hamletmike

HMS Surprise

Can anyone comment on, provide advice, or have experience with the Latina 1/48 scale HMS Surprise.  I am looking at purchasing and building it, but would like to know if anyone has had experience with the kit.

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After a quick search in the build log area, I see 3 builds going on.  If no one answers here, go take a look a the build logs.  You can ask questions of the builders there also.

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Hello Mike

Latina kits seem to be at the lower end of the scale when it comes to quality of material and clarity of instructions.

Existing build logs can help you overcome the kits shortcomings. 

But is very much a case with kits that you get what you pay for

 

Regards

Ken

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Hi Mike, I am building the AL kit and have found it to be pretty good. Couple issues: 1. The directions are sketchy. For example it will say "plank the hull". If you are a newbie like me, that encompasses 3 months work and a lot of help from Internet sources to do it correctly. 2. The nails provided are not brass, they are iron so will rust. I used bamboo trenails that mimic the ship and are to scale. 3. The plans and a few of the parts are not historically accurate, but using the Lavery book and other source material like the Admiralty plans you can work around it. 4. The cost of the kit is variable as it lists for $800, but I ebayed it for $450. I think I have a newer kit as it has a cd of the plans in it that others have not mentioned in their blogs in MSW 1.0 before it died. Feel free to message me if you'd like more info

mikeaidanh likes this

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There should be a book and a CD. See the first page of my build that has a picture of the front cover. If AL won't help I could probably photocopy them for you. PM me if you would like

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Hmmm. My first kit? Sorry.

 

The best source I have found for drawings was Brian Lavery's book The Frigate Surprise: The Complete Story of the Ship Made Famous in the novels of PatrickO'Brian. Worth buying or I got a look at the Library before I purchased.

 

The original ships plans are also available if you google HMS Surprise plans

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I bought the AL 1/48 Surprise and was surprised (pun intended) at the quality of the plans and instructions. Full 1/1 scale drawings and plans in full color. The thick instruction booklet is filled with several color photos in each and every page. I started doubting this was an AL kit, after building the Bounty and Endeavour. Only one negative thing I have to comment this far... the figurehead is hideous.

I have not started building this monster and I may not do it soon due to its size: 1.33 mts., so I can not comment very deep on it, but what I have seen in the open box, pleases my eye.

I read somewhere that AL has now a new line of products, much better than the previous. The Surprise might be one of those.

Edited by Ulises Victoria
mcpesq817 likes this

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Hello Hamletmike,

 

I am also building "Surprise" from AL. The instructions and plans that I received were very basic but by the sound of Ulises Victoria things have improved. Some of my timber was poor and dowels were warped but I can work round that. The historical accuracy is another matter. AL have produced a generic frigate that needs research input from the builder to make it HMS Surprise. On the other hand simply follow their instructions and you will achieve a nice clean model.....just not Aubry's ship.

 

I am sorry that my build log is so sparse but I mean to update it soon.

 

Best of luck!

 

Mike. 

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I have the AL Surprise and found all of the comments here to be spot on. You may want to check out other kit manufacturers of the same ship (Mamoli I think). Never did hear why Jotika didn't launch theirs (too many "Surprises" on the market?). The prototype building log is still on their website.

Best

Jaxboat B)

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I joined MSW today, as I am 7 months into building the AL model HMS Surprise. This is my first big kit as I have scratch built most of my models in the past. The CD and manaul are very difficult and now I'm on the mast and rigging I seem to spend more time studying the book than working on the model. I have Parkinsons so this project was a challege to complete by Christmas,  don't think I will make it as I am hitting great problems with the chainwales, and ratlines. I was hoping that I would find an answer in this forum, but I find the quality of work excellent and beyond my present capablities. Meanwhile I will enjoy the reading.

I also put lighting into the cabin, and the covered it with blue glass, not a good idea.

I will post some photos when I can..

Pete G

riverboat, trippwj, Anja and 2 others like this

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I have seen several mentions of a CD. My kit didn't come with a CD. Is there a way to get it somewhere, or maybe someone would be so kind enough as to send me a copy? We can arrange some form of payment for the work and postage. Thank you.

PS I have a shipping address in Texas, BTW.

Edited by Ulises Victoria

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I have the AL Surprise and found all of the comments here to be spot on. You may want to check out other kit manufacturers of the same ship (Mamoli I think). Never did hear why Jotika didn't launch theirs (too many "Surprises" on the market?). The prototype building log is still on their website.

Best

Jaxboat B)

For what it's worth, the Mamoli Surprise is a  re-box of their La Gloire.  Considering that the Surprise was a captured French ship, it would seem Mamoli's heart is in the right place.. ^_^

 

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For what it's worth, the Mamoli Surprise is a  re-box of their La Gloire.  Considering that the Surprise was a captured French ship, it would seem Mamoli's heart is in the right place.. ^_^

 

 

Much like Revell with their line of plastic ships ie: Bounty/Beagle, Thermopylae/Pedro Nunes/Cutty Sark, Constitution/United States etc... Anyway, I am still interested in this kit.

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