What was the biggest step forward in boat design or building?

Discussion in 'All Things Boats & Boating' started by wet feet, Jul 6, 2021.

  1. wet feet
    Joined: Nov 2004
    Posts: 738
    Likes: 132, Points: 43, Legacy Rep: 124
    Location: East Anglia,England

    wet feet Senior Member

    The title says it.Your opinions please,was it moving from dugouts to planked hulls? The acceptance of planing hulls? Foiling sailboats?The replacement of sail for shipping?Metal ships?
     
  2. Mr Efficiency
    Joined: Oct 2010
    Posts: 10,277
    Likes: 988, Points: 113, Legacy Rep: 702
    Location: Australia

    Mr Efficiency Senior Member

    Without a doubt, the transition from sail to steam, in the sphere of shipping
     
  3. Tiny Turnip
    Joined: Mar 2008
    Posts: 776
    Likes: 204, Points: 43, Legacy Rep: 743
    Location: Huddersfield, UK

    Tiny Turnip Senior Member

    The development of sufficiently sophisticated communication (language) to allow collaborative effort, sharing of ideas and specialisation.
     
  4. BlueBell
    Joined: May 2017
    Posts: 1,756
    Likes: 488, Points: 83
    Location: Victoria BC Canada

    BlueBell "Whatever..."

    Navigation (Vikings) and Sail-to-Steam.
    So two, it was a tie for me.
     
  5. wet feet
    Joined: Nov 2004
    Posts: 738
    Likes: 132, Points: 43, Legacy Rep: 124
    Location: East Anglia,England

    wet feet Senior Member

    A very good point.It must also have occurred in several places rather than rippling out from one location.In a slightly different sense it is also a development that enables us to discuss such notions here via the medium of 0's and 1's.
     
  6. Will Gilmore
    Joined: Aug 2017
    Posts: 560
    Likes: 241, Points: 43
    Location: Littleton, nh

    Will Gilmore Senior Member

    Eureka!

    You know what I'm talking about. Engineering and design of boats has been influenced by that moment right up to today and will be as long as boats float.

    -Will
     
  7. ImaginaryNumber
    Joined: May 2009
    Posts: 435
    Likes: 59, Points: 28, Legacy Rep: 399
    Location: USA

    ImaginaryNumber Imaginary Member

    1) The concept that things that float can support things that don't float.

    2) The concept that the load capacity of materials that float can be increased by shaping the floating body.

    3) The concept that materials that don't float can be shaped in such a way that they do float.
     
  8. missinginaction
    Joined: Aug 2007
    Posts: 1,055
    Likes: 225, Points: 63, Legacy Rep: 512
    Location: New York

    missinginaction Senior Member

    I think it is the modern screw propeller. Prior to it's development, which people struggled with for centuries in one way or another, all we had was oars, paddle wheels and sails.
     
  9. comfisherman
    Joined: Apr 2009
    Posts: 165
    Likes: 66, Points: 28, Legacy Rep: 10
    Location: Alaska

    comfisherman Senior Member

    Internal combustion with a rotary screw or the modern container.
     
  10. Mr Efficiency
    Joined: Oct 2010
    Posts: 10,277
    Likes: 988, Points: 113, Legacy Rep: 702
    Location: Australia

    Mr Efficiency Senior Member

    Steam was the greatest quantum leap in transport and industrialization, otherwise it would be sails on the water, or animals, windmills and watermills on land.
     
  11. Will Gilmore
    Joined: Aug 2017
    Posts: 560
    Likes: 241, Points: 43
    Location: Littleton, nh

    Will Gilmore Senior Member

    upload_2021-7-8_7-47-29.png
     
  12. philSweet
    Joined: May 2008
    Posts: 2,474
    Likes: 272, Points: 83, Legacy Rep: 1082
    Location: Beaufort, SC and H'ville, NC

    philSweet Senior Member

    If you look at disruptive advancements, early boats had to compete with caravans for coastal and long distance transport. This was easy in the Mediterranean where the water route was maybe a tenth the land route. This was not so easy from Shanghai to the Malabar Coast.

    Boats had to defend themselves and their cargo. Being able to construct seagoing vessels that could house 100 people for 3 months was necessary for basic cargo security. Once you could house an army, you could compete with long distance caravans that had been the standard shipping option for hundreds of years.

    Now all you had to do was navigate the seas and oceans for a few months. The Arabs had some tricks for doing that that gave then a complete lock on ship navigation for about 150 years. For a while, the richest man on Earth controlled a stretch of the Silk Road to the far east in what is now Afghanistan - until boats undercut him. When you take down the richest guy on earth, that tends to be important. Seagoing trade connecting the orient to India, Africa, and eventually Europe, utterly changed life for quite a lot of the people on the planet.

    So with navigation, a boat could arrive at the intended destination after months at sea, and when boats became floating fortified caravanserai, their cargo could arrive at the intended destination too.

    Ever since then, it has just been a matter of boats competing with other boats. Boats got better in fits and starts, but boats have ruled supreme since the 15th century.
     
  13. wet feet
    Joined: Nov 2004
    Posts: 738
    Likes: 132, Points: 43, Legacy Rep: 124
    Location: East Anglia,England

    wet feet Senior Member

    I'm a little surprised that nobody has mentioned the big step of being able to join pieces so that boats could be longer,wider and deeper than the biggest tree in the vicinity of the piece of water it would be used on.
     
  14. Wynand N
    Joined: Oct 2004
    Posts: 1,260
    Likes: 148, Points: 73, Legacy Rep: 1806
    Location: South Africa

    Wynand N Retired Steelboatbuilder

    Life rafts / life boats
     

  15. Mr Efficiency
    Joined: Oct 2010
    Posts: 10,277
    Likes: 988, Points: 113, Legacy Rep: 702
    Location: Australia

    Mr Efficiency Senior Member

    I'm surprised you didn't say "steel", Wynand N, it certainly changed the practical size of vessels dramatically
     
Loading...
Similar Threads
  1. 7228sedan
    Replies:
    10
    Views:
    849
  2. Tiny Turnip
    Replies:
    5
    Views:
    839
  3. Alan Kelly
    Replies:
    5
    Views:
    1,952
  4. Corley
    Replies:
    7
    Views:
    1,034
  5. Rurudyne
    Replies:
    10
    Views:
    2,259
  6. lobsterman
    Replies:
    6
    Views:
    1,311
  7. sdowney717
    Replies:
    11
    Views:
    1,437
  8. L'eau.Life
    Replies:
    0
    Views:
    979
  9. AndySGray
    Replies:
    1
    Views:
    1,269
  10. Squidly-Diddly
    Replies:
    29
    Views:
    3,108
Forum posts represent the experience, opinion, and view of individual users. Boat Design Net does not necessarily endorse nor share the view of each individual post.
When making potentially dangerous or financial decisions, always employ and consult appropriate professionals. Your circumstances or experience may be different.