13 April 2010

The Right Choice

From the Berkeley Daily Gazette on this day in 1935:

Ship's Bows

Those two new giantesses of the sea, the Queen Mary of England and the Normandie of France, will be quite different in appearance. The Queen Mary will have the familiar knife-edged bow, while the Normandie's bow will be very bulbous.

The marine engineers studied bows thoroughly. For each ship, elaborate tests were made to find out which type of bow would be more satisfactory. Model ships were launched in miniature but tempestuous laboratory seas. Conditions in the testing tanks duplicated on the proper scale the most severe Atlantic storms. Then the English engineers chose one bow and their French fellows another.

Perhaps the best laboratory, after all, will be the actual voyagings of the two huge ships. We'll know which batch of marine engineers was right was right when we see which ship future boats are modeled after.

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