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I know this isn't STEAMpunk; however...

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Hester
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I know this isn't STEAMpunk; however... Empty I know this isn't STEAMpunk; however...

Post  GarethG Sat Oct 18, 2008 10:47 pm

Merchant sailing ship!

(Feel free to move it if it is considered to be off-topic, I just thought it was rather 'anachronistic')

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Post  Mrs. Sullivan Sun Oct 19, 2008 12:34 am

This is fabulous news! I love the fact that their cargo is wine and spirits! At least some people have their priorities in order. Very Happy

Better watch out for Pirates! cat
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Post  T.T. Sun Oct 19, 2008 12:36 am

Thats great. Im glad some people have the urge to relive what made humanity what it is.
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Post  Dr Quack Sun Oct 19, 2008 12:49 am

If it turns out to be more than a headline grabbing exercise then this is good news indeed.

The problem might turn out to be finding crews for a commercial service. Also the fuel costs may be less but the wages bill will be considerable.

Still, I hope it works out.

Time to resurrect the "Marlinspike" and "Shanty" threads.

Yo ho ho and a bottle of eco friendly wine,

Dr. Q.

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Post  Sir A Poiselamppe Sun Oct 19, 2008 12:53 am

It could be a new future indeed for the Cutty Sark when it's restored (again)
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Post  von Corax Sun Oct 19, 2008 1:59 am

Dr Quack wrote:
The problem might turn out to be finding crews for a commercial service. Also the fuel costs may be less but the wages bill will be considerable.
I know the technology exists to allow single-handing of surprisingly-large sailboats, and I recall that more than a little research was begun during the last oil crisis on designing "modern" wind-powered cargo vessels.

Certainly this was more a publicity exercise than a practical venture, as a "traditional" sailing ship would be far too labour-intensive to be cost-effective, but publicity is essential to bring about the commercial interest required to develop this.

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Post  OldProfessorBear Sun Oct 19, 2008 3:39 am

I was thinking, back in the mid-70s, that a minicomputer-controlled sailing ship was probably doable then, and it certainly should be doable now.

Mind you, this is with a minimum of knowledge of sailing ships (I've never even been out on a sailboat - just on the deck in port), but, while I suspect total automation isn't likely to work well, I think it could reduce the necessary manpower to competitive levels or better.

Ships are big, so massive solar panels for operating the machinery shouldn't be a problem.
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Post  Mr Clockwork Sun Oct 19, 2008 4:14 am

A great example of reverting back to older times, and a very earth friendly style of transportation of goods, it's quite a feat to be able to run and maintain a ship of this kind as a carrier. Now we just need ships of this calliber, with balloon type additions, and the such to make them airborne. It's funny that in a sense a fair amount of steampunk artifacts and ideas can be considered to be possible paths in the process of trying to cut down fuel and carbon emisions. Hopefully in twenty years we'll see the return of airships and the such as a completely viable form of transport due to it's minimal use of actual fossil fuels etc.

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Post  5.6. Kaboom Sun Oct 19, 2008 5:13 am

This intrigues me... how fuel-friendly would a zeppelin be, nowadays? If you get into rarified air, how much fuel would you actually need to move an airship from Halifax to London?

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Post  von Corax Sun Oct 19, 2008 5:54 am

5.6. Kaboom wrote:...If you get into rarified air...
It's my understanding that you generally don't, with a dirigible.

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Post  5.6. Kaboom Sun Oct 19, 2008 6:08 am

von Corax wrote:
5.6. Kaboom wrote:...If you get into rarified air...
It's my understanding that you generally don't, with a dirigible.

Shush, I'm being drunk. =)

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Post  Gazongola Sun Oct 19, 2008 9:27 am

5.6. Kaboom wrote:
von Corax wrote:
5.6. Kaboom wrote:...If you get into rarified air...
It's my understanding that you generally don't, with a dirigible.

Shush, I'm being drunk. =)

Best way to be.
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Post  Dr Quack Sun Oct 19, 2008 12:16 pm

Von C,

Yup, the wage bill for a conventional type ship would scupper the idea (see what I did there) but there are lots of ways to turn wind energy into motive force. I did see some designs for ships with vertical turbines (Savonius rotors) many years ago and rigid aerofoils have been suggested. Both of these will work, and modern control technology should make them workable with fewer hands.

Another economic factor will be the business of finding "back cargo" to carry on the return trip so there's no need to run an empty ship back to the home port.

Ha har! Jim lad! Ye scurvy son of a software engineer! Splice the mainframe into the GPS and batten down the disc drives, We're in for a bit of a blow!!

Aaaaaar!

Dr. Q.

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Post  Gazongola Sun Oct 19, 2008 1:32 pm

Dr Quack wrote:
Another economic factor will be the business of finding "back cargo" to carry on the return trip so there's no need to run an empty ship back to the home port.

Back cargo eh?... A touch of contraband perhaps?
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Post  Mrs. Sullivan Sun Oct 19, 2008 8:50 pm

Dr Quack wrote:Von C,

Yup, the wage bill for a conventional type ship would scupper the idea
Dr. Q.

Wages!? What's all this talk of wages? Whatever happened to press gangs and shanghai-ing yer crew?

Mrs. S.
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Post  Hester Sun Oct 19, 2008 9:00 pm

Mrs. Sullivan wrote:
Better watch out for Pirates! cat

Indeed! pirat
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Post  Herr Döktor Sun Oct 19, 2008 11:25 pm

Sailpunk?

Smile
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Post  Doc Hornfels Mon Oct 20, 2008 4:47 am

Sort of on a similar vien: Kite ship

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Post  Dr. Oliver Cross Tue Oct 21, 2008 12:15 pm

Mrs. Sullivan wrote:
Dr Quack wrote:Von C,

Yup, the wage bill for a conventional type ship would scupper the idea
Dr. Q.

Wages!? What's all this talk of wages? Whatever happened to press gangs and shanghai-ing yer crew?

Mrs. S.

Why does it not surprise me that a fellow Portlander would be the one to encourage a return to the days of the Shanghai arts?

On the topic at hand, however, and speaking as a member of the crew of Lady Washington, the vessel that appeared in the first Pirates of the Carribean film as HMS Interceptor, yes, I do see a return to the days of sail transport. The Lady can be operated with a crew of six, although a crew of eight is preferable. With a crew of eight, she could transport, were she a cargo vessel without an engine rather than an educational vessel with one, roughly 50,000 bottles of wine. (Not that wine would be a primary money-maker, but this gives you an estimate on cargo space.) Given the crew requirements for a modern transport of comperable size, and factoring fuel cost comparisons, I'd say that whilst the crew costs relative to volume transported would indeed tend to favour engine vessels, the difference could be made up in fuel costs within roughly six months of service per vessel.

All told, I couldn't be more in favour of this!

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Post  Zwack Tue Oct 21, 2008 4:31 pm

Mrs. Sullivan wrote:

Wages!? What's all this talk of wages? Whatever happened to press gangs and shanghai-ing yer crew?

Mrs. S.

And that is the reason that Britain wouldn't let you give up British Citizenship for the longest time. After all if you were a loyal subject (or not so loyal) they could press gang you.

Z.

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