Love the spreadsheet! I do have to disagree with a couple of points, however.Here's a cleaner revision of how I think it happened.
Many people missed a lot of things that happened. Lightoller, Col. Gracie, and others never heard the breaking up--something that was mentioned by someone in a lifeboat this way: "Then we heard the most awful roaring and rumbling that seemed as if it must be heard over the ocean for miles." Those men didn't see it, so they thought it didn't happen. They were absolutely wrong...and their error skewed all of the rest of their testimony. So, focusing on what people missed is a completely backwards way of looking at it. In failure analysis, we look at what people say, and what they think they know, and then try to figure out what really happened. People get things wrong all the time. Lightoller was one of several such people.I think the overall shallow breakup and the bow re-appearing and the stern rising up more than two times is all too busy to explain why someone might simply say, ‘the bow went down, the stern came up, and it disappeared.’
Lightoller’s account was very straightforward. No mention of a break. Simply the bow going down, the ship goes vertical, and it shoots down. Now he probably was in a poor position to see a break, but wouldn’t you think he’d see something suspicious with the “non-traditional” theories? He mentions a rumbling roar and the extinguishment of the lights when the vessel achieved about an angle of “60 degrees.” In my mind, this was the first and only visible mass break of the ship. Of course the stern never reached 60°, but it tells me that the stern was a team a considerable height when it broke away from the bow (25-30°).
This quote seems to be used among both "traditionalists" and those who stand by a shallower break. To me, this confirms that the ship broke apart after the second funnel had collapsed near Thayer. "...it seemed to me that she broke in two just in front of the third funnel." Does he mean that it broke in front of the third funnel, or it had broken in front of the third funnel (prior to the collapse)?"About five seconds after he jumped, I jumped out, feet first. I was clear of the ship, went down, and as I came up I was pushed away from the ship by some force. I came up facing the ship, and one of her funnels seemed to be lifted off and fell towards me about 15 yards away, with a mass of sparks and steam coming out of it. I saw the ship in a sort of red glare [from the pulverized coals that blew out of the third funnel], and it seemed to me that she broke in two just in front of the third funnel."
It sounds more like the latter to me. The way it's written comes off as if Thayer had just surfaced with the fallen funnel about 15 yards away, already in the water. I'm hesitant to say that the hull had already broken up though, but that might just be confirmation bias.This quote seems to be used among both "traditionalists" and those who stand by a shallower break. To me, this confirms that the ship broke apart after the second funnel had collapsed near Thayer. "...it seemed to me that she broke in two just in front of the third funnel." Does he mean that it broke in front of the third funnel, or it had broken in front of the third funnel (prior to the collapse)?
We have been over and recognized this. My reference to the animation (which has been created under supervision of figures like Bill Sauder and Parks Stephenson) was simply showing how the bow might have appeared to rise from the water, and nothing more.Animations are not reality.
Well David, you are right that animations are not reality, but the 23 degree angle I believe was pulled from when the ship would have maximum stress... As in, where the ship would most likely break up. However, it does not mean that the ship couldn't break up earlier.Animations are not reality. At best, they are second or third hand assumptions with the expected errors and mistakes of such work. Not to make fun of the animators, but few of them have done as much research into Titanic as they have into computer programs, pixels, and wot-not. Take them for what they are, and not for factual presentations.
Look at the image just above. The stern is up in the air like the nose of a dirigible. However, from scientific analysis of the ship's hull girder strength, that's really impossible. A positive trim by the stern of 13 to 15 degrees takes the girder into the failure zone. That's the trim of Titanic when Lightoller walked into the sea and noticed that the crow's nest was still above water. How does that bit of reality fit into the typical animation? Hmmm...
-- David G. Brown