Wednesday, 3 February 2010

Ship Repairs

A while back when I was in the midst of the big projects, I accepted the commission to restore a large copper foil panel. It is 1000mm by 610mm with a lot of detail. Not all of the spaces between the rigging lines are individual pieces of glass, but a surprising number are. A considerable level of skill is evident in the construction of this piece. There are foil lines of various sizes used, and there is considerable skill shown in the fitting of the glass.

The problems arose because the panel has been sitting, propped up in an window opening for a number of years. This has caused the panel to bow and finally separate mainly at the junction of the water and the horizon. I suppose many will say that this was an obvious design fault. Even though there are interruptions in the horizontal. It is these interruptions that took the force of the bending and broke at the places where the hull and the water "interact".

It is not only where the panel has separated that there are problems. This clear piece, high in the panel has cracked, probably due to the sharp angle at the bottom left of the piece.

The hull of the boat is where the most obvious work is required. Some glass is missing from the left (or bottom in this picture) and it is broken on the right (or top).

At the stern of the ship, a number of small pieces have been broken. This appears to me to be impact damage rather than stress related.

A small piece of the light blue has also broken near the area of separation, probably as a result of stresses.

I will need to think about how this panel can be protected from the same process working on the glass again. This will help me make the restoration in a sympathetic way and produce a strong panel.

In preparation for conducting the work, I have taken a rubbing. I find that this gives a reference point when sections have been taken apart. There is no arguing with the rubbing taken from the original panel. Then things you do have to conform to the rubbing.

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