Questions tagged [ships]

For questions relating to water-based vessels. Ships in space should use the spaceship tag.

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9
votes
12answers
3k views

What are some mechanical ways to help propel a ship through a canal?

There is as a system of canals that connects a country, these canals are about 10 meters wide 15 meters deep. I am designing a ship that was built specifically to travel the canals. Its main purpose ...
5
votes
5answers
862 views

How does material-magic change pre-industrial warship-building?

My magical civilizations have a unique type of magic, material magic. This magic allows them to improve strength and hardness of wood. As an example: with a cannonball, the magically treated wood ...
4
votes
3answers
213 views

Sea-monster resistant sailing ship design

The Setting: The world is over 99% water with only very small bastions of solid land or ice covered land. The humans who live on this world are very capable swimmers and divers who can hold their ...
0
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6answers
430 views

Designing a safe way to share location of a secret ship

There is a secret ship and it is used by pirates as a recharging point. It has a nuclear reactor as a power source and other ships are using electricity. Let's assume in this world stealth technology ...
1
vote
6answers
2k views

Naval cannons vs ships made of magic wood

In my magical world, for reasons magical, metals such as iron have never gotten used, and even use of bronze is scarce. On the other hand, magic allowed for refinement of wood, similar to the ...
5
votes
7answers
196 views

Cannonless ship of the line - could I have ship of line with magic catapults/balistae?

I am facing a conundrum. You see, my world has magic, but this magic is very restricted and has great limitations. As consequence of these limitations, they never got into metalwork, developing no ...
1
vote
4answers
198 views

Age of Sail warships with magic flamethrowers

So, you are a powerful empire, where most of the army consists of magically self-enhanced warriors, who can for a limited but not short amount of time double(regular soldiers) to triple(elite soldiers)...
8
votes
8answers
2k views

What would be the best propulsion system for this aircraft carrier?

So, I was watching a funny movie about undead pirates when the realization hit me, I never once tried to create naval superiority for my Mary Sue. Well, guess I just do it now. Titanic 2: (n)Ice to ...
76
votes
16answers
13k views

I'm on the Titanic, what should I do to survive? [closed]

I time traveled to the date of April 14th, 1912 with my time machine. It’s evening, 6:00 PM to be exact and my location is the deck of the ship Titanic. We all know what is going to happen not too ...
2
votes
2answers
144 views

Would navigation work if the magnetic poles were located at the equator?

Let's say the magnetic North Pole is and has been located around 0, 0 (off the coast of Africa) for all of human history, and the magnetic South Pole 180 degrees to the east/west. Maybe the Earth's ...
3
votes
1answer
122 views

How to design a ship class around single nuclear reactor and single shipyard?

Situation: modern tech equivalent sparsely populated planet very limited amount of fossil fuels, but sufficient amount of nuclear (plus willingness to use it) Consequences: designing single nuclear ...
1
vote
5answers
162 views

A torpedo or bomb to kill everyone inside the ship or in general vicinity of the battle

I was thinking of chlorine gas bombs/rockets or cyanide torpedoes to kill everyone inside a sinking ship or on the general vicinity of the battle to insure that no one survives... The only objective ...
6
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2answers
385 views

Can one person do nearly everything to sail a 25 meter cog for a few hundred miles if that person is a tireless being?

In my fantasy world I have a humanoid species that can work pretty much non-stop. Assuming he has enough energy, can one of these creatures do most of the necessary things on a 25 meter long cog to ...
15
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11answers
4k views

How might boat designs change in order to allow them to be pulled by dragons?

So in my book, the majority of my society's medieval-era navy is pulled by at least one adult dragon. Adult dragons are huge; their heads alone are about the size of a medium-sized car. How might ...
3
votes
2answers
179 views

How high can a Victorian-era kite sail be flown?

A big problem with Steampunk airships is how to propel them. Steam engines tend to be too heavy to be useful. And sails cannot be used, because unlike sea-going ships, airships are in contact with ...
2
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4answers
160 views

Largest sailing vessel manned by 2 people [closed]

I am currently running a D&D campaign and am entering an area that doesn't have many set rules and I'd like a reality check. I want to give them a vessel around the size of the ones from Pirates ...
9
votes
3answers
344 views

What's the crew composition of any modern small attack submarine sub?

