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jablackwell

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  • Website URL
    http://www.regulusastro.com/

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  • Gender
    Male
  • Location
    Exeter, NH, USA
  • Interests
    archery, model building, astronomy, photography, oil painting, drumming, cooking, family.

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  1. Awesome work on that netting: I am taking notes! Nicely done, Jesse! ~john
  2. jablackwell

    What have you received today?

    Today has been a fabulous day: a friend walked over and, for my birthday, handed me a kit that had been in his barn for decades..... A Sterling Models American Scout C-2 Cargo Ship.... this was made some time maybe in the 60s? Hard to tell, as there are no dates anywhere to be seen. This was originally designed to be an RC model, but I think that, when I get around to it, I'll make this a display instead. At 50" length (1.27m), it'll be a large display. Most if not all of it is balsa. One fun piece of paper in there was a warranty card which notes a $0.50 shipping and handling fee for returns ;-) THOSE were the days. It had been opened, and it appears that someone might have taped the plans to a board at one time, but nothing has been worked on, glued or missing that I can tell. Wow! Very happy to have this to look forward to. ~john
  3. Yep - a teacher - astrophysics during the school year and researcher during the summer months. It's good work, and allows for some interesting off-time hobbies. Been working the planks up to the port openings. I have some images here to show how I am handling the cutting of the notches into the planks. I am using a small saw to notch the planks first, to the depth of the needed notch, then I use a #11 blade to remove most of the wood, then a small file to finish it off. It looks pretty good. It was a trial and error type thing at first, with a couple of horribly failed attempts. I am sure there are better methods, but this one is working for me thus far ;-) The colorful clamps were a bargain at the Dollar Store... they are poorly made, but do just right for this work. ~john
  4. Some free time has evolved into my schedule - namely, school is over! 3 X Huzzah! I've been working on the upper planking with the boxwood, and it is moving along nicely. Made a "wall of planks" to use as a test for the total height above the wales, and it looks to be just about spot on. So far, so good. Using PVA, and going slowly to allow things to set overnight. Some pics of the process.....
  5. Patrick: no worries! I am doing well to remember my name on most days ;-) All: Yep I have TONS of binder clips.... best thing ever for frame clamping, as long as there is a bulkhead in place to attach the clamp to. Their price is right. ~john
  6. I am using a little peg stand that I built for a plank bender. The pegs align with the curve at the bow, and have some adjustment. Works well enough, but not as precise. The clamps are there to hold the plank onto the bulkheads long enough for the wood glue to set. I will be looking into additional plank bending methods (heat, etc) when the planks get to be needing bi-directional curvature, as it does towards the stern. I have a surface mount solder station that might just blow hot enough air, so I will be giving that a try some time soon on some scrap. ~john
  7. Started planking this week. The key learning moment this time around was in trying to figure out how to get the boxwood shaped just right. The best I could get was to soak it for 6 hours, then shape it into a board with pre-placed pegs for the correct bow shape... and leave overnight to dry. The wood is pretty brittle, so small sharp curves are a no-no. Lessons learned! So, the first plank has been set on both starboard and port sides. They may be incorrectly placed, but they are symmetrically aligned! ;-) I can be happy with that! ~john
  8. All, Still here! ;-) I was waiting on some boxwood to continue on with the build The next step is the start of planking. Got the stern framing completed and the ports all painted red. The wood has arrived, so onto the next part! It's coming along. Some images below. ~john
  9. That is just excellent: quite a build! I would love to see more pictures. ~john
  10. Worked on getting through the stern framing today between watching games of soccer. Got the sills and lentils sanded down. For sanding the exterior I used a DeWalt finishing sander. That is the best purchase I have ever made for building the Syren. It has saved me endless time in all the sanding of the gun ports. For the interior, the finishing sander will not fit, so I used a small pencil-like vibrating sander tool I picked up a while back when making the whale boats for the Kate Cory. That did the trick in no time at all. I then cut some spare sheet wood to fill in the two outboard gaps in the stern framing and then sanded the stern sides to fair against the future plank lines. Nothing broke, so I must be doing something right! :-) ~john
  11. Got the sills and lintels in place.... now to the VERY gentle job of sanding and shaping the stern. I have already cracked the frames a couple of times. Slow going... ~john
  12. Welcome, Tim! I hope this build goes as well as the Cory. We shall see! ;-) ~john
  13. More progress this week between classes and grading papers. I have started to work on the stern. Yep - those little ribs are quite fragile, particularly where they have been inscribed with the laser cutter... so they tend to bend then break away from those marks. Cyanoacrylate to the rescue. I'm going to let this set overnight before continuing the stern framing. ~john
  14. jablackwell

    Fokker Dr 1 by Mike Dowling

    I always bend away from the grooves....

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