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Mahogany and Brass Ship’s Wheel and Steering Station

A ship’s wheel is a device used aboard a water vessel to change that vessel’s course. Together with the rest of the steering mechanism, it forms part of the helm.

A ship’s wheel is composed of wooden spokes shaped like balusters, and all joined at a central wooden hub or nave which houses the axle. Each spoke runs through the middle “felloe,” creating a series of handles beyond the wheel’s rim. One of these spokes was usually crafted with extra grooves at its tip to allow the helmsman to feel the steering mechanism in the dark and to determine the exact position of the rudder. The wood used in construction of this wheel is mahogany, a very durable wood capable of surviving the effects of salt water and regular use.  It measures 54 inches tall and is fastened on a brass stand.  It is 36 inches tall.