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Moving the Titanic model by crane

titanic-move-header

Some of our ship models are giants more than 6 metres long and cannot fit into the goods lift at the Maritime Museum. An example is the Titanic model,| which used to be on display on the third floor of Merseyside Maritime Museum before it was moved to the first floor in 2006.

Models this large have to be lifted by crane, which is a complex job. The model is first built into a wooden crate so all its fragile detail is protected from the lifting straps. Outside the building we build high scaffolding towers, so the hook of the crane can lift the model straight up without it ever getting jammed between the buildings. 

Once this is ready a window is temporarily removed and the model is taken out of the building and lifted to the ground. While it is 'parked' there, the scaffold platform is either raised or lowered to the height of the floor that the model is being moved to. 

Inside the building we sometimes need to demolish doors and walls because the model is too high for the door or too long to go around corners. 

We always move these models very early in the morning and the doors and walls are back in place by the time our first visitors of the day come in. 

Follow the links below to see the move of the Titanic model from one floor to another.

First, the model was built into a wooden crate, so all its fragile detail could be protected from the lifting straps. We always move these models very early in the morning, on this particular morning there was a beautiful river mist shrouding the Maritime Museum. For moves such as these, we need to build high scaffolding towers so the hook of the crane can lift the model straight up, without it ever getting jammed between the buildings. This photo was taken on the day before the lift. In this photo you can see just how close the buildings are. The scaffold tower needs to take much more than the weight of the model just in case of 'heavy landings'! The crane in position ready to go. The man who directs the crane driver is called a 'banks man'. He either gives hand signals or talks to the driver by radio. The model was successfully lifted before the scaffolding tower was lowered to the height of the next floor. The model is 'parked' whilst the tower is lowered to the next floor. We sometimes have to demolish doors and walls because a model is too high for the doorway or too long to go around corners. The model will only just fit through most doorways and it can be tight moving it down the museum's corridors. The Titanic model safely installed in the Titanic, Lusitania and the forgotten Empress gallery, Merseyside Maritime Museum.

Merseyside Maritime Museum collection

Accession number 51.36