Jump to content


  • Content count

  • Joined

  • Last visited

Recent Profile Visitors

257 profile views
  1. Thanks @Kevin Kennyand Robert/ @Fright for the comments. Kevin, even before your comment I was reviewing your video on the work you did on the cockpit. I'll likely use that as inspiration and try to emulate at least some of what you did. We'll see how it goes. Before that, I started working on the rudder and ran into the same issue you mentioned, where the rudder did not fit. I should've learned the lesson and done the rudder much earlier. Instead, like you, I had to remove some of the copper and shave down the stern post to get it to fit. I'll likely not do "real" gudgeons and pintles. The ones supplied in the kit would be tough to fit over the copper. I'll just put some fake metal bands on the rudder and stern and then glue the rudder in place.
  2. I bought something similar from Amazon, though a different brand (Kraftex). I ended up not using it. The copper is quite thin, like heavy duty foil, and I was concerned about the durability of the adhesive. But I've seen a number of build logs here using it or something similar and no one that I have seen had issues with it falling off. I ended up buying a roll of 36 gauge copper...it was thicker but still cutable with scissors. I cut strips and did something similar to what was described in the article, along with some aging using liver of sulphur. Here's the stuff I bought: https://www.amazon.com/St-Louis-Crafts-Copper-Inches/dp/B00S3TYN1M/ref=sr_1_2?ie=UTF8&qid=1534389581&sr=8-2&keywords=36+gauge+copper+roll I used a household/craft glue with it, so who knows, maybe my copper will fall off sooner than if I had used the tape. I was somewhat happy with the results....I'd give it about a 6.5 out of 10. See my America build log for more details and pictures. Note this was 1/48th scale. If working in something like 1/96th, that might make this method more difficult and might make the thinner foil more appropriate.
  3. Main Hatch/Companionway Thanks for the comment Russ, and to others for the likes and looks. This week's progress was completion of the main hatch/companionway. Sorry, I did not take any pictures during the process...nothing special, just cut pieces out of 1/16th or 1/32nd mahogany sheets, glue'em together, stain and finish. The kit supplied two small brass nails to use as door knobs, I used some of the copper tape to create hinges, then blackened both. I also put some blackened copper on the rails for the hatch to slide back on. Next up is the aft hatch and cockpit and rudder.
  4. Aft Skylight My relatively glacial build pace continues, hindered by a short but unexpected trip last weekend. But I have now completed the aft skylight and just started a bit on the forward companionway. I maybe cheated a little bit on the aft skylight. There are corner posts that were supposed to fit into the corners of one of the rectangular openings crafted into the deck beams. However, I noticed on my model that particular opening was a little bit off center. So I built the skylight off of the deck and will glue it on centered on the deck instead of centered on the rectangular opening. Since I plan to fully plank the deck, the difference will not been seen (I believe). The skylight was made out of mahogany supplied in the kit. The sheets of 1/16th inch thick mahogany were rather pale and yellowish so I used some minwax mahogany stain to make its color more similar to the forward skylight and capstan. I'll be doing the same for the two companionway/hatches and the cockpit. When completed I also rubbed on a bit of the tung oil finish that have. The collection of parts I made to build the skylight: The the skylight with the window bars installed. I used a #75 bit and a pin vise to very carefully drill down from the top of the skylight then inserted chunks of wire provided by the kit: The completed skylight: The skylight placed into its position on the deck. After I do the deck planking, I will put a small trim strip around the base of the skylight to hide any gaps between the decking and the skylight.
  5. Capstan 2.0 Or maybe it is 3.0. As noted above, I attempted to build a capstan in place of the metal piece supplied in the kit. I used some of the Mahogany from the kit (and a bit of scrap basswood, just for the central post). I built one but had some issues with the whelps. I maybe could have salvaged it but decided to start over. Below is a picture of my capstan and the metal one from the kit. The wood one is actually only a tiny bit taller....it just appears so much taller because the hole it is stuck in is not deep enough. I have not applied any finish to the wood one. I'd probably try to do a little more clean up sanding and filing then apply the tung oil finish that I used on the skylight and on the baseboard. Any comments or suggestions would be welcome. Should I put some chocks between the whelps, maybe one third or half way up, to make it look a little stronger? Any other suggestions?
  6. Thanks all for the looks and likes, and thanks Kevin for the comment. After I made that post last night, I reviewed the part of your video on making the capstan. This kit supplies a cast metal part but I'll try to make my own from scrap wood, using some ideas from your video.
  7. Forward Skylight Man, things look so much worse when you take a close up photo of them, at least for some of us. Part of the problem is that I blew out the reds and did not bother to retake the pictures, so parts of the wood look yellow in these pictures.
