Jump to content

Welcome to Model Ship World
Register now to gain access to all of our features. Once registered and logged in, you will be able to create topics, post replies to existing threads, give reputation to your fellow members, get your own private messenger, post status updates, manage your profile and so much more. If you already have an account, login here - otherwise create an account for free today!

To help kit developers and kit builders alike-What would you like to see developed for the hobby.

  • This topic is locked This topic is locked
107 replies to this topic


  • Members
  • 78 posts
  • LocationAtlantic Canada

As a total newcomer to wood I at first thought I had nothing to add here, but on reflection I do.


Even though the topic is "new kit development", I think its worth saying that with regards to existing kits I would like to see more/better information on all the manufacturer's websites.  A ship name, scale, and a handful of low resolution photos of the expertly finished product, frankly, doesn't cut it.  Show me what I am getting for my $100-$600 (don't rely on 3rd party reviews).  You don't have to give away the plans but a PDF of the assembly process is what gave me the confidence to finally click "buy" on my first kit.


As far as future development, I think there is a great opportunity to up the scale realism by embracing a more multi-media approach. Wood is nice, I like wood, and wood is the whole point here but there are many many parts-pieces which could stand to be resin, or even injection molded plastic.  There are just some details for which the over-scale grain of real wood shatters the illusion (ships wheel for example).  Also the plastic model world is doing amazing things with PhotoEtch and I see lots of opportunities for its incorporation in wooden ship building (beyond what its currently being used for).

Edited by Sunsanvil, 25 July 2016 - 06:17 PM.

  • trippwj, mtaylor, E&T and 3 others like this


  • Members
  • 1,502 posts
  • LocationQueensbury NY
Ok, I'll throw a few cents in.

As a newbie scratch POF builder, I transitioned from "traditional" POB kits, however I did learn a lot from POB kits, mainly that the plans and instructions were mostly terrible ( exception being MS Confederacy IMO ).
I agree wholeheartedly with a lot of comments that having options for upgrading kits is great, but I think that's better left to the specialists like syren/crown etc.. to offer than the manufacturer ( it's not in their interest). Just check out the option kits available for a lot of plastic kits from third parties ( it's a huge business ).
Now I think I can say with reasonable confidence that a large amount of ship modelers want to build something with a history ( why so many Vic's and Connies ), but there are a lot of other ships with great history's that are being ignored but my point being that who wants to build 5 Vic's, we need to have choice, but who knows what they are interested in until they get inspired by seeing something different, ( DA comet, GH swiftsure, CP barge ).

I think what I'm trying to say is " if you build it, they will come" IF it's good quality, great plans and instructions, price reasonable for the subject matter ( $200 for a awesome barge, $800 for an awesome frigate, $1500 for an awesome first rate ).

  • Chuck, Ryland Craze, Rustyj and 5 others like this

Current builds: HMS Pegasus TFFM, USF Confederacy,


Completed builds:  ECHO cross section.18th C Longboat.


  • Members
  • 40 posts

I would like to see 'crew members' so as to help give a clue as to scale.. I find some on wargames figures websites,  but the general kit scales do not often match these... be nice to have sailors looking like they are altering rigging etc.

  • mtaylor, Canute, EJ_L and 1 other like this


  • Members
  • 1,075 posts
  • LocationWichita, Ks

More scale figures would be nice to see but with so many scales available I would think that would have to be a custom order from someone with the time and equipment, mainly a 3d printer, who would be willing to do that. If anyone knows of someone who is let me know as I would love to have some sailors on my ships!

  • mtaylor, Canute and Sunsanvil like this

"Anchors Aweigh"



Current Builds - La Couronne - Corel &  Le Soleil Royal - Sergal

Completed - Wood - Rattlesnake - Model Shipways, HMS Bounty - Constructo

                      Plastic - USS Constitution - Revel (twice), Cutty Sark.

Unfinished - Plastic - HMS Victory - Heller, Sea Witch.

Member : Nautical Research Guild




  • Members
  • 30 posts
  • LocationCornwall, UK

I don't know if this applies to multiple manufacturers, but I think Caldercraft/Jotika missed a trick with their Ballahoo schooner beginners model which I'm currently building. The instructions are not designed for a beginner - they are simply a list of things to do in a sequence with minimal detail on technique or process.


It's quite possibly one of the reasons why I bounced off the hobby for several years after getting 2 or 3 planks into the first planking. Thankfully I found a way back into it by looking elsewhere for guidance (such as this site) and I now feel up to speed on how to approach the build. But the whole process of learning the hobby is way too obtuse in my opinion; it's totally different to any other kind of model making and there needs to be a lot more hand-holding for absolute beginners if you ask me.


