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Everything posted by john_wilmer

  1. I have used my full-size shop disc sander and simply moved it gently by hand with great results. I also used a finer grit sanding disc. Of course I realize that this doesn’t answer the problem of walking across a shop every time. An old pattern-maker trick is to mark your cut line with a knife. This creates a more exact stopping point for whatever you are using. The wood grains are already severed at the surface and that will help with the appearance of the board end. There are special wood working marking knives, but an exacto blade will work fine. This might be your simplest solution.
  2. I remember Tamiya having a clear (translucent) yellow paint color for auto model turn signals. Check that out.
  3. There are two vintage Artesania Latina Charles W. Morgan kits offered on eBay right now. Probably close to the price of the plans and books you are considering buying. Just a thought.
  4. Ken, I'm so happy to see your ship in the photo feed on the home page! Congrats on your completion!! -John
  5. I always liked that series of books. During my married years my wife once called me at work and asked "How do I turn on your table saw?" Scariest thing I ever heard! Your guitar build was an interesting read. I learned my formal woodworking skills by "helping" a friend in his professional shop, similar to your situation with your luthier friend. -John
  6. Table Saw Basics, by Roger Cliffe. A whopping $1.25 used on Amazon. Although the Byrnes saw is smaller, it is the same tool as a full size table saw. Buy the book and learn a ton about a tool that can remove a finger if not handled correctly. BTW, I worked in a woodshop where the saws were set up with the fence to the left of the blades. I am right handed and it was awkward at first, but the saws were high quality and set up well, so the fence side didn't affect the cut. At home my fence is to the right of the blade, where, in my opinion, they should be. The comments above about blade choice and setting the fence properly are right on the mark. Buy that book and it will give you even more info that will make that great saw you have cut to its fullest potential. Enjoy!! -John
  7. The furled sails really add another dimension to visual effect of the rigging. You have really elevated this model far above kit form. Cant wait to see it. -John
  8. john_wilmer

    What have you received today?

    Thank you for the likes and comments! CDW: I have a cigar box full of that hardware, but have been saving that for my own box project one day. Bill: It is definitely my Grandfather's. I carried it out of his basement when I was a teenager. It was passed from my Uncle to his sons and back. So now I have it. That's his name on the nameplate and it even has his Pattern Makers' League membership card in a drawer. (Dues were $3.33 a month in 1950) I don't think there is any actual historical value to the box, just family value. (I'm guessing just like your Granpa's axe). Still, I'll sit and ponder things for a while. This box has a sister toolbox, which went to my Mother. It is maple, and has always been kept in the house, and has faired much better over the years. Its not as large or fancy, but is also a wonderful piece of craftsmanship. I think the true value will be when I reach into a drawer, pull out a tool, and shape a piece of wood for a ship, just as my Grandfather did. Its the connection to family long gone that makes me proud to have this. -John
  9. john_wilmer

    What have you received today?

    I just brought home my Grandfather's toolbox. It spent its professional career at the Philadelphia Naval Ship Yard, where he worked as a pattern maker. For the last 40 years it has lived in several basements of family members, and now will be used, once again, for shipbuilding. (Although smaller scale ships this time around.) The wood is mahogany, it was made by my Grandfather, and it is in need of restoration. I'll leave it alone for a while to acclimate, then see what can be done.
  10. john_wilmer

    New member

    Welcome to MSW! Sorry, can't help with your question, but good to have you here.
  11. It has been an absolute privilege to follow this build. Thank you for all you have contributed. You bring value to this forum. With all of the talk about MSW vs. other sites, its builds like this and members like you that settle the debate!! Thank you again, John
  12. john_wilmer

