Tuesday, 11 December 2012

The Construction Process

       Robinson Crusoe built a new civilization from the remnants of a sunken ship and the primitive supplies of the island. From the ship, Crusoe rescued a number of very useful materials, such as cables, masts, planks, and sails. He also recovered a number of tools and supplies from the cabins of the ship. He found hammers, nails, axes, and saws, among other supplies.
       Crusoe built his shelter using vernacular construction techniques of the time. His double layered tent was constructed in the usual manner, each tent made up of two uprights supporting a crosspiece.
The wall fortification - two rows of stakes cut from the ship's masts support stacks of the ship's cable in the manner of a fagot shack wall.
       Over time, Crusoe builds a structural roof over the cabin, similar to a fallen tree shelter. Using tree trunks and wooden poles from the ship as rafters, and supporting them on the face of the rock, he covers the roof with wooden planks and grass. Crusoe extends his fortification by creating a second wall out of brushwood between the trees that encompass the shelter and fagot wall.
      For the bower, Crusoe produces a standard wick-up shelter. This is the first of his structures to resemble a traditional framed house. Thin lumber creates the frame of the bower - four perpendicular walls - and a flat roof. The frame is held together with braided rope, which Crusoe produced from straw. It is then covered with straw and grass to provide shelter. He also develops a number of sheds and apartments in this same fashion.
       Another construction aspect to consider is the cave. Crusoe builds his first wall around a small recess in the rock face. He finds the rock loose and soft enough to burrow in to. Over time, as he requires more shelter, Crusoe burrows a tunnel leading into the rock and back out on the other side of the fortified wall. In the tunnel, he hollows out a number of small cellars in which to store supplies and food.

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