Over the past several years, you have seen on our blog site the wonderful nickel plated parts we’ve received from RE Sturdy Company. This week we received our last shipment of plated parts from RE Sturdy Company along with a note that this 158-year-old family-owned business was closing.
We are humbled and honored to think that as they were struggling with NAFTA and free trade competition, and burdensome, inequitable regulations, taxes, fees, permits, and licenses, they would support our project. We thank the Perkins family for their generous support, and wish them well in their new endeavors.
RE Sturdy has once again done an awesome job of nickel plating our bronze pieces to look like real nickel steel. Here is the last batch of shackles as well as the rings to attach the staysail and jib topsail to their stays (Mike is currently fabricating the jib hanks).
Bern installed the topmast heel rope sheave and topmast fid and slot. As you may remember, the topmast is sleeved into the mainmast.
These efforts have revealed another Reliance conundrum. The hole in the upper and lower sleeves holding the topmast in place are 13.25″ in diameter, and the topmast is 13″ in diameter. The heal rope is .375″ diameter wire, so how could the topmast telescope into the mast? There isn’t enough clearance and there are no slots or holes noted in the drawings for the wire…
Bern has also been working on Columbia’s 1899 topmast and we’ve obtained detailed drawings of the cap and truck. Lo and behold, our Reliance topmast drawing refers to this drawing….so now we can complete this task as well.
Our vendors are our life blood–especially our “volunteer” commercial supporters–so we feel it’s important to bring them into the limelight another key member of the RELIANCE team.
R.E. Sturdy of Providence, RI does plating for us. Tom Perkins and his daughter Dorothy McCauley have been very helpful, delivering superb-quality products with extremely quick turn-around times. The pictures below show a recent batch that Dorothy brought over; thank you Tom, Dorothy and R.E. Sturdy!!
The original RELIANCE had bronze, nickel steel, and some cast iron fittings. We plate our bronze castings in nickel to look like the Ni Steel original ones; steel is just too difficult for a volunteer force to work with in scale. We also use an automotive paint on our fittings that were cast iron. The contrast between our bronze, steel, and cast iron fittings gives RELIANCE another layer of beauty, as well as further insight into structural design.