Civil War Lifeboat

This 3D model of a lifeboat was made as part of a project to re-create the Battle of Fort McCallister for the Fort McCallister Museum in Georgia. One of my project areas was the creation of the lifeboat of the Union Ironclad, USS Montauk.  

My first reference source was this illustration made shortly after the battle. Unfortunately, it did not contain enough detail for me to model from. In my search, I came across the original 1858 patent of the J. Francis Lifeboat, which was incredibly useful for aligning the various parts of the model. 

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One thing I learned in my research was that the style and configuration of lifeboats during the 1860s were incredibly diverse. I was able to use sketching to narrow my designs down to one amalgamated configuration of the final lifeboat. Using the patent as a base, I surmised that individual crews and ships would augment their lifeboats over time, leading to a unique configuration based on a singular design. 

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The surface of the lifeboat is meant to resemble a freshly painted surface. From my own time in the United States Navy, I often saw sailors painting surfaces to deal with rust. Part of the regular maintenance of metal surfaces is a periodic application of paint. I also wanted to focus on the rivets that held the metal sheeting of the hull in place to create a surface variance. 

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