I've (after my usual amount of prevaricating) have settled on the finish for the sole boards.... I've ordered Liberon Hard Wax Oil, which is a simple satin finish oil that can brushed on, withe the brushes cleaned in just water..... and yet is designed for wet and hunid environments like kitchens and bathrooms... so should be pefect. Its also very strong and hardwearing, so shouldn't get scratched.
Its a much better option in my opinion than a varnish, as it is harder, and won't go milky like water based varnishes.
Also, I've found a decent source for the brass lifting rings at a price that can be afforded, so need to remove the old corroded and broken ones.... bet that'll be a drill out job... thank god they're fitted using brass screws, not stainless!
Finally, I've also been wondering about how to secure the soleboards for ocean passages... they are 2" thick, so the thought of them flying around in a knock down doesn't bare consideration... so, my solution?
i've found some 8mm brass ferules and holes that are normally used to locate the base boards for large model railways, so that they can be disassembled, yet keep the tracks aligned when put back together
So that's one end.... and the other?.... I reckon a french window flush mounting bolt should do it....
between the two things, there's a secure, yet flush fixing, with easy operation.