The Sail Doctor: Traditional Rigging by Raven

by · September 2, 2013

Way, hey, me hearties! Seems like every issue of SCA, I am desperately casting about for some new and scintillatin’ yarn to tell ya. Often, writer’s block just scuttles my creative butt. But, the Muses swam in today and got me thinking about nautical jewelry. No, not the glittery diamond constellation brooches my ol’ Cousin Tony offers, but real, wooden blocks for running rigging.

‘Bout time for the 37th annual Wooden Boat Festival here in Port Townsend, Washington where wooden blocks are a community affair. I like that the NW Maritime Chandlery offers wooden blocks, all the parts of which – as well as the assembly – are local.

Funny, ain’ it, how something like wooden blocks which used to be the ONLY kinda blocks have now become almost an extravagance, a kind of nautical jewelry.

However, like other traditional aspects of sail and rigging, there is still virtue in the old ways. Obviously, nothing saltier than a wooden block! Moreover, in terms of practicality, not only do wooden blocks endure; but, they can be taken apart and any of the components replaced..

Far as that goes, matey, you can just go to work whittlin’ out yer own blocks and strop em’ yerself with rope grommets.. Now, there’s some really rustic nautical jewelry! Real personal and homemade; very much in the home brew tradition of seat o’ the pants small craft self–reliance and know how. Since you are getting this by email, I figger you can get online. So, take a gander at the instructions out there for making up wooden blocks!

(and here)

Well, I’m ‘bout chock a block here haulin’ this little ditty up; so lemme cast off by sayin’ that if ya got a nice, salty, small boat, I recommend treatin’ her and yerself to some real nautical jewelry. Heave sheet or haul a halyard on a wooden block! A wooden block; blimey, that’s the kinda block that makes this writer’s hair light up!

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Discussion1 Comment

  1. Roger Slagle says:

    Check out my post on the scamp message board under mrogers.
    They are finished now, stropped with hempx and sezed with tarred marline.
    many of them have tails instead of thimbles. The idea is to “boom hitch” or rolling hitch” them, it seems to allow for more swivel.

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