Terminology from the Age of Sail

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Search result for definition: frame
Frame: The timber or rib of a ship running from the keel to the side rail. The frames form the shape of the hull.
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ship's frame
Frame-first Construction: A method of construction in which the internal framework, or skeleton, of a ship's hull is constructed first, with the hull planking being attached afterward.

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Several different methods of building the frame or hull were used according to local practice and time-period.

A semi-frame-first method, as shown below, would consist of building the keel and attaching a bow- and stern-frame first, then lay and shape the bottom up to the bilge as the shipwright saw fit, including the planking. After this was completed the remaining frames and sides would follow.

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More 'progressive' builders would build the entire framework before any planking. Several combinations of the two were also used.

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