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Boxwood scale ruler

Date: 1940-1979
Dimensions:
40 x 245 x 10 mm, 0.1 kg
Medium: Wood, metal
Credit Line: ANMM Collection Gift from Trygve Halvorsen
Classification:Tools and equipment
Object Name: Ruler
Object No: 00039418
Place Manufactured:England

User Terms

    Description
    This foldable wooden ruler has four different scales, and bears an engraved inscription in black reading 'Boxwood no.1380 Rabone Chesterman Made in England'. It features metal mobile parts to fold and extend the body.
    SignificanceThe ruler was used by the Halvorsens during the design stage of an often long and complicated boat building process.
    HistoryIn 1925 the Norwegian born Lars Halvorsen began working from a small rented boat shed in Drummoyne with his eldest son Harold. Needing larger premises, they moved the fledgling business to a boat shed at Careening Cove, and in 1927 to Lloyds yard on the site of Ben Boy's wool store at Neutral Bay.

    Continuing a family tradition, Lars Halvorsen trained his sons to be shipwrights from the age of fourteen. Following this apprenticeship the sons progressively joined the company; Carl in 1927, Bjarne in 1930, Magnus in 1932, and Trygve in 1934. His daughter Elnor joined in 1928, working with her mother Bergithe and the youngest daughter Margit, who worked as the secretary from 1939. Following the death of Lars Halvorsen in 1936, Lars Halvorsen Sons Pty Ltd was formed with Harold as Chairman Managing Director and principle designer, and Carl as Sales Director.

    Lars Halvorsen Sons Pty Ltd purchased a waterside property with five acres at Waterview St, Ryde, and production moved from the Neutral Bay boatshed, which was retained as a service branch, to the new boatshed in 1940. The Ryde facility was the largest in the southern hemisphere, with an engineering section, blacksmith and lumber shops, stores, machine shop, plumbers shop, sheet metal shop, fueling facilities, five slip-ways for craft up to 90 feet and 100 tones, a three tone crane and an electric oxy-acetylene welding plant.

    During World War II owners of boats over 40 feet in length were asked to hand over their vessels over for the war effort. At the Ryde boatyard these civilian boats were refitted for military use. Boats built by Lars Halvorsen Sons were also deployed by the Australian, United States and Dutch forces during the war. The momentum of this war time production continued into the 1950s with the manufacture of cruisers and the subsequent establishment of the large hire fleet at Bobbin Head in the late 1940s and early 1950s.

    From 1926 to 1976 the Halvorsens built 1,299 vessels including motor cruisers, launches, tenders, yachts, tugs, mission boats, fishing boats and military craft.

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