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About robnbill

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    Chantilly, VA USA
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    Woodworking, Wooden Ships, furniture, Travel, Reading

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  1. The thin rip jigs work extremely well with the 10" Sawstop I use. I found a similar jig made by Infinity Tools that is slightly cheaper and looks to be a bit more substantial than the Rockler tool. This is the one I have been using. Trying to cut strips between the fence and the blade is very dangerous and error prone.
  2. Theoretically I like the idea of rigging everything off ship. However, I find my mind just doesn't work like that. I end up rigging everything on ship. For me that is what works. Everyone has a different method. Fore to aft, aft to fore, bottom to top, etc. You just have to see what works. You will find your groove as you rig.
  3. Here is a photo from the Connie when they were removing the copper plates from the rudder. You can see the various dimples created by the nails in the copper plate. The older photo is of a previous restoration when they had removed the copper plate. You can see the nail holes. You can also see the frames where the board in the upper frame was removed.
  4. Just an update on progress on the Eagle. I have been putting quite a bit of time into researching the rigging configuration for the model. Dr. Crisman has a fuzzy hand drawing of how he thinks the ship's Rigging Profile would have looked. For my purposes, I need to drill down to much further details. My model will not have sails but there will be a combination of standing and running rigging on the model. I am using several references. The American ships were rigged following most, if not all the basic rules used for British Ship's of War. This makes things much cleaner. Given the expediency with which the Eagle was built (19 days) there were in all likelihood shortcuts in some of this. There certainly was with the hull construction. However, following these guidelines along with Crisman's expert opinions should give a good approximation of the ship as she sailed to battle. Here is a list of the reference material I am using in this effort.= Crisman's The Eagle Steel's Elements of Mastmaking, Sailmaking and Rigging Lee's Masting and Rigging of English Ship's of War Lennarth Petersson's Rigging Period Ship Models David Antscherl's Swan Vol 4, Rigging a Sixth Rate Sloop (while much earlier than the Eagle, it is a valuable treatise on actually rigging a model The first order of business was to attempt to identify those lines shown in Crisman's drawing and record these on a new CAD drawing (I am attempting to do) of the rigged ship. I also had an email discussion with Ed Tosti asking his advice on approaching designing a detailed rigging profile. His sage advice was to develop a detailed spreadsheet that would capture all the lines as well as the details around them, i.e., size of rope, serving, color, blocks etc. I found that the Petersson book was great in identifying lines typical to that period. I used this in conjunction with the Crisman drawing to develop a list of those lines I would be installing. This could then be cross referenced with the Steel and Lee volumes to flesh out the details. One key aspect of this is deciding the size of the ship itself. Steel has a table for sizing ship's based on the number of guns on board. I will be using the 20 to 22 gun tables. There is a difference in line and block sizing between Steel and Lee. Steel's number tend to be slightly larger in both line circumference and blocks. However, there is also inconsistency in these tables that Lee's smooths out using common block sizing ratios. However, this does not answer which method to use. There was nothing left of the rigging in the wreck other than the lower chainplates and mast steps. However there was an inventory list for the supplies sold from Whitehall during the sell off of the Lake Champlain fleet and supplies in 1825. While circumstantial at best, it does point to those supplies that were common in the fleet. The sizes of running rigging and blocks falls more neatly into the Steel tables than Lee's So I feel comfortable using these. I have compiled my list of lines, but have only started working on fleshing out the spreadsheet. This will be an on-going project I will be doing in conjunction with completing the masting and spars for the ship. I had built a manual serving machine when rigging the Connie (1:92). However at 1:48 the Eagle will show much more detail in the rigging and require much more serving to be done than I wanted to do on my old manual machine. In preparation for this, I purchased Alexey Dumanoff's powered serving machine. It seems like a great machine and I can't wait to put it into service. It will be a great match for the Byrnes ropewalk. I also have been putting in time actually making sawdust (and brass shavings). The photos below show the ship where she stands. I have been playing with my Grizzly Milling machine trying to develop the skills to actually use it well. More on that later. For this update, I used it to build the upper mast cheeks as well as sheave slots for the masts. The sheaves were turned on the lathe out of brass stock. I decided I did not like the previous iteration of the topgallant masts that I had done. On the Eagle, Crisman call for these to be exactly the same. So I redid these building them in parallel. These like all my masting were done first by cutting square strips of Maple to the size of the widest part of the mast, then using files, chisels and sand paper shaping the various sections per the drawings. By doing the fore and main topgallants at the same time I was able to better insure they were matched section by section. I still need to build the foremast cross trees and caps. The main mast caps also still require fitting and I may decide to redo some of those before all is said and done. Anyway, that is where she is today. Once the foremast is complete, I will work my way through the bowsprit and jibboom, then the spars. At that point, I hope to have all the rigging spreadsheet filled out. This will give me a good estimate for the numbers and sizes of the blocks to be made as well as the inventory of rope I need to make prior to starting the rigging. Here is a close up of the topgallant cheek blocks. Topmast and topgallant masts. The fids will be cut to length after the cross tree is installed.Main mast topmast and topgallant masts. Main mast topmast and topgallant mast Main mast topmast and topgallant at cross tree.
