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  1. A warning to new readers. This thread reached the ninth page on a tidal wave of enthusiasm, but on the 3rd March 23 I admitted to myself that my literary tide has gone out. The thread doesn't end there but continues in a much less detailed form; WIP-lite, if you like. Whaling isn't considered a noble profession in the 21st century by many (and that's as close as we need to get to the politics of conservation, my friends) but in the 1860's it was a trade for brave men. I read Moby Dick ages ago, and will read it again in the coming weeks. It's a brilliant book but I didn't appreciate how tiny and fragile the New Bedford Whaleboats were until I bought this kit. A few sticks and a crew of six against the ocean and the whales, rarely aggressive but very big and dangerous, especially when close enough to harpoon with little more than a caveman's spear. It was a bloody and dramatic way to make a living. These are photos of the outside of the box. I'll open it for you later. The whaleboat is built in the same way as the original, more or less. The ribs are planked inside and out to make a lightweight and strong structure. It's almost all wood and metal apart from two or three resin buckets and tubs for the harpoon line. I'm very tempted to remake them in wood to keep this as old school a project as possible. All of the equipment is included. There's a mast and sail but I'll probably keep that in the stowed position as pictured here. The other end. I'm struck by the knives built into the boat for cutting the harpoon line in emergencies. It wasn't unusual for a crewman to become entangled and whisked over the side and down among the whales. We have a rudder for sailing and a steering oar for rowing in the hunt. The whaleboat has two sharp ends so that it was as swift in either direction when the time came for dancing. The kit is by Amati, an Italian company with a good reputation for quality. I hope to be able to do it justice.
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