Chapter 139: Shipbuilding

Inside a rock cave, a long sketch of a ship was laid out.

Zhen Jin, Zi Di, Cang Xu, Zong Ge, and some others sat around it, every gaze focused on the sketch.

The sketch included a lateral view, an overhead view, and a perspective view of the ship.

The artist of the sketch——the fourth boat craftsman, introduced it: “Adding all of us up, there are 247 survivors altogether. We have already dismantled the Hog’s Kiss, after calculating in the wood we transported here and the amount of iron we can produce, I have designed this ship.”

“This new boat is estimated to be 42 meters long, 16 meters wide, 8 meters high, and have a displacement of 300 metric tons.”

“As you can see, the new ship will have two decks, five cannons can be deployed on the uppermost layer.”

“Altogether there are three masts, with every mast having a mast house.

“This is the mainyard.

“The masts and the mainyards have all the primary square sails. According to our ocean map and sailing route, the wind blows in a steady direction, thus square sails will be the most practical choice. To be more precise, they are three corner sails.

“I estimate our main sail will exceed 200 square meters.”

“The bow deckhouse will mainly be the giant’s quarters. The aft deckhouse will have Lord Zhen Jin’s room. Behind the aft deckhouse, there is a balcony with an open light of sight, one can appreciate the beautiful sea surface there.”

To that end, the fourth boat craftsman smiled, showing he wanted to curry favor with Zhen Jin.

The new boat was smaller than the Hog’s Kiss. The Hog’s Kiss was 76 meters long, it was a large-scale trading ship, capable of transporting merchandise and personnel over long distances.

According to the sea distance, this island was located at the midpoint between the Sheng Ming Continent and the Wilderness Continent.

Zhen Jin’s and the others’ goal was to not make a well performing ship, rather it was to leave this island with all haste and complete the second half of their voyage, thus they were rushing to the Wilderness Continent.

“What materials are we lacking?” Zhen Jin inquired, smashing the silence.

The boat craftsman replied: “Mainly boat nails. We need a lot of iron; this is the aspect with the greatest shortfall.”

“We still don’t have enough ore?” Zhen Jin felt doubt, he had been afraid of this, thus spent many nights as a monkey tail brown bear to mine. All of the ore currently on hand had likely been dug up by Zhen Jin.

Zi Di answered: “We need to thank those monkey tail brown bears for a sufficient amount of ore. However we are currently using potions to melt the ore and extract the iron. We do not have enough potions.”

“So that’s how it is.” Zhen Jin nodded and gazed at everyone, “This problem, does anyone have a solution?”

Zi Di showed frustration: “Currently I am looking for substitute materials, however I am uncertain if I can find any in the end. After all this is the rainforest, not the forest. Maybe we can organize an exploration team to collect raw materials from the forest.”

Cang Xu shook his head: “Too troublesome, too risky. Lord Zhen Jin needs to stay in the ravine, our military strength cannot support an exploration team. Using potions to extract ore, in itself, is unconventional. I suggest we make an earthen kiln. Not the kiln I made in the oasis, but a large scale one. Using charcoal as fuel, we can melt the ore and obtain pig iron.”

“Can you build a large scale earthen kiln here?” Zhen Jin questioned closely.

He remembered in the oasis, Cang Xu had failed in his attempts to make an earthen kiln.

But Cang Xu nodded: “It is possible. The soil here is different from the oasis’, in fact, someone has already made one. He is a smith, and compared to me, he is more experienced in the making of kilns.

A large percentage of the survivors were craftsmen. These people went to the Wilderness Continent for work.

Humanity needed to establish itself in the Wilderness Continent, to win this war of aggression, castles, barracks, and other fortifications needed to be built.

These defensive fortifications represented work opportunities that paid far more than the standard salary in the Sheng Ming Continent.

Zhen Jin nodded: “In light of Cang Xu’s proposal, we will build an earthen kiln.”

After deciding this, Zhen Jin looked at the boat craftsman again.

“There are additional shortfalls.” The boat craftsman replied.

One shortfall was sails. Sails needed a great amount of cloth, at first the boat craftsman hoped to take the sails from the Hog’s Kiss. However after this dismantlement, there were only fragments of sails left. Because beforehand, the air temperature in the base camp dropped, thus the survivors there tore the sails apart and used them as clothing to stay warm.

Another shortfall was glue. Boat planks used flat level technology; small gaps existed between planks. Under normal circumstances, pitch, hemp rope, glue, and other padding was used to stick the gaps to each other.

A third shortfall was sailors. Zhen Jin and the others needed to train some temporary sailors.

The last one was supplies.

There was a lot of food and water remaining, but it was not enough.

Building a ship consumed a lot of stamina, this would also aggravate food consumption.

After the ship was built, sufficient supply reserves were required. During the voyage, it was difficult to replenish them.

Perhaps someone would say, just fish.

Those were amateur words.

Fishing operations were carried out in fishing grounds, fishing in other waters was very inefficient.

Working on a ship was very burdensome, if the people had to fish inefficiency, travel speed would slow, the time needed would be longer, and more food would be consumed, the gains did not make up for the losses.

From this point of view, the ocean wasn’t much different from a barren wasteland.

“How much time do we need to build the ship?” Zhen Jin asked the most crucial question.