    New to the forum

    Hello Doc! Welcome! Lots of great people here. From where in PA? -John
  13. Sorry, I wasn't very clear. Andi, the comments about the brass blade guides and other similar models from other manufacturers was about the axminster saw in your link. Search for other band saws of this same size and see what comes up. Look for the small differences between the brands, such as the type of blade guides. There are several brands which are all made in the same factory. Mike, my comments on the brass blade guide was not about the microlux saw. Mine has full bearing guides like you described. I agree with all of your observations on this saw. But I do have that one extra issue on mine. -John
  14. Looks like the side blade guides are round brass. This is not a horrible design, but rarely seen on modern saws. You have to be very careful that you always have the rear thrust bearing set properly, so that the teeth of the blade do not touch the side guides. They can chew them up. Also, if you use small blades the round shape allows only a small amount of the "circle" to contact the blade on the sides. This saw is sold in many incarnations from other companies. There must be 5 versions available here in the states. Each one has some slight difference from the others. Look around and see if the same basic saw is available with a different blade guide system. I own the Microlux band saw. It seems to be the same saw as the proxxon. I also have screaming bearings, which I think Mike addressed well. I have an issue where the upper blade guide arm moves up and down in a different plane than the blade tracks. This is not a tuning issue. The blade tracks perpendicular to the table, the guide arm does not. That means when the arm is up for thicker material the guides must be re adjusted, which is a pain. Mike, do you have this issue? -John
  15. Congratulations on 50 years!! The models look great. Especially the United States and Olympia, two ships I drive past often. Sadly, the models are looking quite a bit better than the actual ships these days. Sigh.
  16. After seeing how great your Cheerful turned out this should be an interesting build. Looking forward to following along.
  17. I know we all see a lot of holly used. Nice and white. I've never seen an actual deck on a ship look anything even close to that, though. I have a branch from high up on a holly tree, and it has a really nice greyish-tan to light brown color. Still that fine grain, but the color is more similar to aged oak or weathered teak. Might be my choice on a future build. -John
  18. Ken, I really like the way the transom ties into the walnut on the sides. The ship looks great, and your choices have really brought it together well. I don't think the supplied metal casting, no matter how thin you filed it, would have worked so well. Look forward to you bringing it to a meeting again soon. -John
  19. john_wilmer

    Cotton bales aboard HMS Bounty?

    I was referring to the connection to slavery in my comment. This voyage was a possible solution to the question of how to spend even less feeding slaves. But history is filled with practical solutions to bad ideas, and the Bounty is an amazing story. (No less amazing is the fate of the 1960 Bounty reproduction. Sunk by Hurricane Sandy, with some of the most dramatic rescue photos that can be believed.)
  20. john_wilmer

    Cotton bales aboard HMS Bounty?

    So why did Bligh (or rather, England) want breadfruit anyway? History certainly is more interesting than it is pretty.
  21. john_wilmer

    Help with Model Shipways kit choice

    If you go to the Syren page on Model Expo's site, you can see the instructions written by Chuck under the "Documents" tab, and read through them for yourself. They are superior to most other instructions out there. If you start a build log on this site, the combination of excellent instructions and the actual kit designer's oversight will give you a huge boost on tackling a higher skill level build. Sorry if I seem partial!! -John
  22. Looks like I'm the first to sign up! Your Niagara build was incredible. I am really looking forward to watching this project progress. Your skills are inspiring! -John
  23. Phil, Test fit the bowsprit into the ship now. Notice on the stock bulwarks the 1/2 round notches that would receive it? See if your new pieces line up well. Much better to confirm this now, as later will be too late!! ( A mistake I made on mine). Also, the stock bulwarks have small rectangular holes in them, and they are meant to line up flush with the decking. They are the drain holes (scuppers). Your waterway idea might interfere with this, so plan around it!! I don't think the scuppers are necessary, but maybe neither is the waterway, so it may come down to a choice between the two. Having fun yet? -John
  24. Philthy, This kit was my first build, I wish you much enjoyment. Completing it infected me with the shipbuilding bug. Although you may take the following as discouragement, I mean it to be instead liberating. There is no historical accuracy to this this kit, whatsoever. Forget researching the Independence. It has nothing to do with this kit. Instead, enjoy the model. The instructions call for long strips for the decking, never mention blackening the edges, or deck plank patterns. Go with whatever you feel adds to the look, don't get bogged down too much in historical accuracy (or the directions). Use it to improve your skills, spend your time building. I do recommend adding blocks at the bow and stern, the planking will go easier. There is no paint scheme to this kit, it has an all natural wood look, but again, forget the instructions and paint it if you like!! Research the general paint schemes, then follow your own judgment. I built mine with zero knowledge of wooden ships, before I knew about MSW, following only the instructions, and was totally naïve to how inaccurate this kit actually was. And I loved building it!! -John
  25. john_wilmer

    Woodcarving Makes Guinness World Record

    So all this time I could have been just carving my ship models from one block of wood? Why didn't I think of that before? -John

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