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Atlantis by Thistle17 - Robbe

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I have a client that wishes her late husband's Atlantis R/C model be completed as a static model. Parts are missing and I have just learned Krick has bought out the Robbe business. Can anyone shed light on Krick's intentions to re-release the models and parts?

 

Alternately, anyone out there have a kit or partial kit for sale?

 

Thanks

Edited by Thistle17

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Help from anyone out here! Has anyone had any success contacting Krick Models in Germany? They just don't seem to respond to any of my queries.

Edited by Thistle17
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I finally heard from Krick and they do have some spare parts. The masts are available but it proves to be a shipping problem due to their length. I have appealed to Ages of Sail to see if I can piggy back one of their ship ments.

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I have taken possession of the partially completed model (as of this post) and will begin a more detailed inventory of parts on hand and what is missing. Hopefully Krick Manufacturing will come through on the masts and we will see what else shakes out from their inventory as I progress. This thread will be periodically updated with progress.

 

The boat model is 54 inches long at the deck level and 13 3/8 inches of beam. The masted height will be approximately 64 inches. The hull is of high impact molded plastic. The keel is weighted with what appears to be lead. At this stage the model weighs about 45 lbs! Of note on closer inspection it has no transom I will finish it off in mahogany most likely. The deck is partially planked and although there is some extra deck material it is not sufficient. Also some of the deck planking has lifted as the adhesive used has dried up. I am planning a strip down of the deck planking and I will begin anew.

 

Below is a picture of the model as is. I have mounted it on a shop cart as it will necessarily have to be moved around due to it size and work access. The second picture is where I am headed. My client wishes the model to remain static so although there are some RC controls on board they will remain inactive.

 

(Those dangling ball and claw legs in the background are for a distant project).

 

Joe

P1010103.jpg

P3260002 (Medium)[1].JPG

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After 3 1/2 hours of "prying" deck planks up the hull is now ready for re-planking. Some planks were lifted with a finger nail, others came up with a sharp chisel and prying. The deck was sanded down with 120 grit sand paper to flatten the residual glue/wood. I believe CA glue was used but why it didn't work over the entire deck is somewhat mysterious. The original deck planks appear to have been pine. They came as an accessory package. They are 5 X 1.5 mm and 10 inches long.  I am going to use some other material that is more dense and of the patina of boxwood. Oddly the directions do not suggest sealing the final deck surface, rather applying wax is recommended. That doesn't sound at all right to me for a RC model.

 

I read on another web site that the total cost of this vessel if fully outfitted could cost as much as $1800. The base kit was $700 at the time (circa 2012) and "accessories" were priced in the $90 and up range. The wood deck kit for example was $90! I feel it was a crazy way to market this kit. One would get 'sucked in' to a big expense if they were not paying attention,

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Here is a view of the completely stripped down hull. The plastic units atop the hull are actually building forms that the cabin and hatch materials are fastened to. The smoke plastic becomes windows when the outer skin is applied.

 

I am slowly getting through the inventory of parts supplied by the owner. Many of the deck fittings I find are missing. I will spend a good deal of time tracking down reasonable substitues for this 1:20 scale model. For example there are 28 stanchions, ships wheel, life boat, air vents and more missing.

P1010104.jpg

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I have decided that the deck should be re-planked with mahogany or a combination of mahogany and a lighter wood such as box wood. I think since most of the deck furniture is mahogany this will blend well.  I'd like to try the Alaskan Cedar but it is a tad too yellow I think. Since one of my last posts I came across someone who had trouble gluing down planking with CA glue on ABS plastic. It was commented that the bond doesn't hold up. That is likely why I could lift some planks with a finger nail. I am tempted to try the new DAP "Rapid Fuse" 30 second adhesive. I will have to experiment before I commit to this method.

 

While waiting for the planking material I have moved onto the deck furniture. It is all die cut ply. The curious thing about the parts sheets is that not all of the required parts are on the undisturbed sheets. Not to be outdone, the "plans" do not call them out either. The instruction book is of little help as well. I guess I have been spoiled by the current generation of plans and instructions from our US companies. They are relatively simple structures so I do not anticipate issues.

 

I do perceive a challenge with the bulkwarks as they are missing. I plan to fashion them out of styrene pieces. The challenge is they have a fancy upper edge molding and a lower edge one a well that sits in the rabbett at the sheer line as seen in the picture above.

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In applying the decking (wood) to the hull surface I asked DAP about Rapid Fuse General Purpose adhesive bonding integrity. The return stated that Rapid Fuse General Purpose will adequately bond wood to ABS plastic. I further asked about the bonding property of Styrene and ABS. The answer was that the bond was inadequate. This pretty much removes the plan to make the bulkwarks out of Styrene.

