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    Beach Park, IL and Eastport, ME
  • Interests
    Retired from career in construction engineering.
    Returning to ship modeling as vehicle for better understanding shipbuilding technology and history.
    Currently researching clippership Grey Feather built in Eastport, ME in 1850. Current builds include rigging Connie started 48 years ago; kit-bash of Baltimore clipper Dapper Tom; scratch build of US Brig Cabot..

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  1. Thanks to both for your kind comments. I now have a much higher respect for those who frequently work with this type figure. Much more difficult than I anticipated to place limbs where you want them and to hold onto such irregular shapes with a forceps while cementing into place. Used a lot of CA de-bonder on my fingers.
  2. Thought I’d update. Found these guys to modify. And I found this guy to be my Tastego harpooneer from Moby Dick. Turned out ok, I think ... not going in any museum, but my Grandaughter likes it.
  3. I was aboard Constitution a couple days ago and noticed the deck plank joint in the pic. Follow the plank joint starting at the toe of the person in the pic. Right at her toe, and again near the bottom right corner of the pic, there is a short “jog” in the joint, right angle, about 2” long. This is on the berth deck. There are similar joints on the gun deck (near the step, right of the white line, right of the sea chest in pic below) I noticed these joints in many planks, mostly within about 10 ft of ship centerline. A pair of adjacent planks may have several of these joints along their length. Do these “castellated” plank joints have a special function?
  4. I am currently building the US Brig Lawrence and intend to rig her similar to that shown in this painting In the postings and build logs, I have seen examples of furled sails and full sails, but none of sails aback against the mast. I have had some success on another build, using paper sails, some with brass wire bolt ropes, in modeling full sails, and did okay with furled sails, but am troubled about getting the lines of the outlines of the mast and lifts into the backed sail. Any tips about achieving the desired look?
  5. Model Shipways Lifeboat

    Ultimately got two boats that I’ll live with. Planking turned out okay but required some slivers to be added to fill gaps. Dark stain hides lots of problems.
  6. De-magnetize tools?

    Thanks. I’ll pursue such a device. Hope I don’t have to apply it to all 700 pins.
  7. A chisel that I sometimes use while modeling usually resides in a carpenters toolbox. Apparently it has picked up a charge while stored next to a tack hammer with a magnetized head. Unfortunately the charge, while the chisel rested on the workbench, has transferred from the chisel to either my forceps or my supply of pins. Any way to “clean” the tools or pins of this annoying charge?
  8. Model Shipways Lifeboat

    Wish I would have found this post and petehay’s log before I started building these boats. A couple of comments to those attempting to build these. [NOTE: Subsequent to my initial post, I discovered the kit build log Ships Boat by JSGerson. It is a superb log that covers this kit and problems with it. I realized that since the time of his build and now, Model Shipways has eliminated the boat plans and consolidated the two pages into one reduced page, which is probably the source of most of the problems I describe. Beware!] [Another NOTE: In my post below, I sound like I’m dumping on MS. Like others, I (unreasonably) expect perfection from my kit suppliers. I paid nine bucks for each kit, considerably more than what the kit went for in recent past. But, even at $9, there is probably not much profit margin for the seller on this little kit. Even with the inconveniences, I’ll probably purchase a couple more, and I’m glad that someone is selling such a kit. If nothing else, I have a better appreciation for those in this hobby who model at very small scales!] If if you want one finished boat, I suggest you buy two or three kits, because you will likely ruin two of them in the building process. This is NOT a beginner’s project. Soaking and steaming the 1/16x1/16 wood still doesn’t prevent splintering of them when attempting to form the very tight radii of the main ribs. (Count this as the reason to throw away one of the kits you bought!). Suggest laminating each rib from two layers of well soaked 1/16”x1/32” pieces. Despite the years between petehay’s original post and now, MS hasn’t improved the quality of the instructions. The photos in them are still not readable (in any of the four kits I purchased). Even if you could clearly read them, the figure number referred to doesn’t match the text. Also, the “Hull Frame without Planking” drawing is tagged “Scale: 1=1” ... it isn’t (but, it is still the most useful illustration). This kit comes in several sizes. For any but the largest size, MS has included an addendum to the instructions recommending the buyer have the instruction sheet reduced by photocopying to proportions they list. There is nothing useful on the figures in the instructions that would benefit the modeler by doing so. The one thing that does benefit by reduction based on the listed proportions is the statement in the text that says “Draw ... crosslines 1” apart” when building the hull building jig. This 1” dimension applies only to the largest kit. It must be reduced for smaller kits. (If you have followed this instruction and set up your hull building jig to 1” for any but the largest kit, count this as reason to throw away another one of the kits you’ve bought). Instead of using the listed proportions reductions, I suggest marking these crosslines (which establish the main rib spacing) directly off the laser cut Keel piece. The instructions say (referring to forming the main ribs over the jig forms) “At the keel position in the center there should be a 1/16” gap”. This means the modeler should NOT form the rib tight to the jig at the location of the keel ... but, while forming, that gap doesn’t naturally occur at 1/16”. Suggest either adding material to the jig to complete the curve of the hull while leaving a small notch at the keel location. The laser cut main rib formers have been truncated ( so much so that only about half of the former actually provides the “form” of the rib) in an attempt to create this gap, but if the hull curve of the former is continued it results in much more than 1/16” gap. It would have been nice if the former would have continued farther around, with a small notch to prevent improper glueing ... as they did where the rib ends are glued to the forms. Conclusion: I purchased four of these kits, in two different sizes, neither the largest size available. I am hoping to have one complete, good build and maybe one salvageable build. You can decide if something less than 50% meets expectations.
  9. Thanks. I just spent a few minutes on their website and this looks promising.
  10. Lou: I came across your post when searching for discussions on “capstans”, and soon became interested in the discussion on gunports. Lots of info from several respondents on the sizing and location of them, which lead me to wonder ... which comes first: gunport sizing and location, or hull frame location? I’m thinking frames, then gunport size/location adjusted to fit. Also, I’m wondering if they gave any consideration to the port size vs. carriage size, in the event they might have to lose their guns overboard if being chased. Finally, how does your build progress? I’ve not been able to find a log, if you’re posting one.
  11. Just curious ... what did you wind up doing? Tiller or wheel?
  12. Thank you for responding. Indeed, I have now been searching sites for 1:35 ( or thereabouts) figures, and the search continues. The second post was a weak pre-apology to those who might respond that I ought to have first looked at the pinned topic “In need of ... boat crew members” before posting my question. There were many good tips in that topic that I ought to have looked at first. Nonetheless, additional suggestions would be welcomed, as I am still looking. Thanks again.
  13. Thanks for the info. I picked one up this afternoon. I’ll be playing with modifications tomorrow.
  14. Could one of you update your opinion of this saw now that it is five years later? still have it? Still working? Thanks.
  15. Duh ... just noticed the topic at the head of this page. Ill peruse the many responses.

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