JerseyCity Frankie

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It’s a point which weighs against us, and a fact to be deplored – 
That we chased the goodly merchant-men and laid their ships aboard.

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  1. It's a Scientific kit I'm pretty sure now, just going by the base it's attached to, which matches perfectly the ones I see online on known Scientific Constitutions. Now I guess I should start a build log. Still gathering info and making decisions about the rout ahead. This'd decisions are mostly about what I will keep and what I will toss.
  2. It's odd that in my copy of Anatomy of the Ship Bounty on page 100 is the comprehensive running rigging diagram and line number 215 is the Peak Halyard but I can't find an indication of the Throat Halyard anywhere. It's true it would be hard to see being located up tight under the top and up against the after part of the Mizzen, but there is no arrow pointing into that location. Peak and Throat Halyards are usually paired together, you can't have one without the other if they are to be used for lowering the Gaff. But I could imagine a Peak Halyard rigged alone on a Gaff fixed in position on the mast as lowering the Peak of a sparred Fore and Aft sail is a quick way of depowering the sail, it ruins the arodynamics of the sail simply by folding down the Peak and it allows you to turn away from the wind easier as it negates the weathervane effect the Spanker has on steering. and on page 112, the key to the numbered lines from page 100, the Peak Halyard is there but no mention of Throat Halyard. but what you do have is a three part listing for a line called "the Derrick" line number 214 consisting of the "Span, strapping and Lashing". Which almost sounds like it could be the Throat Halyard. BUT, I can't find the number 214 anywhere on the rigging diagram. Although there is a pin for it in the Starboard Mizzen rail in the Belaying plan on page 106. In my mind, anything called a "Derric" is a crane for lifting stuff and I'd expect to see it where it could be positioned over the main hatch. But I could imagine someone thinking a Spanker Gaff could look like a Derrick as they would both be at a near 45 degree angle? anyway the brails for the spanker are clearly documented in the book so furling the sail would keep the Gaff aloft in position not lowered to the deck. But then how do you reef the sail? A reef band is clearly shown on the sail drawing of the Spanker. Nobody can reef the sail if you can't lower the entire Gaff suficently to allow access to the reef band from the deck. Is this just ANOTHER example of poor documentation? I'm sure somewhere in the actual ships log there must be many notations of how this sail was handled bug I've not the time or patience to go digging!
  3. By the way, I mentioned knots above. In my opinion the best knot for a temporary and adjustable knot to tie on say, a backstays, is the Rolling Hitch. Take the backstays down to the lower deadeye or whatever then around and up and tie a Rolling Hitch back on itself. It's a knot that will hold where you put it but one which you can easily adjust by sliding back and forth on whatever you hitched it to, without having to losen or untie or make any adjustments to the knot itself. You need to leave the backstays and all other standing rigging you want to be adjustable longer than necessary in order to have enough extra line to tie an adjustable knot in the end. The Rolling Hitch is ludicrously easy to learn and tie.
  4. To me it looks like you lack only the anchors and boats, both of which you can scratchbuild. For the spars and rigging, buy aftermarket blocks they may be better quality than the kit parts and ditto the wood for the spars. Certainly you can obtain better rigging line than the kit would have supplied. Maybe your lack of kit parts is will actually prove to be a factor in producing a better model? It will certainly force you to become a more independent solution finding model builder, and that's a very good attribute.
  5. My intention is to re-rig entirely,take the lowers out of the deck and give them their proper rake, keep as much of the rest of the spars as possible then give her a full suit of sails using my epoxy-stiffened technique to belly all the sails like they are drawing wind, and have all the yards braced up sharp like I always do. But here I face a situation familiar to many of you: my intention is to keep this project in check, I want to prevent it from ballooning into a multi-year saga. I want to invest ONLY as much time as it takes to produce a passable Rigging job NOT a "museum quality" ( I know there is no such thing) job that could serve as an example of how such things should always be done. I want to tread a very narrow path with a crappy job on one side and a maticulously perfect job on the other. Can I follow the straight and narrow without veering off to one side or the other?
  6. Can anyone identify this kit? Picked up this broken Constitution model at a second hand shop in Manhattan on a whim and a thin rationalization that I could quickly repair it and use it for more Nautical Decor. Solid hull, about 17" long without the bowsprit. It was covered in fluffy cottony strands, as if it had been used in a haunted house and covered in "cobwebs", but otherwise very clean with practically zero dust. Bowsprit broken at the stem. Indifferently rigged it has molded pairs of deadeyes on all the shrouds on a solid thickly painted hull. Other white metal molded parts are the gunports. The cannon and carriages as a unit, fiferails trial board and capstan etc. only the quarter davits are copper. The rigging appears to have been done in a few hours with much winding around the spars of the lose ends. All shrouds and ratlines were made off the model and glued under the tops, not passing around the mastheads. It has that look that most Gift Shop Models have of appearing to have been rigged all at the same time off of one big spool, never cutting the end but winding around one yardarm then on to the next, with another turn taken, then the masthead, then back down the other side. Yet the lifts and braces were all rigged with blocks. It gives off a vibe of having been started slow then finished in a hurry, with all lines that would belay on deck gathered together and overhand knotted on the Starboard sides of all the fife rails in great bunches, the Main not even drawn up or the lose end of the bundle cut short. So in short the hull was not slapped together nor were the fittings attached poorly, someone took time there except it's a terrible thick globby paint job, then the rigging was put on in a way that would not pass muster viewed close up bug from across the room would give the appearance of a legit model. That's why I think it was used as a prop.