Also, it really is in the manufacturers best interests to grab hold of newbies and shower them with amazing instructions on beginner models (I'm not suggesting they include a complete paperback guide, just... something substantial). It means once they've finished they will go back and buy a more advanced model that takes their fancy.

Edited by Cornish_K, 09 August 2016 - 08:36 PM.

  • Chuck, mtaylor, coxswain and 4 others like this


  • Members
  • 54 posts
  • LocationSouth Coast NSW Australia

Name of Ship - No particular vessel in mind but would like to see something with similar lines to La Jacinthe through to a composite steam/sail or steam luxury yacht – type that you would see anchored off Nice or Rhode Island late 1800s to1930s- eg Imperial yacht Standart (1893) being built by Alex Baranov in the current build logs.


Scale - depends on size but prefer 1/48


Country of Origin - not important just fit the bill for appeal.


Material Choice –Very Important to me being located here in Australia as it is difficult to source the nicer wood such as pear/boxwood/cherry etc especially in thick sheets or billets would pay what it takes to get the wood supplied in say 24”x 4-6”W by 2”D or in smaller sheets that is dressed to get around our quarantine.


Style - Either POB or POF or possible (Hybrid see below) but not solid hull – reason again is mainly location and cost of mail to ship the weight. Probably also an issue internally in the US?  It may be worth considering a Hibrid hull choice which would help both the newer modeller and those that do not want to spend the length of time on a full frame. I thought something like the build of Toms10 HMS Leopard POB/POF/POB.  For those new to full framing you could offer all the easier square frames and POB for the more difficult cant and stern frames? Also may appeal to those that are looking for a shorter 12 month build. It would for me as I intend to start with an accurate kit probably POB to get my eye back in before I tackel Eds Naiad but would love a hibrid to cut my teeth on frames.


Build time – I would be prepared to put in around what it takes to build an Naiad as I want to leave something of me behind when I move on but I also normally have a couple of projects on the go for when I hit the wall on the main one. So another POB or Hybrid would fit the bill there as a 12 mth project.


Price range - depends on the timber supplied but if it came in large planks as mentioned above whatever they are worth plus the design time and plans – realistically probably up to $850 – $1000. Having just spent around $450 for a used Byrnes a third of which was shipping cost that would seem reasonable.


Advanced or beginner......something in-between? - Maybe the hybrid design could address this problem – one lot of research same detailing for both with three hull construction choices? In regard to a kit for beginners I think we have to acknowledge that we have a passionate but pretty narrow field of interest compared to the real and virtual world out there.Not many kids these days know what a chisel is let alone how to use one – this is in no way a critism of them its just that they have grown up in a disposable world and the thought of repairing something let alone building something is completely alien to them. If you accept that thought then it seems to me (generally) that the new entrants to our hobby will be those now aged mid 40s who have built models of some sort in their youth and are looking to re-engage rather than abinitio.


My two bobs worth – hope I'm not out of order. - Cheers Pete

Edited by PeteB, 10 August 2016 - 05:03 AM.

  • mtaylor, coxswain, Mike Y and 3 others like this


  • Members
  • 54 posts
  • LocationSouth Coast NSW Australia

I know I'm doing an Oliver Twist but I've been reflecting on my comments in my last post effectively writing off younger beginners which is not what I'd like to see happen. Maybe the way is to harness their mastery of computers and see if they can be tempted to put some skin in the game by physically constructing an object they have created on the "Dark Side" ie CAD modeling ?

  • mtaylor, Canute, donrobinson and 1 other like this

Janet B

Janet B
  • Members
  • 136 posts
  • Locationwarwickshire u-k


                                   I would love to see or buy if it was available a kit of the paddle steamer Waverly;the ship was built on the Clyde in the United Kingdom i think about 1930 or even

                                   before that in the second world war it helped in the evacuation of troops from the beaches of France.The ship has now been fully restored and in season you can

                                   even take a trip round the coast,with its two large funnels she makes a stirring sight.Many people in the u/k have made models of her but they are built from plans.

                                   I think as a fully working ship from the maybe just working paddles she would make a really fine model say 1/48 scale.

  • donfarr, Elijah, Canute and 1 other like this

0 user(s) are reading this topic

0 members, 0 guests, 0 anonymous users

Welcome GUEST to the Model Ship World Community.
Please LOGIN or REGISTER to use all of our feautures.