building a bronze age boat for Time Team

Moderator: Moderators

User avatar
robin wood
Posts: 113
Joined: Mon Sep 17, 2007 5:07 pm
Location: edale, peak district
Contact:

building a bronze age boat for Time Team

Postby robin wood » Thu May 17, 2012 7:16 pm

I have been off the forums for a while whilst building a bronze age boat in Dover. It was the most amazing project to be involved in and three months hard graft culminated in a manic week last week with working 7am Thursday to 4am Friday then 8am Friday to 2am Saturday to get ready for the launch. Time Team were there for much of the project filming for a special which will probably go out in the Autumn.

This was back in February hewing the first timbers.
Image
Bronze axes and adzes with rawhide lashings
Image
beginning to look like boat timbers
Image
adze at work
Image
The worksite
Image
Tony Robinson inspecting proceedings
Image
casting bronze tools
Image
carving the stern piece
Image
beginning to fit it all together, this is around 1 am last Thursday night, Phil stuck with us lending a hand until after 2am.
Image
here you can see the way the two base timbers are joined with wedges hammered across through a raised rail. It seems a bizarre jointing system but then this is 1550BC so 2000 years earlier than Viking ships and 3000 before the Mary Rose.
Image
4am and the base 4 planks are sewn together.
Image
next day was my birthday so Time Team folk provided us with lots of red bull, ginger beer and cake, real woodworkers sharpen their pencils and cut their cake with axes.
Image
1 am teabreak
Image
great teamwork stitching the last planks and laths into place.
Image
crazy tiredness but a great team spirit and determination to be ready for the launch just kept us going somehow.
Image
still working as the marquee filled with press the next morning
Image
and finally she was on the trailer ready to go off for the launch
Image
Off she went hotly pursued by Time Team crew whilst we were left behind to tidy up the site and put the tools away.
Image
Launch itself was not so successful but never mind, it was the most amazing woodworking project I have ever been involved in and is now off to form the centrepiece of a major bronze age exhibition touring to France, Belgium then back to UK.

Lots more photos on my [url="http://greenwood-carving.blogspot.co.uk/search?q=dover&max-results=20&by-date=true"]blog[/url]



User avatar
Bittersweet
Posts: 255
Joined: Sat Jun 17, 2006 11:54 am

Re: building a bronze age boat for Time Team

Postby Bittersweet » Fri May 18, 2012 3:36 am

Great photos of a beautiful piece of work :)
Why was the launch not so successful? Seems a shame after all that, were you there to see what happened?


Why can't life be simple?

User avatar
Medicus Matt
Post Knight
Posts: 1467
Joined: Mon Jul 18, 2005 1:16 pm
Location: Zummerzet
Contact:

Re: building a bronze age boat for Time Team

Postby Medicus Matt » Fri May 18, 2012 6:31 am

Why was the launch not so successful?


http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/newstopics/howaboutthat/9262100/Maiden-voyage-of-Bronze-Age-boat-founders.html

Because it sank as soon as it was put into the water.

But it looks amazing Robin, and must have been a fascinating project to work on.


"I never said that I was here to help."

User avatar
lucy the tudor
Post Knight
Posts: 1982
Joined: Sat Jul 14, 2007 11:57 am
Location: Lancashire
Contact:

Re: building a bronze age boat for Time Team

Postby lucy the tudor » Fri May 18, 2012 11:17 am

I bet the first one the people made all those years ago had some teething problems too, she looks absolutely beautiful, and a lot learned from the project too.
Well done, now then,after a few weeks to sleep it off, what tweaks needed to keep the beauty afloat?


lucythetudor@gmail.com

a filthy, arse-grabbing strumpet, masquerading as a demure two-door lady.

User avatar
robin wood
Posts: 113
Joined: Mon Sep 17, 2007 5:07 pm
Location: edale, peak district
Contact:

Re: building a bronze age boat for Time Team

Postby robin wood » Fri May 18, 2012 6:29 pm

Sadly out of time for floating as has to be taken apart to get it into a museum in France. We get it back in 12 months and will make it float then.



User avatar
Bittersweet
Posts: 255
Joined: Sat Jun 17, 2006 11:54 am

Re: building a bronze age boat for Time Team

Postby Bittersweet » Sat May 19, 2012 5:55 am

Such a shame but glad to hear you'll be having another go. Perhaps the whole thing needed soaking to swell the timbers/seal the joints before floatation attempt?
(Obviously I know little about boats...just an idea)


Why can't life be simple?


User avatar
Bittersweet
Posts: 255
Joined: Sat Jun 17, 2006 11:54 am

Re: building a bronze age boat for Time Team

Postby Bittersweet » Sun May 20, 2012 3:50 am

Before anyone has a go at me for being picky or nasty, this is a genuine question of interest....when was the first known spirit level in history?
I wouldn't put it past the Egyptians to have come up with one. If they didn't have them in Bronze age, would they have used some other method or just worked by eye and/or experience?


Why can't life be simple?

