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Found 6 results

  1. This Fall has been busy with many birthday and Christmas projects, and the resumption of homeschool with my grandchildren. So not much time has been available for work on Galilee's plans. However, a recent topic regarding gaff-rigged sails in this forum reminded me that I haven't been able to identify Galilee's mainsail type. Basically, it is a leg-of-mutton sail headed by a short spar. The not-so-all-knowing Internet claims that brigantines and hermaphrodite brigs all carry/carried a gaff-headed mainsail. Here is Galilee in all her glory, courtesy of the Carnegie Science Library: So, what is this kind of mainsail called? Thanks in advance for your assistance. Terry
  2. Hello, All. I've been searching for any plans/photos/schematics of a Hyde Windlass Company (HWC) hand capstan and windlass assembly. This would be sized for a 350-ton sailing merchant around 1890. The brigantine Galilee was launched in 1891 in California and seems to have been equipped with a Hyde capstan (see the photo below). Photo courtesy of the Department of Terrestrial Magnetism, Carnegie Institution, Washington DC (c. 1907) (The attire of the men is somewhat strange. The research crew's surgeon is on the right and his steward/surgical assistant is dressed for surgery.) What I really need is some information about the windlass, which was located in the open forecastle under the deck. I would like to render this equipment as accurately as possible, since it will be visible in the finished model. An entire windlass/capstan assembly has been modeled; its images are available on the Web. However, all that i have been able to find are steam windlasses, like the one shown here. Galilee's windlass was strictly manual. I have already contacted the Maine Maritime Museum in Bath, ME. They have some extensive archives pertaining to the HWC (which became the Bath Iron Works Shipyard), but their staff is limited and they haven't been able to find what I need so far. If any members live in or near Bath and would like to look into this, I would be very grateful. Terry
  3. Evidently this particular "boat" topic has never been brought up in this forum. Late in the 1800s when builders were toying around with more compact and energetic sources of energy for propulsion, they developed the naphtha engine, which used volatile fuels produced by the distillation of petroleum to either heat water to steam or, eventually, to produce propulsion by internal combustion. It was the precursor to gasoline engines. Between the 1890s and around 1905, small- to medium-sized vessels called naphtha launches were very popular with the boating public, and thousands were built by companies such as the Gas Engine and Power Company for recreational and commercial use. Now to my question: The brigantine Galilee, in which my grandfather sailed, was conducting magnetic surveys of the Pacific Ocean between 1905 and 1908. Because the vessel was not entirely nonmagnetic due to the hundreds of iron fasteners in her hull and some steel and iron rigging components that couldn't be removed, she produced a small by measurable magnetic characteristic that had to be accounted for in the sensitive measurements and calculations of the earth's magnetic field. This was accomplished by measuring the earth's field elements on various courses at sea, and turning the ship in harbors at the ports she visited. The former was done using wind, sails, and rudder. But the latter was very difficult without outside assistance, and very time consuming. To deal with this problem, on her second and third cruises, she was equipped with her very own—naphtha (or more probably, gasoline) launch—carried in beefed up davits off her stern. Sadly, I don't have very many photos of the launch to finalize my reconstruction of the plans for the ship. Courtesy Department of Terrestrial Magnetism, Carnegie Institution, Washington, DC This is an approximation of what I can see: According to various sources, the boat is described as a plumb-bow fantail launch. My best approximation of its length is about 20–22 feet long. Its depth is about 4 to 5 feet. I have no idea of the beam, since there are no views of this detail. I don't even know if there is a transom or if the stern is elliptical or canoe-shaped, like many of the available plans of this type of vessel show. If anyone knows of sources that show either this particular type of launch or one similar to it, I'd appreciate direction to them. I've already checked out most of the diagrams available on the web, but if there is one that looks close to this boat, and in particular shows the plan and body views, those would be of great help. Terry
  4. Hi all. Anyone know of an authoritative reference showing late 19th-century merchant pinrail diagrams? It is my understanding that belaying pin arrangements were fairly standardized by ship-type throughout most of the world, or at least within a nation's fleet, so that crew could be hired in nearly any port and would be able to serve with little additional training. I am looking specifically for the pinrail layout typical of a late-19th century, West-Coast, brigantine merchant of medium size. Any assistance will be appreciated. Terry Egolf Colorado Springs, CO, USA
  5. Need some help interpreting what I am seeing here. In the attached photo of Galilee's middle deckhouse port side, there is evidently a sliding door mounted on wheel tracks top and bottom. Here are some questions: How was such a door made reasonably weatherproof? Would there be water stops built into the frame to prevent major water intrusions during boarding seas? Would the door handle/latch be a lever or just a hand grab like a staple? As you can see, the photo is pretty muddy where a handle would be. There is a suggestion of a vertical metal rib along the forward edge of the doorway, which might be a water stop. Like all sliding doors on ships in my experience, there was probably a standing latch when the door was fully open and a latch when it was shut. I have no idea if technology of the late 1800s would have produced a mechanism that would operate both latches. If anyone has reference photos or other images of such an installation, I'd appreciate seeing them. Thanks. Terry
  6. As I am moving into the details of deck furniture, deck houses, and the poop and forecastle decks in Galilee, it occurred to me that I had no idea whether the main deck in a basic sailing merchant ship extends the full length of the hull, including under the poop and forecastle decks. The remains of Galilee's bow at Benicia Historical Museum suggest that the main deck was planked all the way to the stem. But what about at the stern? Galilee had a low poop deck about 4 feet above the main deck surrounding the aft end of the main cabin (see photo below). The helm and main boom traveler were located right aft and the companionway to the captain's cabin was via a short stairway from the poop deck to the cabin deck, which appears to be at the main deck level. So, did the main deck planking continue aft to the fantail under the poop deck? I found a photo of the lumber schooner C. A. Thayer in San Francisco during her recent renovation showing what appears to be workers standing on the main deck while reinstalling the aft cabin and constructing the poop deck framing (see bottom photo). Would this be typical of merchant vessels c. 1900? If so, what was the dead space under the poop deck used for? Was this part of the lazarette space? Terry
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