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About rafine

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    Delray Beach, Florida

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  1. The Lumberyard , among their Hahn timbering sets, has a set for the schooner Halifax which has full laser cut framing for the hull. You can see the product (and some of it's problems) in my current build log here. Bob
  2. While I understand the reasons given for leaving masts unglued, my personal preference is to glue them in place. I would rather have the stability of a permanently mounted mast. Proper tensioning of rigging is difficult enough without having to worry about the mast moving about. Bob
  3. Absolutely go for it, Rob. Being 77 myself, I well understand the challenges of age, but that only makes each new project even more enjoyable. Bob
  4. Roger, they produced all of the fittings in an extended garage behind the elder Irwin's house. The equipment was fascinating. It was ancient overhead belt driven and there was literally a machine for each kind of brass part. I sometimes sat and watched in awe as Bob Irwin turned out the parts. The machines were irreplaceable, and I assume that the new owner doesn't have the machines or make the brass parts. Bob
  5. Ed, the original Fisher company closed when the owner, Bob Irwin, died some years ago. I heard that some of the business had been picked up by someone, but I don't know what part, or by whom. Bob
  6. Sovereign of the Seas was a kit offered by the AJ Fisher Co of Royal Oak , Michigan. I built one in the 1980's and still have the plans, which show an original date of 1940. Bob
  7. I'm with B.E., Erik, Don and Joel. While I know that I can scratch build (I've done the Triton cross section), I have no power tools, and the thought of hand cutting all of the framing for a full ship just doesn't appeal to me. I'd rather spend my time on other aspects. For me, buying a kit simply provides a convenient way to get plans, framing and whatever else may be of use, and then go from there with enhanced wood and scratch building. Bob
  8. LIke everyone else, I am shocked and saddened to learn of Augie's passing. From the time that I first joined MSW some years ago, Augie and I had shared in our respective builds and communicated often about them. Like others here, although we had never met, nor even spoken, I considered him a friend. His loss will be felt by our group collectively, and by me personally. My deep and sincere condolences to Diane and family. Bob
  9. Building models, whether trains or ships, has been something I've loved to do for over 50 years. Now that I'm an older (76) retired guy, it has become a love that I have much more time to pursue, but with diminishing physical abilities (particularly hands and eyes). I enjoy not only the work itself, but the interaction with the great group of people around the world here on MSW. The skills that I have learned here in the past number of years have certainly allowed me to get better, even with the physical losses. Both Sawdust Dave and Remco have it right. We work at this for ourselves. I may foolishly aspire to, and compare myself to, the work of "Masters", but in the final analysis, I build ships because it's something that I look forward to doing every day. It has provided me with not only an activity, but a passion. Bob
  10. Mercdaddy, If the plans are from the the original kit, be very careful using them. Sam confirmed to me at the time that they were not his final drawings. There are issues of scale, discrepancies between drawings and other problems with them. Good luck, and start a log when you begin the build. Bob
  11. I thought you would all like to know that I have heard from Sam. He wants you to know that he is facing further procedures, but is still with us, although unable to do any modeling at this time. He thanks everyone for their concern and support. Bob
  12. Tim: The original kit bulkheads were all one wood, but were terrible in every way: completely wrong in both size and shape; plywood too thick; not fully laser cut etc. The castings were as you show them and largely unusable, as you say. I scratch built the stern galleries and got a carved figurehead from Janos. I ended up using the cannon barrels (with a fair amount of work) because I couldn't find anything in the correct size and didn't choose to scratch build them and I used the wheels. I'm looking for a lantern now (sadly, Chuck's are too big). Bob
  13. Jaxboat: You should ask for new plans (if they have done them). The original plans had numerous discrepancies between the sheets and problems with scale. Bob
  14. While I have no problem with bringing greater clarity and definition to the categorization of builds on MSW, I remain confused over just how that would be done here. Taking my current Essex build as an example, I still have no idea how you would classify it. I started with the kit plans and framing, but had to significantly modify the framing and disregard the plans. I replaced all of the visible wood, scratch built virtually all of the deck furniture and fittings ( but used some kit items like gun barrels) and added considerable detailing. I then added scratch masting and rigging to a kit model that was not designed for it. What have I got? I've called it "kitbashed". Truthfully, I enjoy what I do and don't particularly care what label it is given, but I would be happy to adhere to any categorization that most could agree upon. Bob
  15. Bill: My most recent communications with Sam were a few months ago. He told me that he had been quite ill and continued to be so. Bob