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About jhearl

  • Birthday 09/26/1949

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  • Location
    Milford, Virginia
  • Interests
    Shipmodeling and photography

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  1. You might find the photos on this page of interest: http://mua.apps.uri.edu/in_the_field/skipjack.html Cheers - John
  2. I thought of one more thing you might want to consider about the DRO option. I don't have room in my shop to leave the lathe out on a workbench all the time. I have to store it away between uses. There are a lot of wires and things associated with the DRO that would add to the difficulty of moving it around a lot. So if you're considering the DRO option, you'll likely be happier if you don't ever have to move the lathe. Cheers - John
  3. I see no one has responded so far. I don't have the DRO version of the lathe so I can't comment on the usefulness of DRO. I do have it on my mill and am very glad I do but there haven't been many times where I wished I had it on the lathe, although I can see how it could be useful - especially for repetitive tasks. As for accessories, I think it's a matter of what you can afford and what you want to do. I think it's cheaper to buy a package deal up front than it is to add all the same accessories individually later. I got a B package with mine and some of the things I've used and some I haven't. I didn't feel like I'd need the thread cutting attachment that comes with the C package and so far, haven't missed it. I've often thought about buying the compound slide though and likely will one of these days. I also added a 4-jaw, self centering chuck. I have not had occasion or need to use the steady rest, faceplate, or lathe dog so far and I've had my lathe for about 3 years now. One other accessory you might want to consider is a quick-change tool post. I know Sherline makes one, but I think it's too expensive. You can find one for half the price at Little Machine Shop that looks good - http://littlemachineshop.com/products/product_view.php?ProductID=4039 I bought one made by another company (A2Z) but they have since gone out of business. It would be much more tedious to use the lathe without that tool post. I often change tools frequently while working on a single part. One other accessory you might consider getting is the WW collet set (1160). If you're working with small-diameter wood stock, a collet can hold it well without causing indentation marks the way a 3-jaw chuck can. The drawback to collets, though, is that the diameter of the stock must be very close to the internal diameter of the collet so their usefulness can be limited. I use my 3-jaw chuck 99% of the time. But if, for instance, you were turning a bunch of wooden belaying pins, the collet would be very nice to have. If you only turn metal or wood where the indentations won't matter, then I think the 3-jaw chuck is just fine. I bought my lathe and mill from Discount Campus. They have better pricing than Sherline Direct and they are an authorized reseller. I've bought accessories from them as well and have no complaints. Hope that helps - John
  4. I'm using the same version of Firefox (except 32-bit) on Win 10 and can reply to this topic. I also tried creating a new topic and could have if I'd wanted to. Cheers - John
  5. One thing to be aware of with POF is that there are different methods for making frames. The Hahn method is somewhat simplified and less historically accurate compared to the way the Echo cross section frames are built. (Neither is simple!) So that may color your decision. I started Hannah as my first POF model many years ago but never finished it. Not because it was too hard - I just lost interest altogether. I purchased my plans from Mr. Hahn back then and used his book along with advise from a fellow modeler. It was difficult, but not overwhelmingly so. I documented my experience on my website in case you're interested - http://modelboatyard.com/hannah.html Cheers - John
  6. One author I like a lot is James L. Nelson. He has a couple of series starting with The Guardship. The action in that book takes place in and around Tidewater Virginia during the colonial period, so a bit different than the English novels. By Force of Arms, the first book in a different series takes place in New England, again during the Revolutionary War period. Light reading, but for me, real page turners. Cheers - John
  7. I also vote for Sherline. I had one of the little Proxxon mills and almost never used it. For me, it was too small and too limited. Since getting the Sherline mill, I have used it much more than I ever expected to. I would advise getting the DRO option. It's much easier to use than trying to count turns on the handwheels. Definitely get the rotary table (#3700). I used it just a while back to make a ship's wheel. The tilting angle table (#3750) is very useful too. I'd recommend getting one of the mill packages because you'll need all that stuff anyway and it will be cheaper. A 5400 DRO package and the two accessories I mentioned will put you well over your budget however. Adding CNC would be considerably more. I bought my mill (and lathe) through Discount Campus. They have better prices than Sherline Direct. http://www.discountcampus.com/store/sherlineonline.htm Cheers - John
  8. macro photography

