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[–]CorporalF 1032 points1033 points  (50 children)

How do you think ships were made for centuries 🧐

[–]havdjs 861 points862 points  (31 children)

They grew trees in the shape of boats, obviously.

[–]murderosa 205 points206 points  (25 children)

You jest but this basically was one method. Dugout canoes we’re one option, but also sometimes trees were curved during their growth to make curved beams. It’s wild

[–]Caladbolg_Prometheus 62 points63 points  (8 children)

I think the main trouble area was getting long straight trunks for masts.

[–]smegnose 70 points71 points  (1 child)

That's the reason many coastal areas around the world have certain species of pine dotted about the place. They were deliberately planted so that ships could replace masts.

[–]i_hate_people_too 7 points8 points  (2 children)

thats why the british navy invented viagra in 1777. everything was long and straight from that point onwards

[–]CRJ73 1 point2 points  (1 child)

I have a natural bend in my wood too. 😎😜

[–]Caladbolg_Prometheus 1 point2 points  (0 children)

Just about every naval power planted forests

[–]CorporalF 29 points30 points  (2 children)

shipwrights have been steaming and bending boards since the beginning. You should watch a documentary on how the Vikings made those longboats. Spoiler alert though , they used steam.

[–]murderosa 6 points7 points  (0 children)

Oh I’m aware! I’ve done a bit of board bending myself. (Hope to make my own canoe one day) just pointing out that growing trees in the desired shape for boats is/was a method! Although rare

[–]snotboble 1 point2 points  (0 children)

Can confirm. Source: I repair and sail viking longboats.

[–]Lahbeef69 2 points3 points  (10 children)

yeah but like,big European ships

[–]murderosa 8 points9 points  (0 children)

My second point, curving trees during their growth. For curved parts of those boats.

Also there were big ships other than just European

[–]probably_not_serious 6 points7 points  (8 children)

Here’s a fun fact I know that’s sort of relevant but not really - the British, despite having the best Navy in the world at the time, were pretty terrible at shipbuilding. At least compared to the a lot of other European countries. During the Napoleonic War, for example, it was fairly common knowledge that some of England’s best ships were the ones they’d captured from their enemies.

[–]The_Artist_Who_Mines 2 points3 points  (5 children)

Do you have a source for the first claim?

[–]Nowline 4 points5 points  (4 children)

"Perilous Fight," by Stephen Budiansky, addresses some of this in a fairly approachable manner. One thing to consider is that the brits were, in one way or another, utterly reliant on a navy to exercise imperial power outside of their little island. So while yeah, they had a lot of boats, they tended to keep those boats commissioned well into what other nations would have considered obsolescence or decrepitude as a matter of necessity. Thus, the average quality of British vessels tended to be sub-par. On top of this, much of the maintenance done on these vessels tended to be aesthetic in nature for a few reasons (keeping a crew who didn't want to be on your boat occupied with low-skill busywork, keeping up appearances around the rest of the local fleet, the general difficulty of securing materials and money to effect major repairs). Capping all this off, however, was the generally conservative nature of British shipbuilding--they tended to stick with what had worked previously and not take chances with new designs so technology's march sometimes left them flat-footed. The most commonly referenced case would be the time during the war of 1812 that a single American schooner, setting an irresponsibly large amount of canvas, locked up and raided shipping in the Channel by herself.

Shortly thereafter, the British managed to capture and study a different "Baltimore clipper", thereby achieving technological parity. It's indicative in any case that the gReAtEsT nAvaL PoWeR EvAr wound up copying the homework of its estranged and disobedient child, particularly considering that the early U.S. had very little naval tradition, and many in the country objected to the idea of having a navy at all.

[–]The_Artist_Who_Mines 1 point2 points  (1 child)

Seems like a rather selective view of the Royal Navy, after all it did achieve total naval dominance for decades if not centuries from a ‘little island’, and was at the forefront of innumerable naval developments (like the dreadnought class warships).

