A ship replica may also be a generic replica, one that represents a certain type of ship rather than a particular historic example, like the Kamper Kogge, replicating the Cogs that were used extensively in Northern Europe by the Hanseatic League in the Middle Ages, but where there is little knowledge of specific ships.
Reasons to build a replica include historic research into shipbuilding, national pride, exposition at a museum or entertainment (e.g., for a TV series), and/or education programs for the unemployed. For example, see the project to build a replica of the Continental brigantine Andrew Doria. Apart from building a genuine replica of the ship, sometimes the construction materials, tools and methods can also copied from the ships' original era, as is the case with the replica of the Batavia in Lelystad and the replica of ship of the line De Delft in Rotterdam (Delfshaven).
Some generic type replicas such as Thor Heyerdahl's Ra II, qualify as true replicas as these ships were built to investigate the craft and or culture of the original era. That they do not replicate a specific vessel is mainly because no details of such a specific vessel are available.
Some other ships that are modeled after ships of a certain type or era (and are in that sense replicas) do not quality as true replicas. Some ships maybe borderline cases such as the Kanrin Maru, which is actually twice the size of the original, but built following the plans of the original.
Replicas can be temporary, cheap and very simple, such as the replica of a Viking ship that was burnt at the Leixlip Festival.
Notable historic type ships that are not replicas include:
Another ambiguous case subject to the Ship of Theseus dilemma is the US Brig Niagara. The original was sunk in 1820 for preservation, and the ship has been rebuilt three times since. The third reconstruction was considerably more extensive, and the only parts from the original which were retained are non-structural, leading many authorities to classify her as a replica, rather than a reconstructed original.
|Ship name||Type||Current porta||Current affiliation||Country||Original affiliation||Original built||Notable for||End||Remark|
|Ra II||Reed boat||Oslo, Norway||Bygdøy maritime museum||Ancient Egypt merchant. Heyerdahl crossed Atlantic in it||Class replica|
|ULUBURUN II||Merchant||Bodrum, Turkey||Bodrum Underwater Archaeological Museum||Late Bronze Age merchant||Oldest known merchant shipwreck.|
|Olympias||Trireme||Faliro, Greece||dama||Main warship of ancient Greece||Class replica|
|Kyrenia II||Merchant||?||Merchant ship of ancient Greece|
|Lisa von Lübeck||Caravel||Lübeck, Germany||Main medieval merchant||Class replica|
|Kamper Kogge||Hanseatic cog||Kampen, the Netherlands||Main medieval merchant||Class replica|
|Santa María||Carrack||1)Palos de la Frontera, Spain 2)Columbus, Ohio, US 3)Edmonton, Canada 4)Funchal, Portugal||Columbus 1492 squadron||Several replicas, all based on conjectures|
|Pinta||Caravel||1)Palos de la Frontera, Spain 2)Bayona, Spain||Columbus 1492 squadron||Several replicas, all based on conjectures|
|Niña||Caravel||1)Palos de la Frontera, Spain 2)Grand Cayman, UK||Columbus 1492 squadron||Several replicas, all based on conjectures|
|Matthew||Bristol, UK||John Cabot's ship to America in 1497|
|Victoria||Carrack||Seville, Spain||Only survivor of Magellan's 1519-1522 travel||Achieved to survive the circumnavigation of the globe again in 2006.|
|Real||Galley||Barcelona, Spain||Flagship of Don John of Austria in the Battle of Lepanto|
|Golden Hinde||Tudor||London, UK||1577-1580 circumnavigation|
|Duyfken||East Indies Explorer||Perth, Australia||discovery of Australia 1606|
|Discovery||Barque||Jamestown, USA||first UK settlement, 1607|
|Godspeed||Brigantine||Jamestown, USA||first UK settlement, 1607|
|Susan Constant||Merchant||Jamestown, USA||first UK settlement, 1607|
|Halve Maen||Maine to Virginia Explorer||Albany, USA||original explorer of what is now called the Hudson River, Henry Hudson, 1609|
|Mayflower II||Merchant||Plymouth, USA||Pilgrim ship 1620|
|Kalmar Nyckel||Dutch Pinnace 280 tonne ship rigged||Kalmar Nyckel Foundation, USA||Founded New Sweden colony at Fort Christina (Wilmington, Delaware, USA)||Charters, Daysails, Appearances|
|Batavia||East Indies Merchant||Lelystad, The Netherlands||mutiny 1629|
|Prins Willem||East Indies Merchant||Den Helder, the Netherlands|
|Nonsuch||Merchant||Winnipeg, Canada||Manitoba Museum||First trading in Hudson Bay 1668-69|
|De Zeven Provinciën||Ship of the Line (80 guns)||Lelystad, the Netherlands||Flagship of Michiel de Ruyter||Under construction|
|Götheborg||East Indies Merchant||Gothenburg, Sweden||Globetrotter||Sail training vessel (volunteers)|
|Amsterdam||East Indies Merchant||Amsterdam, the Netherlands||Scheepvaart Museum|
|Lady Washington||Brig||Aberdeen, USA||first US merchant to reach Japan|
|Jacobstads Wapen||Galleon||Jakobstad, Finland|
|Surprise/Rose||Frigate||San Diego, USA||San Diego Maritime Museum||1776 attack New York. Master and Commander||Renamed Surprise after movie|
|HMS Sultana||Schooner||Chestertown, USA||US colony coast patrol||auctioned 1772|
|Endeavour||Bark||Sydney, Australia||Captain Cook's ship|
|Santísima Trinidad||Ship of the line (144 guns)||Málaga, Spain||battles of Cape St Vincente & Trafalgar|
|De Delft||Ship of the Line (54-60 guns)||Rotterdam, the Netherlands||Scheepswerf 'De Delft'||Battle of Camperdown||Under Construction|
|Bounty||Bark||Sydney, Australia||Mutiny 1789|
|Grand Turk||Frigate||Middlesex, UK||Generic Nelson age war ship replica|
used in Hornblower
|Lady Nelson||Brig||Tasmania, Australia||Explored Australian coastline||1825 capture by pirates|
|Lynx||Schooner||Newport Beach, USA||UK blockade running privateer|
|Pride of Baltimore II||Topsail Schooner||Baltimore, USA||UK blockade running privateer||Type replica|
|Niagara||Brig||Erie, Pennsylvania, USA||Erie Maritime Museum||Battle of Lake Erie||Sunk for preservation 1820, rebuilt three times since||Sail training vessel and museum|
|Amistad||Schooner||New Haven, USA||Involved in Slave trading incident 1839||unknown after 1844|
|Enterprize||Schooner||Melbourne, Australia||Transported European settlers to Melbourne|
|William the Fourth||Steam Paddle Wheeler||Newcastle, NSW, Australia||Newcastle City Council||Ocean going steam powered side paddlewheeler||Replica of Australian built ship|
|Pilgrim||Brig||Dana Point, USA||1834 novel by Richard Henry Dana, Jr.||Used in Amistad movie|
|Dunbrody||Barque||New Ross, Ireland||Famine Ship||A Famine History Museum|
|Jeanie Johnston||Barque||Dublin, Ireland||Famine Ship||Sail Training vessel, a Famine History Museum and a Corporate Entertainment venue|
|Californian||Schooner||San Diego, USA||patrolled Californian coast app. 1850||based on C.W. Lawrence|
|Bluenose II||Schooner||Lunenburg, Canada||Winning Racing Schooner||Fundraising for Bluenose III|
At the Viking Ship Museum in Roskilde, replicas of Viking ships are built.