Without effective and durable hull fastenings, boats and ships—from the earliest days of seafaring through the twentieth century—could not have plied the seas. In Ships’ Fastenings, this central element of boat construction receives its first detailed study. Author Michael McCarthy offers a fascinating, thorough description of a range from sewn-plank boats of the ancient world and Micronesia to Viking ships, Mediterranean caravels, nineteenth-century ocean clippers, and even steamships. Along with the comprehensive account of ship fastenings, McCarthy provides a history of many of the discoveries and innovations that accompanied changes in the kinds of fastenings used and the ways they were secured. He discusses copper sheathing, metallurgy, the advent of Muntz metal, rivets of all types, welding in the ancient and modern sense, and the types of non-magnetic fastenings needed on World War II minesweepers. He even takes a glance at the development of underwriting and insurance, because the registries kept by Lloyd’s and others were not only guides to the suitability or a particular ship but also dictated the form and method of fastening. Ships’ Fastenings will prove of value to shipbuilders, historians, and archaeologists. It is also written for the enthusiast and amateur boat builder.
David Stimson grew up on Cape Cod, Massachusetts, and learned boatbuilding while working in the local boatyards. During this time, he developed an eye for boat design from Merton Long, a retired catboat builder who became his friend and mentor. David's love of traditional boats was further inspired by the writings of John Gardner and Pete Culler in the 1970's and by WoodenBoat Magazine. He now lives in Boothbay, Maine, with his wife, Tamora and two teenage boys, Abraham and Nathaniel. He is a sailing charter captain during the summer, and designs and builds boats at Stimson Marine, Inc. in Boothbay.