Dolphin strikers and documentation, hmmm

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tenngun

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On the front of a ship was a spar, the bowsprit, guy lines- stays from the fore mast ran to this to steady the mast.
About 1700 ships started to hang triangular sails off those stay
Since there was upward pressure on the bowsprit they ran stays down to the stem on the bow of the ship
Pretty soon they started more sails on these stays, and soon added an extension to the bowsprit called the jib boom to give more room to hang those sails on.
But now the angle is wrong to put lines out there to the ship and stay against upward pressures
So about 1800 another spar was struck out the bottom of the bowsprit. As dolphins race ships and ships rock up in down this spar would jab up in down in to the water among them dolphins.
Lines could run from the jib boom to the bottom of the dolphin striker back to the back of the bowsprit then secured to the ship. This corrected for the upward pressure.
What that got to do with ml and documentation?
Well,
I’m building a ship model of a vessel called Fair American. A privateer thought to have been built in the Chesapeake bay about 1768. It’s shape and size represents an ancestor to the ‘Baltimore Clippers’ built around 1810
There were so many Fair American’s in the Chesapeake and that became privateers that would fall in to British hands we today have no idea of the history of this vessel.
What we know is a model was made for the British admiralty that emphasized the ships rigging and underwater lines.
The Brits considered American ships to be over sparred and the Chesapeake made ships the worse offenders.
Many ships sported the ‘Bermuda’ rig. Lots of sail tall mast in relation to ships length
The model I’m making is the model of a model made for the Brits about 1770-75.
It was not well cared for and seems to have been reworked about 1830.
Howsomever the original had a dolphin striker.
A device on a ship made before 1770 that didn’t come in to use until about 1800. Wow
It’s thought that when the model was repaired the fellow doing the repair ‘modernized’ the rigging and added a striker that was in general use in the 1830s.
The plans I have for rigging are conventionally done, and the bowsprit/jib boom is sans striker. The rigging is straightforward Bermuda rig
Painting, plans, log entries and supply records never make a reference to a striker at this time.
However there it is on the original model.
I THINK that it was an add on from 1830. But, what if it was known before. What if a handful of ship builders were playing with the idea twenty-thirty years before it came in to use.
Lots of competition in ‘fastest ship’ on this side of the pound, especially in the Caribbean.
When we try to document some thing we look for common use and even first entries. How many things were dancing around before records start?
Did the admiralty want a model of a light fast brig, that had and as yet unknown addition to stay the jib boom and let it carry more canvas.
Makes me go hmmm
How much in our sport is like that.
Who first stuck a cape on a farmers smock and made a riflemans shirt? Used a short starter, a ball board, even patched a ball in a smoothie?
 

Bob McBride

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I don’t know Tenn but your post makes me want to go get the old Patrick O’Brien Aubrey/Maturin book series out and reread them for the 7-8th time.

Fun.
 

tenngun

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I don’t know Tenn but your post makes me want to go get the old Patrick O’Brien Aubrey/Maturin book series out and reread them for the 7-8th time.

Fun.
Have you tried the Alan Lewrie books, by Lambdin? If you liked Lucky Jack you will really like Ramcat Lewrie.
 
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