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What are your questions when building ships?


40 replies to this topic  – Started by Horry , Oct 12 2011 04:37 PM

#1 Horry

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Posted 12 October 2011 - 04:37 PM

hello folks,

As you might know I have made three tutorials on features of historical sailing ships. Those three tutorials (frigates, caravels and small sloops O' war - I know, shameless advertisment  :pir-grin: ) always consist of three slightly different sections and try to tell about the structures, the functions and the equipment of the the respective vessel types.

My questions to those and future tutorials would be: are they helpful when building a ship or thinking about it? Do they answer your questions or raise more? Are there some parts that are irrelevant to you and what would you like to see added? And finally: What types of ships would you have to be put into a tutorial? Galeons, clippers, late galleys, carracks?
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#2 Captain Blackmoor

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Posted 12 October 2011 - 05:01 PM

View PostHorry, on 12 October 2011 - 04:37 PM, said:

I know, shameless advertisment  :pir-grin:
Yeah, how dare you. :pir-laugh:

Your tutorials are very helpful, I have been looking at them to find out how for example a stove looks like, and how to build them.
It's great reference material, and I like the amount of effort you put in these tutorials. So I'd say to keep it up!

The only thing I'm always struggling with is the exact place of deck objects. The exact place for the capstans and staircases for example.
This kind of reference material is hard to find, if you manage to get that captured I'm sure it will help a lot of people out here. :pir-classic:

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#3 Sebeus I

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Posted 12 October 2011 - 07:36 PM

What I want to know is how the steering mechanism works exactly,
the connection between the steering wheel and rudder.
I can design one myself but I'd like to have a historical accurate one.
From the steering wheels tehre are ropes going down below, that's all I know, but what route do the ropes take ? are there pulleys leading them so they can pull a tiller to the left/right ?
I didn't find anything on the internet  :pir_bawling:

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#4 Horry

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Posted 12 October 2011 - 07:49 PM

okay, so it is technical details, actually. True story, I have not been very particularised on those. Thanks for the input so far! I will try to adjust the existing tutorials accordingly. More things?
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#5 Frank Brick Wright

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Posted 12 October 2011 - 07:55 PM

I also have interest in steering, and also couldn't find anything by myself Posted Image

I have also another question: anchors. Anchor sizes, weights, and historical mechanisms... I couldn't find either great info...

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#6 Horatio

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Posted 12 October 2011 - 08:39 PM

I did find the tutorials helpful- especially the one on frigates. I was actually inpired to build a powder magazine on my old ship because of the tutorial. As to the steering mechanism, it looks like this:
Posted Image

Here, (shown at an angle) there's the wheel, and a black rectangle meant to represent the deck, and on the wheel is a barrel (enlarged in the green rectangle) with a rough surface to catch a rope that's drawn over it. When one turns the wheel, the barrel turns with it, moving the rope up on one side, and down on the other. The black circles on the rope represent blocks (I just use pins) and the two ends of the rope are attached to the end of the tiller. when One rope is pulled one way, the tiller will turn with that rope, and the slack of the rope coming off of the barrel with allow movement of the tiller. My old ship had this system working perfectly, just like real ships, but I don't have any pictures. It really can work, but there's a lot of fine tuning to do.
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#7 cb4

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Posted 13 October 2011 - 03:17 AM

How about general dimensions/proportions for various types of ships? When I built my first MOC ship I didn't give it nearly enough beam - it's hard to know how much is enough just from pictures, as most pictures do not show a ship's true width and create an illusion of thin-ness. Even a sleek ship like a schooner has a surprising amount of beam in order to carry its sails.

My current project isn't unusually huge by any means, at only 79 studs at the waterline, but it is about 22 studs across at the rail, which is 6 studs wider than one of the prefab hulls. I would never have realized I should go that wide if I hadn't had plans. I realize that it isn't easy to widen out a hull when it's built on the prefab hull sections, but all that room is wonderful and you don't regret it. I could never have crammed in the boats and the cannon comfortably otherwise.

I think a really, really useful tutorial would be one on ships of war in general, their rates and designations. Something that explains the difference between a ship of the line and a frigate, a post-ship and a sloop (aka rated and unrated ships), and just how many guns a ship of a certain rating would have.

I would also add the cutter to your tutorial, as they were very common and were the most common type of single masted warship.

#8 Skipper

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Posted 13 October 2011 - 04:03 AM

I don't remember if I've said it before, but many thanks for your tutorials Horry, they're always very informative and interesting (especially with those cross-section MOCS).  :thumbup:

I would be very interested in a tutorial on assorted merchant ships - East Indiamen, fluyts, hoys, etc.

