Shell plating

Shell plating

Shell plating is the outer-most structure on the hull of a steel or aluminum ship or boat. It is the structural element that renders the hull watertight.


A strake is the name given to each line of planking in a wooden vessel. [Kemp, "The Oxford Companion to Ships and the Sea" , p. 838 (definition of 'strake').] In modern ship construction it refers to the longitudinal run of plating covering the hull, deck and bulkhead structure. Certain specific strakes are uniquely identified:

Keel : is a special strake of the Bottom plating extending from the centerplane outboard.

Bottom : the Bottom Shell plate strakes extend from the Keel to the Bilge.

Bilge : is the plating which transitions from the more-or-less horizontal Bottom Shell to the more-or-less vertical Side Shell and is generally curved. See also Chine (boating).

Side : is the plating which extends from the Bilge stake(s) to the Shear strake.

Shear : is a special strake of the Side plating. It is the strake that connects the Side Shell to the Strength Deck.

Stringer : is a special strake of the Strength Deck plating. It is the strake that connects the Strength Deck to the Side Shell.

Strength Deck : is a special deck. It is normally the uppermost continuous deck and forms the top flange of the hull girder. See Strength of ships.

See also

:* Strength of ships:* Hull (watercraft):* Naval architecture


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