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Protective bars on skylight windows


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Hi All,

 

Can anyone offer some historical context on the use of bars to protect skylight windows? In "Historic Ship Models" zu Mondfeld just says they were "sometimes fitted" (pic below is from the book), seeming to imply that included late 18th/early 19th century British naval ships (I'm working on HM Cutter Mermaid, 1817). Seems like glass would be pretty vulnerable without some protection (especially on a man-of-war)? Any conventions for how (or how extensively) they were implemented in the British Navy in that time period? Pics below are just some random images I found. Not British navy from that period.

 

James

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From what I gather the "windows" were removed as part of "Quarters!" and left open much like the grates were removed and sent down.  My disclaimer is I'm not sure this was done by all the navies. As for the metal rods, it's purpose was basically to keep anything falling from up high doing damage.  

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10 hours ago, Cabbie said:

Does this mean that this frame with cross bars is not correct for our cutter?

I was thinking of using mine.

Chris, I haven't found anything to suggest the windows in the kit are incorrect, but I'm not a big fan of the look. There are really no good drawings of the skylight so I may customize a bit. I bought a few model railroad window frames to play with. As for the protective bars, we'll never know if they're for sure accurate for the Mermaid but I'm hoping to narrow it down to "likely," "possible," or "unlikely." If they're possible or likely, I may take a shot at adding them.

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13 hours ago, mtaylor said:

From what I gather the "windows" were removed as part of "Quarters!" and left open much like the grates were removed and sent down. 

Mark, I hadn't thought of that and it makes a lot of sense...especially for a larger ship where the cabin below would become part of the gun deck. They would probably need good ventilation and I can't imagine a window faring well with cannons being discharged nearby on deck or on the deck below. 

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One reason I was thinking of using the supplied frames was if a pane of glass is broken I would prefer

it to be a smaller one. I'm not sure what it would be like to obtain a new piece of

glass back in the 1820's. Still might need the protective bars as well, stop them being broken

or someone falling on them.

 

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It would be interesting to have a timeline for the history of sheet glass manufacture.  When was glass of X x Y dimension economically available. 

There must have been a time when skylights for officers' country was open and needed solid shutters for rain and cold.  The bars would keep crew from plunging thru or breaking a limb.

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The Romans cast thin sheets of glass unto sand-beds, but the technology was lost during the 'dark ages'. In medieval times glass sheets were produced by either blowing up a bubble of glass, cutting this into half and then spinning it out to a flat disc of up to 4 feet of diameter, or by blowing a glass cylinder into a mould, cutting this cylinder longitudinally, after the top and bottom have been cut off, and then flattening out the cylinder. Since the 17th century flat glass was produced by rolling. In the first half of the 20th century the main method was drawing sheets from a melt, while since the 1960s 'float glass' is the method for mass production, where by the melt is cast into a trough filled with liquid tin - the melt spreads evenly and the solidifying glass is drawn across the trough. Batch production by casting the melt onto troughs with liquid tin was also used at some time.

 

While glass was expensive as such, quite large sheets would have been available in the early years of the 19th century.

 

Of course, glass is prone to shattering due to mechanical impacts or thermal stress. For this reason 'muscovite' was used instead in various applications, e.g. in lanterns, the looking glasses in powder chambers or furnaces (where it is still used). Muscovite is a mineral belonging to the family of mica or sheet-silicates. Its name is derived from Moscow, where it is found in large, easy to cleave crystals. It was traditionally used in that region instead of glass and exported.

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Olliechristo has a very nice skylight in his log and a much more elaborate companionway than

I was thinking about. Overall a very fine build.  Page 16 post 457

Something I just learnt click on the arrow top right in link and it will take you to the post.

 

 

Edited by Cabbie
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If you look closely at King's cut-away sketch you'll see that he has shown a similar companionway (I've just noticed that I faced mine in the opposite direction to the one Ollie installed need to revisit the model for some amendments!). I used a similar construction to his for my skylight. 2mm glass with frames glues to the glass to give the appearance of separate panes.

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Rick

Edited by Rick01
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  • 1 year later...

Apologies for resurrecting another old thread, but I am seeking advice on what type of skylights Bligh had installed on the Bounty for the "garden" conversion of the great cabin.  Others have spotted in his log that Bounty had air scuttles and two skylights added but the McKay AOTS book only shows gratings in the positions available for skylights.  The lines of Bethia/Bounty show what I think most assume are gratings,  but could be low skylights (would have to be low for the one under the tiller and steering tackle).  

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Heavy glass lenses called deadlights have been recovered from wreckage of warships lost during the War of 1812 on the Great Lakes.  There seems to have been two varieties; a lens shape, and a prism.  Both were intended to project light into spaces below.  They would have been set into metal frames.  The deadlight would have been flush with the deck and far more resistant to damage than a skylight.  These would not have eliminated the need for a skylight in areas where more light was considered necessary or desirable.

 

As a sidelight, we discovered deadlights in the steel hulled whaleback steamship Meteor launched at Superior, Wisconsin in 1896.  In the compartment housing the rudder quadrant, the shell plating has been perforated with several rows of 2in diameter holes.  A glass lens had been set into each hole and a similar perforated plate riveted in place to sandwich the lenses between the two plates.   We later found out that the builders of the ship had patented this feature.   Although the ship was launched with an electric “lighting plant” the need to capture sunlight in this space was still deemed to be important.

 

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