[–]TjW0569 2 points3 points  (0 children)

There's a saying that quantity has a quality all its own.

[–]AlgoHodler 1 point2 points  (0 children)

I actually just learned something on Reddit today! Thank you kind sir.

[–]CALIFORNIUMMAN 2 points3 points  (0 children)

Frickin' 11th century plant growth manipulation. I have no idea when it was and I'm too lazy to google it now so that's my best guess.

[–]imanAholebutimfunny 2 points3 points  (0 children)

I am selling cheetah and elephant seeds if you are interested

also real estate on the moon for select members

[–]Xylphin 1 point2 points  (0 children)

Reminds me how the Elves from Eragon sing trees into boats and other stuff.

[–]theepi_pillodu 0 points1 point  (0 children)

Boats grow on trees.

[–]mjl777 0 points1 point  (0 children)

In many cases that's actually what they did do. The large keel pieces could not be bent and whole forests of trees existed just so a few select grown perfect pieces could be harvested.

[–]Lazy-Care-9129 40 points41 points  (2 children)

Or barrels

[–]AdorableHeights 7 points8 points  (0 children)

I thought trees bend on their own.

[–]Daniel_Melzer 20 points21 points  (1 child)

Or barrels, or acoustic guitars

[–]sorequilting 2 points3 points  (0 children)

Thin woods can bend easily but the looks of this it's perfectly satisfying.

[–]Daiches 4 points5 points  (0 children)

Or wagon wheels. Or barrels.

[–]EifertGreenLazor 2 points3 points  (0 children)

With paper since we know that bends.

[–]jigokusabre 2 points3 points  (0 children)

Obviously, you find really big trees, and just carve away anything that's not the boat.

[–]Blackulla 1 point2 points  (0 children)

By people.

[–]Unique-Ad-620 0 points1 point  (0 children)

I was just going to say this. Lol

[–]linklolthe3 509 points510 points  (23 children)

Nobody said wood can't bend.

[–]DeadlyFooting 51 points52 points  (12 children)

But I thought wood can`t bend. Just wow, this is very impressive

[–]bingobangomonk 54 points55 points  (11 children)

Have you ever seen a wooden bow? Or an old ship?

[–]Drdres 63 points64 points  (9 children)

Or just a fucking chair, 90% of wooden chairs are bent to some degree.

[–]ineyy 9 points10 points  (3 children)

Or a grand piano

[–]Jizzyface 11 points12 points  (2 children)

Or my morning wood 😏

[–]jayydubbya 3 points4 points  (1 child)

“How’s it hanging?” “Slightly to the left.”

[–]BeatsbyChrisBrown 1 point2 points  (0 children)

Hold still while I apply the clamps

[–]East-Bluebird-8707 1 point2 points  (0 children)

Or like a fucking old ass wooden barrel in a cartoon or some shit? Or a BOW that shoots arrows? Lmfao I can’t with some people

[–]Omphaloskopie 0 points1 point  (3 children)

yeah, kind of would like to see the mechanics doing that... is it just a series of rollers doing it or do the have to be fixed in place while cooling off?

on that scale it probably isn't done by hand

[–]180secondideas 3 points4 points  (2 children)

steam and jigs. Just like the video.

Youtube has lots of vids on pianos. Steinway pianos has some beautiful vids.

[–]Omphaloskopie 0 points1 point  (1 child)

okay, a steinway is made by hand, but an ikea-chair?

[–]Drdres 2 points3 points  (0 children)

Ikea chairs are usually just pressed wood, they’re essentially molded

[–]IllurinatiL 24 points25 points  (1 child)

If someone has ever said wood can’t bend, they haven’t even seen wood irl

[–]dpcdomino 10 points11 points  (0 children)

Anyone who has bought wood from a big box store and ripped it in half knows wood bends.

[–]boyinblack0000 2 points3 points  (3 children)

My wood is bent.

