I know there may be people following this blog that will think “planks?” But, cutting the oak tress and making them into planks is the basic element of building the Mayflower and as such I think it would be interesting for you to see this process. This is the very beginning of the building of The Harwich Mayflower.
Today I arrived at the project to see one of the workers cutting up some of the old English oak into planks for the ship. The Mayflower Project is housed in an old disused railway yard in Harwich and as you may have seen in an earlier post, dozens of tons of oak are stored on site, ready to be cut and planed to become parts of the ship.
The tree is moved from storage and placed on the bandsaw ready for cutting. Once the oak is secured, the bandsaw is pushed through the trunk.
If you look to the left of this image, you can see the horizontal blade of the bandsaw as it slices through the tree trunk.
Once the tree has been cut, it is checked before the bandsaw is lowered by several inches (depending on the size required) and the process begins again, giving several planks that will end up being part of the Mayflower.
I’m hoping that on my next visit I’ll be able to see some specific parts of the ship as they are worked on. Photography and content: James kelly.