Thursday, October 20, 2011

Exchange Student Lofting

A German exchange student, Jonathan Schuetze, came to the MFS project this fall and helped with the lofting.  This blog was written by him.  Enjoy!

My name is Jonathan Schuetze,
I live in Germany in a village near Munich.
I attend a private school; it’s called Freie Schule Glonntal.
You can see something under: www.Freie Schule
I will take my final exam in 2012.

In my free time I play basketball with my friends and have done martial arts for one year. But sometimes I also work on the weekends on events. I set up chairs, tables and bars, etc.. It‘s very exhausting because sometimes I work 40 hours in two days!   

I also play guitar; I learned it by myself 1 1/2 years ago. I started songwriting 6 weeks after beginning guitar.  I also play two wind instruments. I started with a wind instrument called Tenorhorn 8 years ago; two years ago I started playing Trombone, too. I’ve been in a brass band since I started playing. We play music by Bryan Adams or “The Lion Sleeps Tonight”, waltzes and music from the Oktoberfest, too.  This is traditional Bavarian music that Americans call “Oompah” happy music.  I went with the brass band to Lisbon, Portugal to play there. It was so great; the residents were enthusiastic and the atmosphere was incredible!

But now, something about my visit here in the USA in Phippsburg, ME.

My English teacher’s family lives in Phippsburg.
Jonathan Emerson asked me whether I wanted to stay with his family at Edgewater Farm to learn English. I said, “Yes!  Why not!?!”  and so I left Germany on the 13th of September and bussed up to Bath from Boston.  He also told me about a big project in Bath (Maine’s First Ship).  He said I could help them in various ways.
So, here I am!

Maine’s First Ship, the pinnace, Virginia.  The Preparation:
Rob Stevens and Will West are doing the preparation of the ship; it’s called “Lofting.”   Lofting!?!  But, what does that mean really?

Here is a small summary of what I found on the internet:
 “Lofting is the process of drawing the hull lines full size from the designer’s scale drawings. The intersections of the contours of various horizontal and vertical sections are measured from an imaginary “base line” using an architect’s scale. These junctions are then laid out, point by point, in their full size. Because it is difficult to take accurate dimensions from a small drawing, it is necessary to adjust these lines to assure that they are “fair.” A listing of these points is called a table of offsets. It takes a lot of space to loft. This, along with the difficulty, makes it a daunting task and a real drag to those
builders who just want to get at the “wood.” All GLEN-L designs have full size lofting required.”  (
For example this piece of the ship is called a” stem”.  It is connected to the keel and it forms the bow from a boat.

Each part has lines on the top of it, which have to agree with the lines on the floor!

The stem is constructed from four different forms.

But before the 4 forms get fixed, they are painted red on the side where a special glue is applied.
The special glue, called “bedding” is a mix from three different substances - they are all natural and they were used 400 years ago!
They are: pine tar, horse hair and cow manure.

After painting and bedding, the forms get bolted so that they can’t move and it gives the stem more strength!


  1. It was great to work with you, Johnie! Good luck with your schooling, and come back any time.


  2. I watched this page so many times but I've never seen the comment :(
    I think the work is now finished or?
    It was greate to work with you too :D and it was a very greate time there!
    I would send you something but I got no e-Mail of you so I am sorry :)
    maby you will send me something:
    greatings to all! :)