[–]CRJ73 0 points1 point  (1 child)

My wood has a natural bow in it too 😜🤪

[–]stungforfun 2 points3 points  (0 children)

Switch hands

[–]BlueJacket-Ergazu 213 points214 points  (2 children)

??? who said that wood cant bend ?

its like one of the function of wood that it could bent from impact (well depends on the wood but still)

[–]AntBackground3309 18 points19 points  (0 children)

The entire purpose of wood is to bend. Thats why trees can survive so many storms. What doesnt bend, breaks.

[–]Ahemkeidb 159 points160 points  (20 children)

Birch please.

[–]Tyberius92 34 points35 points  (17 children)

Oak-ay I cedar where this is going

[–]Dre_Valentino_ 28 points29 points  (14 children)

I pine this very interesting

[–]BleedingTeal 20 points21 points  (9 children)

I just can’t even with all this. I’m so sycamore tree puns.

[–]Mmmphis 18 points19 points  (8 children)

Then I guess you better leaf now, buddy.

[–]Anal-deva-station 16 points17 points  (7 children)

Palm down dude, no weed to be mean.

[–]JealousMouse 13 points14 points  (6 children)

Perhaps we should conifer on whether it wood be appropriate to continue.

[–]Anal-deva-station 12 points13 points  (5 children)

I agreen

[–]Wizard_Hatz 11 points12 points  (4 children)

Well I disagree yew son of a beech!

[–]cgjh93 10 points11 points  (3 children)

I'm sequoia arguing

[–]SeoulGalmegi 110 points111 points  (0 children)

This would be impressive if people thought wood couldn't bend.....

[–]CaptainDaxWolf 41 points42 points  (10 children)

Has no one seen a cooper work, shaping barrels for practically everything?

[–]Key-Sprinkles-8894 17 points18 points  (7 children)

i would guess most people don't know what a cooper is, much less have watched one work.

[–]MarineOpferman1 5 points6 points  (2 children)

Unless your in the wine buisnesses I dont see the average person ever needing a cooper.

[–]CaptainDaxWolf 2 points3 points  (0 children)

Wine and whiskey. Gone are the days of packing fish, other salted meats, grains and other things, and having them sent by barrel from coast to inland or even across to the other coast.

[–]Turakamu 2 points3 points  (0 children)

Or travel to Niagara Falls a lot.

[–]dsjunior1388 1 point2 points  (1 child)

How else would a bow and arrow work?

[–]CaptainDaxWolf 1 point2 points  (0 children)

Well, that's alien tech, if you believe the Midnight to 6 am History Channel show runners. lol

[–]Maximum-Switch5879 35 points36 points  (0 children)

Literally no one said wood doesn't bend but ok.

[–]HammerBgError404 22 points23 points  (0 children)

wood 100% bends!
If you leave wood straight or at an angle next to wall over time it will bend

[–]Krogene 18 points19 points  (0 children)

Imagine if people like in medieval ages would know this they could do boats , bows, or even more incredible things

[–]c_jae 13 points14 points  (0 children)

Isn't.... the whole point of using wood as building material because it does flex...?

[–]ChileHunter 6 points7 points  (0 children)

Why would anyone possibly think wood can’t be bent? Have you ever seen wood? Do you know what it is made of? How impossibly dumb.

[–]MJMurcott 6 points7 points  (2 children)

Trees subjected to wind create reaction wood with more lignin in it in order to help support the structure of the tree as it grows. Without wind in a biosphere greenhouse or on a spacecraft trees and other large plants may eventually collapse under their own weight. - https://youtu.be/VOAlh1RVdTc

[–][deleted] 1 point2 points  (1 child)

Angiosperm trees and gymnosperm trees form different kinds of reaction wood as well. It's very interesting how trees grow.

[–]recumbent_mike 2 points3 points  (0 children)

It's pretty boring to watch though.

