Tag Archives: marine museum

Cleaning the Catamaran

Amaryllis, a catamaran built by Herreshoff, is being taken down from the rafters to be cleaned and re-hung for better viewing pleasure. Upon bringing it down for inspection, we were surprised to see a speedometer and underwater speed measurement device in the hull!


Here’s an old photo of the Amaryllis, for perspective.


Configuration Management

There is a lot of effort going on behind the scenes to make sure our RELIANCE is accurate. Boats, especially race boats, change during the season. We chose late August as our configuration date, when RELIANCE was measured and raced for the Cup, since this timeframe is when we had the best pictures. Ours has been a constant battle for configuration management. 

For example, NGH’s approved drawing 86-126 (from MIT Hart Collection) shows the original placement of three topmast backstay staples and a trysail staple as shown in picture #1 and as placed on our model as in picture #2.  Our visit to the NYYC in NYC last Spring to see their model showed a discrepancy which was confirmed in picture #3 as blown up in #4. 

Our metal casting expert, Mike Mirman, then used this picture to created a new fitting, shown in #5.

1. 86-126 Stern Details 2. As designed configuration 3. afterguard on fantail 4. As raced configuration 5. As raced configuration

Another productive time last week with the crew. We completed two of the three starboard toe rails, finished the second of three forward hatches, and progressed on the fantail toe rail. 


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Just sent a picture from our “guy upstairs” of Joe Bartram’s nephews Ford and Gris helping us lay canvas. As you can see we are not bashful about asking for help!
On Tuesday we began putting eight toerails and two handrails in place. By close of session we laid the two outer toerails down. On wednesday the port handrail went down.

Worked on toe and handrails on Saturday. The portside has been laid down. Will need some cleanup but it looks great!
Joe also brought his large hatch to work on.

Come Visit us today, FREE DAY 11/16

Our annual Fall Free Day is currently underway today (11/16). Come join us for a fun day full of activities including: guided tours, kids activities, hot cider, and so much more! And FREE ADMISSION! We hope to see you here.


Much progress has been made this week as you’ll soon see in the next few blog postings, coming soon.

We’ve assembled a diorama, several RELIANCE benches, augmented the RELIANCE PROJECT with ten other exhibits, and have cleared our spar bench to display other parts of RELIANCE. Come meet Capt. Barr and one of his crew. See the Education programs as well.

This week we assembled a diorama of RELIANCE’s wooden Spars – 4 foot sections of real-sized topmast and topsail spars.

Picture no. 1 shows (l. to r.) the no. 1 club topsail club, no. 1 club topsail yard, and topmast. In the background are the spinnaker boom and bowsprit which will have their own display. The diorama base will have aluminum plate covered in cork as on the real RELIANCE’S deck

The second picture show a bench we’re building, the seat of which is a 4′ section of the club topsail yard

Photo 3 shows the metal base that when sand-blasted and painted will become the base for the bowsprit section. We’ll drill holes in the bowsprit to receive the rods, so she’ll stand about two feet off the floor

Hopefully, we’ll have the spinnaker boom on its own stand and ready to go by Saturday

In real life, the topmast was 58′ 3″ long, the no. 1club topsail yard 68′ long, and the no. 1 club topsail club 57’6″ long. These would have held a no. 1 club topsail which luff was 105′ long! The spinnaker Boom was more than 83′ in length.