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About TomShipModel

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    East Brunswick, New Jersey
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    All things Nautical but my primary interest is Sail between 1750 and 1815. Previous builds include Sloop of War Wasp, Screw Sloop USS Hartford, Training Ship Empire State (all scratch Built) as well as Destroyer Escort USS Camp (scratch built excepting the hull from an old Revell kit - Long Story). Current Build in HMF Liverpool built 1757 at 1:96.

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  1. I default to Kurt for all soldering questions. However, I can say that I've been resistance soldering for a while, specifically on chains, chain plates and other similar items. I am working in 1:96 so these parts are extremely small. With resistance soldering, I'm able to make a very convincing chain plate, soldering while a walnut deadeye is already installed. The deadeye doesn't get charred at all. I use "Cold Heat". It uses four AA batteries. I use Tix or Stay bright with paste flux. I cut off small slivers of solder and use the flux to hold it in place. Cold Heat used to be sold by Radio-Shack. According to their website,, it is also sold at Home Depot and Fry's Electronics. With resistance soldering, it is very important that the parts contact each other. This is the most difficult part of the operation for me. All the best, Tom
  2. Good morning all, I am making yards for my 1:96 Liverpool. The sixth rate frigate has stunsail yards fro the fore and main lower yards and the fore and main topsail yards. In my 1:64 model of Wasp, I was able to drill a size 78 hole in the end of the yard to attach the iron at the end of the yard. In 1:96, that simply isn't feasible. I've searched the forums and find several kit parts that Caldercraft and others supply, but these are larger scale. Any suggestions on making, or perish the thought, faking these in 1:96 scale? All the best, Tom
  3. Danny, A wonderfully well thought out technique. I will be starting rigging my 1:96 Liverpool soon. I have about one hundred blocks some in this size range and about 1/3 larger. The largest ones are maybe twice this size. I will use your technique. It will save much wasted effort and will look quite a bit tidier. Thank you very much for sharing this with us. Tom
  4. Chuck, I'll look for those photographs of Hermione. Tom
  5. This has become a very interesting discussion. Based on the paintings that are shown here, as well as Popeye's first hand expertise, I'm certain that shifting the flag haliyard was done when the flag was run up to the gaff.. Now for the issue of a flagstaff and when it was rigged; my current project is HMS Liverpool, as she appeared in 1775. The plans that I have definitely show a long driver boom but both an ensign and bowsprit flag staff. The Liverpool does have a driver boom and it significantly extends past the stern, although the Swan Class Sloops, at least a few of them, not a frigate but still a sixth rate, had a loose footed driver sail (probably the wrong term). Looking at Pandora in Anatomy of the Ship (a smaller frigate built twenty years latter) there is a driver boom shown with no stern flagstaff, but also a mizzen course (rigged from the gaff but no boom). The model shown with Pandora's Box has a mizzen course with a Flagstaff. Finally, a print of a painting by Thomas Birch, of Constitution's battle with Guerriere, shows Constitution flying a flag from the driver gaff and Guerriere from a staff at the stern. At this point in the battle she is dismasted though. Same period, a painting of Constitution and Java shows Java flying a blue ensign from the gaff, with no staff. So, as to the staff and when it was rigged, I really don't know. Given that that wasn't the original question, maybe another topic. Opinions please. Tom
  6. Yes, It does make very good sense. Come to think of it, I did see Hermione when she was in Philadelphia. Let me see if I have any photographs. Some things to consider, are that the practice may be different among English, French, United States; and that I am told, that ships in the period did not generally fly a flag all of the time. Basically, the flag only flew when someone needed to know nationality, or the fleet commander needed to keep track of his fleet. I have looked at several paintings as well as some texts such as Harland's Seamanship in the Age of Sail. As best as I can tell, if there was a flag at the driver peak it was belayed to either the taffrail or to the bulwark near the taffrail. I looked at some paintings done by Geoff Hunt, and one shows a flag flying from a stern flag staff on a ship that does have a driver boom. For sure, the staff would need to be removed for the driver boom to swing. So, I think that no one can call you inaccurate if you belay to the taffrail. Tom