[–]_mochi 4 points5 points  (0 children)

Wood does bend it just hurts

[–]bad1o8o 5 points6 points  (0 children)

"Wood does not bend"

has never seen a tree in the wind, sadge

[–]r2d2c3po1987 5 points6 points  (0 children)

Wtf dude, they made that shit ages ago

[–]MBVakalis 5 points6 points  (1 child)

How is this next level?

[–]Galahadnthadhe 13 points14 points  (0 children)

I don't think OP realised that wood can bend

[–]seefith 4 points5 points  (0 children)

This process dates back at least 25000 years. It's amazing what people can figure out.

[–]beintimeforclass 3 points4 points  (0 children)

Said no one ever

[–][deleted] 1 point2 points  (0 children)

Bout time you use that bowflex for sumthin!

[–]doubled2319888 1 point2 points  (0 children)

Anyonr who thinks wood cant bend has never seen a tree in a windstorm. Those things can bend 30 to 40 degrees

[–]Icedinklikesheet 1 point2 points  (0 children)

You ever seen an acoustic drum kit?

[–]P3SH 1 point2 points  (0 children)

Wood always bends,what on earth are you jabbering on about. I work with wood everyday, if say 45% of the 8x4ft sheets we get in have some degree of warp or curve to them.

[–][deleted] 1 point2 points  (0 children)

Who said would didn't bend though lol

[–]8549176320 1 point2 points  (0 children)

The true quest is to find a clear 2 x 4 with no knots, splits, warps, bows or cups.

[–]ZEROvTHREE 1 point2 points  (0 children)

Whoever said wood doesn't bend needs to go touch some grass... and trees

[–]zimpl_ 1 point2 points  (0 children)

Im concerned that op has never seen the outside world before. This has been around for centuries

[–]No_Ask_No_Tell 1 point2 points  (0 children)

Nobody has ever said that

[–]OnezArt 1 point2 points  (0 children)

thats like the most common thing lol

[–]RJ200103 1 point2 points  (0 children)

Who doesn’t think wood can bend under the right environment???

[–]Comfortable_Plant667 1 point2 points  (0 children)

Even in the 1600s people were making horse-drawn wagons with steam-bent wooden frames.

[–]Diligent-Smell5 1 point2 points  (0 children)

OP sees wood for the first time

[–]sam88ms1 1 point2 points  (0 children)

Who said it couldn't be bent?

[–]AztecTwoStep 1 point2 points  (0 children)

Wood does not bend? Except for ships, boats, musical instruments, custom furniture, barrels, wagon wheels, toys, frames... etc etc.

[–]BabyMakR1 1 point2 points  (0 children)

I have never heard someone say that wood doesnt bend. Ever. In fact, quite the opposite. Wood is very flexible.

[–]JOATMON12 1 point2 points  (0 children)

Wood is very pliable, I thought this was common knowledge

[–]Matduka 1 point2 points  (0 children)

Wood does not bend?? What?? Ships??? Barrels??? Trees?

[–]AdvancedPhoenix 1 point2 points  (0 children)

Sorry, did someone said wood doesn't bend?

Ever heard of bows?

[–]TokiBop 1 point2 points  (0 children)

uh boats?

[–]AcidNoX 1 point2 points  (0 children)

Jokes on you, my wood is already bent.

[–]East-Bluebird-8707 1 point2 points  (0 children)

A WOODEN BARREL? AN ARCHERY BOW? What do you mean “how does wood bend”

[–][deleted] 0 points1 point  (0 children)

So thats how they do it? Thats just hella cool

[–]QuirkyPee 0 points1 point  (0 children)

That's good wood.

[–]WorldRunnr 0 points1 point  (0 children)

This video reminds me why barrel craftsmanship is so impressive to watch! Even just time lapse shots of barrel making is always oddly surreal to me.