  8. Hull Complete After a bit of a break for a brief vacation, I resumed the coppering, and have now completed the other side of the hull. I also applied a finish to the baseboard. Below are a few pictures....this time of both sides of the boat. And of course in looking at the pictures, I see I need to apply more of the finish to the end of the baseboard. Otherwise I am fairly happy with how this came out. I perhaps wish it was a bit more smooth and consistent, but I don't think it will draw to much attention to itself, which is what I wanted. Next up is to work on the deck furniture. The layout of the deck of the bluejacket kit is a little different from the Mamoli kit. This kit has no forward hatch, but has a hatch/companionway midships where the Mamoli kit just had grating. I'll probably work on the deck furniture from simplest one to most complex....in other words, the two skylights first and the cockpit last. I still need to do the rudder as well....I guess that will be done with the cockpit. I've probably also reached the point where the build logs for the other America kit builds become more relevant, more useful, and provide ideas for details to add. Here are the pictures of the completed coppering. I stuck in the bowsprit, and placed a dowel on the deck to simulate the boom. For now the hull is just balanced on the base board and not mounted.
  9. Coppering the Hull So on my America, I wanted to try some real copper of some sort on the hull. But I wanted a fairly subtle "old penny" look. I did not want the bright and shiny new copper look and did not want the zillion overscale nail head look either. I first acquired some copper tape. That seemed like a possibility, but the tape was very thin and delicate, and the words "tape" and "durable" aren't exactly best buddies. I was afraid the tape would start peeling off before I even completed the rigging, given my pace of construction. I then went off to Amazon to see what I could find. I first bought a couple of 6 inch by 12 inch sheets of 28 gauge copper. This seemed promising, but it was a bit thick to work with. There's probably some tool that would easily make many nice, straight cuts in this copper but whatever that tool is, I don't have it. So, it was back to Amazon. I found there a 12 inch by 5 foot roll of 36 gauge copper. The description explicitly stated that it could be cut with scissors. So I ordered a roll of that stuff, and it turned out to be just about perfect. It was more substantial than the foil but still easy to cut, as promised. While on Amazon I also investigated methods for aging the copper and came across something called "liver of sulfur". So I bought a jar of that too. A few experiments gave me decent results, similar to what I was looking for. And while the copper could be cut with scissors, it was tedious so I got a guillotine style paper cutter. I decided on making my copper plates 3/8ths inch but 7/8ths inch (1.5 feet by 3.5 feet at scale). So with that it was off to the production line. This first photo shows the copper roll and the paper cutter. I had to be concerned about fingerprints as they affected the aging solution. So I wore latex gloves while handling the copper. The fingerprints you see are just from the powder on the gloves. I cut a piece that was 5 1/4th inch wide. That would give me 6 copper plates at 7/8ths inch each. I built the jig below and then scribed a dent into the copper to indicate the edges between the plates. Yes, that is an ordinary pizza cutter that I used to scribe the plates. It was dull enough to give a nice dent in the copper without cutting it. And here is the piece of copper with the plate widths scribed onto it. Then it was back to the cutter to cut the scribed copper into strips that were 3/8ths inches wide. And here is the aging process. The left container has the liver of sulfur solution. I just used room temperature water instead of hot water and used a more dilute solution than suggested by the instructions. Even so, it only took 20 or 30 seconds for the copper to darken. After that, I moved the strips to the middle container which had water and baking soda (as suggested by the instructions) to neutralize the liver of sulfur and stop the reaction. The third container had just plain water to rinse off the strips. And yes, the "liver of sulfur" smelled just about the way you'd expect of anything that has "sulfur" in the name. And here is the container of almost finished aged copper strips. After they dried, I did polish them with an automotive paint polish. In some cases the coloration was a bit too dark and too gray for my liking. Using the polish and even some very fine sandpaper brought back more of the copper color. One last step was to press the strips in this little jig I made, to try to give the copper strips a little more shape, and to turn the edges down. This only sort of worked. In most cases, the shape was mostly lost as I installed the strips on to the hull. For the most part, I installed the plates in these strips of 6, though in some cases I cut the strips shorter. The end result can be seen in my prior post. I have not decided yet if I am just going to leave the copper as is, with the potential for it to naturally darken some more, or if I may spray it with a coat of clear gloss or clear satin. I'll probably finish the starboard side, then spray some of the left over copper to see how I like the look of it with the clear coat on it. For the most part I am very pleased with the look of it as it is now. I wish it was maybe a little darker and a little more consistent in color but overall it is close to what I was shooting for.