    I have a good deal of experience with macro photography. I own several high-end cameras and macro lenses. I never use any of them when photographing my models. The main reason is depth of field (DOF). DOF is very shallow with macro lenses - often just fractions of an inch. I use what might be considered a high-end point-and-shoot camera (Fuji X100) that has a so-called "macro" mode but that mode is really nothing more than a close-focus mode - not a true macro capability. The current version of that camera costs $1,300, so it's not for the casual shooter. But there are probably far less expensive P&S cameras that have a close-focus mode. They allow you to get within a foot or less of the model. Today's high-resolution cameras allow you to severely crop an image so you can move back from the subject then crop out everything that's extraneous. That will give you a much greater DOF, meaning that much more of the subject will be in focus. I also rarely use a tripod. With a macro lens, it's a critical necessity, but with a P&S, you can get very sharp pictures by simply hand-holding the camera. So, bottom line, forget about expensive, special-purpose macro gear. Get a good quality P&S with a close-focus mode and high resolution. With it, you can take overall shots of the whole model and close-ups of individual parts. Cheers - John
  9. If you go to a hardware store, you can find locknuts with plastic inserts that you can use to replace the ones on the headband. The locknuts will not loosen up once you put them on. Just be sure you know what size thread you need before you go to the store. Cheers - John
  10. Where to buy thread for ropewalk machines?

    I have been using DMC Cordonnet thread for years now. It comes in ecru, which works well for un-tarred rope and it can be easily dyed after the rope is made if you want a dark brown. It is a cotton thread but has no fuzz and is considerably less expensive than linen. It comes in sizes 20-100 (100 is smallest). Here's one online US source that appears to carry all sizes: https://www.tattingcorner.com/threads-12/dmc-cordonnet-67/ (I've never ordered from them and have no affiliation with them in any way - just one source I found on the web.) Sometimes, even the 100 is too large, so I use Gutermann cotton sewing thread for the smallest lines. Sometimes, you have to just use thread itself without twisting it into rope for really tiny lines. I'm not sure what kind of rope machine you have, but on mine, I can use multiple threads (such as 6 or 9) to get even thicker rope if three 20s aren't big enough, for example. When I got started making rope, I made up a sample length with each thread size so I would know what I needed in the future for a particular size finished rope. Cheers - John
  11. One advantage to a primer over a clear sanding sealer is that it will show up any defects that need to be repaired before painting the final coats. I always find something that needs to be fixed. On hulls, I usually use something like Rustoleum or Krylon in a rattle can from the hardware store. Of course, it has to be sanded before applying finish coats. Cheers - John
  12. Easiest to plank

    The Ronnberg book mentioned above is included in the kit you have, so there would be no need to buy another copy if that's the one you're thinking of. Cheers - John
  13. That's too bad that poplar isn't available in Canada. I'm no fan of aspen. I got some by mistake once when I was buying poplar and didn't like it at all.
  14. I second the suggestion on poplar. It's not hard to find pieces without any green. It's very easy to work with and is harder than ordinary building pine. It has a fine grain and machines well. It's inexpensive and is readily available in 3/4" thick boards, which makes it easy to turn into ship modeling lumber. In some of the large lumber stores, you can also find boards in 1/4" and 1/2" thicknesses that are typically 3"x24" and often they are very white and almost grain free. I've used poplar on several models and like it a lot. At the moment, I'm using it to plank the outside of a deckhouse and the planks are 3mm wide and less than 1mm thick. Cheers - John
  15. Looking for a kit

    The most challenging (and rewarding) part about building from scratch is that there are no instructions. You have to figure out what to do, when to do it, and how to do it. You have to think far ahead to understand how something you do now might affect what you need to do in the future. The best plans in the world won't help with that. Having experience in building kits is helpful, of course, but you may be surprised at just how different the experience is when you have to go it alone just from a set of plans. If you want to try scratch building, I'd suggest starting with a very simple boat so you can really get a feel for what it takes. Don't forget as well, that you won't have any pre-cut parts. You're bound to need dimensioned lumber that isn't available unless you can mill it yourself. Scratch building is great fun and highly rewarding, but it's certainly not easy. Cheers - John