The boat craftsman replied: “Normally, ships are built in two years. It is difficult to assess the completion date for this new boat, however it will take at least half a year.”

“Too long, can we not cut that down by a little?” Hei Juan was unsatisfied by this time estimate.

The boat craftsman sighed: “That is already the fastest we can do. It is that fast mainly because of Lord Zi Di, her potions can speed up the drying of wood. Usually, ship wood needs to be dry, and all moisture needs to be eliminated, such a process generally takes a year or more.”

“Fortunately, we have many artisans.”

“Without the two hundred people in the ravine, if we just relied on just our prior personnel, even if we had four to five years, we still might not have been able to make a ship.”

This answer disappointed Zhen Jin, after half a year, he feared the White Sands City lord competition might have already been decided.

The imperial officials could not wait for Zhen Jin alone forever. There were two other templar knights competing for city lord, they wouldn’t wait for Zhen Jin either.

But nothing could be done about that.

Unless rescue arrived during the ship building, Zhen Jin had no choice but to accept this passage of time.

The ship would be built in the ravine.

As long as it was remodeled slightly, the open area in the small ravine would make a great shipbuilding site.

Making a dock was too troublesome.

Of course, the wood needed to make a dock was not as strict as the ship, and the rainforest did not lack wood.

Hei Juan, Tripleblade, and some others organized lumbering teams and patrols.

A steady flow of wood poured into the ravine.

They were mainly cutting in the area between the ravine and the beach. By clearing the forest here, tracks could be easily built, making it easy for the ship to smoothly enter the ocean.

Compared to building a dock, the tracks were a smaller engineering project.

After spending several days, the open area in the small ravine was isolated from rain drops. During rainstorms, the ground would remain dry.

Shipbuilding needed a dry environment.

The boat craftsman and some others started to work on the largest tree trunk, it was the best material for the keel. According to the boat craftsman and Mu Ban, even if the Sheng Ming Continent had many large harbors, it was difficult to find such good material!

Under Cang Xu’s overall plan, all of the survivors in the ravine were busy, everyone had to work.

Lan Zao and Bai Ya were in charge of remodeling the ravine, they were to build fortifications, lay traps, and install warning devices around the ravine.

Fei She assisted Cang Xu, while Zi Di was in charge of medicinal development.

Zhen Jin, Zong Ge, and some others were mainly purging the surrounding beast groups and replenishing their food supplies.

Que Shan led the women and wounded in the manufacturing of hemp rope and cloth.

When the keel was made, the boat craftsman and his team, without stopping to rest, began to make the masts. Because of the lack of suitable lumber, six masts were made and joined together in pairs to make the foremast, the mainmast, and mizzenmast.

At the same time, Fei She, with some people under him, smeared compounds on the keel. The compound would dry the keel quicker.

The amount the keel needed almost exhausted Zi Di’s stock.

Zi Di was forced to break down the manufacturing procedure and delegate different parts to others, so the output could be increased.

This needed new manpower.

Luckily Cang Xu had abundant experience, he quickly transferred sufficient personnel and prevented any project from slowing down too much.

With ultrasound, Zhen Jin did not miss any beast group near the ravine.

In every operation, he harvested many.

Zong Ge no longer competed with Zhen Jin, and his accomplishments were second to Zhen Jin’s.

As the boat craftsman, Mu Ban, and the other artisans built the ship, everything within a five kilometer radius was cleared out.

But the purging of beast groups still continued.

Because beast groups were naturally mobile, to beast groups, free territory and abundant food were huge enticements.

Beast groups were no longer purged as often, and at the same time, it was no longer as dangerous.

The things attracted were comparatively weak beast groups or magic beasts. Formidable beast groups or magic beasts were the overlord of their territory, they didn’t need to migrate.

Zhen Jin gradually gave this work to Zong Ge, Hei Juan, and others.

During surplus fighting time, he privately trained the many forms in the core, making much progress in it.

The frequency of devastating rainstorms declined more and more, there were now more sunny days than rainy days per week.

The weather would clear up in the evening.

The setting sun reflected on Zhen Jin and a group of scaled leopards.

While Zhen Jin was privately training, this scaled leopard group charged into his ultrasound range.

When magic reserves presented themselves, Zhen Jin kindly accepted them.

After a close quarters fight, the battlefield became tranquil.

“Too easy……as long as I touch a scaled leopard, they will be electrocuted by me.” Zhen Jin exposed a satisfied smile.

This was the result of long lasting perseverance and diligent training.

He could now discharge electricity with ease!

“I am different from a silver level flying squirrel, the latter will immediately become dispirited after discharging electricity, but when I do it, it will just accelerate magic consumption, my body is unaffected.”

“Someone?” Using ultrasound again, Zhen Jin suddenly found someone in the distance.

Zhen Jin’s complexion changed.

During the fight, he stopped the ultrasound, and with his attention mainly focused on discharging electricity, he didn’t sense the person in time.

Who was the person watching?

When did they arrive? What did they discover?

Zhen Jin had the scorpion carapace on his body, it was easy to make the connection between that and what Zong Ge saw.

Who was this individual?

Zhen Jin wildly rushed at that person.

Sensing this, the person madly ran back to the ravine!