Our project is to build a half size replica using a mix of modern and ancient techniques, when we arrived on site Dover was under a very unusual 4″ of snow so the first job was to clear the snow from site. Next we used levers and bars to set up working platforms of railway sleepers and position the main timbers on them.
Another 2 days went into setting up chap marquees and reinforcing and lashing them down securely since they are really designed for one day parties rather than 3 months working.
Here is team leader Richard Darrah giving us an evening presentation about the history and structure of the boat. Because it is incomplete and the timbers rather squashed and distorted the precise shape is open to debate, the design we are using is the result of extensive research by Richard and in consulktation with Viking shipbuilding expert Ole Crumlin-Pedersen. But that is not my department I just have to cut the shape that has been decided.
The other main hewer on the job is Trevor Marsden who has worked with Richard before on a replica of the Ferriby boat.
and off I go hewing the first rough shape with my Japanese axe.
large scallops left from the axe, at this stage I was still thinking the bronze tools would be hopelessly slow and was keen to do as much with the steel axes as possible, I was in for a surprise.
lots more to come in separate posts.
Here is an index for all blog posts on the Dover boat project
woodworking-marathon-continued-just 18 hours to go.