Preserved in almost pristine condition, pegged mortise-and-tenon joints such as these held the planks of the ship together. The protruding tenons fit into corresponding mortises in an adjacent plank; pegs locked the entire arrangement together. Unlike the other components of the hull, which are of pine, the tenons and the false keel are of oak.
To the surprise of the excavators, the planks of the hull were too tough to break easily into short lengths. Because prolonged exposure to water would have seriously damaged the wood, the investigators had to remove the planking quickly. They sliced the tenons connecting the planks with a knife and either carefully broke the planks or sawed them into pieces small enough to fit into their conservation tanks.