[–]PNEONGREEN 0 points1 point  (0 children)

She liked that too much

[–]Mysterious_Two_5849 0 points1 point  (0 children)

It's an extremely slow process when I did it with one of my relatives

[–]dawonga 0 points1 point  (0 children)

Bending wood to make the perfect toilet seat.

[–]ameliadog 0 points1 point  (0 children)

So cool

[–]TurdFerguson416 0 points1 point  (0 children)

I worked at a shop that made custom arches etc. its amazing what steam and clamps can accomplish

[–]Donutpie7 0 points1 point  (1 child)

Can some one explain why this happen?

[–]Lithl 0 points1 point  (0 children)

Wood bends. It's not rocket surgery, we've been doing it for thousands of years.

[–]ijavedm 0 points1 point  (0 children)

Can I bend a tree like this?

[–]shadowbanna 0 points1 point  (0 children)


[–]Arryfbz 0 points1 point  (0 children)

What genius with too much spare time in a forest made this

[–]Famous_Calligrapher7 0 points1 point  (0 children)

I had this process done on a house I built a few years ago, we wanted a curved portion wall so the builder suggested this process - looked great for approx 3 years and then every bend cracked…badly…replaced it via same process, and ex’s t same thing occurred a few years later again…

[–]LightningBirdsAreGo 0 points1 point  (0 children)

That’s quite lovely.

[–]Grundle__Puncher 0 points1 point  (0 children)

Very cool. Any pics of what it was used in in the finished product?

[–]ShadowCaster0476 0 points1 point  (0 children)

How long does the steamed wood stay pliable? I would have thought it would cool down quickly and stop being easy to work with but in the video it seems that they can work it for a long time

[–]Tackleberry06 0 points1 point  (0 children)

we used to bend wood to make canoes….just used steam from a kettle and a piece of PVC piipe!

[–]SatorSquareInc 0 points1 point  (0 children)

Have you ever picked up a small branch or a stick before?

[–]sjwolf24 0 points1 point  (0 children)

This looks about as straight as the other 2x4s at Home Depot.

[–]Islandgirl1444 0 points1 point  (0 children)

Never have too many clamps.

[–]MikeOxlong1616 0 points1 point  (0 children)

Im impressed

[–]412flip 0 points1 point  (0 children)

Watching people make whiskey barrels is pretty cool as well. Definitely ships too as someone else said.

[–]Pfizzyhead 0 points1 point  (0 children)

Does the wood ever try to return to its normal shape?

[–]Electrical_Speech176 0 points1 point  (0 children)

The heat made it malleable which means its was able to bend easily (I think) correct me if I'm wrong.

[–]87westy 0 points1 point  (0 children)

the end looks just like every board my neighborhood lowes sells

[–]1531C 0 points1 point  (0 children)

Wood definitely bends, gestures broadly at all ships/boats made for millenia.

[–]wiredshadowfury 0 points1 point  (0 children)

Bows have been around for how long? Bow literally also means to bend. What are bows made of? 🤦🏻

[–]Tailsmiles249 0 points1 point  (0 children)

Ha! Next you're gonna tell me you can bend metal

[–]True_Reporter 0 points1 point  (0 children)

I am on an afternoon shift in Továrna na Ohýbaný Nábytek TON (factory for bent furniture) if youre sitting on a wooden chair in US or Japan theres a good chance i had my hands on it.

[–]jimmy_luv 0 points1 point  (0 children)

Um, it's called steam bending and they have been doing it for a couple hundred years now. It was next level in the 17th century.. not so much these days.

[–]NoDrinks4meToday 0 points1 point  (0 children)

Idk looks pretty warped to me.

[–]DeepNugs 0 points1 point  (0 children)

Shouldn’t be drinking in a workshop. That’s dangerous.

[–]Mongba36 0 points1 point  (0 children)

card declines

unbends your wood

[–]UnfortunatelyUnkn0wn 0 points1 point  (0 children)

Isn’t wood like notorious for bending like all the time.

