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Thread: Different types of spikes....anyone know ages ?

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  1. #46
    us
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    also if anyone has been able to compare a muntz fastener to bronze one you will immediately notice how brittle the muntz spikes are. They are almost always broken or chipped, and if you drop one the can break easily. In my second photo in the op you'll see a piece of muntz spike at the bottom.
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  2. #47
    us
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    Quote Originally Posted by AARC View Post
    Hey I just thoughtof something... Bart isn't there a wreck down there by you called the "the bronze pin wreck"... or something like that ? ? ?

    Somewhere off grass key I think ? ? ?

    What year was that wreck ?
    hang on i got a pdf on that one some where.
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  3. #48
    us
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    19th century for bronze pin wreck.
    wahoo caught in bahamas

  4. #49
    us
    Stickmarsh Jedi Master

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    Quote Originally Posted by AARC View Post
    1733 ships found on Florida's coast contain bronze spikes.
    As well as 1715... 1721... and I can continue.
    This is true. I have one.

    But most of the ones I've seen from the 1715 fleet are iron.




    Quote Originally Posted by AARC View Post
    Here is interesting read btw... especially since you own so many and prolly will find more.... it is a "pricey" book but perhaps you could buy a used copy... or maybe local library has a copy.
    https://www.tamupress.com/book/97815...ps-fastenings/
    That is the only book I have found on the topic, and it doesn't really date the various types of spikes. I'm really surprised there hasn't been a book dedicated to using spikes to date shipwrecks. Maybe there has, but I haven't seen it.




    Quote Originally Posted by Alexandre View Post
    I got interested in sheating when I discovered Angra D, a probable late 16th century galleon whose below-the waterline hull, keel and sternpost were all covered in lead.

    This was further compounded when I discovered and excavated the remains of the HMS Pallas, beached and burned in the Azores in 1782, after escaping shipwreck at high seas, like the rest of her party:

    https://historycollection.com/20-nav...red-to-sail/3/

    And why sheating? Because I read the court martial of the Pallas captain and in it they said that the frigate's carpenter had found out that all her iron fasteners had "shrunk" and had "got thin as a toothpick".

    What had happened? The British had coppered all those ships. But they had maintained their iron fasteners.

    Now, when you immerse copper with iron in a salt bath, aka seawater, you have a battery. And galvanic corrosion (that's why we have to have a zinc piece on our outboard engine so that it can die for all other more valuable metals on the engine).
    This is correct. In fact, you don't even need the saltwater to have galvanic corrosion (although it accelerates the process). One of the things we had to be careful of in aerospace manufacturing was using fasteners of dissimilar metal to the structure. Whenever we had to do it (ex. aluminum blind rivets into steel) the rivet would be installed "wet", meaning covered with epoxy paint prior.



    Quote Originally Posted by AARC View Post
    In case "proof" of my statement is needed...

    Here is a photo of a 1733 coin encrusted TO a bronze spike recovered from wreck.

    Attachment 1862254
    Sweet! Very nice artifact.
    Last edited by Boatlode; Sep 10, 2020 at 02:29 PM.
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  5. #50
    ie
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    cooper

    Quote Originally Posted by Alexandre View Post
    Bottom line of all this post is: NO Spanish ship prior to 1770s used bronze fasteners.
    There is evidence of copper fasteners being used in ship building from the 5th century BC, and I believe in Iberian ships in the late 16th century? You can not really say they were never used as all the evidence has not been examined in full.

    The 1715 fleet, the archaeology on these shipwreck sites is so bad we can’t really take anything concrete from it. The more you look at the evidence the more gaps appear in what is assumed?

  6. #51
    us
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    Thanks everyone for your responses.....i honestly thought that it was easier than that to date these spikes. From what I've gathered it seems the majority should be post 1770 like alexandre has said.....that still leaves us with the anomalies that are found at many earlier wreck sites. One thing I have pondered is the use of these copper alloy fasteners in other things besides the construction of the ship. Perhaps these fasteners were used in other objects that were carried as cargo ? Cross contamination is a possibility but to have these fasteners pop up here and there on many of the galleon sites is puzzling. I guess its just like my op.....more confusing than helpful. I have seen time and time again people attributing these spikes with time frames far before 1770.....i can't imagine every one is wrong ? Seems there really is no expert opinion that accounts for all the anomilies. You would think that you could attribute a date to some of the different styles that I posted. I always find that no one really knows for sure exactly how old and what time period the different styles represent. Without a ship id, and date.....no one can say for sure....even our esteemed expert friends in the archeological world. Definitely an area that could be studied more !!
    wahoo caught in bahamas

  7. #52
    ie
    Mr

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    That is the Major problem with shipwrecks and to a degree archaeology, so little has been properly studied or recorded, many archaeologists focus on one aspect of a shipwreck, mainly due to limited funding that in turn limits the time that can be spent on excavation.
    It is Archaeologist like Alexandre that study, recorded and publish which provide us with a reference to enable us to cross reference artifacts, and yes some not all treasure hunters do focus on the treasure and leave the elements and structure of ships unrecorded, unpublished, therefore the important evidence is left or worse lost.
    In turn archaeologist for all there god like unselfishness and sense of studding preserving and publishing do tend to brush over what is there and focus on what id call the treasure, take the HMS Victory all you here about is recovering the unique collection of cannon, or the San Jose, all you ever read about is recovering the cargo, no one is talking about the ships elements or structure the real archaeology. I guess that is way when you break it down fasteners lose out against cannon, coins, cargo and structure.

