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Inside view of frames. American shipbuilding terms 1918:
A, beam bracket. B, column or pillar. C, web frame.

17 Posts
There seems to be remarkably little support for the construction - you would think the ribs (sorry not sure of the correct term) would sag outwards under the weight of the steel plates. There only appears to be one cable in site going across the ship. Maybe there are external supports you can't see?


1,285 Posts
Now you got me thinking LOL
Must be some external bracing, I have seen quite a few ships on the ways, never paid attention....
Although I usually wondered why the whole heap didn't come crashing down (==D)

As an aside the famous "Hog Islanders" were built where there is now the Philadelphia airport, originally a swampy island with nothing on it.

Super Moderator
5,620 Posts
A very interesting set of photographs Stein, thank you for posting them.

The frames (Brian's ribs) were rivetted through the double bottom to the centre keel plate, so that a lot of the weight was transferred downwards. Wooden props were placed against the outside of the frames (like long, but angled pit-props) until the frames were joined across the top by deck beams. It is likely that no further plates would be added until this was done. The wire strop was probably only used to ensure that the hull lines were properly followed. There was usually a mass of wooden scaffolding erected to enable the rivetters to work.
At this time shipbuilding was a very much enlarged version of traditional boatbuilding. Note the absence of cranes. Very labour intensive, difficult and dangerous. All changed by the introduction of welding, prefabrication and cranage.


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