The History of Ocean Going Technology

The following are important dates and their advancement in sea going technology throughout the world and throughout history.

200 BK
The sea engineers of Unadrian discover the use of angled sails provides much better performance. In addition, the angled sails allow the ship to sail at an angle to the wind direction thus allowing a ship to appear that it is sailing against the wind. In actuality, the ship is sailing slightly off the angle of the direction of the wind. This will reduce sailing times by a great deal.

190 BK
The sea engineers of Unadrian discover by using a Plita, which is a flat plate, placed forward of the bow and submerged will propel a ship at six to eight mph without a sail or oar. The Unadrian discover that the Plita works best on larger ships. Several Unadrian barges and merchant ships are fitted with Plita system. The Unadrian are able to reduce the cost of building merchant ships by ½. The Unadrian still build ships with oars and sails especially war ships where every ounce of speed is required.

100 BK

Cavis, the elven sea mage, discovers that the use of stern mounted rudders provides better handling for ships in the water. Unknown to Cavis, this simple observation would change the world.

200 TK
The Sea Elves of Bryagel discover that by cladding the bottom of ships with copper, it stops the formation of barnacles on the hull of the ships. The Sea Elves of Bryagel experiment with other cladding materials.

650 TK
The Elves of Clease (sea faring) develop a sail they call the Beetle Wing. This new type of sail harnesses the wind much better. The Clease set a new record for crossing the great sea. They estimated 19 miles an hour.

900 TK
The Ship Fields of Moshven have perfected the fabrication of Stern-Mounted Rudders. The Stern-Mounted Rudders increases the maneuverability of ships and their speed in which they can maneuver.

950 TK
Admiral Walter Mason of the Azin navy experiments with what he calls a bird’s wing sail. The sail is a canvas sail that is wrapped around a rigged frame that is shaped like a bird’s wing. The Azin navy builds three ships with these sails. The performance is equal to current designs in speed however; there are control problems to be worked out. Walter Mason was killed in an accident late in 950 TK thus ending the interest in this experiment.

1005 TK
Watching native islander ship builders, Dragos a saurian guard, learns that a double hulled craft is very stable for ocean going vessels even in very rough waves. Dragos was in the service of the Great Elves of Bryagel acting as a guide in swamps. He informed his employers of what he saw.

The Elves of Bryagel begin to experiment with a two hull design with a frame connecting the two hulls. During the first sea, trials of this new design a storm came up in the area of testing and it was discovered that the two hulled design was very stable in rough seas. After a short period (for elves) of 25 years of testing and improving the design, the elven nation Bryagel launched its first Alishay class ship.

Note: Alishay is the goddess of Knowledge and Wisdom; her parents are Debohran and Hyach. On the test ships one hull was called the Debohran and the other Hyach.

1030 TK
Midsummer’s day
The Drunken Sailor Tavern on the bay of Nari' of the Island of Three sisters. A group of human ship's carpenters and navel architect are celebrating the holiday from work drinking and being loud when several dwarven engineers ask them if they would mind shutting up to allow civilized engineers to enjoy a drink. The tavern owner had his cook's servant go get the city guard. The human navel architect knew what the dwarf was trying to do and answered the dwarven goating with. "We are enjoy are selves, very well actually, thank you." The human then turned his back on the dwarf. The dwarf voice filled with anger. "How dare you turn your back on a Master Engineer?" The dwarf screamed. "How can one turn on his own back, for I only see one Master Engineer here and that would be me?" replied the human. The dwarf whose face was now read, as crimson understood the human just challenged him. "If you are such a master engineer prove it." The Human smiled. "That's easy. I have my drafting tool right here. The competition started. The bet was to design a better way to build ships. After an hour both parties looked over each other's design and were amazed on the quality of each other's work. The human looked at the dwarf and state. "You have defeated me honorably." The dwarf rose up his hands and admitted. "I do not believe so. Your design is good and not just for a human." The human offered his hand in friendship and the dwarf took it proudly and honestly. The human began. "Your design looks like it would work better. Mine has a problem with gates." The dwarf looked at the humans design and stroked his beard.

“Barkeep!” The dwarf commanded. “Bring us your finest wine and if you have Dragon wine all of it!” The dwarf and the human began working on improving and combining each other’s design. The humans and the dwarves spent several hours working together on the design. Just after midnight, one of the dwarves began carving the design into one of the tables of the tavern. At day break, 11 tables were transformed from serving tables to a single work of engineering beauty. The dwarf and the human burned their names into a blank area of each of the transformed tables. On the first table the design’s name, “Dry Dock” was burned into the wood.

The Tavern keeper, grateful that his tavern was not destroyed, did insist that they pay for the tables. The humans and the dwarves split the cost of the tables equally.

As the 15 humans and 10 dwarves left the tavern, the dwarven master engineer commented. “You know, if we get a couple of those earth type mages we could have them create the stone piers, docks, and gates and then have them dreg and dig out a section of the harbor near shore. It would cut down months of work.” The human navel architect smiled. “Well the mage’s guild hall isn’t open right now we would have to wait. It is just over there.” He said pointing towards the mages guild hall.

The dwarf smiled from ear to ear and proceeded to lead the band of human and dwarves over to the mages guild hall. The dwarf knocked on the door and when the sleepy voice replied, “We are closed.” The dwarf knocked harder and announced. “I am of the Clan Hammer and I have important work for a mage that could end the war quicker.”

As they say, the rest is history. Seven days after midsummer’s day in TK 1030, the first Dry Dock for construction and repairing sea and ocean going ships was completed. The dry dock is powered by windmills and tidal watermills that pump water in and out of the dry dock. The dwarven Master Engineer was so impressed with the earth mages work on constructing the gates for the dry dock that he engraved Approved by a dwarven Master Engineer on them.