The discovery of HMS Erebus by Parks Canada also had a significant impact on my project. My blog was inundated with thousands of views and I received many dozens of emails from interested readers, researchers, and other enthusiasts. Many came during the exciting few weeks between the time the ship was discovered and when it was eventually identified. I enjoyed these exchanges immensely and they led to a blog post about the structural differences between the ships, which received a very positive response from many readers.
The discovery also led to several requests for consultation/information/plans from researchers involved in various media projects. I’m very excited by some of these new projects and while I can’t disclose them all yet, I’m sincerely gratified that my research will appear in formats other than my blog . One of these has already come out; Canadian Geographic Magazine requested a modified version of my plans showing the most important ship systems. They did not utilize the entire plan, which included a cross section, so I have provided the entire image above for readers.
Despite all of this additional work, I haven’t forgotten about my model, and I’ve been working slowly away at it when I can find a chance. Below I outline my progress to date:
|Each scarph on the keel had 8 copper bolts, 1 and 1/8 inches in diameter (consistent with much larger 36 and 74 gun vessels). I simulated these using 20 gauge copper wire which accounts for a 1.5 inch rove.|
|Gluing the main keel and stem together. Alignment was critical, so the parts |
were laid out over the plan and clamped/weighted down.
|Checking the alignment before gluing. The unfinished profile piece can be seen in the background.|
|Gluing the pieces in place.|
|The completed keel/stem assembly with the false keel sections dry-fitted below. Each false keel section |
was ca. 24 feet in length and 7 inches deep. I originally thought they were attached with staples,
but nails were more likely in this era.
|Gluing black velum to the false keel sections to simulate tarred flannel.|
|Gluing the false keel to the keel assembly. Note the final shaping of the lower stem piece has not been completed.|
|The 1836 plans indicate that false keel thinned as it ran forward; here I've mark off its run prior to final sanding.|
|The completed piece. Unfortunately the fluorescent lights I'm using don't do the richness |
of the Swiss Pear justice - indeed they make the wood look quite dry and pale when it actually is not.
|Profile piece and station bulkheads cut from 1/4 inch plywood.|
|Cutting the slots for the station bulkheads.|
|Deburring with some wonderful scroll-saw sanding strips I purchased from Lee Valley.|
|The profile piece with all the bulkhead slots cut out. The fore and aft slots will be finished after the keel is glued |
to the profile piece and the mast slots will be removed when the station bulkheads are all in place.
|The keel assembly and profile piece prior to gluing.|
|The keel was pegged and glued to the profile section.|
|The pegs continued up the stem.|
|Captain Crozier inspects the boxing.|