|Isambard Kingdom Brunel|
|Ships:||Sailing ( 1)|
|Complete:||Vasco Núñez de Balboa|
Isambard Kingdom Brunel FRS (9 April 1806 – 15 September 1859), was an English mechanical and civil engineer who is considered "one of the most ingenious and prolific figures in engineering history", "one of the 19th-century engineering giants", and "one of the greatest figures of the Industrial Revolution, [who] changed the face of the English landscape with his groundbreaking designs and ingenious constructions". Brunel built dockyards, the Great Western Railway, a series of steamships including the first propeller-driven transatlantic steamship (SS Great Britain), and numerous important bridges and tunnels. His designs revolutionised public transport and modern engineering. (Source: Wikipedia)
To read more about Isambard's journey in Seaport, check his storylines.
|SS Great Britain|| |
|Type:||Steamship ( 2)|
|1||Hello there, captain|
Interested in cooperating on a big, revolutionary project? I could use a reliable partner. Show me the quality and speed of your ships by transporting some large cargo.
I see you are a master of an impressive fleet and your skills in commanding it are not bad either. If you are interested, we can get down to business. An investment for the start will be necessary.
|3||Meeting the crew|
I would also like to meet your crew. Good sailors are an important part of the sailing business. Don't worry, I will just ask them a few questions, it will be no interrogation.
Now let me explain what you are getting into. I have finished a steam railway across Britain not long ago. My dream is to extend the trading route across the Atlantic with a steamship service.
I plan to build a large steamship that would be able to cross the Atlantic only with the power of steam. This has never been done before. Come, I will tell you more while we eat some fish and chips.
The ship will be built mainly from wood. This will be the longest ship ever built, so we will need a lot of material. But don't worry, we will start small with the outer structure.
My railway is called Great Western and this will also be the name for this steamship. Let's have a drink on the good start of the works.
|8||My first ship|
I am a civil engineer and a mechanic. I have worked on tunnels and bridges before, but this is my first ship. Your experience will be invaluable on this project, captain.
Your sailors can help with the building process too. Their insight can improve the work of the men who will sail this ship. It should be possible to operate it with just a small crew.
However, sailors are no shipbuilders. We will need to hire some professionals for this. We need capable men for the hard work and I will oversee the building of the ship.
The hull of the ship is of wood but we will build iron reinforcements to maintain the keel's strength. This ship will be enormous and so must be constructed accordingly.
The reinforcements are done, but we will need more wood for the hull. We have barely finished half of it. I hope you are not tired yet. There is still a lot of work to be done.
Let's take a break today. I don't want to impose but I would like to eat some dinner on your ship. My wife is with her family and I am not a good cook. I will bring some fine wine and cigars instead.
|14||Drinking too much|
We have drunk almost all of the wine I had at home. My wife will be furious when she finds out. She doesn't like me drinking too much. I should find some wine to replace what we have consumed.
Back to work. We need to build four masts. The ship will be propelled by steam but in the case of need, she will have sails too. Call your sailors to help raise the pylons.
While the sailors have been transporting the beams for the masts they destroyed the statue on the square. We need to fix this. I don't want the police to find out.
|17||Stock up on fuel|
Everyone is afraid that there won't be enough free space for the goods when we take fuel for the whole voyage across the ocean. I will prove them wrong. But first we will need to buy a lot of coal.
|18||Power of steam|
The ship is looking good. Now to the essential part - the steam engine. The design is ready, let's just get the materials and let the mechanics do their job.
A fire has broken out by the steam engine! Quickly get some barrels with water before the fire spreads out. We can't let our work go to waste.
The ship is saved. But I have suffered some burns while trying to put out the fire. I won't be able to attend the maiden voyage. Will you take my place on the ship?
You will sail from Bristol to New York. Take your sailors with you. I don't know who could manage it better than your crew. Show them what a great ship we have built!
You have missed the chance to be the first to cross the Atlantic by steam power alone by a few days. Still, I think this project was a success. This deserves a toast!
Great Western is ready for her first commercial voyage. I have received a request for a shipment of marble to New York. We have no marble here, but you can surely get some.
|24||No time to rest|
I already have a new project in mind. I like working with you and I promise this business will be worth it, just like before. So join me, my friend. Just a small investment and we can start.
We are going to build a sister ship for our Great Western. She is so wonderful that we need more of her kind. But this time we will build a steamship completely out of iron.
Of course, we will need some wood. I still want masts for sails on the ship in case we run out of fuel. As for the name, I am thinking Great Britain might suit her.
This ship will be even larger than our first steamship. It would take years to build it with the workers we have. We will need some help of your sailors too.
