Dubigeon – Bulle Six Shell patent MANEVAL

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The Axonometry of the Dubigeon Shipyard. In 1963, the Anciens Chantiers Dubigeon and the Chantiers reunited Loire Normandie merge..

and give birth to Dubigeon-Normandie, which includes four industrial establishments : Dubigeon Nantes, Grand-Quevilly, Dieppe and Le Havre.

The Chantiers de Normandie, them, are originally, an offshoot of the Saint-Nazaire-Penhoët Construction Site. When in 1955, the group splits into two companies, the Chantiers de l 'Atlantique and the Chantiers Reunis de Loire-Atlantique, the main activity of the Chantiers de Normandie remains shipbuilding with the Grand-Quevilly shipyard. In 1963, the company will become Dubigeon-Normandie and the repair facility in Le Havre will remain fully linked to the Rouen Construction Site.

Major players in the region's industrial development, the yards employed until 1500 people in Grand-Quevilly in the years 20. Created in 1893, the company led at its inception by engineer Jean Laporte, floated more than 250 ships up 1986, year of final closure. SMEDAR is keen not to make a clean sweep of the glorious past of this site. For this purpose, the project for the future sorting center includes the construction of a reception pavilion, in which some objects acquired by SMEDAR will be exhibited: fresco, Quevilly model, photos. otherwise, the Perret Pavilion, former building foremen's pavilion which bears the name of its architect, was rehabilitated in 1999.
It is now listed in the inventory of historic monuments.

Dubigeon had at least Two Sites: One of Nantes and that of Grand-Quevilly

A few Kilometers Downstream Rouen, on the Seine, located in Grand-Quevilly Buildings Veterans Shipyards Normandy.

Today (in 1968), Boats are no longer built there, with the exception of small pleasure craft units, but during the conversion of certain Yard activities, these buildings are seen to unite materials which generally are more complementary than competitors :

Wood and Plastics Bulle Six shells were manufactured there, the Plastics Division

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Chantiers Dubigeon,chantenay (Nantes)
Nantes are a shipbuilding company
Founded in 1760 and Disappeared in 1987.

The Building Dubigeon
was the name of a Nantes shipbuilding company, closed in 1987.

The old site Dubigeon Island Nantes
Hosts some of the machines on the island

The founder
Julien Dubigeon

The corporate headquarters of Nantes (France)

The first shipyard Dubigeon family was established in 1760 Julien Dubigeon (1711-1781)

Carpenter training, it s & rsquo; is formed gradually in all trades shipbuilding. He set up his first shipyard in 1760 on the site of the & rsquo; former scholarship. At the end of the eighteenth century, Nantes is the first port of French trade, position due notably triangular trade and the slave trade, which ensures the prosperity of Nantes shipowners and development of shipbuilding. As Dubigeon sites, shipyards Nantais s & rsquo; install near shipowners.

Industrialization, Marketing:

L & rsquo; Adventure Bubble six shells is copy is unique in & rsquo; French architectural history & rsquo; postwar. It combines architectural d & rsquo research; vanguard,association & rsquo; an architect with a large industrial group with the general public. One of the most innovative aspects in the process of John Benjamin Maneval, is the & rsquo; attention early in the studies the control of the & rsquo; whole process of manufacturing.

This design Mastery,manufacturing and marketing spread by Jean Benjamin Maneval into the & rsquo; development of information leaflets designed entirely by its agency. Search d & rsquo; an industrial partner, from the first sketches, is the & rsquo; one of the decisive elements of project success.

Reconciliation with Pétroles d & rsquo; Aquitaine allows to have the detachment d & rsquo; an engineer specialized in plastics, Marcel Dupieux, and substantial resources to carry out the first prototypes to the & rsquo; actual size.

The company Built-plastic, created by Jean Benjamin Maneval in partnership with Aquitaine Oil,is hosted in turn Elf Defense,and brings together prestigious industrial partners (Lafarge cements or d & rsquo Company; Technical and Economic Studies),useful to provide the necessary appropriations to the first manufacturing and marketing of Bulle six shells institutions and Toy Dubigeon, thus a key driver for business success of the project.

The gigantic aisles d & rsquo; assemblies are rehabilitated, and the House of People and Technology ; the number shims 1, 2 and 3 are cleared and developed, to highlight 250 Years of shipbuilding site ; Loire edges are redesigned, the courts are created, refurbished docks ...

After more than 5 years of work, the site has been totally transformed to make way for a vast public park 13 hectares called Parc des Chantiers.
L & rsquo; all platforms and is accessible and offers a beautiful walk along the Madeleine arm ; various lush gardens, exotic or wild are arranged on & rsquo; former industrial wasteland ; an urban beach and a playground mark the versatility of the site ...

The d & rsquo naves assemblies, located along the boulevard Léon Bureau, now house the famous machines of the & rsquo; island, while the House of People and Technology somehow becomes a museum tracing the & rsquo; naval history.

  • Closing in 1987 of Dubigeon shipyards puts an end to more than 200 years of shipbuilding in the heart of the city of Nantes, and makes an entire section of Nantes culture disappear.
    – Founded in 1760 Julien Dubigeon, Dubigeon shipyards support Nantes' economic development, commercial city enriched by Triangular Trade. In the 18th and 19th centuries very tall ships were built, including the Belem, launched in 1896, still bears witness to majesty today.
    – After years of expansion, the economy darkens from 1959, as the White Paper written by the Merveilleux-du-Vignaux Commission notes.
    – International and mainly Japanese competition leads to a drop in orders for French shipyards, and therefore imposes their concentration. So, in 1963..

