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October 2018


The start of the last of the three Falls of Clyde models will be built as a

fully detailed, fully rigged, sails furled water line model, my inspiration

being a photo of her at anchor off from San Francisco in about 1899 - I

make the point ABOUT, as I have seen the photo several times from

different sources, each with a different date and place name, so will settle

for what I have stated  The photos could well have been taken just before

she was handed over to the Matson Line.  The only difference will be

that this clearly shows a donkey engine in the mid-ship house, as is

currently there, but this is not shown in the original board room painting

by Lai Fong dated 1891.  The tell tale sign is of the donkey engine boiler

chimney, as the large drum on the roof of the mid ship house, which at

this time I will be depicting with the model, ie, as built, would have

been the Galley.  It is the ship as in the Lai Fong painting that I am building.


I should state here at the start that there is very little pictorial data available as to exactly how the Falls of Clyde was originally fitted out, and a lot of what I state is conjecture on my part from the data that I have available, which is not much.  I will however give the reasons for what I have decided is where it is and is not, and if any one can come forward with evidence that it is not correct, then I will be the first to acknowledge the fact and congratulate them on their research,  I have been collecting data on the ship for the past 40 years, and feel that I have turned over almost every stone there is for what I have located, but you never know, there could be an archive out there with deck photos to disprove all of my findings and suggestions.


The point about this being that if one is setting out to build the ship as

originally built, as I am, then one has to make the decisions as to what

was fitted and where, and then make it and fit it, from what ever data

is available.  With regard to the donkey engine and boiler, the original

costs book for the Falls of Clyde is, most surprisingly, still in existence,

and it states that these were purchased, so presumably were fitted. 

The engine however was fitted to the windless under the forecastle,

and also most surprisingly, is also still there on the ship, but no boiler,

or any sign of where it might have been.  The only original plans for

the hull that still survive are a full side view and centre cross section. 

This gives an indication of the position of the windless but not the

engine or the boiler.  I thought long and hard on this one, and

consulted far and wide but could find no answers.  To raise steam

for the engine the boiler would need to be close to it, and there is

no room under the forecastle for it as it was crew accommodation

down each side with the big windless in the centre.  There is no original

deck plan available for the Falls of Clyde, but there is one for the Falls of Garry launched in 1886. 


It was a general practice when building a fleet of ships to provide them all, if in the same trade, with a similar deck layout.  This is evident from the photos that are available of all nine Falls Line ships and barques when matched to the Lai Fong painting, of the first of the line.  It was after a very long and close scrutiny of these that I noticed an anomaly, particularly between the Falls of Clyde and the Falls of Garry, that the fore hatch on the Falls of Clyde is aft of the fore mast, while the fore hatch on the Falls of Garry is forward of it.  The break of the forecastle on the Falls of Clyde is much closer to the fore mast than on any of the other vessels of the Falls Line.  This being so, the skids for the forward ships boats being directly aft of the fore mast, and usually planked over between the two boats, could be the ideal place to put the donkey boiler, being only feet away from the donkey  engine attached to the windlass.  The tell tale drum chimney not being visible on the available photos, as it would be hidden between the two ships boats.


Like the unique Bilge Pumps, that will be dealt with later, new innovations were incorporated in the Falls of Clyde - the first of the line - that were not built into the later vessels of the fleet.  It was only three years before the launch of the Falls of Clyde that the very first of the 4 masted iron ships was built, the County of Peebles in 1875, so I feel - and have some evidence - that many new things were built into her that were later found not to be as practical as first thought and not included in the later ships.  The steam drive for the windless being one of them.  It was probably found more practical, to have the forward hatch forward of the fore mast and dispense with the steam engine and boiler, which would have also needed a coal store and only used to weigh the anchor a very few times on each voyage. Loading and unloading a ship takes time, and time is money. The fore-hatch being forward of the fore mast, could have facilitated that.



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An After Sales Service to my book readers

Should you have found inspiration, ideas, or just picked up new techniques from my books, plans, and/or web site Galleries, and have photos of your work built as a result, and would like to give me the honor of showing them to others here, please drop me a line, and I will let you know how to proceed.

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NOTE - Very poor photo copies of some of my books (among a number of others) have been sold on eBay as originals, and eBay, up to this point in time, are protecting the criminals, even though they have ample evidence of my copyright infringement. Should any one have had dealings with- Nicholas Thomas alias - phantomoftheauction09 - and/or  Michael Thomas alias plaininspain9 - or anyone else passing off fake copies of my books, I would be most pleased to hear from them.  eBay UK have now removed both of the above individuals, from their web site, but will not, as yet, provide me with the details I need to put them permanently out of business.  Until they do my advice is DO NOT SHOP FOR BOOKS ON eBAY-UK - Go to AMAZON and get satisfaction.

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I am often asked about the availability of plans.  The following web sites have been brought to my attention, and I am pleased to pass them on here. Some of my own plans are available in my books.  For details, click on the ‘Books’ button on the ‘Home Page’


<http://www.carblueprints.narod.ru>

<http://www.the-blueprints.com/>

http://www.smcars.net/

http://leander.mutsaers.us/

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