photo by Sean Antonioli
In this shot, you can see all of the frames or "ribs" laid out in sequence.
Sean took this a few years back at Squero Canaletto.
It shows so much about the gondola building process.
Each frame is not only different from the others, but asymmetric as well.
Once the frames have been created, they are laid out as you see here, on a long curved beam called a "cantier".
Also known as a "jig" in some parts of the english-speaking world, the cantier is one of the most valuable pieces of equipment in a squero.
Each squero has at least one proprietary cantier.
The distance between the frames is determined by the cantier.
Some cantieri carry marks and measurements that make their gondole unique.
The curvature of each gondola comes from the cantier it was built on.
Experienced gondoliers can sense differences between boats built in different squeri; often times these difference are the result of differences between the cantieri they are built on.
Click and enlarge the image and you can see all sorts of interesting details, including the tail of another gondola in the background.
Thanks to Sean Antonioli for a most rare and educational photo.