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Forum Index > Off-topic Talk > Ways of reaching relevant staff at the met Reply to topic
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Martin Kallander




Location: Sweden
Joined: 25 Sep 2018

Posts: 37

PostPosted: Sun 17 May, 2020 12:38 pm    Post subject: Ways of reaching relevant staff at the met         Reply with quote

Does anyone know how to contact people like qurators or something like that at the met?

I've commissioned Tord Bergelin to replicate the Flügellanz in their collection, but the information available on the met website is sadly not really enough to do this accurately. Owing to there being no information of the thickness of the blade (which is not only unusually thick, but has a somewhat strange taper), getting the spearhead right is very difficult. This should be able to be remedied if we just knew how much it weighs, but that too is unkown.

I tried to contact the met for about a year via emails with no success, the mails I tried to contact just had automated responses. So we decided to proceed with nothing but the few (probably inaccurate) measurements available on the met website. The first attempt has ended poorly, the blade became way too thin and so I'm hoping in a last ditch attempt before Tord begins work on the second one to somehow get a hold of the staff at the met, so that they can perhaps provide us with proper dimensions of the Flügellanz.

Essentially I am looking for someone with authority to go into the met storage facility to acquire both as many accurate measurements of it as possible and the weight of it.


https://images.metmuseum.org/CRDImages/md/original/tr47212001s1.jpg
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James Arlen Gillaspie
Industry Professional



Location: upstate NY
Joined: 10 Nov 2005

Posts: 562

PostPosted: Mon 18 May, 2020 10:40 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

That won't be happening for awhile; they are all on lock-down.
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Joe A




Location: Philadelphia, USA
Joined: 17 Oct 2013

Posts: 75

PostPosted: Tue 19 May, 2020 6:57 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

James Arlen Gillaspie wrote:
That won't be happening for awhile; they are all on lock-down.


Unless you know someone on the inside it will never happen.

Consider this, why should a boss allow his subordinates to work on anything that is not a priority to the museum?

Sorry.
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Martin Kallander




Location: Sweden
Joined: 25 Sep 2018

Posts: 37

PostPosted: Tue 19 May, 2020 8:19 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Providing information about the old stuff on display seems like one of the things a museum is for. I don't see how this wouldn't be in their interests aside from them having more important things to do Confused
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Michael Beeching





Joined: 22 Jan 2014
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Posts: 229

PostPosted: Tue 19 May, 2020 9:51 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

I completely agree with your sentiments, Martin.

In my experience in probing for information, most of the time the museum will get back to you. Furthermore, they will generally offer some simple information for free, but will further then request a fee for more in-depth information.

Last, it must really depend on the museum in question. The Smithsonian is very professional in their RFI process. A curator from the National Naval Aviation Museum went so far as to call me when I didn't respond promptly enough. I have no experience with the MET, but to me the most important thing to do would be to start making phone calls once New York decides it's had enough of its lock-down. In the meanwhile, you will probably be on hold for your project if you need exact details to begin. If your project is important enough to you that you will go through the hoops to make international calls, perhaps you'd consider using something like Skype to cut down on the costs?
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Tyler C.




Location: Canada
Joined: 20 Aug 2019
Reading list: 2 books

Posts: 60

PostPosted: Tue 19 May, 2020 11:55 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Martin,

The pictures on the Met website are decent. As long as you can trust the dimension that they do give I imagine that you could scale things and get quite close. The attached would be my guess.



 Attachment: 133.66 KB
Scaled widths [ Download ]
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Martin Kallander




Location: Sweden
Joined: 25 Sep 2018

Posts: 37

PostPosted: Tue 19 May, 2020 1:12 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Tyler C. wrote:
Martin,

The pictures on the Met website are decent. As long as you can trust the dimension that they do give I imagine that you could scale things and get quite close. The attached would be my guess.


That is what I did. There are some problems with that though, as the photo is tilted downwards which makes the top look bigger and the bottom smaller than it should be. Triangulating with the upper parts of the wing is the only real way to counter this and the images are not really detailed enough to accurately do this. I have however also cross referenced still images from a video containing the lance so I'm fairly certain my measurements are quite accurate. Still, the fact that your measurements are very different from mine bring me no joy whatsoever and highlights just how unreliable this method is.

