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How are bowsprit shroud deadeyes & collar attached to bowsprit?

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I cannot figure out how the bowsprit shroud deadeyes and collars should be installed.  Various rigging book (Lever's 'Young sea officers sheet anchor' and Pederssons 'Rigging period ship models') all seem to provide tantalizing hints but not the complete picture.  Per Lever, it states that there was one deadeye or heart per collar (implying that two collars would needed for starboard and port deadeyes), but in the merchant service it was common to have both deadeyes on one collar.


I tried to draw below what I'm alluding to.  Questions:

  1. Should the  eyes be at the bottom of the bowsprit (option A) or the opposite side of the deadeye (option B )
  2. Given the 'lashing is passed through the eyes and over the bowsprit' (per Lever) does this mean the lashing goes from one eye around the bowsprit to the other eye, if so, how many times?  I'm not really clear how this works.

Any help would be much appreciated! - I'll post this in the 'masting and rigging' section as well as so more people may see it.



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The lashing would go between the two eyes only, not taking the long way around the spar but rather the shortest path between the eyes. The lashing would be made of some smaller stuff and several turns would go between each eye. For a nice flourish look up "rose lashing". As to the relationship between the eyes and the deadeye, I can't say with certainty. But I tend to think the disposition won't matter, neither one or the the other types you have drawn look better or worse. What could make a difference is how this bit of rigging fits onto the spar, what other equipment is alongside, where are the stop cleats, that sort of thing.

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Bob,  pages 49-50 of Lees' Masting and Rigging give great detail on the various deadeyes including outer bobstay, fore stay , fore preventer stay, sprit shrouds and so forth.  For the time period of the Constitution, assuming she was rigged similarly to the British vessels, each deadeye would have a collar which was always spliced at the outer most point of the groove of the deadeye.  The collar would be served for it's entire length.  Often the collars were covered with leather as well.  There were wooden cleats, usually four or more, attached to the sprit for each collar to prevent them from sliding along the sprit.    Lees also addresses the order of dressing the collars and deadeyes of the bowsprit for each time period covered in the book on page 158.   



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Henry, for the sprit shroud deadeyes you make a great point and Lees does point out that the lashing should lie on top of the sprit and  one leg would indeed be shorter than the other.  But there also some deadeyes at the top of the sprit for the stays, and some underneath for the bobstays and these did not usually have eyes that were lashed together, but rather were spliced together.  Not an easy task on a model though!!   


Lees comments that after 1773, hearts were used in preference to deadeyes for the sprit shrouds which would be appropriate for Constitution,  IF she was rigged similarly to the British.  Same goes for the forestay and preventer stay.



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It seems some were lashed as discussed above where as others were a single splice strop making an oversized loop of rope (line).

The deadeye (or thimble which is the example I am looking at in The Anatomy of Nelsons Ships, page 235) is fitted with the "item" inside the strop, rope in the groove and wrapped around it, then seized tightly to it.


Possibly this is what was done in your case.



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