Would you be agreeable to us writing some related tutorials ourselves?

#9 Sebeus I

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Posted 13 October 2011 - 07:51 AM

View PostHoratio, on 12 October 2011 - 08:39 PM, said:

I did find the tutorials helpful- especially the one on frigates. I was actually inpired to build a powder magazine on my old ship because of the tutorial. As to the steering mechanism, it looks like this:
Posted Image

Here, (shown at an angle) there's the wheel, and a black rectangle meant to represent the deck, and on the wheel is a barrel (enlarged in the green rectangle) with a rough surface to catch a rope that's drawn over it. When one turns the wheel, the barrel turns with it, moving the rope up on one side, and down on the other. The black circles on the rope represent blocks (I just use pins) and the two ends of the rope are attached to the end of the tiller. when One rope is pulled one way, the tiller will turn with that rope, and the slack of the rope coming off of the barrel with allow movement of the tiller. My old ship had this system working perfectly, just like real ships, but I don't have any pictures. It really can work, but there's a lot of fine tuning to do.

Thank you, it's exactly as I thought it was  :pir-sweet:
It feels good to be right :P

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#10 Horry

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Posted 13 October 2011 - 10:11 PM

View PostSkipper, on 13 October 2011 - 04:03 AM, said:

I don't remember if I've said it before, but many thanks for your tutorials Horry, they're always very informative and interesting (especially with those cross-section MOCS).  :thumbup:

I would be very interested in a tutorial on assorted merchant ships - East Indiamen, fluyts, hoys, etc.

Would you be agreeable to us writing some related tutorials ourselves?

Thank you! Merchant ships would make a fine addition, you are absolutely right - and regarding your question: I don't own the right to make tutorials here all by meself - that would be terrible! I would be very interested in reading more other tutorials and sure I could learn a great deal from every single one  :pir-sweet:
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#11 Imperial Shipyards

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Posted 17 October 2011 - 10:37 PM

View PostCaptain Blackmoor, on 12 October 2011 - 05:01 PM, said:

The only thing I'm always struggling with is the exact place of deck objects. The exact place for the capstans and staircases for example.
This kind of reference material is hard to find, if you manage to get that captured I'm sure it will help a lot of people out here. :pir-classic:

100% agree here! Another issue I'm having all too often is the colors, I've been struggling with that a lot. There is few decent footage available on the web and all kinds of different colorschemes exist, often within the same time frame. Everything is made more difficult by the limitations of Lego colors available, I have a lot of useless bricks because I bought them in the wrong colors!

Making tutorials is always a good idea, and if they are well made, they can be really helpful! Don't let yourself be demotivated by a lack of feedback; not everybody who uses your tutorial will post here!  :pir-blush:

Keep it up!  :thumbup:

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#12 Horry

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Posted 25 November 2011 - 02:23 PM

Okay, some time has passed and I've decided to do some tutorials based on your requests.

The first one will be:

Sailing ships - Tech-specs and workings

describing how dimensions and proportions are done, how gunports work and where to find capstans and stairs

Followed by:

Sailing ships - merchant ships

From the gallon to clippers - dimensions, crews, armaments and cargo-positions

Coming to:

Rigging and sails

From jibs to topsails - functions, form and positions of the most important part of sailing ships
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#13 Sebeus I

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Posted 25 November 2011 - 04:05 PM

Be sure to use the correct terminology on those subjects, I'm still confused about which deck which deck is  :pir_wacko:
main deck, weather deck, orlop deck,... I know the names but I can't say for sure where they are on a ship,
When building a large ship and posting pics of the progress it quite frustrating that I don't even know what deck I am talking about  :pir-grin:

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#14 Skipper

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Posted 04 December 2011 - 08:53 PM

I wasn't sure where you wanted comments, in the thread or here. Regardless, nice new tutorial. I was going to make on myself after exams but you've beat me to it, and done a pretty good job as well. You've displayed the history and development in response to weaponry very well and as always with a nice presentation.  :thumbup:

Really my only criticism is that IMO LEGO miniscale just doesn't do a great job of depicting the important sections and designs of a Vauban fort very well. The angles just don't match up/they are somewhat unrecognizable, and that's one of its most important features. For example if you compare this and this.

Thanks for the tutorial regardless, a great read.  :pir-sweet:

Edited by Skipper, 04 December 2011 - 08:57 PM.


