Denny Tank Museum, Dumbarton

(4.8/5 based on 150 reviews on the web)
The Denny Ship Model Experiment Tank was the world's first privately owned commercial tank and was built in 1882 using Froude's design of the 1870 Admiralty tank at Chelston Cross, Torquay. From its inception until 1963 it was owned by William Denny and Brothers of Dumbarton, world renowned builders of fast cross channel steamers. It was then owned by Vickers until its closure in 1983. The facility has been in the safe hands of the Scottish Maritime museum since 1986.

Visitors to the museum will be able to see the complete model making process, which has remained virtually unchanged since tank testing began.

The purpose of the tank was to test scaled down models of the proposed ships hull to find out the stability, speed, and drag in the water. With the new tank the Dumbarton firm enjoyed a tremendous advantage over their rivals. Before even the keel of a Denny boat was laid her speed had been determined.
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  • We can endorse everything already said about this fascinating place. It gives a great insight into the techniques used in ship design and testing before computers became available. There is plenty to ...  more »
  • The museum is very informative and worth a visit, but the cafe was awful. Ordered a pot of tea and a scone (not home made, small shop bought and hard as a rock even after microwave heating) . Should h...  more »
  • This is a fantastic museum to visit,for an insight into the early days of shipbuilding,telling how models were made with wax and floated in the test tank to see how they would perform..Our guides were...  more »
  • Interesting maritime museum, home to the first test tank in the world on a large scale. Plenty to see and plenty of relative activities for adults and kids. It also has a 3d printer (kind of) built in 1884! At £3.50 per adult and free entry for children, a good couple of hours at a reasonable price with friendly staff.
  • Staff very friendly; exhibits well later out and interesting. All in all worth the small admission fee
  • It is a unique experience into the development of ship building and design of earlier days particularly on the Clyde using models of wax and testing them totally in an enormous test tank. Much worth a visit and the little Cafe attached thereto is also worthy of testing for good food at modest cost.
  • Staff very nice food inexpensive and fone
  • Brilliant little museum based around one of the most important maritime buildings in the country. Well priced with very helpful and knowledgeable staff.