 

I have been decking this large model in boxwood and mahogany as disclosed earlier. This DAP Rapid Fuse adhesive is growing on me. Small amounts applied to the decking and held for 30 seconds (cure in 30 min) works well. As a matter of fact the adhesive quickly becomes tacky when the planks are laid down. To continue the case for this adhesive, one can lift and reposition the planking, if misaligned, soon after it is laid. No further adhesive is required. If it gets on the topside of the plank it does sand. Otherwise it behaves as CA does  especially on one's skin.

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I have run into a problem with the boxwood planking made from purchased sheet goods. I ordered 3/64" (.047) sheet material and ripped the planking. To simulate the original material that came with the Atlantis I cut the 24 inch planks in half. As I began laying the planks I noticed significant variation in thickness of the planks across the 12" length. At first I thought is was the roughness of the ABS hull after I had sanded it down. I finally measured the plank thickness end to end and found as much as 10 thousands variation. I have learned that the vendor does try to control its variation =/- .005. I have been working with the vendor to try and correct this problem.

I now will measure all stock upon receipt and will be the wiser for doing so. The vendor is sending on a new batch of sheet stock for which I am grateful. In the meantime I have a good deal of sanding ahead of me.

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Been there, done that with the wood supply.  I now mik the wood and run it through a thicknesser before using.  A PITA but it pays off in the long run.

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Well after more hours than I care to add up I finished sanding  the deck planking. As I mentioned earlier I foolishly laid planking without checking its thickness over length uniformity and as a result had quite a time of leveling the planking especially on the starboard side (that is where I got a bit wiser). In addition to material problems I ran into 2 other problems with the hull. The first is I discovered that the hull 'half's' port and starboard were slightly different. This in combination with plank over plank placement/tolerance build up became a real challenge to give a completely matched deck pattern along the center line of the hull. It came out relatively well but there was a price to pay doing so with a combination of pattern making to nicely fit the planks. Secondly the hull deck (substrate) was slighltly concave just forward of the mid cabin on the starboard side. I managed to get most of it out but there is still a slight depression to my touch.

 

I am now faced with a dilemma with simulated deck plank length. The material used in planking was 12" long so there are a number of butt ends at non uniform places along the beam. Most modelers I have seen on line ignored how a real boat is built and so paid no attention to where the deck beams might have been. The end result was the planking on other models looks like a herring bone pattern. I am working to scribe in some simulated planks obeying some semblance of uniformity. I have included a picture of results to date. Hard to see the plank ends though.

P1010149.JPG

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Sorry to come to this party late!

But a couple links:

Taylor Sparks' build of Atlantis: http://sparksstudios.com/boatyard/atlantis.htm  and some others too.

My build of the Robbe Valdivia (with many similar construction features): https://matthewsmodelmarine.wordpress.com/writings/robbes-valdivia-rc-schooner/

 

Hopefully you have the complete Robbe instruction set? Used to be available online... I have an e-copy for Valdivia, maybe Taylor has Atlantis.

 

The hull should be vac-formed ABS (not injection molded styrene).

Valdivia's decking is real teak, with some mahogany trim. The teak planks are a bit overscale in the grain department, but are soft enough to bend sideways. 

Gluing with CA is the plan, but have plenty of CA "kicker" on hand, as the CA is stubborn about setting on the porous wood.

Not sure what was specified for Atlantis, but on Valdivia there were white plastic strips to use as caulking, and instructions on proper joggling and plank-end staggering.

A scraper was the best way to smooth out planks and caulking; avoid sanding, as even light sanding can soften the plastic and drive its dust into the wood grain.

 

BTW, I waxed my wood deck, never had a problem after sailing. Real boats get wet, no? 

 

Pat M

 

val2-01deckplank[1].jpg

val2-02deckscrape[1].jpg

val4-10[1].jpg

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Pat I had seen your planking photo on line before. Splendid execution and results. The Atlantis doesn't have teak as best I can tell. It is more like weathered pine and of poor quality. The ends of the planks look like they were chopped and poorly so. I scrapped the material and used box wood and mahogany. I will be putting up the results shortly

 

 The client apparently lost the bulwarks pieces so I am fabricating them at this very moment. I am using straight grain maple milled to fit the rabbet on the hull and adding a basswood height extension as my maple material was only 3/4". The basswood will also allow me to add a mahogany cap rail to this improvisation when all is said and done. This would have been infinitely easier had the parts been available. I have contacted Krick in Germany who bought out Robbe and they have indicated they will be sending the masts in a shipment to Ages of Sail and then onto me. I hope!!!!!!

 

Luckily I have the instruction manual and drawings. The drawings are not to scale so I am having to apply some relative size approximation for sizes and adjust for parts I can find on line. The bulkwarks and stanchions are a good example of this.

