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Barque La Demoiselle (Barque des Enfants) & L'Aurore

by H.G. Rogers

These are the final two barque du Leman that I had left to make.  In reality, both of these boats are reconstructions of boats that once frequented the lake region, transporting cargo such as wood, rocks, and barrels of food goods.  Also included in the scene is L'ile de Peilz, a tiny island on lake Geneva, where exists one beautiful tree.  The cormorants use this tree as their Winter nesting grounds, turning it white from what they leave behind.

La Demoiselle in Real Life:

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Here is La Demoiselle in real life.  I caught her just leaving the port and took advantage of the moment to take a few images to help with the building of the ship in bottle. 
Check out that bow and how it turns upward to sky as well as the candy cane spirals on the mast.  She certainly is unique!

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The Hulls:

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La Demoiselle (the larger to the left, above) is carved in two halves to fit through the neck of the bottle.  L'Aurore passes through the neck, but will have a different system to stand the rig since she has no shrouds, fore, or backstays.

 

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Demoiselle:

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 I decided to build La Demoiselle as she would have looked when boats like her existed and were used on the Lake.  Therefore, I removed the large cabin as well as the generator box, both being modern day comforts.
In the photo to the left you can see how the port side shrouds and jib sheet run through pins instead of being tied off.  This is because she will be inserted in two halves, afterwhich the shrouds will be pulled tight, glued, and cut off inside the bottle.

On deck, she is complete with her hatches, mast platforms, shroud turnbuckles and more.  Her stern is hand lettered with the name which can be read.  All her rigging lines exist and even the antenna's chain halyard is indicated with black thread.  On the tips are her mast are the Swiss flag and the canton (State) of Vaud's flag.

L'Aurore:

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L'Auore is actually a cochere, which means she is an open boat with a flat bottom.  Unlike the large barques she is not as stable and heels more under sail. 
Her overall construction was rather simple because she has practically no standing rigging lines.  She is flying the Flags of St. Gingolph which is a town on Lake Geneva in which the border runs down the middle.  The red represents Switzerland and the blue, France.

 

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L'ile de Peilz:

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There is no exaggeration in the tree's color.  If you see it in real life during the Winter months she appears and is completely white.  Cormorants use the tree as the winter nesting ground leaving behind a white coating, which seems to not damage the tree.  Though, odd to think, it is a pretty sight....from a distance.
To the left you can see the walls constructed around the island to protect it. This is made of air drying clay upon which, tiny peddles are glued.


Going in the Bottle:

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After the putty rested in the bottle for a significant length of time to air out, all pieces are ready to go in the bottle. The scene is setup before the bottle as it will be displayed once inside.

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Here, you can see La Demoiselle in two halves with her shrouds stretched out. The lines have to be extra long, which leads to tangles, but overall allows the two half build to be possible. 

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The half with the rigging and sails attached goes in first.  This makes the attaching of the second half easier to deal with. 
To the left, you can see the first half of the barque being inserted into the bottle, while its shroud lines are stretched out to the other half sitting on the table.  The second half is then inserted while I continously pull out the shroud lines to avoid tangles and ultimatley pulling the two pieces together on their own.
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Demoiselle is in, glued together with white glue, and epoxied into her place in the sea of putty.  You can see all the shroud lines pulled tight and taped on the outside of the bottle.  These are glued at the turnbuckles and the excess cut off with a razor blade.

 

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The tree was the hardest thing to insert into the bottle.  Above you can see it all squished up to pass throught the neck.  Afterwards, there was a lot of work inside the bottle unfolding the limbs and generally straightening it out.  Notice the island is already in position and epoxied to the sea.

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To the right you can see how I've pulled the mast lines tight by jamming the boat at the bottle neck.  After securing the mast, the lines were cut and final adjustments to the rig were made once the boat itself was glued into position in the sea.

 

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Finally L'Aurore is ready to go in the bottle.  Her rig is different.  The masts will literally be stepped into two small holes in the deck and cockpit.  Attached to the bottom of the mast is a string, which once inserted into the bottle I can pull, standing the masts upright, and glue to the bottom of the ship

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Compete!

Final details included the addition of cormorants to the tree and flying just behind it.  I hope you have enjoyed looking through this project!
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