Model Boat Mayhem - Forum

Dry Dock / Shipyard: Builds & Questions => Yachts and Sail => Topic started by: CERES on May 08, 2011, 07:16:34 PM

Title: Rigging Blocks for period ship
Post by: CERES on May 08, 2011, 07:16:34 PM
 :-)Is anyone familiar with the various type of rigging blocks as used in the period Boat kits.

Usually the instruction manual indicates size of block and sometime quoting double or single use.
 Its the size that seems to vary eg:- Take a 5mm block. Which measurement is used total length or the width because some are so close to each other I know some modellers have a hard choice.
Many thanks.Ceres.
Title: Re: Rigging Blocks for period ship
Post by: Brooks on May 09, 2011, 02:24:30 PM
Blocks are generally denoted by length as a proxy for sheeve size. Sheeve size is determined by the diameter of the line, the number of sheeves is determined by the weight needed to be lifted. The number of sheeves will set the width; I've never seen a block listed by width dimension, but I suppose all things are possible.

To learn what size and style block is appropriate, I consult rigging books & photos of real ships, or look at photos of museum models. An excellent book is John Harland's "Seamanship in the age of sail." Another is "The Ashley book of knots." There are countless others, one's library can expand indefinitely :-)

Be aware that museum models may not be rigged appropriately for the era, though. If the model is old, then it will likely have been re-rigged at some point to replace rotted line. The replacement rigging may or may not be correct. Once you find a photo or painting of the ship you are interested in, then compare the block size to a common object, eg. a man's head.

For working ships (merchant, fishing) the blocks will likely be less standardized in size; the ship owner is always looking to save money, and will buy what's cheapest at the time. There may be rigging losses during a cruise, and the replacement blocks will be what's on hand. For yachts, the cost is not so important, so blocks will be more likely to be "just right."

Hope this helps.
Title: Re: Rigging Blocks for period ship
Post by: CERES on May 09, 2011, 07:10:47 PM
 :-)) :-))Brooks,
Many thanks for that information.
Title: Re: Rigging Blocks for period ship
Post by: Jimmy James on June 03, 2011, 11:53:10 PM
I make my own blocks if I need special ones .....but if they are only 1,2, or 3 sheeve blocks I ring up some where like Deans Marine or Modeling Timbers
who do an exellent line and put in an order
Jimmy James