  7. Good question Christos, They would need to shift the belaying point. That is they would untie the haliyard, and then move it to the cleat on the other side. They would have the same issue if the ship had an ensign staff and the boom needed to swing. Take the staff down, move the boom, replace the staff. It would probably make more sense to belay the flag haliyard to the driver boom. I'll see if I find any other information in any of the references that I have. Frankly, given that this line had nothing to do with sailing the ship, I'm not too optimistic. Best regards, Tom
  8. Corrected Good Morning Christos, For a flag flown from the Driver Gaff, as shown in the photograph, there is a small single block at the peak of the gaff to run the flag haliyard. The haliyard is then belayed to a cleat on the inboard of the taffrail. Depending on which way the driver boom is angled the flag haliyard is belayed either on the port side or starboard side of the boom. Hope that this is useful, Tom
  9. Good Morning Christos, For a flag flown from the Driver Gaff, as shown in the photograph, there is a small single block at the peak to run the flag haliyard. The haliyard is then belayed to a cleat on the inboard of the taffrail. Depending on which way the driver boom is angled the flag haliyard is belayed either on the port side or starboard side of the boom. Hope that this is useful, Tom
  10. Also, a Special thanks to Chris. He did a great job keeping us all informed via email and brought along the younger generation. Tom
  11. Hi Everyone, Home from joint clubs. It was a great job by New York Shipcraft Guild. Congratulations, Ben, Dan, Nancy, Vlad, Charlie, and everyone else in the Guild. You all did a job to be proud of. The after lunch speaker was exceptional. Hyde Park will be a destination sometime soon to see FDR's collections, especially the Ship Models. There were lots of models of very high quality. The Jim Roberts Competition was very tight with the top models separated by very few points. Vendors there were very good including Syren Ship model as well as the new Wood Source. High quality all around. Next years conference will be Saturday April 28, 2018 at the same place. Ship Model Society of New Jersey (SMSNJ) will be running the Conference next time. The New York Club is going to be a tough act to follow. We will do our best to repeat a great conference. Tom
  12. Jaager, Yes, another god suggestion. When I put in the lower masts for the last time before doing the shrouds, I'm going to insert a very small pointed pin in the bottom to hold the heel of the mast.
  13. Good Day Martin, That is a great Idea. I have Longridge's book, but it has been so long ago that I didn't remember that detail. Thanks for sharing that. I've placed and removed the masts several times, and I'm sure that I will be doing it several times before I rig shrouds etc. The method that you use prevents enlarging the wood. Best regards, Tom
  14. Thanks for the link Frank. I understand that a lead block, or some other way to get the line to come in from the side or bellow the timber head would allow the use of the tugboat hitch. So, if I have a line coming from above the belaying point, I'll put a lead block on the deck. This hitch for sure would work. I'm working with a ship built in 1757 and I'm modeling it as it would be in 1777-1778. AS best as I can find from what I've read, belaying pins weren't in use at that time in the Royal Navy. I have a further question that I think I know the answer to, but I'll ask those who know a lot more than I on this subject. The timber head passes through a rail (as you see on the background plan of Culloden on MSW). I'm thinking that the line would NOT pass under that rail before hitching to the top of the timberhead. Is that correct? Also, I'm assuming, that belaying by simply wrapping the line around the rail would for sure never be done. All the best, Tom
  15. Frankie, A very good explanation. Although I've belayed many times, this is the first time that someone clearly defined the how and why as well as the number of turns etc. Question though: If you are belaying to simply a timber head, that is, no underside, how do you belay? Depending on type of ship, and period, belaying pins might not have been used. If belaying was simply to a timber head, what is the correct way to belay? Thanks all, Tom