  7. i use a couple of methods. In each case you should unspool all the line you will need since whatever preparation you use, it can't penetrate stuff still on the spool and you will only effect the outer layers. I use one of two methods: most often I wet the thread with water ( a lot of water the thread should be dripping almost), stretch it between two points then I rub a small rag with acrylic paint over the thread,running it back and forth. If the color is too dark remove some of the paint by rubbing the line again with a rag soaked liberally with water. You can, if you work quickly, remove most of the paint if that's what it takes. Let it dry stretched so kinks won't form then coming again if you want it darker. It's done and dry within an hour. The other method I use is diluted acrylic in a tin can and I soak the unspooled thread overnight. A pain in the futtocks to untangle and stretch to dry but maybe more consistent color throughout the thread. Also strong coffee will empart color on white thread this way but will never get very dark. The color of acrylic paint I use is Burnt Umber or Raw Umber. Any brownish earth tone will work but black works too if thinned enough. In all honesty a brown magic marker can work but probably will age weirdly on the model.
  8. The entire photo set can be viewed at this URL: https://www.flickr.com/gp/140039433@N06/1v0U3F its worth noting the dark color of the oiled pine deck. This is typical on modern tall ships. I don't know of any ships today that holystone the deck, so I have no idea if the very light color that results is a poetic notion or not but I can say that this very dark brown reflects real world deck color for a working vessel. Also note that no two lines aboard are the same color as each is a different age and was added seperatealy to the rig as demand dictated. Certainly a newly rigged vessel would have lines of the same color and age but also with certainty we can see that with time the lines all develop individual character. By the same token the sails are stained and show many smudges of dirt tar and slush from the masts. From a distance they are all a cream color but up close one can see they have a history and are not new and brilliant white.
  9. Got the chance to spend a week as a deckhand on the historic schooner Lettie G Howard last week, and I took a bunch of photos I would like to share. They should be of interest to the model builder since they show real world colors textures and gear and Rigging arrangements. Lettie G Howard has a pair of engines and her fish hold has been transformed into bunk space for passengers but in all external appearance she looks and functions exactly as she would 100 years ago. The trip was for the benefit of some very lucky high school kids who were participating in a total immersion learning experience. Those of us in the crew both operated the vessel as well as trained the kids. The cruise started and ended in New York City's East River at the South Street Seaport Museum, and between casting off and tying up we never touched land as we sailed East down Long Island Sound then back agaiN. Anchoring at the end of each day and once we motor-sailed the entire night. The students stood regular watches, night and day, and took part in every operation on the ship. I'm amazed at what they were able to absorb in one weeks time and I would stand them up against any similar group of "adults" in terms of their newfound skill and teamwork. It was a privilege for me to take part in working with them.
  10. I'm looking on the National Meritime Museum site but the only longboat model of the period I've been able to find on that Museums website is the one depicted above, object number SLR0330. http://collections.rmg.co.uk/collections/objects/66291.html Does anyone have a link or a photo or a contemporary two-dimensional artwork depicting other instances of the impossible Sheet/Tiller arangement? I would like to see other examples of this oddity. As it IS an impossible set up -the boat as rigged can not function as a sailing vessel- I'm finding it vary curious that there are apparently more examples of this configuration from contemporary models and artwork. What it suggests ( if these are not artifacts arising from folow-on restorations) is that contemporary models can't reliably be used as 100%faithful examples of actual contemporary practice. This would throw a great deal of rigging research under the bus.
  11. Try white vinegar, just soak it in it. It took a thick coat of black paint off this boat horn I found in the trash, the paint curled up and died after soaking overnight.
  12. Since this topic of "sheet-fouls-tiller" got onto my radar I'm seeing this problem on a LOT of models. The problem is always the same: the sheet is located in space in the same area through which the tiller will have to sweep, and vice versa. this is a sailing impossibly. You can overcome the problem, obviously, by moving the sheet out of the way: locate it Forward of or Aft of the Rudder and tiller. This is a problem in small vessels since there isn't any room, everything is crammed all the way Aft. The most common solution is to have a two legged Sheet: there is a block on the boom but there are two blocks making up the rest of the tackle- one to Port one to Starboard- the sheet has two ends on deck and the fall of the tackle describes a triangle with the apex on the Boom and the other two corners as far off to either side as is possible, under which this triangle the tiller is free to sweep. Another solution is to have an offset tiller. A clever way to have your cake and eat it too. A very rare solution is to have the lower Sheet block fixed to the ruddder head itself. But you can't have a horse for the Sheet with any part of the tiller ABOVE IT. You can however certainly have a Tiller UNDER the Horse. Your tiller can be "U" shaped with the bow passing under the Horse. I dug up some photos off the internet:
  13. Speaking of the run of the mainstay: I would seriously consider dispensing with the Fore and Aft Mainsail on the Fore, it strikes me as being implausible. At least in how it's depicted in photos of the Constructo model I see online. It's possible I'm wrong but my feeling is that this Sail can't be tacked OVER the Mainstay and that on half of all tacks the sail would be chafing HEAVILY on the Mainstay. Also the way the braces for the Square Foresail are run to the Main Masthead, the Fore And Aft Mainsail Boom would be heavily chafing those Braces too. I doubt anyone would rig a vessel with all these built in issues.
  14. The TITLE of the book is Rigging Period Ship Models: A Step-by-Step Guide to the Intracacies of Square-Rig. This title SUGESTS that it's a guide to rigging Square rigged ships in general, does it not? From what you are saying ( I have not read the book) the title would be more accurate if it was allong the lines of Rigging of the model Malampus. I have not read the book but I HAVE read Rigging Period afore and Aft Craft And I can say that that book should be avoided due to the extraordinary numbers of inaccuracies it contains-regardless of weather the inaccuracies are the authors or of the three models he limited himself to. It's a foolish notion to use only a single example, and a model at that, as the basis for a book that claims to be a step by step guide to understanding a given rig. Doubly foolish to chose a model that was rigged wrong, if that was the case.