The thickness in particular is really dificult with this method since you can't even really make out where the center of the camera was when taking the picture aside from it being somewhere above the wings.

https://i.imgur.com/G2YtFIP.png
https://i.imgur.com/gcratv5.png
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Martin Kallander




Location: Sweden
Joined: 25 Sep 2018

Posts: 37

PostPosted: Tue 19 May, 2020 1:29 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Michael Beeching wrote:
In the meanwhile, you will probably be on hold for your project if you need exact details to begin.

That's not really an option, I should have specified this earlier, but Tord started working on the new lance the day after I made this post. He seems to have gotten the thickness right this time around so it kinda solved itself, though I really ought to have made this post a year ago :S

Thanks for completely agreeing with my sentiments though, I do that too :3
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Tyler C.




Location: Canada
Joined: 20 Aug 2019
Reading list: 2 books

Posts: 60

PostPosted: Tue 19 May, 2020 1:41 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Martin Kallander wrote:


That is what I did. There are some problems with that though, as the photo is tilted downwards which makes the top look bigger and the bottom smaller than it should be. Triangulating with the upper parts of the wing is the only real way to counter this and the images are not really detailed enough to accurately do this. I have however also cross referenced still images from a video containing the lance so I'm fairly certain my measurements are quite accurate. Still, the fact that your measurements are very different from mine bring me no joy whatsoever and highlights just how unreliable this method is.

The thickness in particular is really dificult with this method since you can't even really make out where the center of the camera was when taking the picture aside from it being somewhere above the wings.

https://i.imgur.com/G2YtFIP.png
https://i.imgur.com/gcratv5.png


Martin,

What reference dimension did you use for the profile dimensions? I used the thickness dimension given by the Met (4.8 cm), but I see that you must have used something else because you have 4.6 cm listed for the outside diameter of the socket. I used the thickness dimension because I felt there is less chance of image distortion being a large factor in that direction than if the overall height is used. I did mine pretty quickly which could also explain some of the discrepancy. That being said, we are not horribly different. What level of accuracy are you expecting from your reconstruction (tolerance on your dimensions)?
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Martin Kallander




Location: Sweden
Joined: 25 Sep 2018

Posts: 37

PostPosted: Tue 19 May, 2020 1:49 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Tyler C. wrote:
Martin,

What reference dimension did you use for the profile dimensions? I used the thickness dimension given by the Met (4.8 cm), but I see that you must have used something else because you have 4.6 cm listed for the outside diameter of the socket. I used the thickness dimension because I felt there is less chance of image distortion being a large factor in that direction than if the overall height is used. I did mine pretty quickly which could also explain some of the discrepancy. That being said, we are not horribly different. What level of accuracy are you expecting from your reconstruction (tolerance on your dimensions)?


It becomes pretty apparent that the 4.8 mm dimension is the widest part of the blade rather than the socket when you compare it to both the height of the lance, the span of the wings and consider how the socket is smaller than the the widest part of the blade. I can see how you would assume the dimension was in reference to the socket though, I did that too at first.
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Tyler C.




Location: Canada
Joined: 20 Aug 2019
Reading list: 2 books

Posts: 60

PostPosted: Tue 19 May, 2020 2:16 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Martin Kallander wrote:


It becomes pretty apparent that the 4.8 mm dimension is the widest part of the blade rather than the socket when you compare it to both the height of the lance, the span of the wings and consider how the socket is smaller than the the widest part of the blade. I can see how you would assume the dimension was in reference to the socket though, I did that too at first.


It is pretty typical for simple artifact measurements to be given as a bounding box. I imagine it would be very unusual to give the width of the blade at its base instead, especially without stating that is the case. The difference you are seeing may be due to image distortion. I would assume it is a bounding box measurement unless stated otherwise.



 Attachment: 106.93 KB
tr47212001s1.jpg

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Joe A




Location: Philadelphia, USA
Joined: 17 Oct 2013

Posts: 75

PostPosted: Tue 19 May, 2020 8:38 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Michael Beeching wrote:
I completely agree with your sentiments, Martin.

In my experience in probing for information, most of the time the museum will get back to you. Furthermore, they will generally offer some simple information for free, but will further then request a fee for more in-depth information.

Last, it must really depend on the museum in question. The Smithsonian is very professional in their RFI process. A curator from the National Naval Aviation Museum went so far as to call me when I didn't respond promptly enough. I have no experience with the MET, but to me the most important thing to do would be to start making phone calls once New York decides it's had enough of its lock-down. In the meanwhile, you will probably be on hold for your project if you need exact details to begin. If your project is important enough to you that you will go through the hoops to make international calls, perhaps you'd consider using something like Skype to cut down on the costs?


