of trophies and honors. With the help of Dana Hardy (also a Master Shipwright), Koehler and his crew began the restoration of DAWN, in 2003. Ample time was given for the "drying out" period and to determine the extent to which original wood could be saved. In fact, the years, and lack of upkeep, had taken their toll. The only pieces worth saving were the keel, deadwood and a very few floor timbers. In that Koehler has been responsible for the restoration of 4-5 other PC's, he had the forms necessary give true shape to the hull once the new planks were fitted. A "Whiskey Plank" ceremony was held in June, 03 at the annual San Diego Wooden Boat Festival (sponsored each year by KoehlerKraft) when Dana and CF invited Rish to put in the last plan fastener. (read.... it cost Rish $100.00 worth of good whiskey!!)

To date, all the planking is finished and the hull rough faired a number of times. Long boarding will be next. The interior has new ash laminated ribs, floor timbers, knees, bulkheads and settees. The keel bolts and floor timber fittings are all new. Dana is now crafting the interior as per Rish's requests. A new deck will come soon, followed by the addition of the cabin. Many of the pieces are already cut and rough finished.



The Koehler crew will soon begin construction of a new mast and boom. This vessel is sure to be another award winner. Hopes are that DAWN will be splashed in time for the SDYC Opening Day celebration and on display for all club members and visitors to see. Rish has already invited his friend, Sco and his family, to be present for the re-Christening at KoehlerKraft. What a thrill it will be to see DAWN's original owner, Mr. E. Scofield Bonnet, on hand to recreate the event that he last participated in, in 1934! Seventy years later, Rish has promised his friend, Sco, he will be at the helm when the restored vessel sails again.

Look for additional pictures of DAWN's progress in the coming months!

Photo credits: Scofield Bonnet