HIPEXEC

USS Syren (USS Argus) by Hipexec - Model Shipways - 1:64

166 posts in this topic

Hooray!!!  My kit arrived via USPS from Model Expo.  Outer box a little beat up but kit is okay.

 

I have to admit this model ship building is an addiction. With no kit to work on I was pacing the deck looking for things to do. I even contemplated tweaking my Connie that has been dormant for almost two years.

 

I'll spend some time checking the inventory  against what's in the box.

 

Then I will read the very, very comprehensive instruction book. It looks like the most detailed instructions I have ever seen in a kit.

 

The 1:1 drawings look very detailed.

 

Compared to the lack of instructions and drawings from that banned kit of the HMS Surprise, this is heaven.

 

 

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Sjors, Gahm, Ryland Craze and 13 others like this

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How do you eat an elephant?......"Start chewing on the toe!"

 

I cut out my first piece. Excellent laser cuts except for one vertical. I had to cut it myself since the laser didn't go all the way through. 

 

I've got to stop and paste together some templates provided, then figure out how to use them.

 

Very little warping, but I put the piece under a flat piece of glass to make it perfect.

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Sjors, Heronguy, Aussie048 and 9 others like this

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I'm adding the rabbet strip. The instructions said soak the strip 10 minutes, which I did, and the strip bent beautifully! I will leave it set overnight then glue it. Once the glue sets I will carve the bearding line.  I've made space for the planks on the keel, stem and stern on two previous models but I didn't know the terms rabbet and bearding. See, you can teach an old dog new tricks.

 

The pipe in the picture is one of my soaking tubes...just PVC pipe with end caps.

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What a great historical subject. I will watch this with great interest.

 

Have you read To the Shores of Tripoli by A.B.C Whipple? It's a great read on the subject and goes into much detail about Presley O'Bannon and his exploits.

Nirvana, HIPEXEC and mtaylor like this

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Hey Rich , Have fun with your new kit. I thought I was the only one who decorated his shop walls with box tops from finished kits.  :)

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Gluing on the rabbet strip. First I sanded off the "char" left by laser cutting to give the glue a better hold. After applying PVA glue, I made sure strip was centered on the piece. than clamped and rubber banded it in place.

 

By the way, Chuck Passaro who designed this kit is being very supportive in my attempt to make it into the Argus. Thank you Chuck.

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Since I can't stand just waiting for glue to dry, so I decided to modify the rudder. Syren's rudder slants straight down while the Argus's rudder has a flare at the bottom. So, I formed and glued a small triangular piece to the base of the kit's rudder which I will shape into the Argus rudder

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Nice little mod RIch.

The quarter badge looks suspiciously like the Enterprise though I have no doubt Chucks is far superior.

Sam

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Chuck has helped me with excellent sources for the Argus. There are many small differences. The rudder being one of them

 

By the way, the quarter badge is a fake to make the brig seem like a larger frigate at a distance. Early camouflage.

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I formed the bearding area between the line and rabbet strip. I tried carving it with poor success, so I sanded it.

 

I've now placed the bulkhead former between two one inch boards in a vise to make it perfectly straight while I glue on the keel, stem and stern.

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rafine, Sjors, Nirvana and 6 others like this

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I just glued the stem knee to the rabbet strip being very careful to keep it centered with equal distance on either side for correct planking space. I shall add the keel piece next,  but hold off on the stern piece until after planking as per the instructions. This is a mistake I made on all my previous models and it made planking a lot harder. Good tip, Chuck

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I tacked on the false keel since the instructions say to NOT glue it on until after coppering. Actually it said tape it on but I thought the tape will keep coming loose hence I tacked it using tiny, short nails which will easily pry off.

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mtaylor, GuntherMT, src and 3 others like this

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I prepared and dry installed the first bulkhead. Very tedious work since there is a fragile quality to each bulkhead. I rough beveled the bulkhead to approximate the proper planking angle. The kit provides some markings to make beveling more accurate. I used sandpaper and files to get rid of the charring and allow a tight fit to the bulkhead former.

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canoe21, src, GuntherMT and 3 others like this

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Rich,  

 

It is going to be really useful to hear of the various challenges with this kit.  I take your comment about how tedious the prep work was as a indication to be patient when I get there too.  Thanks.

 

Still waiting for delivery of my Syren kit.  I'm watching yours with great interest!