#15 Horry

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Posted 04 December 2011 - 09:25 PM

Yes, you're absolutely right - I am considering doing a "high resolution" LDD, especially for the picture you mentioned. To be perfectly honest, I was a bit lazy on that part  :pir-blush: But thank you very much for your feedback! I'll change this during the next days.
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#16 derLiebesmuskel

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Posted 06 December 2011 - 06:51 AM

View Postcb4, on 13 October 2011 - 03:17 AM, said:

I think a really, really useful tutorial would be one on ships of war in general, their rates and designations. Something that explains the difference between a ship of the line and a frigate, a post-ship and a sloop (aka rated and unrated ships), and just how many guns a ship of a certain rating would have.

Perhaps Horry will cover this in a more in-depth tutorial, but some rating information:

Royal Navy (for the Napoleonic age):
1st rate* - 100-120 guns /w 3 "gun decks" - 850-875 souls
2nd rate* - 90-98 guns /w 3 "gun decks" - 700-750 souls
2nd rate* - 82-88 guns /w 2 "gun decks" - 700 souls
3rd rate* - 64-80 guns /w 2 "gun decks" - 500-650 souls
4th rate* - 50-60 guns /w 2 "gun decks" - 320-420 souls
5th rate** - 32-44 guns /w 1 "gun deck" - 200-300 souls
6th rate** - 28 guns /w 1 "gun deck" - 200 souls
6th rate*** - 20-24 guns - 140-160 souls
unrated**** - 16-18 guns - 90-125 souls
unrated***** - 6-14 guns - 25-90 souls

* - Ship-of-the-Line
** - Frigate
*** - Post Ship
**** - Sloop-of-War
***** - Gun-Brig or Cutter

note: the term "gun deck" should be understood to be a deck dedicated for housing the majority of the guns. A part of the ship's compliment of guns could be contained on the main deck, but that does not make it a gun deck. i.e. a typical 1st rate of 100 guns would have 32 (of its heaviest guns) on the lowest gun deck, 30 (slightly lighter guns) on the 2nd gun deck, 28 (slightly lighter guns) on the top-most gun deck, and 10 (light guns) on the main deck (normally aft amidships).

note: Guns stored on the fo'c'sle and quarter-deck are not counted in a ship's rating count. Generally speaking, captains personally ordered "extra guns" to be stored fore and aft to be used as bow and stern "chasers." Thusly, they were normally "long" guns.

note: Carronades were never counted in a ship's rating count regardless of their placement within the ship until 1817. Carronades were also usually stored on the fo'c'sle and quarter-deck for close "yard-arm to yard-arm" action until they came into common usage.

Edited by derLiebesmuskel, 06 December 2011 - 08:02 AM.


#17 Sebeus I

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Posted 06 December 2011 - 08:37 AM

View PostderLiebesmuskel, on 06 December 2011 - 06:51 AM, said:

...
note: the term "gun deck" should be understood to be a deck dedicated for housing the majority of the guns. A part of the ship's compliment of guns could be contained on the main deck, but that does not make it a gun deck. i.e. a typical 1st rate of 100 guns would have 32 (of its heaviest guns) on the lowest gun deck, 30 (slightly lighter guns) on the 2nd gun deck, 28 (slightly lighter guns) on the top-most gun deck, and 10 (light guns) on the main deck (normally aft amidships).
...
so, the ship I'm building, the flying dutchman has its main deck filled with cannons, I refer to it as the second gun deck is that correct then ?
(lower) gun deck has 20 guns , main (gun) deck has 18 guns

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#18 Horry

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Posted 06 December 2011 - 11:33 AM

View PostSebeus Iniwum, on 06 December 2011 - 08:37 AM, said:

so, the ship I'm building, the flying dutchman has its main deck filled with cannons, I refer to it as the second gun deck is that correct then ?
(lower) gun deck has 20 guns , main (gun) deck has 18 guns


No, not really, I'm afraid. The terms once were used precisely for what they had been created but by the 17th century tradition and function had already been mixed up.

The main deck (or weather deck) is always the main deck, no matter how many cannons it will carry. The gun deck would be the first deck below the main deck to be a continuous (flush or running) deck, primarily designated to carry guns.
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#19 derLiebesmuskel

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Posted 06 December 2011 - 05:20 PM

View PostSebeus Iniwum, on 06 December 2011 - 08:37 AM, said:

so, the ship I'm building, the flying dutchman has its main deck filled with cannons, I refer to it as the second gun deck is that correct then ?
(lower) gun deck has 20 guns , main (gun) deck has 18 guns

Just to reiterate what Horry said: the top-most, full-length deck that is exposed to the elements (hence the name) is the main deck or weather deck. It is always referred to by one of those two names. It can never be considered a gun-deck, because guns never run its entire length.