  10. Been a while since I have posted out here, though I am still plugging away at the America. I often find only a few minutes here and there to work on it, a bit more on the weekends. Since the last post I have painted the inside of the bulwarks white, painted the hull black and given it a coat of satin clear. I've cut and installed the bitts, and also shaped the bowsprit. And I have started coppering the hull after doing a number of experiments. You'll note the photos below just show the port side; the starboard side does not yet have any copper on it. Regarding the copper, I'll make a separate post about how I did that, as I came up with my own method that might be of interest to others. Here are a few pictures:
  11. Thanks Kevin, Tim, and Per for the comments and thanks to others for the likes and looks. The transom was a bit tricky, though it helped a great deal to start with a cardboard template and only cut the wood when I had a good fit with the template.
  12. After completing the planking, I took a couple weeks off. Over the last two weeks or so I have done the following: 1. Sanded the hull. And sanded it some more. And some more. I think I am pretty much done though if I look at it again I am sure I'll find some other not quite smooth spot to sand. 2. Worked on the transom. My transom piece is a bit larger and squarer than called for in the plans, due to the couple of planks that I probably should have carried farther aft than I did. But I think it looks fine and no one will really notice, especially once I paint the hull. 3. Did the "waist plank". That is what the plans called it, though I have not heard that term before. This is the top plank, above the level of the deck. It is only 1/32nd inch instead of 1/16th, so it is indented slightly from the other planks. And of course aft, the timberheads notch in from the edge of the hull causing the waist plank to indent even more. I created each of these in two pieces, leaving a seem amidship. But that was easier than trying to deal with one long piece the length of the hull. The kit provides strip wood that is 1/2 inch wide. I tacked that to the hull with a couple dots of CA, then drew a line on the inside of the plank at the top of the hull, then cut along that line to get a nice fit above the cap rail. Overall I am relatively pleased with how things have come out. I am not quite to the skill level of building a hull like this and leaving it a natural finish; I am still depending on paint to cover a few things. But I am getting closer. Speaking of paint, that is probably the next step, to paint the outside of the hull black and to paint the inside above deck parts white. I probably should have painted the inboard side of the waist planks before installing them but a bit late for that now. After the painting, I need to figure out the coppering of the lower hull. I have some things I hope to try in that regard. Enough words, on to the pictures. The hull here is just press fit onto the pedestals and balanced on the unfinished base board.
  13. Yay, I have now finished the planking and the treenails above the water line, which is all I plan to do. I am investigating ways to put copper on the bottom and am planning some tests for the finish above the water line. I have also started sanding down the hull on the port side, causing the treenails there to almost disappear. Overall I am pleased with the planking. It is far from perfect, and I am not ready for a model left in natural wood state, but it is workable. I continue to be a bit concerned about the transom. Those top two or three planks should have hung out farther I think. I'll probably need to do some patching there and that will likely prove difficult.
  14. Just as another data point....the 1/48th scale yacht America from Bluejacket supplies 3/64th inch basswood dowels to use as treenails for the hull planking. 3/64th = 0.047, which would be 2 1/4th inches scaled up. I did not do any research to verify, though I assumed that is larger than scale, but probably the smallest diameter basswood dowel that is practical to make and use.
  15. Thanks all for the looks, likes, and comments. I am getting anxious to be able to sand down the hull planks. I've got three more planks to do and about 500 treenails.

About us

Modelshipworld - Advancing Ship Modeling through Research

SSL Secured

Your security is important for us so this Website is SSL-Secured

NRG Mailing Address

Nautical Research Guild
237 South Lincoln Street
Westmont IL, 60559-1917

About the NRG

If you enjoy building ship models that are historically accurate as well as beautiful, then The Nautical Research Guild (NRG) is just right for you.

The Guild is a non-profit educational organization whose mission is to provide support to our members in their efforts to raise the quality of their model shipcraft.

The Nautical Research Guild puts on ship modeling seminars, yearly conferences, and juried competitions. We publish books on ship modeling techniques as well as our world-renowned quarterly magazine, The Nautical Research Journal, whose pages are full of articles by master ship modelers who show you how they build those exquisite details on their models, and by maritime historians who show you what details to build.

Our Emblem

Modelshipworld - Advancing Ship Modeling through Research