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I dry fitted all the bulkheads. It got easier with each bulkhead. The laser cutting is excellent otherwise some of the bulkheads would have snapped in places. High quality laser cutting! Yeah!!!!

 

I also rough beveled the bulkhead edges to facilitate planking. They help by providing markings to help locate the beveling. Next step will be fine tuning the bulkhead beveling.

 

Even though nothing is glued....it's great to see a ship taking form.

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Nirvana, Jack12477, rafine and 9 others like this

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I am continuing to bevel the bulkheads both outside and inside the bulwarks. I am holding the ship in a cradle I built for my Connie since I work standing up.

 

I finally clamped the keel to set up gluing the bulkheads in place. One bulkhead doesn't want to sit square, so I will make a small spacer to slip in place to square it up. Gluing them is a big step, so I will sit and look at it for a while before fixing them in place. I want to make sure everything is lined up, level, and straight.

 

After that comes filler blocks to strengthen the whole structure.

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I started gluing filler blocks between the bulkheads for stiffening. This set simulates the lower deck which I planked. The instructions said to run a pencil along the edge of each plank to simulate caulking. After the glue dries the instructions said to stain the deck Golden Oak. Even though you will barely be able see see a tiny bit if the lower deck through an open hatch, I've done this on all my models.

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Sjors, src, GaryKap and 6 others like this

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Well, the keel started off straight, but managed to develop a slight warp during the placing of the bulkheads and spacers. So, as per the instructions, I fabricated a 3/16" slot using some straight lumber I had and am continuing to add bulkhead fillers. The keel is now straight, but I check it after each set of fillers.

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Sjors, Nirvana, GuntherMT and 8 others like this

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I finished the bulkhead fillers as per the instructions. I had the hardest time keeping the keel straight. It never got very warped, but just enough to drive me crazy. I tweaked it and tweaked it until finally it is straight!

 

I might add some more filler when I am planking if I think it will help glue the planks on. Also, my fillers don't look as pretty as the instructions, but I think it is all hidden from view anyway.

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capnharv2, rafine, mtaylor and 6 others like this

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Moving right along Rich!

 

I just got my kit yesterday!  I'm not sure when I'll actually start it but I'm doing the reading and following your build.

 

I have a couple of questions:

 

You mentioned that the bulkhead former got a little out of true and that you clamped it while adding the filler blocks as suggested in the instructions.  Just curious when you said you checked after each filler that the bulkhead former was still true. Was that just an extra precaution or did you expect to make other adjustments?

 

Secondly - Do the filler blocks play a role in the planking of the deck or are they just for strengthening the hull?  It appears in the manual that fillers are level with the top arc of the bulkheads but I didn't see any mention of matching the camber on the fillers.  

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Doug,

The bulkhead form  just seemed to get a very little bit out of line so I made tiny adjustments with each filler block. Not much stress, though...just a nudge. As far as decking goes, I haven't looked ahead, but I figure the filler blocks being level will help support the deck. Keeping it straight is key to a nice model. Good luck

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Just like most of the build logs I've been looking at for the Syren said, Yep....the bulkhead extensions are fragile!     Yesterday one just kind of fell off?  I glued it back on but I think I will touch each extensions where it joins the main piece with a drop of CA to help strengthen them. I read that fix  in one of the build logs.

 

BTW Doug, my last build was a banned kit that had mostly no instructions, so since this Syren kit with its lush instructions, I am going to drown myself in these instructions....it's refreshing.

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canoe21, mtaylor, GuntherMT and 2 others like this

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Preventative measures!  I CA glued all the fragile areas of the stern frames and bulkhead extensions.  For you glue aficianados....I have several different versions of CA, but Crazy Glue with a brush applicator seemed easiest for this job. I have no idea if it will help. It's like chicken soup......it couldn't hurt!

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Just like most of the build logs I've been looking at for the Syren said, Yep....the bulkhead extensions are fragile!     Yesterday one just kind of fell off?  I glued it back on but I think I will touch each extensions where it joins the main piece with a drop of CA to help strengthen them. I read that fix  in one of the build logs.

 

BTW Doug, my last build was a banned kit that had mostly no instructions, so since this Syren kit with its lush instructions, I am going to drown myself in these instructions....it's refreshing.

 

Rich,   I'll be interested to see if the CA glue helps - let us know if you have any more snapped extensions!

 

Certainly agree that the inclusion of detailed build instructions makes this kit even more desirable.  I'm hoping to learn lots from them while I build.  

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