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I need to build a capstan for my mini-mamoli riverboat (1:206) - the information in the plans is insufficient (and what they show doesn't look at all right). It would be tiny but it should be there!

 

Three things:

 

- Some of the larger models of paddlewheelers show the capstan bars flat against the deck, and I don't quite understand how that works.

 

- I am not sure about scale (how long would the capstain bars normally be, how big the capstan in "real life").

 

-Some old photos show a rope around the capstan, but not what the other end might be connected to...

 

 

Thanks for any help! Rebecca

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Rebecca,

 

Because paddlewheel boats had steam power most capstans were powered by a small steam engine below decks under the capstan.  The capstan was used for many things, from the grasshopper td get them off of a sandbar to cranes to lift things onto the boat to . . . you get the idea so the rope would go to whatever the need was.

 

Bob

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Rebecca, here is a picture that was in a book about an ocean going steamer....I don't know how similar it would be for a riverboat....(you can see my interpretation of the part that moves the gear there too)

DSC07107-M.jpg

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Thanks Sarah, the capstan for the riverboats is much simpler - Frank & John pm'd me with some ideas, and I'll post the results here when I get to it. I decided to work on the pillars & railings on the sides first, while there is still nothing to "break off"  and do the bow fittings last.

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Rebecca,

 

I'm not sure if those are actually the capstan bars.  Some models they are, in others, they're permanently attached to the deck to give the crew using the capstan some foot hold.  IMO, it's just artistic license for them to be there.

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Sara,

 

Apologies, but I think Popeye has it right. That is a picture of a hand operated windlass, rather than a capstan, and was used on both sail and steam vessels.

 

A windlass, which has a horizontal barrel, basically had one job – to bring in the anchor, and hence was situated in the bows. Capstans, with a vertical barrel, could be used for a variety of tasks and might be situated in various positions. There could be several smaller deck capstans on the one ship – especially in the later days of sail, and used for hoisting yards, adjusting sheets, hoisting cargo, etc. The rope, halliard, etc., was usually led to it through a suitably placed block.

 

Rebecca,

 

Yes, they sound like foot treads, for purchase, to me.

Edited by Stockholm tar
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Sara,

 

I rather thought that was the case. It seems, yet again, that kit instructions are at fault and have used the incorrect term. I can't really understand this, as with a little more thought they could use the right one.

 

Btw, you're doing well with your HL. I think it's going to be a very good model. :)

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