  5. Just realize that no matter what set you choose, you will still have tunnel vision. It is just optics. You. Ight see ligght from your peripheral, but it will not be in focus.
  6. You are welcome. I am glad it helps. It took me awhile before I figured it out and then it became clear. They really did a great job on explaining where each line went.
  7. She was built for an inland lake and the shipyard was up a river that had a very shallow bar at it's entrance. She was unable to take on her ballast (which was magnetite ore) until she crossed the bar into the lake. There was nothing found of her rigging except the chainplates. Dr. Crisman felt she would have a tall rig, like that of the Niagara. She probably could not sail very close to the wind but that was not uncommon in those days either. Since it was an inland lake, she had no need of a deep hold for supplies. Water was readily available since they were sailing in it, food was available since they were never far from shore, so all they needed was enough room for the men and ammunition. Originally Dr Crisman put a ship's wheel on her, but after sailing on the Niagara felt it probably only had a tiller, so he revised this. Thanks for following the build.
  8. Wow, it has been a long time since I posted an update on my Eagle. Here she is. She is currently being masted. More details in my build log.
  9. Here is the Eagle as she sits in the dock today. The upper mast sections for the foremast are still to be done. On the spanker mast I decided to go with 12 rings. This was based on the Model Expo Niagara. It was slightly less than what I had calculated but given the boom and the angle of the gaff was well within the tolerances. Since the Niagara was what Dr. Crisman used as his basis for rigging, this is the rig I turn to when questions arise in my build. Once the foremast is complete, I will start on the bowsprit assembly. The masts are currently just lightly wedged in place so ignore any misalignment. The final angles will be set with the shrouds. The mast sections are also not glued together. I plan on rigging the masts in place. Of course, as always, my plans are subject to change!
  10. All good advice. A note on the tablesaw. I have both a Byrnes and a Sawstop table saws. Since I am scratch building, I do buy rough lumber usually in 8" x 2" x 8'. So I use the Sawstop to mill the lumber down to smaller sections then use the Byrnes to perform final cuts on the smaller stock. On another note. 10" Table saws are VERY dangerous beasts. Every day, people loose fingers to these. The SawStop saw not only is a fantastic saw, it prevents this from happening. If you are in the market for a 10" TS. Look at the SawStop. Woodcraft stores as well as other sell them. I don't have any stock in them but I love the saw and highly recommend it for the 10". It will never replace the Byrnes for the close work, but it is a safer saw than the Byrnes. I need both saws. However as Chris pointed out, the 10" TS puts out a huge amount of dust. So dust collection both active and ambient is critical if you want the dust controlled.
  11. Hi Samuel, Did I miss something? Which ship is your cross section of?
  12. I have had the Veritas micro chisels for over a month now and wanted to update my previous email. I love using these chisels. I am working on masting for my Eagle and find these are the go to tool when making small cuts and bevels on the masts. They also work well in getting into tight corners to remove squeeze out. I also have to mention that the stereozoom microscope I purchased off eBay is also coming in very handy. While it is a large tool, it is sort of tertiary to this discussion since it allows one to see really small areas. A good example of how both of these tools came handy is when I was making the top mast platform. After I cleaned up all the squeeze out using my flip down magnifiers, I decided to see how mush left over I could see with the microscope. It was a huge amount. However, with the small chisels I was able to clean out all of this squeeze out cleanly. You ask if it made any difference since it was so small to begin with? I think so. Cumulatively, this type of squeeze out removes some of the sharp corners that while they might not be evident, once they were all done, did make the stop seem much crisper. Anyway, that is my story and I am sticking to it.
  13. As Chuck said, I think it is a reality shock. They buy a model based on the fantastic photo of the completed ship and open the box to see a bunch of sticks and pages and pages of instructions (in the case of Mamoli, in 7 languages) and blueprints that look like you need an engineering degree to read. Then they find out that this cool model will be their companion for months if not years and it chills their ardor.
  14. Best of luck with this. I swear, there is someplace in my workshop that IF I ever find it, I will be able to build three ships from all the parts!
  15. Here is what the main mast looks like today. I have completed the lower main mast and fighting top. The Main Topmast is mostly done. A bit more clean up, then I will work on the cross trees. I have a question regarding the mast caps. My assumption is they need to be aligned perpendicular to the mast itself rather than aligned with the fighting top. Since the main mast is raked at 8 degrees it is more pronounced. The cap that is shown in the photos is a temporary cap which will be replaced. The fighting top was based upon that shown in the Lee book and assembled following the Swan Series Vol 4. There will be a matching top in the fore mast. Once the top mast was shaped I used the mill to cut the groove through for the sheave. The sheave was turned in brass and a brass pin through the mast as axle. Once the sections are complete the mast will be unstacked and restacked as it is rigged. Also shown are the spanker mast hoops. I really wanted to make these out of wood shavings but found it beyond my skill to make rings that I liked. If I made them out of paper, I would have to paint them. If I was going to paint them I might as well make them out of brass. These were blackened after soldering and cleanup. I still am debating a bit on how many rings to actually put on the mast. I believe a hoop would have been tied to each of the same places as a laced sail which would be every 27" to 3 feet. I have 15 on here which would represent about a 27" spacing.