 

And thank you for the link to your build. It will help.

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I made a test sample of the bulkwarks and tried machining in the scuppers on my drill press. The results were less than pleasing so I have ordered a new Dremel and down spiral bit to mill them in. As I wait I decided to ready the hull for painting. The hull is not too bad in terms of finish but there was need to fill in the joint seams and the rudder receiver. I used Ever Coat Rage and sanded that down followed by Nitro Stan glazing compound in prep for wet sanding. I have searched the web for recommendations on the type of paint and one modeler's source speaks to Krylon works on ABS plastic. Needs more research.IMG_0524.thumb.JPG.14492c347a19b2e2c09e5221d73dd611.JPG

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ABS is a tough material to glue to, and I'm always leary about things like polyester and epoxy resins' adherence as well. Maybe less of an issue for a display model, but the ABS hull can flex and pop these things loose.

If the defects aren't deep, I'd start with regular or 2-part primer filler as the first coat, then use the appropriate glazing compound to take care of what's left.

 

But yes- clean, most any primer, and most any top coat.

 

 

For gluing: Robbe recommends the 2-part methacrylate adhesive "Stabilit Express"- expensive and hard to find in the US. For joints requiring a wee bit of flex (anything attached to the ABS hull), I find that rubberized CA (aka "tire cement") is perfect. It has a bit of flex, so it won't crack like regular CA; it can be built up in thick layers (use CA kicker to help it cure), yet cures hard enough to grind or sand. I use it when mounting bow thruster tubes through fiberglass or ABS hulls, for example. 

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Pat as you observe ABS is a difficult material to adhere to. In terms of glue, I did find that the DAP Rapid Fuse, General Purpose worked well. I used it on the decking and even though the deck does flex the material has stayed put. I had to replace some decking due to thickness problems and the only thing that excavated the plank was a sharp chisel and carefully carving it out.This will be a static model so water, temperature swings and UV will not be problematical. I am curious about the rubberized CA though. Can you direct me to a manufacturer and identity?

 

In regard to painting, I am about to test paint the rudder so I will feedback the results.

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Heard some good news yesterday. Krick came through and shipped masts to Ages of Sail and they will in turn provide them to me. Krick could not ship them directly as European post services do not permit packages of that length in their systems. The masts are 1400 mm long. I can't thank these folks enough for being so supportive!!

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Posted (edited)

This has been an incredibly busy summer so working on this model has been almost impossible. However yesterday I managed to sneak in some time and decided to work the bulwarks for this huge model. I am driven by the fact that it has to be painted soon and I do not have a spray booth. Given the size and extent of painting required it has to be done out of doors. The bulwarks need to be applied to the hull pre- painting. The work shown  is related to the scuppers. There are 5 each side. I tried hand fashioning but almost knew before I started I wasn't going to be satisfied with the uniformity of each to its neighbor. Luckily one of our club members loaned me his Sherline vertical mill. This machine has made it a breeze. 

 

Mounted in the table vise is a block of pine rabbeted to accept the stepped bulwarks. The block elevates the bulwark and enables use of the miniature "quick grip" clamps to clear the mill table. Using a 1/8" router bit I am able to carefully mill the scupper slots to a high degree of uniformity. The bulwarks where the machining is taking place is maple and machining produces a clean cutout in-spite of the slower speed of the mill drive. Prudence dictates multiple passes to cut through the material.

 

I am sold on a vertical mill and plan to acquire one soon.

 

Just an aside. This mill is a Model 4000 and does not behave well at slow speed. I believe the brushes are worn and the commutator is dirty. Given its vintage the motor must be disassembled as the brushes are internal. Newer models have brushes external.  I will be fixing this for the club member as a thank you for his loan.

 

P1010150.JPG

Edited by Thistle17
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The masts (and booms) arrived yesterday via Ages of Sail from Krick in Germany. These folk were so good about following through with my request. It is heartening to know some people still care about customer support!

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The second last step to completing the bulkwarks prior to assembly was to enable the fastening system on the model. Six, 2.2 X 6.5 mm flat head screws were provided for each side. Once again using the Sherline mill, 6 clearance holes were drilled and then counter sunk with a larger drill bit to enable "fill in" so as not to show after painting. The mill proved invaluable in this seemingly simple operation as it enabled accurate depth and alignment control of the machining process.

P1010155.JPG

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I have started early stages of painting the hull and bulwark area. I was advised that Tamiya spray should work just fine with ABS plastic. I am told it does not need to be primed. Having no experience with Tamiya paints (spray) and/or ABS I am at the mercy of others at the moment. Anyone out there that can confirm or refute that advice I surely like to hear back.

