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Gun tackel coiling-perfect coils vers some variations Questions


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When coiling the gun tackel rope,is it always done in a perfect coil when it's on a privateer vers an established naval vessel?

 

I am coiling my tackel ropes for my Armed Virginia Sloop and wanted to know if they all should be perfect coils with no differences between them like on a naval ship,or would they have variations,with some rope laping over in a radom way,being coiled in a round,but not in a one layer perfect circle?

 

 

Thanks

Keith 

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Hi Keith.

Mark is spot on with his advice :)

All the ships I have been on do not have any ropes on the deck.

They are long coiled and tied with thin lashing and stored on the belaying pin that is used to that that preticular rope is tied to.

The only exception to this is when the ropes are being inspected and then they are in coils for short ropes and snaked along the deck for the long ropes.

I know there are a lot of photos out there ... but that in for ceremony purpose and not done in normal practice.

 

Regards Antony.

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When the guns were ready to fire the tackles were flaked down so they could run without tangle. If the guns were secured for sea, they were secured in various ways and all tackle was off of the deck. Ropes coiled in a flat coil on deck was ornamental only, when the occasion was over the tackle was hung off of the deck, who needs a bunch of line underfoot, holding water and rotting.

jud

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I agree with the previous replies that falls for gun tackles would not normally be coiled, or 'cheesed' as it's sometimes known, in normal use. This would only have been done for a brief period during inspections, etc. The reasons have been mentioned above. Btw to achieve this the 'cheese' was started from the end, working back to the gun, until all the rope was taken up. It was normally coiled in the direction of the lay of the rope. In the case of exposed guns on the weather deck, the tackles may have been removed or, if used for securing the gun, would probably have been covered.

 

As has been mentioned, hemp rope coils – from the gun tackles to all other lines – were not usually left lying on deck, due to the fact that they get wet or damp, which causes rot. The proper place for them is hanging from a belaying pin, where the air can circulate and so dry them. Even when a deck has been wet and dried out, you can be sure that damp will remain under any coils that happen to be lying there.

 

I think this is a point modelmakers have to bear in mind. Ok, it might look good to have coils everywhere, but I don't think it would have been so in reality.

Edited by Stockholm tar
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Hi,

Samples of gun tacles on period ships:

HMS Victory pict. 1-4

HMS warrior 1860 pict. 5,6

Danish steam fregate Jylland pict. 7-10

 

Tadeusz

 

My models:

From kits

Vasa, HMS Victory, Le Solei Royale, Friesland

From scratch

HMS Warrior 1860, Esplanade, Grosse Yacht

Norman’s ship, HMS Speedy, La Royale

Peter von Danzig

Polacca XVII cent.

Current project:

SS Savannah 1818

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Having chased 8" projectiles around a turret shell deck and the truck running on a track between the barbettes, Also with a few others trying to catch, stop and secure a fork lift in the tank deck of an LST as well as my meal tray and various other things, I have many doubts that all is told about handling those guns on a rolling deck.There must be some equipment missing, tackles are slow, especially the tail tackle, it must be removed from the gun during firing to keep the trucks from running over parts of it. While it is being hooked and the slack is taken out of that tackle, the gun is free to move ahead. Keeping it from moving is much easier than stopping it once in motion, there must be some wheel chocks or some other missing tool lost in history to protect the gun and crew from a run away while the tackle comes into full play, especially on a rolling deck.

jud

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Jud,

 

With all the museum ships, replicas, and various research documents one would think we have all the knowledge. Do we?   I don't know.  Is possible the handspikes were used to prevent movement?  Plus the trucks were just wood on wood, no bearings.  It's possible that Newton's Law about object at rest, tends to stay rest played a big part also.  Hmm... we really do need a time machine.

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I think Jud has a point regarding the tail tackle and recoil.

The side tackles were needed to run the gun out, after loading, to be fired.

The recoil would bring the gun back to the loading position.

A handspike in front of the wheels would be enough to keep the gun steady while loading.

What if the tail tackle was only rigged to bring inside an unfired gun?

 

just a thought

 

Zeh

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Some thoughts of mine:

 

One important tool is missing in most of the models: The sailors!

 

I find odd that loose ends lay on the floor. Either they should be held by someone or secured and stored.

 

If one looks at most of the builds, the tackles lay unsecured on the floor, one wave and a whole side´s battery makes a visit at the companions on the other board ;-)

 

Often seen, it appears also physically strange that the takle runns in a straight line from the block to the "cheese", no hang or slack to be seen ...

 

For my build I decided to either have someone holding the tackles or to keep it lashed. Easy for the guns lashed for the trip, for the run out pieces and ready for combat, them being lashed and the lanyards placed over the barrel, as seen on Constitution and Victory. This keeps the floor clear.

 

Just to add to the discussion:

                                          #472                         

 

Cheers, Daniel

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There are a number of old handbooks giving precise instructions for handling of gun tackles.  I thought I had posted a link to one of them - but I cant find it just now - perhaps go lost in the "big crash". Anyway I shall look it up and repost but there are plenty of references to step by step handling.

 

Meanwhile there is this description http://www.navyandmarine.org/ondeck/1800gundrill.htm

 

 What is certain is that the flat coils that look so nice are an "admirals inspection only" layout.

Edited by SpyGlass
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Very good discussion.  As mentioned, I usually do not coiled ropes on the deck for the reasons mentioned and also because it is much more work.  As far as the in haul tackle, I rarely see this rigged as the recoil would put the piece in position to load.  I typically don't see these rigged on models.

 

Tom

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  • 3 weeks later...

A word of caution about using museum ships as a source. Some of them are in well funded museums with plenty of scholarship backing up every element aboard. But many museums lack the funding to get every detail right every day and most museum ships are in the process of being restored to whatever period the curators decided to restore the ship to. This means there are plenty of museum ships that lack all the historically correct equipment or use anachronistic equipment or materials to convey a sense of what the ship "would have looked like". Many elements on deck will be configured in ways that were designed to prevent mischief or vandalism at the hands of museum visitors or simply to allow easier maintenance or cleaning and should not be used as examples of how the ship would appear in her daily life. Further, I have seen some badly made coils in photos of really well known museum ships, coils a real first mate would not tolerate for an instant. I think its best to do all you can to understand the rig of the ship your building and be prepared to make your own decisions about how to represent the coils. Defending decisions you made about your model is a fun aspect of the hobby in my opinion.

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    One might say that it doesn't REALLY matter unless you are doing a diorama where all the facets of the model are set in a single moment in time.  Otherwise, you may have various pieces of the model displayed in a manner inconsistent with how another part of it would be at the same time; elmtree pumps with the handles installed but nobody manning them, ditto windlasses, guns rigged for sea on one side and run out on the other.  This is done to show off some of the features that might not normally be seen, since the model is a display, not a real. 

 

    Line coiled on deck as if awaiting the admiral's inspection is not far fetch since the model is 'ready for inspection' by the public.  I think any way is correct if that way would have been done at some point on the real ship.

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Ageed Chuck. a lot is about the look of the finished item and how others see it. To the untrained eye a coil will look very ship shape and seaman like, whilst a loose laid out line might look pretty messy. I guess it depends on the audiance and if you want to expain that it is actually more realistic. Each to his own.

 

Nick

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It's not those flat coils that bothers me, even knowing they are not the norm. It is the lack of deck space that they make so obvious, where do the seamen travel? No matter how neat the lines may be, they don't belong under foot. Those who like those coils, fine, those who think about working and getting around the ship will take note of the clutter, usually say nothing and still be able to admire the effort, time and skill it took to produce the model.

jud

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