The work is coming along nicely. Your sailors have turned out to be pretty good shipbuilders too. I think they deserve some good food today.
We can even let them have a bit of wine today. They can take a day off tomorrow. But after that, it's hard work until the ship is finished.
The building of this ship is much more expensive than I expected. But I am sure in the end it will be worth it and we will earn much more than we have invested.
I am researching a new type of propulsion for the ship. A propeller is more efficient than a paddle wheel. There are only a few ships using it now, but I think this is the propulsion of the future.
My wife wants to have children and the house where we live now is quite small. I want to build a Manor in the countryside for us. Will you help me with this personal project too?
The manor should be surrounded by a large park full of trees. My wife loves the green of the leaves. Can you get some oaks and maples?
I am sorry to keep you away from the steamship project. I am just going to test the steam engine. We will have men with buckets of water at the ready. No surprise fire this time.
No fire broke out. But the buckets of water gave me an idea. We can make a large aquarium on the ship. It would be a nice decoration. I have already a large glass tank, now we need the fish.
|36||Name of the ship|
I have named the ship Great Britain. We only need to buy some equipment and she will be ready for her maiden voyage. This time I am going along too.
|37||We are the first|
We can set off on the maiden voyage. This will be the first iron hulled propeller-driven ship to cross the Atlantic Ocean. We are going down in history. This deserves a drink, I think.
|38||Troubles on the way|
We are going too slow and the weather seems to be against us. The crashing waves have already broken off two of the propeller blades. I will have to fix this once we get to New York.
A mast has broken away too. This storm is something I did not predict. But the Great Britain will endure, I am sure. Let's hope we will get to New York soon without any more damage.
|40||In New York|
The dockmaster promised to send us some guys to help with the repairs. He just wants some of the marble we delivered previously in return. The price for it is going up in the US.
The repairs are finished and we are ready to return back to England. Let's take more sailors aboard. Hopefully, we can avoid any more accidents on the way back.
|42||Back in Bristol|
Another successful project is finished. Take some rest, captain. I am sure I will need your help soon again. Don't forget to thank your sailors for the good work. Treat them to dinner in my name.
|43||Biggest of them all|
I promised you another job, well, here it is. I have started to work on a design of a steamship that could sail to Australia and back without refueling. It will have to be enormous.
I am still not completely sure if it would be possible to build such a titan. I must go talk it over with my friend who is a naval architect. You can come too, just bring a bottle of wine.
Once again, the main material will be iron. But this Great Babe will be more than twice the size of our last ship Great Britain. I hope your fleet can deliver all we will need.
The ship will have four decks and six masts. Sails will be only an auxiliary power source. The main power will come from five steam engines.
|47||Testing the capacity|
She will be able to carry the fuel needed for a voyage from London to Sydney and back and still carry 4000 passengers. We will have to substitute the passengers with some cargo first, to test it.
Such a large ship will need not only a propeller but four paddle wheels as well. They are already constructed we just need to get the men to install them on the hull.
The cost of the five steam engines is higher than we have expected. But we need them all to power this large ship. We will have to get the money from somewhere.
I have thought about the name for the Great Babe. How about Leviathan? Now to more pressing matters. I heard there are problems with the food rations for the workers. Can you do something about it?
|51||More iron needed|
All five engines need a funnel so we will have five of them too. It's time to start working on them. We will need a delivery of that quality iron you have shipped to us before.
|52||Ship for all|
The main structure is already done. We can concentrate on the furnishing of the inner areas. I have designed her as a luxurious ship, but there will be quarters for the less wealthy too.
The ship is ready to be christened. We will need a bottle of wine to break against the hull. Bring more of the bottles, I am sure we will have a use for them. I am still not sure which name to choose.
I have planned the launching a week from now. The tide should be high and it will help us get the ship into the water. But we will still need some equipment to haul her into the water.
|55||On the third try|
It took three attempts to get the ship into the water. But she is afloat at last. Now we can plan the maiden voyage. Are your sailors willing to help us with that again?
|56||Ready to go|
The first voyage won't be long but some food will be needed. Apart from that, we are ready to go. We have enough coal to start this maiden voyage.
We have hardly left the docks and one engine exploded. It blew off the first funnel and killed two men. We will have to pay something to their families. This should not have happened.
|58||Fix the funnel|
It was not a design mistake, just the steam exhaust remained closed and this caused overheating of the engine. We will have to fix the engine and funnel before the ship can sail again.
There is still some damage to the main deck and the inner areas around the engine. This should not take long to fix. We have already scheduled the first commercial voyage.
|60||Good work, captain|
Great Eastern is on its way to Portland. There is not enough trade with Australia to use it on the Eastern run. Nevertheless, our work here is done. Time to sit down and have a drink.