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What is a score block ?


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In studying the rigging on a boat (US 1908 build) I have coming up, I got confused by a label of 12" SCORE pointing at a block.  Most of the blocks are labeled 8"D, 12"D or 8"S which I understand as 8 inch double, 12 inch . . . but I have never heard of a SCORE type block.  Any help?





Edited by Cap'n'Bob
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Hi Bob, Druxey, BE and Mark, I think Mark found the right definition of 'score'.  However the plans show internal iron stropped blocks, so they do not need scoring for stropping ropes.


Bob, are you building a fishing schooner or a warship?  Who drafted the plans?  What is the name of your ship?  Answers may help us find the answer to your question.



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I find the drawing confusing, what are we looking at? At first I thought the diagonal spar pointing to the upper right to the drawing was a Gaff. But looking at the mast on the left of the drawing I see what appear to be a Spring Stay on the Left and Headsails indicated on stays  to the right. So what is our spar doing there on the right, forward of the Mast? Is it some sort of derrick?

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That ship is the indicator loop cable layer USCG Pequot (ex army minelayer General Samuel M. Mills).  Built in 1909 and transferred to the Coast Guard in 1922.  She was transferred to the Navy and stationed in Boston during WW II.  She was decommissioned in Boston in 1946 and sold for scrap in 1947.


Indicator loop cables were laid on the ocean floor to detect submarines.




Edited by popeye2sea
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I've never heard of a 'score block'.  There is no reference to such a block in Paasch's 'Illustrated Marine Encyclopaedia' (1890), Admiralty Manual Of Seamanship Volume I’ (1915) or Wilson-Barker's 'Elementary Seamanship' (1896).




As Druxey suggested, I think I'd simply go with internally stropped blocks.






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Cap'n Poison....That sure looks like a cement block......!
The drawing from the plans looks like a 12" double block (2  12" score) and a  12" triple block (3 12" score) and below those a single 10" block ( 1 10" score).
Now what is meant by "score".......
I've Googled the phrase...nothing, searched all my rigging books,,,,nothing.  Underhill's Masting and Rigging...nothing,  Admiral Smyth's "Sailors Word Book", nothing.
Cap'n Bob maybe try and contact company that put out the plans.  They may know.


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The SCORE blocks are the ones carrying the main lifting load of the derrick, so will need to be strong. Maybe the reference is for the material: steel cored perhaps? Standard blocks are wooden and therefore not labelled specifically. 


I also note that the SCORE blocks are drawn much bigger on the drawing than the others, even if the indicated size is the same.



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I contacted those who put the drawings on the web and this was their response.


"I did a bit of digging as I never noticed that "Score"
notation in the rigging before and like you was curious.  Attached is what I
came up with. It appears a "score" on a wooden rope block is a notch or notches
chiseled into the outside of the block to strap it into place.  So I guess when
the naval architect was drawing up the ship rigging they called those single and
double sheave blocks "Score Blocks" to detail on the drawings that the pulley to
be used should have the "scores" chiseled in.  The rest of the notation is the
diameter of the sheave or pulley inside the block and the number of sheaves -
single, double, triple, etc."


Having been a designer I don't know why he would have specified the type of stopping on those particular blocks, but . . .



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