I'm trying to create a realistic composition of a mildly futuristic diesel attack submarine with API based on a Stirling radioisotope generator. The idea is that thanks to automation it's possible to ...
2
votes
6answers
257 views

Stealthy and hard to sink marine drone made out of… fiberglass and styrofoam

OK, the weapon idea is the following: general shape similar to the drone on this picture modular armament, in default configuration with anti-ship missiles (but goes with torpedos, gun, mines, etc.) ...
1
vote
3answers
163 views

Could a pump jet be made in the 15th-16th century? [closed]

With the knowledge required, could the pump jet be created for use in ships in the given timeline? If not, what other forms of engines can be made in said timeline that can power ships without the use ...
7
votes
5answers
174 views

How should a ship call for help on a sparsely populated planet orbiting a flare star?

Technological level - similar to contemporary. Yes, I mean a watercraft, mostly big cargo carrying ships. I mean only calling for help while being in middle of ocean and not being within line of sight ...
15
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13answers
2k views

Logistics of a hovering watercraft in a fantasy setting

So in my fantasy world, there exists a substance that (when applied to the surface of an object) repels water in the same way a very strong magnet would. This allows boats to hover above the surface ...
3
votes
1answer
118 views

Which part of ship should be targeted while using guided artillery rounds?

Situation, short: gun has similar firepower to 5 inch gun (5/62) most available rounds used are standard high explosives, there are a few armour piercing rounds available, rounds are guided and even ...
7
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2answers
2k views

What could make a ship made of pumice seaworthy?

I'm designing the type of ships an amphibious race could use for long distance travel, like a floating house, following oceanic currents. I imagine it shaped like an iceberg, with more structure below ...
8
votes
2answers
172 views

Is there a good reference for the evolution of ships over the ages?

So in Sci Fi we have this tendency to want to compare ship designations to modern sea faring ships. It dawned on me that this is probably completely wrong. Even though we want to refer to warships as ...
3
votes
2answers
302 views

Ships as survival world (post-apocalyptic world)

In a post-apocalyptic world where the surviving people are forced off the land onto the water in ships, how would this work? How long can a large set of people survive on a set of boats without ...
2
votes
3answers
97 views

A modern Noah's Ark

This is not a duplicate of Building Noah's Ark or Can We Build Noah's ark?, because the former asks only about a relatively small number of species and the latter is set in Biblical times. ...
3
votes
2answers
238 views

How would ships develop in a world without Gunpowder/Cannons

So i was thinking about the world i set my story in: Set in an age equivalent to the 17th century Magic exists, but is not very powerful though very versatile Gunpowder was never discovered naval ...
7
votes
4answers
1k views

Advantages/Disadvantages of a ship made of a single piece of wood

Would a ship made out of a single piece of wood have any advantages over a normal vessel? Context: A particularly clever/mad mage has discovered how to make a living ship by binding a dryad into a ...
1
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5answers
183 views

Post-Apocalypse Vessel To Sail The Great Lakes [closed]

What would be a good design for a vessel that has to transverse the Great Lakes region, from Lake Superior to Lake Ontario, and do so fairly regularly? Some Info Resources: a good amount ...
8
votes
8answers
640 views

What would be a plausible speed for a 22nd century military ship?

No, I am not talking about space ships, I am talking about water-based ships sailing the oceans on planet Earth. What would be a plausible cruise speed and maximum speed for what would be the ...
12
votes
9answers
4k views

Naval warfare in a Bronze Age setting - few big ships versus many smaller ships

I wasn't sure which StackExchange I should ask this question, but since the story I am writing is basically a historically inspired fantasy, I decided to present it here. The story in question is ...
22
votes
4answers
10k views

Biggest possible battleship that can be built?

Disregarding how battleships are really big targets and not really viable in the modern era anymore, I would like to ask how big a battleship can be built before it starts being so large it sinks. ...
4
votes
1answer
131 views

Sailing the Endeavour out of Sydney [closed]

The apocalypse has happened - a super-virulent plague has ripped through, leaving only a small percentage of immune survivors. Luckily, for the purposes of this question at least, there is fairly ...
4
votes
1answer
480 views

How often did trading/traveling ships set sail between port cities in Medieval times?

