Skuldelev 1 - The ocean-going trader

Skuldelev 1 is large ocean-going cargo ship from Sognefjord in western Norway.
The ship is built of heavy pine planks, and has a rounded form that gives it a high loading capacity and great seaworthiness on the North Atlantic. It is repeatedly repaired with oak near the Oslo Fjord and eastern Denmark.

The ocean-going trader could have sailed all over the North Sea and the Baltic as well as in the North Atlantic. The ship and its cargo may have been owned by a chieftain or cooperatively by a group of merchants sailing it on traditing expeditions to the European markets. The ship had decks fore and aft as well as an open hold amidships.

The Viking Ship Museum's reconstruction of Skuldelev 1, Ottar, is on display in the Museum Harbour.


Facts about Skuldelev 1

Dating: ca 1030
Place of construction: Western Norway
Preserved: 60 %
Material: pine, oak and lime
Length: 15.84 metres
Breadth: 4.8 metres
Draught: 1 metre
Displacement: 20 tons
No. of oars: 2-4
Crew: 6-8 men
Sail area: 90 m2
Average speed: 5-7 knots
Top speed: ca 13 knots