|Leads To||Copper Bottoms|
The practice of setting green timber aside after it is felled to dry naturally, so that it can be then used in shipbuilding. Seasoning takes time, as wood will dry out at its own pace once the tree has been felled and brought to a lumber yard. Large sheds are required, where the timber can be left in dry conditions for a year or more until it is ready for use. Some, as it dries, will warp and prove unsuitable for further work. In the case of oak, the wood actually gains strength over time as it dries out and settles into its final form.
Historically, ships, and warships in particular, needed an enormous amount of lumber, of many different kinds. It could take a century for a tree to grow large enough for use, so shipwrights needed to use their materials carefully. In an attempt to save money and timber, the British Royal Navy had a policy of recycling parts from old ships (which sounds commendably "green" nowadays) but this had the effect of transferring old rot to new builds. The French preferred to build ships out of unseasoned wood, maintaining that ships that had flexibility to "work" sailed better.