Dutch Barge Turftjalk

  • Light construction and design
  • Approximately 50 - 60 tons of displacement
  • Rubbing strike almost to the waterline
  • Nig Rubbing strike
  • Round bilges

This ship is a true Tjalk in terms of model and was robust enough for a real trip to Holland. The sailing area was usually limited to the northern provinces. Most skippers considered a trip "over sea" to be quite an undertaking.

With "over sea" a trip over the Zuiderzee was meant. Due to the thin hull (about 4 mm) and light construction (large frame spacing), the Turftjalk lay on top of the water and because it had round keels, it could penetrate deep into the peat area and still bring a whole load of peat. However, due to these round keels, it sailed less well.

Turftjalken were mainly used for peat extraction. This was also done a lot with Friesian Skûtsjes from 40 tons, which were also very suitable for this due to their construction. Peat extraction was the work of regular peat skippers and "wild" skippers. The regular skippers usually had regular buyers and also a regular sales area, a region or village. Sometimes they had their cargo on credit. This was because they regularly returned to the same skippers and the peat cutter. The regular skipper and the peat cutter knew exactly what peat they needed and didn't think of taking anything else. The wild skippers sold everywhere they could and did not have such a good reputation. They often bought the cheapest stuff and therefore often different types: due to their changing sales area, they usually did not hear any complaints later. 

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