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Fastened staysails


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One can find models where the staysails are fastened all over the length of the stay.


Model of "Royal George" from 1715 with its contemporary rigging


And here some french graphics showing the same




big question: How was this done ?!?

- getting the sail to the top and binding it, pulling up, binding, pulling, ...

- or get some monkey up to do the job up there? There are some sketches showing sailors hanging in the middle of the stays (f.e. Souvereign of the Seas)

- fake or stupid idea?

- other ideas?


Cheers, Daniel

Edited by dafi
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I often wonder about the same thing. failing a LOT of Brails, I can't imagine how this could be achieved. I can imagine four or even five brails with their lead blocks but the blocks would be noticeable sitting out there on the stay, they would appear in the etchings.  In order to get a man to be able to bundle the sail up close to the stay, he would need one of those knotted footropes as one sees on jibbooms to stand on. With nothing to stand on, I can't imagine the sailors able to get a neat furl on or be expected to survive the task nine time out of ten. 




 Niagara USS Constitution 


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In his book, "Ship Models in Minature" Donal McNarry complains about the difiiculty of making furled sails in general. He says that very few models have them. He says that part of the problem is that the materials used do not compress to scale and so the furled sails are always too bulky.


On modern sail boats, (i hesitate to use the word yacht for the boats I have sailed on) brails are used to gather a sail when the sheet is loosed but a separate line is used to secure it for any length of time, None of the sails I ever tended were ever furled on the stay itself.


Maybe some other current day sailors with experience on the big boats could weigh on on this one.


Maybe you might search the web for pic's of a sail training ship that furls her staysails on the stays  and ask them how they do it.

Drown you may, but go you must and your reward shall be a man's pay or a hero's grave

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  • 4 weeks later...

Those pictures with the furled stay sails just appeared only briefly near the time, when the stay sails were introduced. Not to be seen later on. Can it be they could have been permant fixes in the start before the preventer stays were used for the downholders?

Anderson describes in The Rigging of Ships: In the Days of the Spritsail Topmast, 1600-1720 on page 256/257 that the sails "laced to their stays with thin lines passed the opposite way of the lay of the rope. They had simple tacks and probably had downholders."  
And I remembered some pictures of other occasions: early way of dealing with lateen sails
The Legend of Saint Ursula (Italian: Storie di sant'Orsola) is a series of large wall-paintings on canvas by the Italian Renaissance artist Vittore Carpaccio,
scene: Arrival of the Pilgrims at Cologne
Or something more modern.
Also this picture should be known ...
... got the small detail ?!? What the hell is this guy doing there?
Cheers, Daniel
PS: And a small easter egg for all of you :-)


Edited by dafi
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