Roy Mengot's bottom up breakup theory


Sep 17, 2007
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Hi, everybody:

I'm a bit of a lapsed student of the Titanic, having been a dedicated follower of the history of the ship from about 1998-2000. I've recently had my interest reawakened by a chance encounter with my 7-year-old sinking Titanic model, of all things. I was a member of the Titanic-Listbox email community a long while back (before I knew what a message board was), and I recall the fascination I had with Roy Mengot's bottom-up theory of the breakup.

Through several weeks of lurking and digging through years-old thread here at ET, I've come across a lot of learning and forensic evidence that's come to light in the years I've been "away." I've seen a lot of mentions of Roy's theory, and a lot of veterans directing newbies to Roy's website (glad to see it's still up!), but I can't really tell what the general feeling about this theory is today.

I thoroughly enjoyed surveying Parks' theory on the break up, and it seems to come to a lot of the same conclusions as Mr. Mengot's, though there are many differences as well.

So ... with all the revised computer modeling done since '99, and the discoveries since then (such as the Third Piece), how much of Roy's theory still "holds water?" I'd welcome Mr. Mengot's opinion as well, but it seems to me that this board is going through a period of relative inactivity, and I don't recall seeing any posts authored by him recently.

Great to be back among my fellows, everyone.
 
M

Matt Pereira

Guest
Honestly a bottom up break can be possible but I just cant really picture a bottom up break occuring since you have the stern pulling down due to gravity and the weight of the stern and the bow is being pulled down due to loss of bouyancy and wanting to sink to the ocean floor.

But that doesnt mean that a bottom up break is impossible. Ive heard I think it was Parks about how some compartments were flooding while there were dry ones infront of that compartment. If thats the case then its possible that water was flooding aft and caused a bottom up break.
 
Dec 2, 2000
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Michael, if Roy has a chance to pop in, I think he would be the first one to tell you that a lot of his ideas are in need of serious revision. He did the best he could with the best and most credible evidence at the time, but as anybody who has seen the two Lone Wolf productions (Titanic, Missing Pieces as well as Titanic's Achilles Heel) knows, new evidence has come to light which calls for revision.

The short version is that it's not seen as something as simple as a top down or bottom up break but as an event that is rather more complex and dynamic.

There's a lot on Roy's website that is still clearly valid and he does a wonderful job of showing what couldn't possibly be so, but like any field of on-going research, things have changed and will continue to change. It's just the nature of the beast.

As always, more research is needed.
 

Roy Mengot

Member
May 16, 2006
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The bottom-up theory article I wrote on my web site 10 years ago is now the active theory with the Marine Forensics Panel. A new paper is in work that includes new modeling based on the new evidence. My article is still valid in principle, but has been refined to a significant extent. The new paper will be out soon.

Regards
Roy Mengot
 

Roy Mengot

Member
May 16, 2006
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We're due to present at the Society on Navel Architects and Marine Engineers meeting in November. I expect I'll post it on TRMA or provide another link. In general, there are features in the ship's construction that only become a liability when the ship is tipped up. The ship is already sunk but hasn't left the surface yet. So the break-up did not contribute to the sinking, only the final lay of the wreck.

Regards
Roy Megot
 
Jan 29, 2001
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Hi Roy! Yes, it is wonderful to hear from you again. As a matter of fact I was just looking thru my TITANIC postcard album, and among the entries are the p.c. sized photographs of your wreck model that you had sent me yrs. back. And, I was so impressed with your work, that I had the photo's enlarged via a color copier...making for a wonderful TITANIC *wreck* display piece amongst my limited ;-( T wall space.

As an aside...this break-up theory makes one give, perhaps more thought to Jack Thayer's account of the loss of TITANIC?

Michael Cundiff
NV, USA
 
Dec 2, 2000
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>>As an aside...this break-up theory makes one give, perhaps more thought to Jack Thayer's account of the loss of TITANIC?<<

If I may, in what sense? That Jack Theyer...and others...pointed to the ship breaking up is an observation that has since been vindicated. The wreck itself has managed to lay that one to rest.

If you mean did the bow pop up as per the representation in the Skidmore drawing, I remain skeptical.
 
Sep 17, 2007
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>>If you mean did the bow pop up as per the representation in the Skidmore drawing, I remain skeptical.<<

As do I. Seems to me the popping-up of the prow in the Skidmore illustration was little more than artistic license, included to make obvious Thayer's point that he saw the ship break in two.
 
Dec 2, 2000
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>>Seems to me the popping-up of the prow in the Skidmore illustration was little more than artistic license, <<

Which interestingly enough is something jack Theyer never said. The breakup he spoke to, but not the bow being levered up.
 
Sep 17, 2007
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>>Which interestingly enough is something jack Theyer never said. The breakup he spoke to, but not the bow being levered up.<<

Right, yes. Not to be rude, but that's kind of what I said, Michael.
happy.gif
 
Jan 29, 2001
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All I know is that Thayer was a yng. man...Lightoller the seasoned *seaman*, who stated that the ship had sank as a whole, and was proven wrong with the discovery of T's wreck on
1 Sept. '85. And still furthur...the youth Thayer's eye-witness description of the separation of the vessel was spot on...only to be resubstantiated on in Sept. of 1985.

As for the bottom-up break-up? Interesting way to spill the carnage of an ocean liner amidist a vast area of ocean abyss?

Could it have been that the upward pressures exerted
on the keel 14-15 April forced however minor, a re-surfacing of a minimal forepeak...therefore providing observation by a nearby Thayer?

Still to this day I remain so intrigued with the laden path of coal...a direct result of Titanic's demise.

Michael Cundiff
NV, USA
 
Dec 2, 2000
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>>therefore providing observation by a nearby Thayer?<<

What observation? He's not on record anywhere as having actually said that.

>>therefore providing observation by a nearby Thayer?<<

That drawing was made by a man named Skidmore, allegedly based on what Jack Theyer told him. While it can't be dismissed out of hand, I think we need to be careful about reading too much into it.
 
Sep 17, 2007
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>>While it can't be dismissed out of hand, I think we need to be careful about reading too much into it.<<

I agree entirely. In my view, the prow poking its way through the surface in the Skidmore drawing is nothing more than the result of either artistic license (to make plain that Thayer saw the ship split in two) or improperly-understood aspects of the sinking behaviors of large ships on the part of the artist, or some combination of both.
 

Will C. White

Member
Apr 18, 2007
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In theory, it would be possible for the bow to momentarily reappear, and it is only possible with some type of "bottom to top" break, which releases strains (keel snaps); water weight shifts, and the shedding of enough other weight to achieve positive lift (the cargo). Probable-naw; possible-yeah.
 

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