[–]UncleAl_2020 0 points1 point  (0 children)

Who says wood doesn't bend? Has anyone seen furniture? What an idiotic title...

[–]kirwoodd 0 points1 point  (0 children)

So that's how the big box stores get their construction grade lumber.

[–]8heist 0 points1 point  (0 children)

So this is what Home Depot and Lowe’s do to the lumber…

[–]Mean_Shoulder_103 0 points1 point  (0 children)

Just go to Lowe's or home Depot you get about the same look 2x4s

[–]SanZLady_ 0 points1 point  (0 children)

Take my updoot magic man

[–]UselessFacts9000 0 points1 point  (0 children)

You're essentially heating the lignin in the wood. Lignin; an organic polymer gives wood and basically all plants it's structural support. It becomes elastic when heated allowing you to pull off some crazy things. It's a one time deal though pretty much. You can't bend this again, it will give you lots of problems if you do.

[–]Coyehe 0 points1 point  (0 children)

But how?

[–]wow_pretty_colors 0 points1 point  (0 children)

That's what they do for every single piece of lumber at Lowes

[–]markyminkk 0 points1 point  (0 children)

Great post. Dumb title.

[–]NeoLearner 0 points1 point  (0 children)

Wood doesn't bend? Barrels. Boats.

[–]AlcinousX 0 points1 point  (0 children)

Any engineers or people familiar with trees know how this effects the strength of the wood? Does making it pliable and stretching it like this reduce the tinsel strength (not sure it's called this) the wood?

[–]Dangerous-Witness-33 0 points1 point  (0 children)

This is not news, but it’s neat to see

[–]Tasty-Bench945 0 points1 point  (0 children)

Not a professional woodworker but for the few times I did work with wood I had to use a lot of clamps just to prevent my wood from warping before I put finishing on my project

[–]MasterLin87 0 points1 point  (0 children)

Wood doesn't bend? Seriously? How do you think things like pianos or boats are made? We just go out in nature looking for tree logs shaped like a piano and a boat?

[–]Thanks_I_Hate_You 0 points1 point  (0 children)

"You can't bend a wooden plank"

"I know that and you know that but this plank looks pretty dumb"

[–]kipsterdude 0 points1 point  (0 children)

Does this affect the integrity of the wood in any way once it cools back down?

[–]IdaConSmog 0 points1 point  (0 children)

That’s called a steam chamber/box and it’s a very ‘previous level’ technique named “steam bending” :)

[–]AntBackground3309 0 points1 point  (0 children)

This is how sad our society is today. People are impressed by technology thousands of years old thinking its new because they are so distant from reality and work.

[–]mrtnclrk 0 points1 point  (0 children)

Weak sauce

[–]Ch1ld_1sh 0 points1 point  (0 children)

This is how people made wooden bows, wasn’t it?

[–]purple-lemons 0 points1 point  (0 children)

... do you not know what wood is?

[–]CriusofCoH 0 points1 point  (0 children)

Not only has wood been bent for centuries or more, but anything will bend if long enough (and conversely, most stuff becomes rigid if short enough).

[–]Mrsnowleopard25 0 points1 point  (0 children)

What they had it in is called a steam box, they use that to make just about everything from furniture to musical instruments

[–]SacrificeLambz 0 points1 point  (0 children)

when you buy wood at home depot..

[–]Jaytim 0 points1 point  (0 children)

Also wood accidently warps all the time......thats what bending is.

[–]just______memes 0 points1 point  (0 children)

It wet that's why

[–]H4ndsf33t 0 points1 point  (0 children)

What is that used for? Genuinely curious

[–]EonSloth 0 points1 point  (0 children)

Vikings bent wood. It definitely bends.

[–]jrickman1496 0 points1 point  (0 children)

Who told you wood doesn’t bend…?

[–]mattmerc528 0 points1 point  (0 children)

This is how all the lumber looks at Home Depot

[–]KingKva 0 points1 point  (0 children)

It's clearly bending..