Say there are two port cities (City A) and (City B). The distance between them is the same as the distance between Greece and England. The world takes place in a medieval setting with normal ...
24
votes
12answers
8k views

Is it possible to bind multiple ships together on open water?

In Renaissance period, would it be possible to safely bind ships together for extended periods of time? Imagine if there was a fleet of large ships (say, two dozen) that have been traveling over a ...
33
votes
18answers
5k views

How would a ship defend against a sea creature, and possibly win?

I have a Viking-inspired race living on a harsh ocean based planet with very rough and cold seas. In these seas there are giant creatures, not unlike kraken who frequently attack ships. I was thinking ...
1
vote
0answers
243 views

How many aircraft could this submarine aircraft carrier carry on its flight deck? [closed]

I have a humongous submarine aircraft carrier (dubbed a Kharybdis-class submarine) shaped like a triangular arrowhead. This submarine can launch a wide variety of aircraft from its flight deck such as ...
5
votes
5answers
409 views

The practicality and feasibility of a fully-submersible aircraft carrier

There's this organisation with an underwater naval base on Île Pott masquerading as a third rate hotel resort. Said base features several underwater hangars housing a considerable fleet comprised of ...
10
votes
2answers
161 views

How quickly could a Norse longboat get from Denmark to “Vinland” (Newfoundland) and beyond?

Alright, departing from my usual fantasy setting to something of a thought experiment. Let's say, for argument's sake, some Dane longboat captain in the 10th or 11th century worked out how to make a ...
2
votes
6answers
1k views

Crashland onto a new planet: Origin of the Legal System?

I've been researching the origins of my world's legal system. I'm trying to develop it over time in a somewhat logical and organic manner and I've come to realise that I don't yet have a clear idea of ...
12
votes
12answers
5k views

How would a sailing ship travel on land?

Or, more specifically : How, starting with a regular ~16th something-century sailing ship, could it be possible to modify it to go on both land and sea? In a pre-industrial setting, no fuel, no steam. ...
38
votes
15answers
11k views

The Infinite Sea, how narrow can that be?

I have a Roleplay setting on the books. It's a constructed pocket universe that the Dragons built to hide from the Great Old Ones; because of its structure, there are vast bodies of water, potentially ...
-2
votes
2answers
103 views

What would a royal wedding on a ship in the 18th century have been like? [closed]

What would a royal wedding from the 18th century would look like? Just imagine that a prince must get married fast and the kingdom decides that the wedding will be on a ship, could it be possible?: ...
7
votes
6answers
531 views

How small of a boat can sustain itself in the ocean?

So my hero (henceforth Bob) has become disgusted with all that society has to offer. He decides to set sail on a ship, never to return to the mainland supercontinent again (this is WWI tech, so you ...
6
votes
4answers
446 views

How long could a modern oil tanker last without maintenance?

After the apocalypse, In Baja California, off the coast of Tijuana, there is the wreckage of the oil tanker, Exxon-Cazador, which was run aground and abandoned by its crew while the first bombs ...
12
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4answers
2k views

How could an outrigger or catamaran ship be modified for age of sail naval combat?

If Age of Sail era Ships were to come into regular contact with Polynesian outrigger and Catamaran ships like the Hōkūleʻa, and the people using the ships did not start using the foreign design of ...
3
votes
5answers
296 views

Could a Fire Mage create an ocean current to propel a ship?

If a mage with the ability to generate heat, used this to heat the water around an ocean vessel, would they be able to do it in such a way that propels the ship? I was thinking something similar to ...
-2
votes
1answer
236 views

Is a windmill battleship in a medieval setting viable?

Imagine a giant Chinese Treasure Ship-class. Could it ever be possible that a warship like that could be propelled by windmills and a water turbine/wheel instead of sails?
7
votes
9answers
1k views

What post-war technologies would be essential or beneficial to a new construction battleship?

My world operates under a few assumptions, and changes to those assumptions are outside of the scope of this question: Aircraft are not considered to be any threat to warships, and due to some ...
5
votes
5answers
372 views

Depth Charges against Surface Vessels

Previously, a treaty was signed that effectively banned air-dropped bombs, and military versions of rockets and missiles. That treaty leaves a gap as far as Depth Charges go, and this is not precisely ...