The earliest plans for the Olympicclass


Magnus Lundin

Member
Jul 6, 2004
35
1
148
Does anyone know if the earliest plans for the Olympic-class vessels (featuring a.o. only three funnels) still exists?
 

Bob Read

Member
Mar 3, 2002
393
4
171
Magnus:
I have only seen one sketch of the 3 funnel version. I believe that by the time formal plans were to be drafted that the 3 funnel idea had been discarded in favor of the 4 funnel version.

Regards,
Bob Read
 

Magnus Lundin

Member
Jul 6, 2004
35
1
148
Thanks Bob! Are you aware if any particulars are mentioned in connection to the sketch? I wonder if anyone else might have any idea?
 

Bob Read

Member
Mar 3, 2002
393
4
171
Magnus:
The only place I have seen this sketch was in a double issue of the Titanic Commutator published sometime in the mid to latter 1970's. The sketch was fairly rough as someone would make when just roughly discussing design. I don't even remember any reference given for who made the sketch.
 
Dec 6, 2000
1,480
3
221
Magnus,

The endpapers of: The Birth of the Titanic by McCaughan show what are labelled as: "Original design drawings for the Olympic and Titanic, prepared by Harland & Wolff and approved in Belfast on 29 July 1908 by Bruce Ismay and other White Star Line directors." - They show 4 funnels; but only a forward mast.

I hope that helps,
Lester
 

Magnus Lundin

Member
Jul 6, 2004
35
1
148
Thanks Bob and Lester for your feedback. I've been wanting to learn more about those early plans since I read about them in a Swedish Titanic book in the end of the '80s. McCaughan's book seems to be interesting, is it still available in print?
 

Magnus Lundin

Member
Jul 6, 2004
35
1
148
Thanks Bob! I found out that the book was available at Amazon.co.uk as well as some Swedish online stores. Great for later purchase.
 

Bob Read

Member
Mar 3, 2002
393
4
171
Magnus:
I did a little digging and discovered some additional information. First, the Titanic Commutator issue that had the early sketch of Olympic was a 1976 double issue covering Olympic.
The sketch was done by Robert Gibbons who was a
co-editor of the Titanic Commutator. He did the sketch presumably sometime around 1976 so it isn't something contemporary to the original plans. His sketch was based on one line from the book "The Ismay Line" written by Wilton J. Oldham (printed in England by Charles Birchall and Sons Ltd. in 1961). The line from this book that he based his sketch on was "original design of Olympic and Titanic was 3 funnels with 3 or 4
masts." That statement is imprecise to say the least. So it appears that there were never any preliminary plans drawn to this early proposal.
If there were then it doesn't appear that they survived.

Regards,
Bob Read
 

Magnus Lundin

Member
Jul 6, 2004
35
1
148
Great, thanks Bob! It was a pity that it wasn't based on an original plan, but perhaps it was a good rendering in any case.
 

Bob Read

Member
Mar 3, 2002
393
4
171
Magnus:
The sketch was fairly crude. It showed 3 funnels and 4 masts. It looks like just an increased size member of the White Star "Big Four" liners which preceeded the Olympic class.
I'm sure you could probably do about as well sketching an H&W ship with "3 funnels and 3 or 4 masts".

Regards,
Bob Read
 
B

Brian R Peterson

Guest
Hi Chris,

Its amazing how similar those sketches look like larger versions of earlier White Star ships.

Best Regards,

Brian
 
Dec 2, 2000
58,641
457
453
Easley South Carolina
They remind me a bit of the "Big Four" but that shouldn't be much of a surprise, assuming those sketches are genuine. From what I understand, Harland & Wolff built ships that tended to look, if nothing else, like improved evolutionary revisions and enlargements of earlier designs.

BTW, are these genuine earlier sketches? That second one is coloured and they look a tad amaturish. Sorry if I sound a little overly skeptical, but I like to know what the sources really are.
 

Magnus Lundin

Member
Jul 6, 2004
35
1
148
While the first picture looks very crude, the second looks fine. Clearly the work of an amateur, nevertheless this second picture could be a good impression how those early plans looked (if they were finalized).
 

Dave Gittins

Member
Apr 11, 2001
5,016
248
333
The web site in question is incomplete and the drawings are without explanations or captions. The links quoted are to enlarged versions of thumbnails on a page about the origins of the Olympic ships.

Where's my salt shaker?
 
Dec 2, 2000
58,641
457
453
Easley South Carolina
>>The web site in question is incomplete and the drawings are without explanations or captions.<<

That's what raised my eyebrows. I couldn't even find any links so I cut and pasted part of that URL to my address box and got This Page. Dave, pass me that salt shaker when you're done with it.
 
Jan 21, 2003
271
1
171
I forgot to say that the last time I went to the site it was complete but i guess he's working on it or just doesnt want to work on it anymore.
 

Similar threads