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Old 08-01-2012, 03:25 PM   #21
thrash
 
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Default Re: [LTC3] Basements & Cellars

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Originally Posted by Quinlor View Post
Storage room was at a premium in many towns and cities. The space for additional buildings was severely limited inside town walls. In many German medieval towns, this lead to extensive building of basements, with multiple underground stories and often interconnected. In some cases, this resulted in extensive underground networks.
The Aboa Ventus museum in Turku, Finland, displays the excavated basements of one quarter of the medieval city: all brick, with many interconnections.
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Old 08-01-2012, 04:09 PM   #22
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Default Re: [LTC3] Basements & Cellars

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The Aboa Ventus museum in Turku, Finland, displays the excavated basements of one quarter of the medieval city: all brick, with many interconnections.
I just bet. Their weather is even worse than ours, and one of the universities here has settled on the same solution (underground tunnels linking every building on campus, including dorms).
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Old 08-01-2012, 11:33 PM   #23
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Default Re: [LTC3] Basements & Cellars

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The Aboa Ventus museum in Turku, Finland, displays the excavated basements of one quarter of the medieval city: all brick, with many interconnections.
From what I've read, medieval labour was cheap. That which was costly was materials.

To dig a basement, you just need an urban labourer who's desperate for a few pennies, or for being fed on the job, and a shovel you can lend him,
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Old 08-02-2012, 04:52 AM   #24
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Default Re: [LTC3] Basements & Cellars

Maybe I'm paranoid, but I don't like unsupervised unskilled labor on principle.
I've met too many morons that are sure they know what they're doing.
I wouldn't trust them to dig a hole properly.
Look at all the modern youths that have killed themselves when their holes collapsed on them.
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Old 08-02-2012, 09:02 AM   #25
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Default Re: [LTC3] Basements & Cellars

Medieval labour (keep in mind that you are talking about most of a continent for a thousand years!) wasn't particularly cheap by preindustrial standards. At some times and places, some kinds of labour were cheap, and at other times and places some kinds were expensive.

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Originally Posted by Flyndaran View Post
Maybe I'm paranoid, but I don't like unsupervised unskilled labor on principle.
I've met too many morons that are sure they know what they're doing.
I wouldn't trust them to dig a hole properly.
Look at all the modern youths that have killed themselves when their holes collapsed on them.
English plays a trick on us: we say "unskilled labour" when we mean "readily available." In an agrarian society, farm work counts as "unskilled" even if it took ten or fifteen years of practice to learn because most men can do it so the wage is set by the cheapest. I'm pretty sure that it takes longer to learn to reap effectively and develop the necessary muscles than it does to learn to stock shelves in a Safeway (especially since reaping has to be done in a short period each year, while stocking shelves is the same most weeks).

Most preindustrial farmers would know how to dig at least shallow trenches and pits for drainage, food storage, irrigation, latrines, and so on.
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Old 08-02-2012, 09:26 AM   #26
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Default Re: [LTC3] Basements & Cellars

Yea, I was going to say that there's a big difference between the "common sense" aka practical knowledge of an 8 year old from the suburbs with a shovel, and an adult from a farm. The first probably still has IQ 9 from lack of maturity and can't even try a default roll vs Mining or some other relevant skill for digging a safe pit (probably with a substantial bonus for this being a really easy task for your average kid-with-a-shovel hole), the second has enough practical experience to actually qualify for the default, AND has got up to IQ 10.

The adult also has the patience to take extra time on considering the hole for safety.

Adults dig some pretty serious holes for outhouses all the time - they very rarely get buried alive in them. This suggests that "some guys with shovels" probably can manage to dig out the basement with some supervision - more to make sure the hole is the right size and shape than to avoid horrible accidents.

Much of the "not having the hole collapse on you" is done before shovels even hit the ground, by picking soil that's stable enough to build a building on. Sandy loose soil, muddy wet soil? Bad news for your hole-digger, but also bad news for your house builder.
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Old 08-02-2012, 10:08 AM   #27
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Default Re: [LTC3] Basements & Cellars

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Yea, I was going to say that there's a big difference between the "common sense" aka practical knowledge of an 8 year old from the suburbs with a shovel, and an adult from a farm. The first probably still has IQ 9 from lack of maturity and can't even try a default roll vs Mining or some other relevant skill for digging a safe pit (probably with a substantial bonus for this being a really easy task for your average kid-with-a-shovel hole), the second has enough practical experience to actually qualify for the default, AND has got up to IQ 10.
I don't think I'd require a straight default roll. For just digging a pit I'd give enough of a bonus to make it a straight IQ roll for an untrained person, which would mean that a trained digger would get a substantial bonus.

In GURPS Underground Adventures, I have digging a simple pit or burrow require a Survival roll for the terrain type. It would make sense to allow a Farming roll instead, for the reasons you specify, or a Masonry or Carpenter roll.

Bill Stoddard
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Old 08-02-2012, 10:31 AM   #28
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Default Re: [LTC3] Basements & Cellars

Heck, I'd let a player swing Prospecting for an open pit, if this came up.

But yes (as noted in the text you quoted), I'd probably give a substantial task modifier bonus. I can't think, off hand, of a skill I wouldn't give a TM bonus to for this and yet still allow it as an option in the first place, but my players sometimes propose some really unlikely options out of desperation :)
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Old 08-02-2012, 03:53 PM   #29
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Default Re: [LTC3] Basements & Cellars

About 50 years ago my dad and my godfather put a basement under my godparents house. Dug a pit down at one side, put in a small footing and a screwjack post, repeat. Worked their way around building a concrete block wall between the posts then removed each post and filled in the gap. Then removed the dirt in the middle adding a couple support posts where needed. Place was still fine last I saw it 15-20 years ago.
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Old 08-02-2012, 04:39 PM   #30
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Default Re: [LTC3] Basements & Cellars

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About 50 years ago my dad and my godfather put a basement under my godparents house...
What's the construction of this house? Timber frame, or brick?
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