A clandestine look at the Frankenwerke.


Warning:  Some of these photos, you are about to view, are “graphic in nature.”  For mature audiences, only.  These surveillance photos were confiscated from an obviously disgruntled member of the Frankenwerke workforce.  Though, disconcerting; at very least, his story may have some deterrence value.  Perhaps.  Above, is a poorly-framed, and improperly-exposed view of the north wing of the Frankenwerke Technical Library.  Obviously, snapped under duress, and in haste.

As a graduate of a two-day seminar and field exercise, in capturing and interpreting clandestine images, under the military/acronymitous moniker of “PHOTINT,” in the fall of 1978, some of the subtleties of this discovery may be lost on you, the casual observer;  but, as a long-standing member of the Intelligence Community, I assure you, they are present.

What, I believe, our disgruntled employee (DE) was attempting to depict, is that amid years’ of randomly-stacked Messing About in Boats magazines, and other obviously outdated ephemera, you will see several series’ of those glossy, step-by-step, expensive, how-books on woodworking.  Perhaps, you yourself, may be hoarding such antediluvian publications?  Perhaps, we haf waaaayyzz to discover the troooothhh, eh?  But, I digress.

The trained observer will readily note that some of these tomes have actually been utilized.  Perhaps, as recently as ten years ago.  However, corroborating investigation will confirm no actual finger prints on any pages past the introduction – with notable exception of pages for tool advertising.  Perhaps, this is not without precedent, eh?  The reason for our DE’s efforts to disclose dysfunctional institutional idiosyncrasies here at Frankenwerke – with good intentions, I suspect – is likely related to a prolonged effort to produce two identical plywood ovals.  I say, “prolonged,” as in, several months.  Along that tortuous path, one helpful observer offered, “…just get two strings and a pencil…”  A bit light on pedagogy, but likely a succinct remedy.

In this particular intercepted image, our DE utilized an incompletely manicured backyard patio step to illustrate scale (and likely painting imperfections.)  This also constitutes evidence that such long-rumored ovals actually exist.  It also indicates a diversion of time and resources from Domestically Approved Projects to those of no-apparent-practical-applications, here at Frankenwerke.

Interpreting the actual intended purpose of these ovals will take considerable further research.  Our DE muttered something about, “…that damn nameboard for Gypsy Wagon…” before staring off, blankly, at an over-full Projects List posted prominently on the shop wall.   Yes.  This will take further investigation.  Please, stay tuned…


  1. Love reading Dan’s contributions to Duckworks. But, two questions arise. The first is, is this Dan Rogers the same fellow as Wooden Boat Dan from the podcast Hooked on Wooden Boats? Second, is the word perhaps actually now to be considered an entire sentence in and of itself?

    Regardless of any grammatical nit-picking, carry on Dan, I love your work!

  2. Transmission received. Will stay tuned to this channel. Awaiting further messages. Unable to say more, as She Who Will Be Obeyed is in the room.

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