From what you describe, were the Flying Dutchman an historical ship it would be a 5th rate frigate. (granted the dispersion of it armament would be something more like: 30 guns on the gun-deck (15 a-side) and 8 on the main deck (6 aft amidships - just fore of the quarter-deck and 2 fore-amidships - just aft of the fo'c'sle).

For constructive purposes, when you're looking at the list how ever many gun-decks you see there you'll need to add one more deck on top of all that (one that isn't enclosed).

I might try to add some listings of how the guns were normally spread throughout the ship.

Edited by derLiebesmuskel, 06 December 2011 - 05:29 PM.


#20 Sebeus I

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Posted 06 December 2011 - 09:50 PM

View PostHorry, on 06 December 2011 - 11:33 AM, said:

No, not really, I'm afraid. The terms once were used precisely for what they had been created but by the 17th century tradition and function had already been mixed up.

The main deck (or weather deck) is always the main deck, no matter how many cannons it will carry. The gun deck would be the first deck below the main deck to be a continuous (flush or running) deck, primarily designated to carry guns.

View PostderLiebesmuskel, on 06 December 2011 - 05:20 PM, said:

Just to reiterate what Horry said: the top-most, full-length deck that is exposed to the elements (hence the name) is the main deck or weather deck. It is always referred to by one of those two names. It can never be considered a gun-deck, because guns never run its entire length.

From what you describe, were the Flying Dutchman an historical ship it would be a 5th rate frigate. (granted the dispersion of it armament would be something more like: 30 guns on the gun-deck (15 a-side) and 8 on the main deck (6 aft amidships - just fore of the quarter-deck and 2 fore-amidships - just aft of the fo'c'sle).

For constructive purposes, when you're looking at the list how ever many gun-decks you see there you'll need to add one more deck on top of all that (one that isn't enclosed).

I might try to add some listings of how the guns were normally spread throughout the ship.

Bart nicely added the decks names (according to him) on my interior sketch (and I find it logical)

Posted Image

As you can see the main deck is not the weather deck in this case, also you'll see that the Dutchman is definitely not a frigate.
The reason I consider the main deck to be a gun deck is because it obviously designated to carry guns and they run its entire length (except for the galleries ofcourse)

the total arnement of the Flying Dutchman consist out of:
20 guns on lower gun deck,
18 guns on main deck,
14 guns on the weather deck (all decks exposed to the outside including forecastle, well deck and quarter deck)
2 swivel guns on the poop deck

here's a wip shot of the build, I'm convinced that this ship has 2 gun decks (at least).
let me know where I might be wrong  :pir-classic:

Edited by Sebeus Iniwum, 06 December 2011 - 09:51 PM.

Posted Image


#21 derLiebesmuskel

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Posted 06 December 2011 - 10:23 PM

View PostSebeus Iniwum, on 06 December 2011 - 09:50 PM, said:

Bart nicely added the decks names (according to him) on my interior sketch (and I find it logical)

Posted Image

As you can see the main deck is not the weather deck in this case, also you'll see that the Dutchman is definitely not a frigate.
The reason I consider the main deck to be a gun deck is because it obviously designated to carry guns and they run its entire length (except for the galleries ofcourse)

the total arnement of the Flying Dutchman consist out of:
20 guns on lower gun deck,
18 guns on main deck,
14 guns on the weather deck (all decks exposed to the outside including forecastle, well deck and quarter deck)
2 swivel guns on the poop deck

here's a wip shot of the build, I'm convinced that this ship has 2 gun decks (at least).
let me know where I might be wrong  :pir-classic:

Okay, the picture greatly helps understand her layout. I think there are some slight issues with the deck naming though.

So, the area from the purple line downward is the hold. From the red line down to the purple: the lower gun deck. Green down to red: the upper gun deck. Yellow to green: fo'c'sle. Brown to green: quarter deck. Pink to brown: Poop. And the blue to green would be the main/weather deck (this should have no roof. the green line should be the deck and the blue line open air). [I've never heard of a well deck on a man-of-war. I believe it's a modern convention. I could be wrong on this though.]

As far as rating: from gun count and rigging she'd be a 46 gun 5th rate (swivel guns never count) with 2 decks. Not by any means a common build for the era but possible. She would be classified as a razéed or jack-ass ship-of-the-line (I should think). But being a fictitious ship to begin with, it's easy to fudge propriety.