The two museums you mention are US tax payer funded public museums that you can complain to someone about.

The Metropolitan Museum of Art of New York City is a huge museum and does ground breaking work across dozens of disciplines. Just to have someone open a case or go down to the storage sites, many outside the city, to take measurements of an artifact for a personal project would take more effort that anyone who has never worked in a museum could ever imagine.

Even if you reached a sympathetic employee, there's no way security would allow the object to be handled without an official notification from a fairly senior person. That senior person would have to justify the action with an even more senior person and so on. Plus, I'm 100% certain that there are rules that expressly forbid exactly what you want them to do and why would anyone put their job on the line?

But who knows, I've seen stuff happen in my seven years volunteering at a major archaeological museum that makes me scratch my head.

Rather than you asking, why not try to have someone ask from a local museum for you? Perhaps they will help as a professional courtesy.
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Martin Kallander




Location: Sweden
Joined: 25 Sep 2018

Posts: 37

PostPosted: Wed 20 May, 2020 1:45 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Tyler C. wrote:
It is pretty typical for simple artifact measurements to be given as a bounding box. I imagine it would be very unusual to give the width of the blade at its base instead, especially without stating that is the case. The difference you are seeing may be due to image distortion. I would assume it is a bounding box measurement unless stated otherwise.

While that line of reasoning makes sense, it would result in a socket that is oval in the "wrong" direction so I don't think that's the case. In images tilted upwards the socket still has a smaller width than the blade so I doubt it's an image distortion in this case. Either the blade is larger than 48 mm at it's widest, or the socket is not 48 mm wide which would make for an oddly shaped 46x48 mm socket.
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Tyler C.




Location: Canada
Joined: 20 Aug 2019
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PostPosted: Wed 20 May, 2020 8:15 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Martin Kallander wrote:

While that line of reasoning makes sense, it would result in a socket that is oval in the "wrong" direction so I don't think that's the case. In images tilted upwards the socket still has a smaller width than the blade so I doubt it's an image distortion in this case. Either the blade is larger than 48 mm at it's widest, or the socket is not 48 mm wide which would make for an oddly shaped 46x48 mm socket.


I think that ovality like that would not be out of the question. Actually, I would expect those two dimensions to be different because the ridge continues down the front of the socket which would make the front-back dimension wider while there is a flat on the sides of the socket which would make the side-side dimension slightly narrower. Of course I certainly don't know for sure so feel free to tell me I'm wrong, but this is what I would assume based on what I see and the dimensions given.



 Attachment: 469.32 KB
Ridge.png



Last edited by Tyler C. on Wed 20 May, 2020 10:53 am; edited 1 time in total
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Martin Kallander




Location: Sweden
Joined: 25 Sep 2018

Posts: 37

PostPosted: Wed 20 May, 2020 10:46 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Tyler C. wrote:
I think that ovality like that would not be out of the question. Actually, I would expect those two dimensions to be different because the ridge continues down the front of the socket which would make the front-back dimension wider while there is a flat on the sides of the socket which would make the side-side dimension slightly narrower. Of course I certainly don't know for sure so feel free to tell me I'm wrong, but this is what I would assume based on what I see and the dimensions given.

You know, you're actually starting to convince me. I just ruled out it being oval in that direction in any way to begin with without even considering the abrupt end of the one side. When overlaying the two images and scaling them to the same height (admittedly not the most accurate way to do these things) it is visibly wider than the side I measured, you might be onto something!

I don't think it's possible to put this into the spearhead at this point though, the only thing left before it's done are the hearts on the sides, the wings and some polishing ¯\_(ツ)_/¯


https://scontent-cph2-1.xx.fbcdn.net/v/t1.0-9/98341600_1368353400023160_2617800893537452032_n.jpg?_nc_cat=101&_nc_sid=110474&_nc_ohc=qLZBUMFNlWMAX_vPuar&_nc_ht=scontent-cph2-1.xx&oh=041b41413c6d20468c78885b73eff0ea&oe=5EEA54C8
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Tyler C.




Location: Canada
Joined: 20 Aug 2019
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Posts: 60

PostPosted: Wed 20 May, 2020 4:08 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

That's looking really good! I'm looking forward to seeing the finished product. Be sure to post some pictures when it's done.
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