Deck planking

Status
Not open for further replies.

Dave Stevens (Lumberyard)

Sponsor: dlumberyard
Staff member
Sponsor
Joined
Dec 1, 2016
Messages
3,592
Points
678

Still waiting

i can answer that

around 1780ish most scantlings list the thickness of decks as 3 to 4 inches but they say nothing about the width of the planks, so that info must of been common knowledge among shipwrights and they took it to the grave.

so here we are 100s of years later wondering

what i do is go as far back as the information allows from contracts or ship wreck data like a contract of 1820 schooner i figure those guys were around 30 years old so what they were building was taught to them by older master shipwrights so i go a generation earlier. if in 1820 decks were 7 inches wide and 3 1/3 thick most likely that is how ships were built for the past 60 or so years
in North American ship yards from the colonial period to the end of the wooden ship building
 
Joined
Aug 2, 2019
Messages
209
Points
278

Dave there is a fellow named Leo, rebuilding the wooden ship Tally Ho which is a little over a 100 years old and he is replacing a lot of the old timbers in her. In fact you can call it a complete rebuild of her. Take a look sir, very educational. Its called the Sampson Boat Co and can be found on YouTube. He's very accurate and seems every thing is to scale. ;)
 

Dave Stevens (Lumberyard)

Sponsor: dlumberyard
Staff member
Sponsor
Joined
Dec 1, 2016
Messages
3,592
Points
678

talking to my grandson who is a civil engineer about civil projects infrastructure.

first comes the design

then the engineers get involved and they say if it will work and if it can be built

then the people paying for the project step in and say you can only spend X amount of money.

so changes have to be made all along the way


i wonder if that is how shipyard worked. sure a deck 3 1/2 inches thick x 6 inch wide material will make a strong deck BUT 2 1/2 thick material is cheaper thus more profit and wider planks require less time because there are fewer to lay down
 
Joined
Aug 2, 2019
Messages
209
Points
278

In the 17th/18th century in English government yards the Admiralty control the purse strings and they had their own inspectors insuring that the builders wasn't cutting any corner's. When it came to private yards they sent them contracts of the ship they wanted built along with a plan and if things didn't come up specks, it would cost the builder. Believe they also had government inspectors that checked things out every once in a while and paid the private shipbuilder in stages along with payments much like they do today. When it came to private yards building merchant ships am sure they had their own rules but haven't done much research on them.
 
Joined
Aug 2, 2019
Messages
209
Points
278

Dave I came across a couple more item on the planking and should help. Enjoy. :cool:
Goodwin (Englishmen of War)- "gundeck - width of the boards (planks) were 9-12 inches (not including stealers)".

Franklin (Navy Board Ship Models) - "the planks are generally shown as a scale 12-18" broad. It is probable that if the modeller were to mark out the plank at all, he would do it according to practices of the time, which would suggest that the deck plank was laid in broader strakes than is generally supposed".
 

Dave Stevens (Lumberyard)

Sponsor: dlumberyard
Staff member
Sponsor
Joined
Dec 1, 2016
Messages
3,592
Points
678

Franklin (Navy Board Ship Models) - "the planks are generally shown as a scale 12-18" broad. It is probable that if the modeller were to mark out the plank at all, he would do it according to practices of the time, which would suggest that the deck plank was laid in broader strakes than is generally supposed".


ok but now we are talking "models" and not actual ships they did back then to models as we do now we stylize them.

you will find models today with wide planks that are stark white and Admiralty models with wide planks
so there you have it models and actual ships are not the same model ships are artistic stylized versions of the real thing
 
Joined
Jan 4, 2017
Messages
200
Points
103

Location
Clinton, Ontario, Canada
That's a great question, but the answer is really left to the modeler and what they are trying to achieve. There also an alternative method for making deck planking but can be very tedious, and that's scribing a solid piece of wood. I tried looking for an image to show one but couldn't find one in the short term, but have used them in the past.
 
Joined
Aug 2, 2019
Messages
209
Points
278

Dave if you want to call them art thats fine, if you want to call them models that is also fine. Art is something that does nothing, just sit there and look at you. Has no purpose but to make one happy. That is unless they are RC, and other then that don't do any thing but sit there. Dave am not sure what the point is to your first sentence. Are We talking about models, thought we was, We do art for no other reason then to make us happy. Dave do you mean we use them to help build our models today. Yes we do but we also build them from the same plans that the shipwrights used to build the full size one. Is it a model yes and it always will be. Did some body say they were a full size ship because I don't believe I heard any one say that. You and I both know why the planking on models are done with white holly wood, do they have to be white no. In order to represent the deck as freshly clean with stones which would make the deck look white, holly is used, but you know that. They didn't used the stones very often because it would sand the plank's down to quickly, making them weak. Is this wrong using Holly? You seem not like this. They moped and clean the decks ever day and you can find this in Shipboard life and organisation 1731-1815 Navy Records society. Is it wrong for people wanting to make their deck white using this to represent that. Are planks wide on admiralty models I don't know never measured one. I just go by contracts and plans that I use. Franklin said that the planks are generally shown as a scale of 12 to 18", and am sure he measured them. I have also seen model's that the deck was a different color but like the photos that you show how often are those decks moped,cleaned and stone. Probably not very often. Are they model's yes and no they are not the full size ship, but a representation of that ship. If you want to call it a artistic stylized versions that fine I will just call them a miniature ship's. But Dave I still don't know who said the model is a actual full size ship. Thought this was all about finding out the size of planking on ships. Didn't Goodwin say the same thing that Franklin said.
 
Joined
Sep 5, 2017
Messages
1,688
Points
538

Everything came full circle back to my original question to Dave last week. In general, are deck planks on larger sized - small scaled ship models overscaled to provide a more aesthetic appearance? The answer seems to be - yes. Not sure what the problem with that is.

In ancient times, there were no design drawings at all. A model was built and then the full sized ship was based on the model. So yet another viewpoint.

If a model ship is only "art" and serves no other purpose but to sit and a shelf and look at. What does a model "ship" do that also sits on a shelf?

Some of us "Paint with Wood" to create a model of striking appearance. Our wood selection is based on appearance not historical usage. If you used the exact same wood as the real ship the grain of the wood itself would be far out of scale. Hence the use of boxwood in modeling for its very tight grain.

Why would anyone want to finish their model ship with beeswax that is known to allow dust to impregnate into it making it nearly imposible to clean when there are more modern finishes such as polys that look just as good but are far eaiser to clean? BUILDERS CHOICE

Nobody is WRONG here on any of these posts. BUILDERS CHOICE.

Someone indicated to my good friend (and me) that it would be wrong to put a hippocamp on a model of the HMS Alfred. BUILDERS CHOICE.

That is really the only point.

Sail on.
 
Last edited:

Jimsky

Administrator
Staff member
Administrator
Joined
Nov 3, 2018
Messages
7,905
Points
738

Location
Brooklyn, New York USA
Gentleman, if you continue to discuss this way, we are afraid, we will have to stop this thread. It does look you will not convince each other. So please, stop this fight, it will be the last warning.

What is the issue? We are building models for fun, not for competition nor the museums. If you care to build the correct size of the deck plank-go for it!! If you don't - then look for alternatives. We are looking to learn from your skills - not from the arguments (ugly arguments).

Hope you understand,
 
Joined
Sep 5, 2017
Messages
1,688
Points
538

So... are you saying Builder's Choice is not supported at SoS? I seem to be confused.
 
Status
Not open for further replies.
Top