Newsflash, added Thursday Jan 21, 2016
The latest edition of the BSTS Newletter No.82 has just appeared online, courtesy as usual of a dedicated page on Barrie M.Schwortz’s shroud.com site.
There is much of interest there, especially original ‘hands on’ research by Hugh Farey that bravely attempts (and at least partially succeeds) in modelling the 1532 fire and its alleged mechanism of action and consequences, notably the resultant symmetrical pattern of burn holes. There is also some welcome and long overdue re-thinking about the “scorches always fluoresce under uv, quite unlike the non-fluorescing TS body image” mantra (see too this investigator’s recent contrary postings) and much else besides (which I’ve yet to read) e.g. that claim for allegedly ‘invisible’ not to say hypothetical mending that we’re routinely told invalidates the radiocarbon dating . Enjoy, or don’t, according to one’s sindonological sensibilities…
PS. Work proceeds apace on my “Shroud Manifesto”, flagged up recently in “Comments” now up to its 25th bullet point. There’s no immediate urgency to post, especially as there’s much refreshing of memory, re-checking of references etc still to be done.
It will have some photos of my latest template for flour-imprinting – a 21cm long vinyl baby doll with a cute face and smile. There’s one striking imprint thus far in some half dozen trials, all with the expected 3D properties, but it’s proving difficult to get consistent results. Technique is all important when needing to transfer flour cleanly and completely from reduced-scale 3D synthetic polymer to linen. One never had this trouble with a 1:1 scale human appendage (my hand!).
Update: Saturday 22nd Jan
Have decided not to bother any more with the doll. Handy though it is size-wise for modelling purposes (less linen needed!) its plastic “skin” is simply not the equivalent of the real stuff, like my hand: while it coats well when first smeared with oil or beaten egg yolk (a new test) and then sprinkled with white flour, the latter – the vital imprinting medium – fails to transfer cleanly and completely to the wet linen, leaving gaps in the image.
However, one good thing came out of the doll test: I decided to try egg yolk versus egg white in place of vegetable oil as the initial ‘adhesive’ on my hand, and obtained (dare one say) a somewhat spectacular result, probably my best to date, as shown by these 3D renderings of the positive and tone-reversed imprints after baking .
Left: positive flour imprints using (a) egg yolk and (b) egg white. Right: the same after tone-reversal in ImageJ. The fingers were deliberately spread apart when using egg yolk, and deliberately bunched together with egg white.
Not bad eh? Note the spindly fingers, as per the Real Thing. It’s a consequence of imprinting cylindrical appendages where the cloth is pressed down ONTO them, not between them, ie. the linen makes bridges between the fingers such that the top surfaces only are imprinted, making them seem thinner than is really the case.
The spindly fingers of the TS are frequently commented upon and have been the subject of some exotic physics and biology – like emission of X-rays! Contact imprinting offers a more prosaic explanation.
I may well substitute egg yolk or white for vegetable oil in future work. While not as convenient as oil straight from the bottle, it’s less messy and easier to rinse off hands etc afterwards. The humble egg is just as ‘medieval’ as vegetable oil, especially in a region of France (like Lirey in the Champagne region) which lies well north of the sun-kissed Mediterranean and its olive trees.
Final postscript: 24th Jan 2015
Once again, this retired scientist is being lectured, nay chastised, by the French physician, he of the prescriptive – and all too often wrong – PDF-penning tendency, on what are the priorities where MY OWN research programme is concerned. yes, see comments attached to this thread.
This is neither the time nor place to discuss the philosophy of science (and the scientific method) with physicians who while using the fruits of scientific research are generally not scientists (unless holding a PhD or UK-style research MD or similar). Suffice it to say that science is NOT about establishing the correct answers. It’s about asking the right questions, assisted by model-building. The answers to those questions, obtained with one’s increasingly-refined model, hopefully improve the probability that one’s answers are correct. But as I say, science is about asking the right questions. It’s not a skill that can be taught, but is one that with patient observation can be learned, by working with a team leader who asks the right questions (thus the attraction of the university environment where there’s a recognized “prof” heading a department who’s good at asking the right questions, often leaving it to his students and research fellows to deliver the answers – right or wrong.
Do i practice what I preach? Yes, I believe so, and here’s the proof from some model-building I did some 2 weeks ago using a home-made, small scale terra cotta bas relief to model the TS face.
Response to Mutant Buzzard (Comments, this posting): here’s one I did earlier (June 2012) – response of those scourge marks on Shroud Scope, given extra contrast, then 3D-enhanced in ImageJ:
I see no reason why scourge marks could not be replicated, at least in principle, do you MutantB? All one would need are miniature dumbbell-shaped templates of some description that are painted with fresh blood or something made to resemble blood, and then serially imprinted across the entire body image, front and back, all 372 of them! (Personally, from reading the NT and the exchange of conversation between Pilate and Jesus, and then Pilate and the baying mob, I’ve never believed that Pilate ordered a scourging anything like as severe as would be indicated had the TS been radiocarbon-dated to the first century. The recipient would have been in no state to carry a protest banner, far less a cross or transom thereof).
Also needed for Comments is this image: