Sunday, October 22, 2006

Carpenter's Stores

Further to the comments on yesterday's post, here's a severely edited version of the list of carpenter's stores as compiled by Captain Bayntun of HMS Milford (74) in 1809 - it seems there was some disagreement about the stores figures so he had the whole kit and caboodle documented and sent off to the Admiralty to prove his point (luckily for us). Quantities are given in Tons, Cwt, Qrs & Lbs, so I'll list 'em with four figures after each item. i.e. Auger bitts (sic) would be 16lbs of same. I'll leave out such items as old canvas, fearnought screens etc but all the tools (blacksmithing as well) and timber are all included and some of the fittings:

Copper nails
Rove and clinch
Bed bottoms
Copper sheet
Auger bitts
Tillers 3/4
Bolts, chain plate
Bolts, drawn
Bolts, drive [to drive out old bolts]
Bolts, eye
Bolts, ring
Bolts, sett [to bring planks together[?]]
Bolts, starting [also used as bolts, drive]
Chisels, cold
Drivers, for hoops on masts
Esses for shrouds [s-shaped hooks]
Hammers, clench 3/4
Cot frames
Camp forge, slice [?], hearth staff
Hammers, sledge
Hammers, uphand [two-handed, used at forge]
Hammers, hand
Hammers, bench
Hammers, riveting
Hammers, nail tool
Chisels, cold and hot
Bellows, double
Files and rubbers
Smiths' tongues
Hasps and staples
Hinges, sorts
Hooks, nail
Iron, new, of sorts
Locks, sorts
Mauls, double-headed
Nails of sorts
Pitch ladles
Saw gear
Staples, large 1/2
Ocham, black
Bars, capstan, half
Board, Elm [Boards being timber 14-18ft long, 8-9in wide and less than 1 1/2in thick]
Board, Oak
Board, wainscot [Continental Oak for panelling and joinery work, bought by the Navy Board in 1 1/4, 1, and 3/4in thicknesses]
Mess tables
Stools for ditto
Caulking tools* 1/4
Chests of sorts for stores
Deals, ordinary [deals 6-14ft long, 9in wide, not more than 3in thick]
Hen coops
Moving pantry
Plank, Elm, sorts [planks 18ft long or more, 9-10in wide, 1 1/2-4in thick]
Plank, Oak
Plank, Oak, sorts
Screws, wood, with bolt
Tables, small
Tables, wainscot
Tables, sideboard
Tillers, spare
Brushes 1/2
Black varnish
Lime, bushels [for making whitewash]
Ditto brushes
Brushes, tar, present use [present use stores were used in fitting out] 1/2
Nails, of sorts, present use
Tar, present use
Board, Elm, present use
Deals, ordinary, present use
Baulks, present use
Wedges, present use

*A set of caulker's tools is given elsewhere as:
irons, sharp, 1
horsing, 1
meaking, 1
caulking, 1
crooked, 1
treenail, 1
spike, 1
horsing, large with iron handles,1
beetle, 1
caulking mallet, 1
ladle spout, 1
hook rove, 1

Additionally, in the Boatswain's stores, we find more Black varnish; brushes, large; brushes, tar; cots; another grindstone; axes, junk [?!]; hatchets, mauls for topmasts; scrapers [for cleaning decks]; nails, woolding [?]; and commanders [large wooden mallets].

Honestly, it was a regular floating DIY warehouse come furniture store...

Anyway, if you're interested in "Nelson's Navy", I recommend "Steering To Glory - A Day In the Life of a Ship Of The Line" by Nicholas Blake from which I've filched this stuff. It's a lousy title, but the content is excellent. The only drawback is he's had to use a lot of court martial evidence so there's rather more going on in the cable tier and other dark spots than maybe was strictly true on the average day...


  1. Wow! Thanks, Alf!

    Quite a store of goods and tools. And thanks for the book title. Just amazing. It's a subject I hadn't really tohught about excpet as applies to modern times on aircraft carriers. I had a friend who worked in one of the 3 machine shops on board of such a beast--along with several thousand others on-board. But these ships, there had to be such consideration for damage done in battle. It amazes me.

    Take care, Mike

  2. You sure this isn't the contents of the good ship "Chez Frampton"???;)
    Must admit, I mean to do a 'shop catologue for insurance means. Still putting that off (along with loads of other stuff!!)
    Hope you find your "spark" soon,
    best regards

  3. Hmm, I might have to borrow that one off you at some stage!


  4. No Lie Lielsen stuff then !!

    Seriously, thanks for that, Alf - really interesting.

    Paul Chapman

  5. Lots on boats around here.

    Is it true that you are going to build one?


  6. Caulking and more caulking. It's just everywhere these days .....!

    First JFC and now you. Will it ever end?!


Owing to vast quantities of spam this blog is getting, I'm afraid only registered users can post. All comments are moderated before publication, so there may be some delay. My apologies.