Ibn Battuta Chinese Junk Model Ship
The Ibn Battuta Chinese Junk is painted in the original colors of the ship
About the Ibn Battuta Chinese Junk wooden scale Model Ship
This model ship of the Ibn Battuta Chinese Junk was custom built from the following information:
- The original construction drawings.
About the construction of the Ibn Battuta Chinese Junk wooden scale Model Ship
- The hull is built using the Double Plank-on-Bulkhead construction method
- The bulkheads and keel are cut from marine grade pine plywood
- The first layer of planking is done plank by plank using Mahogany planks
- The second layer of planking is done using Mahogany Veneer strips
- The deck is made of Anagre, a light brown timber from the Amazon
- The gunwale and stringers are made of American Walnut
- The fife rails and pin racks are made of American Walnut
- The deckhouses and gangways are made of Teak
- The masts and yards are made of Mahogany dowels
- The sails and ropes are made of linen
- The model is painted with acrylic paint
- The ornaments are cold cast in bronze and painted
History of the Ibn Battuta Chinese Junk
A junk is an ancient Chinese sailing ship design that is still in use today. Chinese junks were developed during the Song Dynasty (960-1279) and were used as seagoing vessels as early as the 2nd century CE.
Chinese junks were efficient and sturdy ships that sailed long distances.
The structure and flexibility of a Chinese junks sails make the Chinese junk fast and easily controlled. Another characteristic of the Chinese junks, interior compartments or bulkheads, strengthen the ship and slowed flooding in case of holing. This type of construction for Chinese ship hulls was attested to by the Moroccan Muslim Berber traveler Ibn Battuta (1304-1377)
Ibn Battuta’s travels account for a period of over 30 years. During 1345-1346 after a series of failures in the Maldives Islands and in India – having lost everything he owned to pirates and shipwrecks – Ibn Battuta resolved to go to China on his own. In Chittagong, he caught a Chinese junk and went to Samudra on the island of Sumatra. Here he stayed for about 2 weeks as a guest of the sultan. The sultan then provided him with supplies and sent Ibn Battuta on one of his own Chinese junks to China. He sailed for about 40 days and arrived in the busy seaport of Quanzhou. China was a culture shock to him. China was not a Muslim country and that offended him. Ibn Battuta reported meeting a rich Muslim trader, who lived in Hang-Zhou, he stayed there for a few weeks and then went back to Quanzhou, where he found a Chinese junk belonging to the sultan of Samudra ready to go back. So he got onboard and began his return home. In 3 years he would be walking the streets of his hometown Tangier, Morocco and telling of his adventures throughout the Dar al-Islam.
A full-scale replica of the Ibn Battuta’s Chinese Junk can be seen at the Ibn Battuta Mall in Dubai.
Member of The Nautical Research Guild