User avatar
Attilla the Bun
Posts: 203
Joined: Fri Aug 19, 2005 11:52 pm
Contact:

Re: building a bronze age boat for Time Team

Postby Attilla the Bun » Mon May 21, 2012 11:47 am

robin wood wrote:Sadly out of time for floating as has to be taken apart to get it into a museum in France. We get it back in 12 months and will make it float then.


Isn't there a danger of it drying out and warping if it's kept inside a museum (I only ask because of bitter experience! Image ) or has that all been allowed for?


Age and Treachery will always overcome Youth and Skill

Hobbitstomper
Posts: 327
Joined: Thu Aug 18, 2005 2:04 pm

Re: building a bronze age boat for Time Team

Postby Hobbitstomper » Mon May 21, 2012 3:06 pm

Some people spent a lot of time and money trying to make an Egyptian one. It was on the telly. They thought the timbers would swell and fill the gaps. The timbers didn’t and it sunk. Then they caulked it and it floated.



User avatar
John Waller
Post Knight
Posts: 1551
Joined: Tue Sep 06, 2005 1:36 pm
Location: Surrey

Re: building a bronze age boat for Time Team

Postby John Waller » Tue May 22, 2012 1:34 pm

Bittersweet wrote:Before anyone has a go at me for being picky or nasty, this is a genuine question of interest....when was the first known spirit level in history?
I wouldn't put it past the Egyptians to have come up with one. If they didn't have them in Bronze age, would they have used some other method or just worked by eye and/or experience?



Wikipedia says :-

The spirit level was invented by Melchisedech Thevenot (born in either 1620 or 1621; died 1692). Thevenot was an amateur scientist and patron of many scientists and mathematicians. He was wealthy and well-connected, later becoming the Royal Librarian to King Louis XIV of France. Thevenot invented the instrument some time before February 2, 1661. This date can be very accurately established from Thevenot's correspondence with scientist Christiaan Huygens. Within a year of this date the inventor circulated details of his invention to others, including Robert Hooke in London and Vincenzo Viviani in Florence. It is occasionally argued that these bubble levels did not come into widespread use until the beginning of the eighteenth century, the earliest surviving examples being from that time, but Adrien Auzout had recommended that the Académie Royale des Sciences take "levels of the Thevenot type" on its expedition to Madagascar in 1666. It is very likely that these levels were in use in France and elsewhere long before the turn of the century.

However the Romans had for surveying:-


The Chorobates – The Roman Spirit Level

The Chorobates (Creative Commons)

The instrument known as the chorobates was described by Vitruvius (born c. 80–70 BCE, died c. 15 BCE ) as the way that the Roman surveyors checked levels. The chorobates took the form of a long bench with vertical legs and a small channel carved into the top. The instrument used four plumb bobs, with sightlines, to help to find the true horizontal. If the conditions were too windy for the bobs to work effectively, the surveyor could pour water into the trough and use this to find a level. The idea was that the surveyor could insert wedges under the legs of the chorobates until it was at level and, by looking through the eyeholes, a graduated staff could calculate the angle of an incline via trigonometry. The chorobates was an excellent instrument for leveling ground before building, certainly helping the Roman engineers to lay out the groundwork before construction proper began.


Those who live by the sword get shot by those who don't.

User avatar
Bittersweet
Posts: 255
Joined: Sat Jun 17, 2006 11:54 am

Re: building a bronze age boat for Time Team

Postby Bittersweet » Wed May 23, 2012 6:21 am

Thank you for that John :) I knew about using water based devices (but not the names of them) but i was intrigued by the spirit level and I didn't realise how early the spirit level as I know it was invented. For some reason I'd thought it would be about late 1700s.

Sorry to wander off topic folks.


Why can't life be simple?

User avatar
robin wood
Posts: 113
Joined: Mon Sep 17, 2007 5:07 pm
Location: edale, peak district
Contact:

Re: building a bronze age boat for Time Team

Postby robin wood » Sat May 26, 2012 12:30 am

Attilla the Bun wrote:
robin wood wrote:Sadly out of time for floating as has to be taken apart to get it into a museum in France. We get it back in 12 months and will make it float then.


Isn't there a danger of it drying out and warping if it's kept inside a museum (I only ask because of bitter experience! Image ) or has that all been allowed for?


Yep there is a danger of that, we have specified regular oiling but whether it will happen or not remains to be seen. a certain amount of cracking can be fixed down the line.

The caulking thing relates to carvel built boats, soaking in water to clinker built, the Dover is neither and no one knows just what it needs to make it watertight but given time it can be sorted.



User avatar
Foxe
Post Centurion
Posts: 758
Joined: Sun Jan 15, 2006 9:46 pm
Location: Defending Devon from French invasion
Contact:

Re: building a bronze age boat for Time Team

Postby Foxe » Tue Feb 26, 2013 11:33 am

The full-size Falmouth Bronze-age boat is due to be launched Wednesday 6th March 2013 at noon.


...and further this Informant saith not.

Foxe

'Don't be fooled by his general air of living in a skip'

http://www.etfox.co.uk


Return to “2000BC-55BC”

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 1 guest