Interesting stuff. Thanks for that, I wasn't aware of some of the details.Yes but those were non structural parts.
The ship (as a "composite) is wooden planking on a iron frame.
And apparently the iron is structurally not sound enough and someone cut holes in the structure at some point.
You have to be careful with old ships and the hulls, especially with sailing ships.
A few years back, a group of enthusiasts tried to restore the famous 1911 build "flying P Liner" Passat back to operating condition. Passat (a large 4 masted barque, older sister of Peking and Padua/Kruzenstern) is a museum ship in Lübeck. She floats but hasn't left her moorings since the 50s.
Problem was that somebody had welded parts of the hull during overhauls, making the old hull very rigid.
A sailing vessel has to have a flexible hull, so in order to restore Passat to sailing capacity, you would have to cut open all the welded parts and re-rivet the hull. That is prohibitively expensive and so a new sailing ship was build which actually was cheaper, but of course the new ship is not a flying P-Liner.
So I guess it would be the same with Cutty Sark's hull, as it was repaired with longevity and corrosion protection in mind, not with seaworthiness.
Not to mention that Passat is a "modern" ship material wise, build of Krupp steel, while Cutty Sark was build with Puddle iron frame, which would make it pretty difficult even to find any foundry actually able to produce the same material in sufficient quantities.