[Sca-cooks] coopering

Stefan li Rous StefanliRous at austin.rr.com
Thu May 7 00:06:24 PDT 2009

Selene commented:

<<< The invention of the barrel revolutionized food and liquid [wine]
transportation in a way that would not be equalled until Refrigeration.
One must wonder how it changed from the days of the Vikings to the
Conquistadors?  Not much, I'll betcha.  Well, this sounds like a new
long-term research project, heigh-ho! >>>

The introduction and use of iron hoops to replace rope and wood hoops  
appears to have been the biggest change.

One point that may not be apparent to many is that is wasn't only the  
secure storage capabilities of the barrel that made it popular, but  
that because of the curved sides, it is fairly easy for a single  
person to move and steer even a very large, loaded barrel. You can  
swivel the barrel on it's center to easily steer it around obstacles  
and they store tightly in confined spaces such as ship holds. And  
they are less breakable than the Classical World's equivalent which  
was the amphora.

The wooden cask/barrel stayed in use until the early 20th century  
when it was replaced by the steel drum, usually of 55 gallons. A that  
point we gave up the ability to easily rotate and steer the drums  
because of the difficulty of manufacturing the curved steel sides. By  
that time we had machines to help move them around and with steel's  
strength didn't need the extra support that the curved sides gave.

THLord Stefan li Rous    Barony of Bryn Gwlad    Kingdom of Ansteorra
    Mark S. Harris           Austin, Texas           
StefanliRous at austin.rr.com
**** See Stefan's Florilegium files at:  http://www.florilegium.org ****

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