Joe

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After altogether too much time and effort I have nearly completed the machining, attachment and refining of the bulkwarks to the model. My lament of course is if I had had the original kit supplied bulkwarks this would have been a non event. I guess I needed to vent.

 

The actual bulkwark mounting was a lesson in humility and frustration. I read somewhere that the kit version probably had some adhesive backed tape to help mount them. Anything I could think of just didn't seem right so I attached them with the supplied screws countersunk and filled (and filled and filled again - I used auto body Nitro Stan glazing compound which has a tendency to shrink). To further secure them to the hull I applied the inboard section with DAP Inst Cure. The bow section fit was tricky and required not only Easy Sand filler but also spot glazing. The inboard port and starboard, at the bow, sections of the bulkwarks were sanded with a thin scraper with sand paper both sides to get a crisp fit at this junction. To facilitate this the forward most mounting screws were backed off just enough to allow the scrapper/sandpaper sanding.

 

Once mounted it was obvious there was a void where the bulwarks met the molded rabbet of the hull. I simulated the kit molding by applying doll house furniture chair rail(180 thousands). That disguised the void quite well I believe.

 

One last note. When I tried using the small Tamiya spray cans it became obvious that coverage and cost were going to be a problem. In a hardware store search I came across the Rustoleum Plastic primer and spray paints. I am about to go that route for hull finish.P1010172.thumb.JPG.2c1cd9f459e5bef32485f3640972e72b.JPG

Edited by Thistle17
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I have primed and painted one coat of the Rustoleum product for plastics. I wiped the hull down with automotive de-greaser/cleaner and sprayed the primer. After it dried I sanded the surface down with 220 wet paper. I used the de-greaser/cleaner again and applied the paint layer.The good news is that it adheres well and dries to a hard finish. The bad news is that spray cans aren't really a good device to spray any paints. Even though I used what I believe are good application practices I found that the smoothness of the painted hull doesn't muster. I will have to spend some time wet sanding and repeating the process to get close to the results I am expecting. I may even have to rub the final product out and spray an overall clear coat.

 

I have to mask the waterline and the hull body color area for the final hull finish. I am going to use 3M or equivalent automotive masking tape that leaves little to no evidence of ridges at masked area intersections.

Edited by Thistle17
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Posted (edited)

An update on painting. I changed the base color of the hull to a pure white as the Navajo White just didn't strike me as the right hull color. Took extra precaution and wet sanded the hull 220 then 400. Wiped the hull down with auto body degreaser/cleaner with a lint free cloth and used all my (limited) skill in painting. The results were better than expected as there was little over spray. It is a low humidity day so that helped immensly. Onto the two tone hull color and waterline painting the client liked. This northeast weather is not only welcome it is a gift since I do not have a paint booth.

 

 

P1010178.JPG

Edited by Thistle17
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Posted (edited)

The painting saga continues. After painting the hull 48 hours earlier (per manufacturer directions) I observed a wrinkle pattern on the starboard side about 4 inches long. At the time I assumed it was surface contamination but that is not proving out. I sanded the area down and applied the overcoat of a royal blue color just above the waterline. Much to my dismay it repeated the same wrinkle marking. I searched the internet and now find this is not uncommon. I went ahead and called Rustoleum Customer Service and they indicated it was not contamination (as I had described my process). Rather they claim it is due to the under coat material, the creamy white, had not dried completely. I explained there was over a week between old and new coatings. That did not change his recommendations. Here was the advice I got:

1. Dry sand the area of concern, 2. Wash down the area with a little dish soap in a water solution, 3. Wash area with water only, 4. Dry it thoroughly. 5. Repaint.

 

Not too convinced of this but have no other solution as many on line have also lamented. He also added the best way to use this paint is to apply 2 wet coats in close succession so they paint layers fuse together.

 

An update: I completed Step 1 above and indeed found that the wrinkle did go all the way through the overcoat of white down into the Navajo White coat. So they certainly did have that part correct. I am somewhat hesitant to just plunge ahead and paint without a light prime coat (lessons learned from my youthful days in auto body painting). As I am running out of fair weather I am leaning to follow the manufacturer advice and repaint. My reasoning is that I have now exposed the paint layer that was still uncured so I should have now exposed it to better drying. We will see. Hope this is useful information to others and helps advoid disappointment.

Edited by Thistle17
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What a disaster! This is probably the last time I use this paint (Rustoleum 2X Ultra Cover). It did it again! Per their instructions I sanded it down, washed it with a little dish detergent and water, waited 5 days and reapplied paint on a 74 degree day with low RH. I am now back to Rustoleum Customer Support for answers. What a set back.

P1010179.JPG

Edited by Thistle17
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Just curious Joe, would rubbing compound fix it?  Is it in the same spot?  I wonder if there's a defect in the hull right there if is as I used to run into that way back when I did model cars.

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