    The Former Dubigeon Shipyards and the combined Loire Normandy Shipyards merge into 1963, and give birth to Dubigeon-Normandie, which includes four industrial establishments : Dubigeon Nantes, Grand-Quévilly, Dieppe and Le Havre.

  • Years 1970 constitute a truce for the shipyards, but not for their employees since entering 1956 and 1976, the workforce is down 60% In Nantes.
    – Nantes yards then specialize in car ferries, and completion in 1982 you Scandinavia, which, with its 185 meters long is the largest ship ever built in Nantes, is a source of pride for Dubigeon Shipyards.
    – However, the scale of the naval crisis makes a new merger with the shipbuilding branch of the Alsthom group inevitable 1983.
    – The latter cannot however prevent the closure of the Dubigeon shipyards in Nantes in 1987, after delivery of Bougainville, military support building, the 3 October 1986.
    – Employee strikes, more spectacular operations such as the occupation of Belem fail to avoid closure. 150 employees are transferred to Saint-Nazaire, while the others are placed on conversion or retirement leave, even find themselves unemployed.

With the cessation of shipbuilding, it’s a part of the cultural history of the City of Nantes that is disappearing.

Aux Anciens Ateliers: DUBIGEONNANTES

The old building of the Ateliers et Chantiers de Nantes

the House of Men and Techniques

Hull Prototypes

bubble 6 Hull Jean Benjamin Maneval

were industrialized

A DUBIGEON Grand-Quevilly :

(Premier) PATENT

A mounting method of residential units in synthetic material.

(Second) PATENT

Prefabricated plastic housing.






booklet (color) – THE BUBBLE 6 SHELLS

Bloc Technique S.M.E.T




Plan – Bubbles assembled 5 SHELLS – 10 shells

dubigeon38 dubigeon39 dubigeon40 dubigeon41

The Gray Crane

Acquired by the Port of Nantes-Saint-Nazaire 1966, gray crane, a power 60 tonnes and a height of 47 meters, located on the dock President Wilson, the southwestern tip of the island (47° 11′ 57″ N, 1° 34 '26 "The), coils used primarily for unloading operations on behalf of the company Pum Chaillous (Arcelor) up 2003. After this date, it is abandoned in the redeployment of port handling activities on other terminals Cheviré Nantes and Roche Maurice.

Designed initially to be scrapped, gray crane was bought by the city of Nantes at the Autonomous Port in April 2005 for symbolic euro, it is a listed building as an object the following month. It is the subject of renovation work between September 2006 and February 2007 : security, relief of the counterweight and silver paint.

She now acts as a "figurehead" of the island of Nantes, being rehabilitated, close to the shed bananas and Rings Buren located on the Quai des Antilles.



The Machines de l'Ile is an artistic project born from the imagination
François Delarozière and Pierre Orefice.

It is located at the crossroads of "invented worlds" of Jules Verne, the mechanical universe of Leonardo da Vinci and the industrial history of Nantes, on the exceptional site of the former shipyards.

While the Marine Worlds machines are now installed in the Carrousel, another universe was created in the Gallery, the vegetation and the Heron Tree.
In the Machine Gallery, plant alongside mechanical plants and animals of the canopy: a mole drill, a study ant…

the carousel

This carousel is an incredible sculpture dedicated to the sea. Visitors are invited to travel on water 3 levels in a lace concrete. The carousel is topped by a capital decorated with pediments and guarded by 16 fishermen from all the world's oceans.

The yellow crane was built in 1954
on behalf of the former shipyards Dubigeon

She still occupies the site (47° 12′ 18″ N, 1° 34 '11 "The). She wears prefabricated elements for building boats up 1987, date of the closure of sites. The town bought it two years later, wishing to preserve an important part of the industrial heritage of the city, integrates the Building Fair.

It displays a weight 400 tonnes, height 43 meters and a power lifting 80 tonnes. She undergoes renovation of twelve weeks 2006, the second in eleven years, comprising a securing, relief counterweights and 1,8 ton of paint.

As one of the flagship elements of the redevelopment of the Ile de Nantes, it is the destination point of the walking track to the elephant of the island of machinery.


Currently, the twentieth century: (construction sites – Dubigeon)

were Transformed into a Gigantic ATELIER

> The Royal Society of Luxury <


This pachyderm of wood and steel seems to inspire dreams of grown children. To admire, towards the site of the former shipyards on the island of Nantes.

"Great Elephant"






Virginia Maneval

I am the daughter of Jean Benjamin Maneval, famous urban architect who notably created the Bulle Six Coques, a plastic house from the pop years. You can also find me on my Facebook page Bubblemania.fr or on my page La Bulle Six Coques by Jean Benjamin Maneval.

2 thoughts on “Dubigeon – Bulle Six Shell patent MANEVAL

  1. Hello,
    Can we know the sources of the graphic documents that are published in your article ? Including the first document : l’axonométrie. Is it a redraw from a photograph ? It represents the construction site at what time ?
    Thank you


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