Looking back over your drawing I think I may better understand your intentions. If you mean the brown, blue and yellow line to be a continuous line of deck then that would change all the names around.

If so then what you have as the orlop deck would indeed be that, but in that case should be lower and the hold/bilge not so tall. That would then make your red line labeled as gun deck the lower gun deck and the green line labeled as main deck the upper gun deck with the brown, blue and yellow (quarter, well, and forecastle respectively) the main/weather deck. The pink then becoming the quarter deck, with no forecastle existing. I hope that makes sense without me having the time right now to relabel your diagram.

Edited by derLiebesmuskel, 06 December 2011 - 10:16 PM.


#22 Foremast Jack

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Posted 07 December 2011 - 10:58 PM

Okay so I looked over your diagram some more. I knocked up a rough picture of what I think your intentions are:

posted image

Based on that she'd be a 52 gun 4th rate ship-of-the-line.

Let me know if that looks right to you.

Edited by Foremast Jack, 10 December 2011 - 05:03 AM.

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#23 Bart

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Posted 07 December 2011 - 11:53 PM

View PostderLiebesmuskel, on 06 December 2011 - 10:23 PM, said:

(...)
So, the area from the purple line downward is the hold. From the red line down to the purple: the lower gun deck. Green down to red: the upper gun deck. Yellow to green: fo'c'sle. Brown to green: quarter deck. Pink to brown: Poop. And the blue to green would be the main/weather deck (this should have no roof. the green line should be the deck and the blue line open air). [I've never heard of a well deck on a man-of-war. I believe it's a modern convention. I could be wrong on this though.]
(...)

just for clarification here is my original post with some of my explanation Click
If you scroll up from that a bit you can see some pictures of Sebeus his FD

First from red to purple can't be a lower gun deck to my understanding because its partly submersed.
I would like to note that I added the 'hold' part to the drawing, it was not on the original plans.

and for the name well deck, that is what the dictionary came up with after I translated the Dutch name 'kuildek'/

But I think this discussion about Sebeus his ship is leading away from Horry his question abit.
so maybe its a good idea to move it to the thread where he is showing us his building.
(if it is techicly possible to move the posts conserning, to that thread it would be great.)

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#24 Foremast Jack

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Posted 08 December 2011 - 03:02 AM

View PostBart, on 07 December 2011 - 11:53 PM, said:

just for clarification here is my original post with some of my explanation Click
If you scroll up from that a bit you can see some pictures of Sebeus his FD

First from red to purple can't be a lower gun deck to my understanding because its partly submersed.
I would like to note that I added the 'hold' part to the drawing, it was not on the original plans.

and for the name well deck, that is what the dictionary came up with after I translated the Dutch name 'kuildek'/

But I think this discussion about Sebeus his ship is leading away from Horry his question abit.
so maybe its a good idea to move it to the thread where he is showing us his building.
(if it is techicly possible to move the posts conserning, to that thread it would be great.)

Bart

As far as "kuildek" is concerned, from my VERY limited understanding of Dutch, "kuil" can mean waist. I should think then that the term is meant to express that the deck is in the waist (e.g. the middle) of the ship. That makes sense to me, but regardless the English rendering of "well deck" I do not think is right for the time period we are talking.

As to the lower gun-deck being submerged, I would agree that in the diagram it's a bit too low to serve that purpose. However, keep in mind that the big three-deckers of the time had their lowest gun-decks so close to the water-line that in times of heavy sea they had to keep those gun-ports close. Essentially making them a two-decker.

You are probably right about us moving these latter posts to a different thread. But I think we've come as far as we can. At this point I think Sebeus has all the information he needs. He has to simply take it all and translate it into something that is buildable and maintains the feel of the movie.

Edited by Foremast Jack, 08 December 2011 - 03:04 AM.

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They'll think you weak; despise you in the end."
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#25 Foremast Jack

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Posted 08 December 2011 - 03:18 AM

View PostSebeus Iniwum, on 06 December 2011 - 09:50 PM, said:


Posted Image

I totally forgot I had this. Realized it might be helpful.

Posted Image

Based on these blueprints Bart's original labeling of the decks would be correct. (apart from the well-deck; that's still being debating). However, keep in mind that the Main deck (whilst overcrowded with guns) is not a gun deck. So, there it is.

Edited by Foremast Jack, 08 December 2011 - 06:54 PM.

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They'll think you weak; despise you in the end."
                           - Captain Jack Aubrey



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