  8. #53
    bm
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    Good thread, with some helpful info. Does anybody have thoughts on approx age of these? From a wooden hull with sheathing
    Click image for larger version. 

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  9. #54
    pt
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    Post 1770...

    Quote Originally Posted by 32n64w View Post
    Good thread, with some helpful info. Does anybody have thoughts on approx age of these? From a wooden hull with sheathing
    Click image for larger version. 

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  10. #55
    pt
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    Could be. These are really not "real" fasteners. Like fasteners for frames to futtocks.

    The problem here is:

    1) As far as I know, there are NO copper alloyed fasteners ever been archaeologically comproved on modern sites dating to prior the 1770s.

    2) There are no copper alloyed fasteners listed on construction bills for Spanish ships prior to early 1800s, only "clavos de hierro" - and believe me, I have read hundreds.

    3) The Spanish had lots of iron ore in the Basque country. Iron was cheap and readily available for them.

    4) Bronze, however, was really expensive, as they hardly had tin and they were always scrapping for it for artillery.

    5) So, economically and logistically, it did not make sense to have copper alloyed ship fasteners instead of iron ones.

    So, I still stand by my bottom line: unless proven otherwise, modern shipwrecks with copper alloyed ship fasteners will have sunk after the 1770s, most likely after the 1790s, most certain during the 19th century.




    Quote Originally Posted by Blak bart View Post
    One thing I have pondered is the use of these copper alloy fasteners in other things besides the construction of the ship. Perhaps these fasteners were used in other objects that were carried as cargo ? Cross contamination is a possibility but to have these fasteners pop up here and there on many of the galleon sites is puzzling.
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  11. #56
    us
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    1492 - 1697 .....
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  12. #57
    ie
    Mr

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    Trough Fasting rivet, also known as clench bolts and forelock bolts, I’m sure there are several other names that could be applied to this type of fasting. That’s the problem with archaeology you have to explain the context in which you are using certain term, the common archaeologist in their own world will usually refer to a through fastening rivet as a ships copper alloy fastener, but the term fastening in general cover ever thing from wooden trunnel to copper nails.
    Put this pdf on the stie it might help some id, fasteners..

    https://www.maarer.com/pdfs.html

  13. #58
    us
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    Wow magoopetr.....that looks like exactly what I was looking for....thank you sir !! Maybe the mods can make it permanent up at the top.....i have only just started in on it and have a few more days of studying but I do believe that this will help others who are looking to learn a little more about the world of ships fasteners. Again I thank you for your response mag.....and that goes for everyone who responded thanks everyone for keeping it civil and polite.....this is what I love about this site....people sharing info and helping others learn !!
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  14. #59
    us
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    Wow this is a good read....im only a little way in and its very interesting and informative. That mhuge spike on page 17 would be a prized treasure for a fastener collector.....functional yet elegant !! I think for many folks who don't live close to the sea, its a simple spike found on a vacation that often spurs the mind to further research into the world of shipwrecks. A small tangible piece of history that can be held and fondled. It makes one wonder who held it and pounded it into a ships timbers.....and.....what ship was it in, how did that ship wreck if it did, was there treasure on board, did people lose there life, was anyone rescued.....and on and on !! Amazing how one little fastener can spur the investigation into the story !! The story behind the spike is what everyone is searching for here on t-net. So for many these spikes and fasteners are as close to a shipwreck as they will ever get !! They become cherished little treasures that bring back memories of some exotic trip or adventure.
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  15. #60
    TRG
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    What about Spanish shipbuilding in the Americas? In Cuba, probably Hispaniola and Vera Cruz?

    "The history of commercial mining in Mexico dates back to the Colonial Period. Because of its use in
    many critical sectors of the economy, copper was a significant resource in New Spain. In a society where
    iron goods were scarce, copper (unalloyed or mixed with tin or zinc to produce bronze or brass) was
    indispensable. It was the most widely employed utilitarian metal in Spanish Colonial times. Its importance
    is manifest in the many ways it was used, from coinage and armaments to innumerable articles of industrial,
    domestic, and artistic use. In its nonmetallic form, it was used to process silver ore. In the eyes of the crown,
    the use of copper for making silver and gold coins and armaments commanded the highest priority followed
    by its use for making utensils and equipment needed in the manufacture of sugar (Barrett, 1987).

    During the next 300 years of Spanish rule, different minerals were extracted from the ground, including copper,
    coal, lead, and iron. Copper was extracted mainly from the Inguaran mines and the surrounding areas, which
    remain today among the major mineral deposits in Mexico. Because of its strategic importance, the Spanish
    crown maintained a monopoly on this mineral resource through the early nineteenth century."

    https://link.springer.com/referencew...-3934-5_9872-1

    Ships that were constructed in Spain but repaired in the Americas might have had copper or bronze fasteners perhaps?
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