Watch CBS News

USS Constitution Almost 'Ship-Shape' Again

BOSTON (CBS) - Craftsmen have been refurbishing the U.S.S. Constitution from bow to stern, and the work has been in progress since May 2015.

The goal is to have the 220-year-old ship back in the water by July.

Lieutenant Commander Tim Anderson, the Executive Officer of the Constitution, says damage wasn't that bad.

"The majority of the wood we replaced was right at the water line or above, which is where you get the most rot," Anderson said.

Navy historian Margherita Desy says the work has been thorough.

"We replaced the copper sheeting, 2,200 sheets of copper sheeting below, on the water line, below the water line on the Constitution," Desy said.

"We've recaulked the ship below the water line and replaced 100 hull planks on the ship too," Desy also said.

Anderson adds that all of that work goes better when the crew can use modern tools.

"When we can use modern technology it's a great, great, thing. It's cuts the time and the costs down quite a bit to be able to do it," Anderson said. "But when it comes to nailing copper nails into the hole, there's not a copper nail gun in existence. So all of that was done by hand."

The crew says that this project should put the Constitution in "ship-shape" for another 20 years.

WBZ NewsRadio 1030's Lana Jones reports



View CBS News In
CBS News App Open
Chrome Safari Continue
Be the first to know
Get browser notifications for breaking news, live events, and exclusive reporting.