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Showing results for tags 'castles'.
I've found that since I finished my dromon and was left with only the Great Harry, concentrating on a single build I sometimes get a bit stale, so I've decided to start another one. When I get tired of working on one, I can go to the other with a fresh viewpoint. It's also good while I'm waiting for the glue to dry. I've always been enchanted by the "longships" with castles (often described as "nefs" - the Mediaeval French word for ship) shown on the seals of port cities from the end of the 13th century. Though I originally thought of these as Crusader ships, by the time they start appearing, the main Crusades were all but over. The first of these had castles separate from the hull - many with a castle at each end, but some with only one, at the stern. Here are a few examples, out of quite a large number I've managed to collect while researching these vessels. Seal of Sandwich - 1238 Seal of Melcombe Regis - 1290-1305 Seal of San Sebastian, Spain - 1297 but over time they were incorporated somewhat, with the castles extending over the stem and sternposts. Seal of Dover - 1284 Seal of Kingston-on-Hull - 1348 Seal of Faversham - Date unknown I like the earlier ones better - they're much more attractive in my view. And the most beautiful of all is the ship from the seal of Winchelsea, dating to 1274. I spent quite a lot of time thinking about the form the hull would take - were they long and sleek like the Viking longships (Gokstad, Skuldelev etc)? It is usually assumed the representations on the seals are shown shorter than the reality, to squeeze them into the circular shape of the seal, but on the other hand, though these would certainly serve as warships, I believe their main function would be as merchant vessels and would have to be wide and deep enough to carry cargo. Getting a bit speculative here, bit I decided to take mine as following the tradition of the knarr, the cargo ship used by the Vikings. So I'm basing the hull shape on the largest knarr found, Haithabu/Hedeby 3. From the website https://www2.rgzm.de/navis/ships/ship009/ship009engl.htm "According to the reconstruction the ship had a total length of 22.08 m [72 feet], a width of 6.2 m [20 feet] and a height of 2.52 m [8.26 feet]. The cargo capacity would have been about 60 tons." Using information from the above website, I managed to get diagrams of the ship as reconstructed - from above, from the side, and a midships section. There is more information out there to help with the shape of the hull. One thing I will change, however, is the shape at the bow and stern. The stem and sternposts of knarrs curve backwards into the body of the ship, but in a nef they curve outwards. In fact, the shape of stem and sternpost in these vessels seems to be characteristic throughout the type, always wider at the top, with the outside of the curve following the line of the hull, with the inner surface of the stem/sternpost curving inboard somewhat. I'll be building this ship on a plug - rather than work out frames on paper, I decided to make a shape that looked right, using the midships section and other information I've collected (from other knarrs) to give an idea of the bow and stern sections. And it'll be clinker built - I'm going to try just overlapping adjoining strakes on a smooth plug and see how that works. So, here we go: The plug is made of 4 relatively thin strips of wood each side, which are temporarily screwed together and then shaped. Note: I stuffed up a bit with the 2nd inner strip - made it a little too short - so I had to add a bit to pack it out, then sand it to fit the rest of the hull. And now the other side: Marking out the hull shape. Next step is to smooth off this side of the hull to follow the pencil marks, then pull the two halves apart and line up the strips of the second half with those of the first half, and shape them so they are mirror images of each other. More to come. Steven