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“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
Belfast in County Down, Northern Ireland, United Kingdom
 

Features of the Dock

 
 
Features of the Dock Marker image. Click for full size.
By William Fischer, Jr., May 14, 2019
1. Features of the Dock Marker
Inscription.  

Select, turn, listen...

Find out more about how Hamilton Graving
Dock worked. Select a channel and turn the
handle a few times to play each audio track.
1 Keel blocks
2 Caisson
3 Diver

Time spent by ships in the dock
was measured in tides rather than in days.

Typically, ships would spend a maximum of two weeks in the dock, being cleaned, re-painted, fitted with propellers or anchors, or repaired. Rental rates were high and ship-builders preferred to use the dry dock only when it was absolutely necessary.

[Photo caption reads]
Left
Hamilton Dock, c.1902
[Yellow inset captions, left to right, read]
Metal plates on either side of the dock's entrance cover screw mechanisms which were used to open and close the sluice gates of the dock's inlet and outlet culverts.

Basalt tool chutes installed on the edge of the dock provided a quick and safe way to transfer tools from the dockside to the dock floor.

DEPTH INDICATORS
Arabic and Roman numerals are carved into the wall by the caisson to indicate the depth of the water. Can you

Hamilton Dock Photo on Features of the Dock Marker image. Click for full size.
By Unknown, circa 1902
2. Hamilton Dock Photo on Features of the Dock Marker
spot something unusual about these numbers?
[Diagram showing numerals and mock water level]

[Multiple photo panel yellow inset captions, clockwise from top left, read]
Bollards spaced along the dockside allowed ships to be moored securely by attaching ropes to them.

Capstans were used to control the movements of a ship being floated into the dock. By turning levers [cut?] into the capstan's drum, ropes wound around it could be tightened or released.

The stepped sides, known as altar courses, were designed to support the wooden props, or shears, that held the ship in place. Alexandra Graving Dock

Divers had an important role to play in the operation of the dock. Alexandra Graving Dock, c.1900

Keel blocks are the large blocks on which ships rested while in the dock. Hamilton Dock in 1872.
 
Location. 54° 36.387′ N, 5° 54.683′ W. Marker is in Belfast, Northern Ireland, in County Down. Marker is on Queens Road, on the left when traveling north. Touch for map. Part of the Titanic Belfast complex. Marker is at or near this postal address: Hamilton Dock, Belfast, Northern Ireland BT3 9DT, United Kingdom. Touch for directions.
 
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. Operating the [Hamilton] Dock (here, next to this marker); Nomadic in Hamilton Dock (here, next to this marker); Hamilton Dock Stone Construction

Depth Diagram on Features of the Dock Marker image. Click for full size.
By William Fischer, Jr., May 14, 2019
3. Depth Diagram on Features of the Dock Marker
(a few steps from this marker); a different marker also named Hamilton Dock Stone Construction (a few steps from this marker); On Board SS Nomadic (a few steps from this marker); Building the Dock 1864-1867 / Hamilton Dock (a few steps from this marker); Building the Dock 1864-1867 / Belfast's Industrial Growth (a few steps from this marker); Queen's Island Shipyard / Hamilton Dock (a few steps from this marker). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Belfast.
 
Also see . . .  The Hamilton Graving Dock. (Submitted on June 13, 2019, by William Fischer, Jr. of Scranton, Pennsylvania.)
 
Categories. Man-Made FeaturesWaterways & Vessels
 
Multi-Photo Panel on Features of the Dock Marker image. Click for full size.
By William Fischer, Jr., May 14, 2019
4. Multi-Photo Panel on Features of the Dock Marker
View of the Hamilton Graving Dock image. Click for full size.
By William Fischer, Jr., May 14, 2019
5. View of the Hamilton Graving Dock
Caisson and SS Nomadic in dock
 
More. Search the internet for Features of the Dock.
 
Credits. This page was last revised on June 14, 2019. This page originally submitted on June 13, 2019, by William Fischer, Jr. of Scranton, Pennsylvania. This page has been viewed 60 times since then. Photos:   1, 2, 3, 4, 5. submitted on June 13, 2019, by William Fischer, Jr. of Scranton, Pennsylvania.
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