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2016 NRG Annual Conference

San Diego

The Nautical Research Guild 2016 annual conference was held in San Diego, California from October 6-8, 2016.  In addition to the speakers, sessions and round tables, attendees were able to tour the Maritime Museum of San Diego and take a trip on the topsail schooner Californian.

Museum Tour and the Californian

Everyone attending enjoyed perfect weather and great tours, displays and seminars.

Thursday’s tour consisted of a visit to the San Diego Maritime Museum and a sail on the Topsail Schooner California. Many of the sailing participants volunteered to act as crew and helped sail the ship.

Model Room, Vendors and Events

While folks enjoyed the museum, your hard working NRG crew set up the vendor and model room. The turnout of models was fantastic with over 50 top models from local clubs and around the country. Everyone had a good opportunity to see the models and visit with the many vendors throughout the conference. Vendors were varied with model retailers and manufacturers, machine and tool manufacturers and retailers, and authors.

Friday evening found many exploring Little Italy, which was within easy walking distance of the hotel, for dinner. Because of the mild temperatures many of the restaurants have been constructed with walls but no roofs.

Saturday found everyone back at the seminars. Again we enjoyed an excellent buffet lunch. Randy Biddle, Carolyn Kennedy, and Paul Fontenoy (Subbing for Michel Mantin) all gave very interesting talks. The afternoon session was highlighted by Doug Sharp. Doug was the Naval Architect on the construction of the 1:1 model (real ship) of the San Salvador for the San Diego Maritime Museum and gave us a real look at the trials and tribulations of the ship build.

Saturday evening was the Banquet. The dinner provided by the hotel was quite good. Iris Engstrand, Ph.D., gave us an excellent look into Capt. Cabrillo, the discoverer of San Diego Bay, as our keynote speaker.

Sessions, Seminars, and Roundtables

Friday morning was devoted to the modeler's symposium. Lectures were given by:

    • Douglas Brooks and Clare Hess, Modeling Japanese Fishing Boats
    • Ken Foran, Brass Work in Modeling
    • Panel Discussion with Toni Levine, Bill Maxwell, Don Leyman & Mike Lonnecker, Swan Class Model Building

The afternoon was comprised of five excellent roundtables presenting different topics. Roundtable presenters included:

    • Douglas Brooks
    • Clare Hess
    • Ken Foran
    • Sherline
    • Dave Yotter
    • Swan Panel Discussion Presenters

On Saturday, there was a full day of lectures. The morning presentations were:

    • Randy Biddle, CHALEUR – Developing a plausible framing schema for her using the 1768 Admiralty draught and the nautical archaeological record for similar small New England-built merchant vessels.
    • Michel Mantin, Japanese Battleship Fuso
    • Carolyn Kennedy INA, Steamboat Graveyard at Shelburne, VT
    • Doug Sharp, San Salvador Restoration Architect

The membership meeting followed the day's lectures.

The NRG 2016 Conference dinner was Saturday night. The highlight was the keynote speaker, Ray Ashley of the San Diego Maritime Museum.


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