The Megalith Movers Prehistoric Engineering
Blog 31st January 2015    Again this last week we have been short-handed. Ewan has was unavailable on Monday and Tuesday which just left Steve and myself, but by Tuesday lunch we had almost completed the trestle frame for the fulcrum and lashed it in place and to the buttress frames.    On Wednesday I was the sole worker on site as Steve would be away for the rest of the week, but I carried on regardless, finishing the lashings on the trestle frame and assembling the tower scaffold which was to stand where the crib had been previously. We are using modern metal scaffolding for reasons of health and safety, but I am confident that a wooden scaffold just lashed together would have been sufficient in ancient times.    As soon as everything was ready I started on the next lift. As I was working alone I set the levers at a shallow angle to make it easier to load on the dead men (counterweight), and in less than one hour the Obelisk had risen by just over one inch, I consolidated this gain by moving the packings forward and retired for the day.    On Thursday and Friday I was again working alone but completed two excellent lifts single-handed, of about three inches each. Compared to the progress we had been making previously everything was almost effortless. With the scaffold at about the same height as the fulcrum, while standing on the scaffold I was able to set the levers with the fulcrum at my feet, thus the ends of the levers were still well within reach. And by having all the dead men readily at hand on the scaffold it, was a simple matter to transfer them from the scaffold and onto the levers. Once the weight of the dead men had tipped the balance and lifted the Obelisk, I was able to climb down and adjust the packing at my leisure. With the gain thus consolidated, it was easy to move the dead men from on top of the levers and return them to the scaffold, remove the levers and adjust the fulcrum for the next lift.    Next week we should be able to complete the first of the wedge shaped supports, which will rest on the bottom barn door and support the top barn door. Soon you will be able to see how using such wedge shaped supports change the angle of resistance to the force of gravity acting on the Obelisk automatically as the Obelisk rises, negating the need for the flying buttresses when we reach an angle of about 70 degrees.    The new method seems to be working well, and in any future Obelisk erecting experiments (we are now considering an attempt to raise a 50ft high Obelisk which will weigh around 30 tons, using this new method). We will be working with the lever operators entirely at ground level or thereabouts, and only the carpenters doing the packing will need some form of scaffold.    Sorry I have no pics this week, but I will bring you up to date next week when hopefully we will have made substantial progress. <<previous blog page next blog page >> To read & post comments click here return to top of this page

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