The 15th century
Christopher Columbus had three ships on his first voyage, the Niña, the Pinta, and the Santa Maria. Columbus sailed from Palos de la Frontera on 3 August, 1492. His flagship, the Santa Maria had 52 men aboard while his other two ships, the Nina and Pinta were each crewed by 18 men.
The Santa Maria was a nao, was a bit of a tub, and was not able to go near the coastline. But was able to carry a lot of cargo, and it was able to stand up well in bad weather. The Niña, the Pinta were caravels, with a shallower draft than a nao, did not have much cargo space, but were able to explore shallow bays and the mouths of rivers. A carvel was square-rigged on its foremasts and mainmasts, but used a lateen sail on the mizzen to help in tacking. A caravel had about twenty crew members, who slept on the deck and would go below only if the weather was bad.
Niña. Smallest of the fleet, captained by Vicente Añes Pinzón. The Niña was another caravel of probably 50 or 60 tons. When she left Spain she had lateen sails on all masts; but she was refitted in the Canary Islands with square sails on the fore and main masts. Unlike most ships of the period, Niña may have had four masts, including a small counter-mizzen at the stern with another lateen sail. This would have made Niña the best of the three ships at sailing upwind. Length about 15 meters, keel length 12 meters, beam 5 meters, and depth 2 meters.
Highlights about Santa Nina model ship:
- This model ship is entirely handmade by skilled and experienced craftsmen, using the plank on frame construction method
- No kits are use
- Anchors, guns, decorations, and other intricate details sculpted of metal
- Meticulously sewn sails, keep shape and do not wrinkle
- Use high-quality wood such as rosewood, ebony, black wood, mahogany wood…. , timbers are after process step of pre-construction.
- The Santa Nina model ship is built on scale by the original plan, then drawn up and painted by actual photographs to ensure the best accuracy.