pshrynk

Books for historic rigging reference

This is probably covered in many places elsewhere, but is there  a good book(s) on the topic of rigging sailing ships and the theory behind the way rigging and sails are designed?  (I'm way too incompetent and/or lazy to try searching for this. )

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There are many good books covering this subject. Do you have a specific ship, era and/or country you are modeling? That would help us to point you in the right direction as rigging practices changed over the years as well as between countries.

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Pyshrynk   (Try sharing your name, real or made up, it may get you more responses)

 

Blue Ensign is right.  Even if you find a good book on rigging, and there are many, being a lazy person will not be conducive to making the most of them.  Being incompetent is not forever, it goes away with trying and practicing.  Being lazy, that will not get  fixed by the membership enabling your problem   Spend a little time on the search feature on this site, that's why it is here. 

Allan

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I'm happy to answer! No need to use your real name at all, many of us do not. To your question, I don't think there is really ONE book since the subject expands in complexity the deeper you dig into it. The two best books though, in my opinion, are Seamenship in the Age of Sail by John Harland, and The Masting and Rigging of English Ships of War by James Lees.

The first title may be the best for you since it goes into theory and practice a great deal. THe second covers the multitudes and dispositions of the lines themselves but does not touch on theory or use. Sadly both are expensive and I can't think of any cheaper books that even come close to covering the subject as well.

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Online booksellers, which are mostly clearing houses for others' lists, sometimes have used copies of books we want in good, usable condition (shop books) for relatively inexpensive prices.  Two are abebooks and alibris.

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I have the book by James Lees, it's very good. The other I'd not seen before - and now I want it!

 

Just be careful shopping around. I've bought about a dozen used books from Amazon, AbeBooks, and Alibris. I've been happy with the condition of all of them (often better than the descriptions implied). But the prices you'll see are all over the place! The Harland book on AbeBooks runs from $31.57 to $379.45. A new copy on Amazon is being offered for a mere $512.

 

Richard.

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You do have to watch out for those 'collectors' prices', Richard.  Once you get into that market as opposed to the reader's market the prices can get a bit silly.

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IMO one of  the best books for overall coverage is "Historic Ship Models" by Wolfram zu Mondfeld Sterling Publishing. Lennarth Petersens book looks pretty good too buts covers a single ship type in a specific period.

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The Harland and Lees books are 2 of the best - they did their homework and the layout is very good.  These books are priced wildly but you should be able to get good to excellent copies for under $60.  Other books mentioned above have errors and try to cover too broad an area in one book.  

There are other excellent books on specific vessel types such as the Broudriot, Hoving and Delacroix monograths (just to mention 3 that I know are excellent), plus a number of very good AOS books (anatomy of ships).  

 

As with all modelling projects, you need to do some research to be reasonably sure of your 'facts'.  We all must make guesses, but at least we can make them with educated foundations.

 

Duff

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I've got the book by Lennarth Petersson. Lots of great rigging diagrams in that one.
I'd get the title for you ... but I'm too lazy.

:D  :D

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Some good suggestions. Lees, regrettably, is really only about British navy. Do not have Harland. Peterson has exceptionally understandable drawings for a single ship in each book. zu Mondfeld is a very nice basic modellers guide.

Earlier ships - R. C. Anderson is very good. Marquardt has an exceptional book on 18th century rigs and rigging. Leathers provides great detail on the gaff rig.

There is, as you can see, no single best book. What time frame and which vessel determine best resource to use.

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Self deprecation is a well known means of easing the social interactions, especially on line fora.  Sorry that does not apply here.  Brian Proctor if you really must know, but no one on line calls me that.

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Self deprecation is a well known means of easing the social interactions, especially on line fora. Sorry that does not apply here. Brian Proctor if you really must know, but no one on line calls me that.

Pshrynk works fine! Any particular ship or type and era you are interested in?

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Self deprecation is a well known means of easing the social interactions, especially on line fora.  Sorry that does not apply here.  Brian Proctor if you really must know, but no one on line calls me that.

Brian/pshrynk, sometimes in here the 'lazy' looking for information give the impression that they are 'looking for somebody to write their dissertation for them'.  A certain caution on the part of the answerer can develop from that.

Keep on asking questions.  That's how we learn and grow in skills and knowledge.

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Masting and rigging the clipper ship and ocean carrier by Harold Underhill will get you a pretty good understanding of how it all works and why it's done the way it is. It's specifically about the clipper ship and large four posters of the end of the age of sail but even if you're interested in earlier periods, it will give you a good working knowledge of how and why things are done the way they are done.

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I'm mostly looking for something that gives a feel for how sail trimming was done.  I have noticed with this season's Black Sails that they are doing more than just running down wind and are incorporating trim and attitude in how they are showing seamanship.  As I embark on the rigging for my Victory model, I just thought it would be cool to have a grounding on why there is a line running from here to there and what they did with them.  I'll have to track down the clipper ship book, since my next model will likely be Cutty Sark.

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The Underhill book on Masting and Rigging is very nice.  As to the sail trimming and so on, the Harland book is probably a great choice. 

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pshrynk,

 

You might have a look at this then:  http://www.hnsa.org/resources/manuals-documents/age-of-sail/textbook-of-seamanship/

 

There's been others along this line.  I found this link with references:  http://modelshipworld.com/index.php/topic/14630-furled-sails/?p=459617  Some of these are (again, as i recal) available online.

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