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the water way sits on top of the deck ?? i would think that to carry the water away it should be like a gutter. it should be lower than than the deck, not higher.  i picture the water way to be about 3inches wide & maybe 1/4 high.can any one explain how this works? 

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Waterways guide the water to scuppers, at least on the ships I rode. You don't want water running off of the deck anywhere, makes for a big mess.

jud

Edited by jud
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Guest EricD

I agree with Jed and  always thought that scuppers were the holes where the water drained out.  But I checked Longridge and here is what he says about waterways:

 

"The 'waterways' for instance, are strong lengths of timber set in the angle between the deck and the side of the ship.  They varied in size and shape quite considerably; the last thing they resembled was any sort of gutter to carry away water.  The inner edge was generally chamfered off to allow the front "trucks" (wheels) of the guns to butt against it." 

 

I guess it's sort of like a stringer?

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I've seen waterways on things like fishing vessels or tugs where it actually is a gutter-like trough.  But these are modern vessels with watertight (steel) decks.  But we're talking sailing vessels with wooden decks (I think) here so the above comments are valid.  Keep in mind these sailing vessels are most often 'heeled' to one side or another and can have a rather pronounced curve along the bulwarks.  Without the waterways diverting the water toward the scuppers you would wind up with a VERY deep puddle almost constantly on one side or the other.  Think of them as diverters rather than as conduits.

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On old sailing ships, the waterway was a strong timber that formed the outer edge of the deck planking and formed a transition to the bulwark.  Deck scuppers drilled through the waterways drained the water overboard; and where fitted freeports over the water ways drained any large quantities of water overboard.  These ships had significant camber which drained deck water outboard if the ship was not heeled over.  Note the attached thumbnails for examples from "Newsboy" 1854 and "Fair American" 1780.

 

On modern steel ships the shell plating typically extends above the deck plating and deck scuppers are fitted in the outboard deck plate (stringer plate).  Deck camber is typically not fitted due to modern mechanized steel assembly lines, and where fitted straight line camber is used vs. to older parabolic camber.

 

Pete Jaquith

Shipbuilder   

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JHL

Please let us know your name, it is  much nice than addressing you with nothing or with three letters :)

 

The attached is from the original cross section of Euryalus (1803) when she lay in ordinary in 1815 going through a refit.

Allan

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By now you realize that the answer is 'it all depends'. The more specific you are as to the time and place that the ship was built, the more precise an answer you will get from the experts on this site.

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i want to thank everyone for this info . i think i understand how the waterway works, at first i believed the scuppers were cut even with the deck, but that would make it possible for the water to get under the deck. so they cut them above the deck , now they had some water to get rid of  so they installed the water ways, is this correct?  , russ to answer your question i am working on the phanton. this is my first ship. i been working on it since sept., most of the time is research. 

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my name is john h. lindsey, from phila.pa 73 years old & just started model ship building so far i am happy with my project the phantom, but now i have to learn tying the knots , deadeyes etc.

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  • 2 months later...

Again, Hornet, it all depends on time period, type of ship, etc. Generally speaking, you would find scuppers between gun ports and never above any other port or opening in a ship's side.

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Thanks Druxey, that makes sense. I have just started the Caldercraft 'HMS Supply' ' and am doing a little research for future reference. The plans or this model do not include waterways and the three build logs on this site don't appear to have included them either. I might add them though.

Edited by hornet
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