Saturday, January 09, 2010
Snow and ships.
There's been a lot more snow since I took the photo and it's still coming down. It's very pretty but I won't be investigating anything until it's gone.
Just Peachie once asked if weather affected ghostly manifestations. I'm not sure although there have been reports of weather-linked phenomena, usually during, or just before, an electrical storm.
It's certainly true that weather affects the reporting of phenomena - because there are few hardy enough to go out and look for any ghosts in weather like this! It's reaching -20C (-2F) routinely here at night and rarely getting above freezing during the day. Roads are deadly, you can't even walk safely anywhere and there is no way I'm spending a night out in those temperatures.
So I've occupied my time with something else. Over a year ago, someone gave me an old model of a ship. They gave it to me because I build these for fun and it was on the condition that I restore it. Here it is - it's 'The Prince' as it was around 1670, after a rebuild that gave it more guns.
The structure was in decent shape, flagpoles and extremities were broken but easily repairable. The big issue was the rigging. This is an old model, built when houses had coal fires and humidity indoors was higher. What seems to have happened is that modern central heating has dried the thread and shrunk it so the rigging has snapped, or has pulled its moorings away. I can tell where most of it should go and I have some pictures of correctly-rigged models as a guide.
The first problem was the rigging thread. I ran out after re-rigging the bowsprit and foremast and couldn't get a perfect match. I now have a pretty close match that I hope won't be noticeable after it's been waxed. I run the thread through a block of beeswax to waterproof it because if it gets damp it'll stretch and sag, and if it gets too dry it'll shrink and break again.
Then there was the pulley blocks. On this model, the ropes run through wooden blocks representing pulleys and a lot were missing. I couldn't find any for sale and had just about resigned myself to trying to make some when I came across this site. All that time, and when I found them I bought a bag of 50 pulleys for £3.20 (less than five dollars). So I can now finish this and I'm snowed in so might as well get on with it.
The site has a lot of interesting stuff, very cheap. This ship will have a few extra cannons when it's done.
The paintwork needs attention but matching that will be hard. I might leave it alone.