Viking entering New York Harbor

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The Viking Ship
The Viking ship exhibit is closed for the winter.

Years of inadequate support had caused the Viking's structure to sag.
... stabilization of the ship was the top priority...

National Trust for Historic Preservation’s Midwest Office

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Ongoing Stabilization Project

In the years since the initial stabilization done by Robert Fink of Renaissance Yachts and a team from Methods & Materials in 2008, the Viking ship has endured the heat of the summer months and the below-freezing temperatures of winter. The outdoor environment and inadequate support has been detrimental to the ship.

Concerned, in 2013 the FOVS brought Gunnar Eldjarn, of Tromso, one of Norway's preeminent Viking ship builders, to evaluate the condition of Viking and give us his advice on how to preserve the ship.


Gunnar Eldjarn

Mr. Eldjarn produced a report listing the measures we must take to better support the Viking ship. He has recommended that many more supports be placed under the keel and hull, and place it in a climate-controlled environment as soon as possible.

In October, 2014, that work was begun. Ten additional steel crossbeams were welded onto the steel cradle to better support the keel of the Viking ship. FOVS committee members made all the arrangements, FOVS volunteers made the preparations, and professionals from Methods & Materials did the welding. The FOVS hopes to bring Mr. Eldjarn back to Geneva in 2015 to supervise the installation of the necessary hull supports.

We thank all those who have generously donated the funds that are making this stabilization project possible.

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The 2008 Stabilization

During two weeks in June 2008, Robert Fink of Renaissance Yachts and a team from Methods and Materials stabilized the Viking ship. A prior assessment had been made in November 2007. MORE...

Since being moved from Lincoln Park in 1994, the Viking had been inadequately supported and poorly protected from the weather. Viking sagged and twisted out of shape.

shelter extension First, the shelter was extended eight feet and rigid walls were installed at each end to prevent the entry of bad weather.

worksite Tools of every size and sort were brought to the site. Extra electrical amperage was provided to power saws and grinders.

After first placing protective foam between the newer wood and the old, the preservationists carefully positioned long boards inside the Viking, . Workmen gingerly walked along these boards while all work was being done.

support cables

First came the thorough vacuuming. Then came the placement of the supports, both inside and outside. Working in conjunction with the adjustable supports welded to the outside and the cables, with turnbuckles, on the inside, gradually Viking was brought back to her original shape. VIDEO

support at stern
Viking's stern end was twisted out of true alignment. The preservationists erected a tripod directly to the steel "cradle" and used strategically placed clamps and wire cables to bring the sternpost back into "true". Copies of the original blueprints were used as a guide while "pulling" and "pushing" the Viking back into her original shape.

We thank American Express and the National Trust for Historic Preservation for making this stabilization project possible.

Bruce Andresen Bruce measured and made markings where the crossbeam supports were to be attached

Jeff Yonkus Jeff Yonkus trimmed the crossbeam supports to the exact lengths

Peter Kenar Peter squeezed under the ship to weld the crossbeams in place

keel at bow Viking's keel is now supported on the crossbeams.


new shelter "end" new ends on the shelter - in 2008

grinding
fabricating supports


measuring
measuring the placement


welding supports are welded to the cradle

adjustable outboart support a completed support

Liz inspects examining a support

knee clamps
clamps bring the knees together

of the trade more tools of the trade

photos: P. & L. Straw

PROCESS

ASSESSMENT

$52,000 AWARD

STABILIZATION

RESCUE A RIVET

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