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We hope that you have an opinion on this and can help Roger Branfill-Cook:

gunboat with leeboards
Gunboat Sultan with leeboards on the bow being reassembled on the Nile

Roger asked for our help. Since we don't know the answer we are hoping some of you can help. Here is what Roger asked:

"I am compiling an encyclopedia of River Gunboats of the World for my UK Editor Seaforth. For the chapter on Nile gunboats I am featuring the famous Melik of 1898, still in existence today. Then I came across this photo of one of her sister ships, the Sultan, being reassembled on the Nile. She appears to be fitted with a pair of lee boards, useful in the strong currents and shallow water of the Nile. Melik has never appeared in any photo showing lee boards.

"But why are they fitted at the bows, and pointing the 'wrong' way?

Could it be that these tunnel prop boats handled poorly going astern? So the boards are there to help?

"Any advice or opinion you could give me would be greatly appreciated.

"Kind regards

Roger Branfill-Cook
Ivoiry, Meuse-Argonne,

"My aim when I compile a book is not simply to gather together details, but also to comment on them, to analyse historical events and ship designs, to make people think about what they read, and what they see in old photos. The shot of Sultan has never been commented on to my knowledge."

(please email your thoughts, opinions and facts regarding the above to us at:
(use only @) Leeboards.com and we will forward your email to Roger)

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