Jump to content
RPaul

Deck planking - as in, 'any'? BB Cutty Sark

Recommended Posts

Hi All, 

I've made a start on BB Cutty Sark, and am close to fitting the deck in place. The plans/instructions don't mention deck planking, and there's no wood for it in the kit. I am assuming it's implied that one just draws caulking lines on the deck as is? Generally not a problem, but it's plain ply, so I'm thinking - would it look realistic enough? 

My preferred way would be to get some wood strip in, something like lime or maple, and plank it. Then caulking etc. It probably won't take me much longer to do it than it would to do a good job with drawing lines; the expense is likely to be tolerable too. So are there any reasons I might not want to do it? 

And another question is about a part I've highlighted on the second picture. What is it? It looks like some sort of grating for the helmsman to stand on - it's right in front of the wheel on the quarterdeck. There's no part number or any mention of it in the instructions; am I right in assuming I should just draw it on the deck? Or is there a better way of doing it? 

 

Thanks in advance, 

Pavel

Untitled.png

Untitled 2.png

popeye the sailor likes this

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

RPaul,

 

Curious I have no experience with BB boats but this was an expensive model I am surprised strips were not including in the kit, for the cost that would dissuade me from Billings unless that is a standard for them most comments here are positive about them.

Would look better planked. Others here can give better advice than myself.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Pavel:

I do not know much about these kits, but I would definitely strip plank the deck and add the grating. 

 

The deck planking can be premilled strips. I use basswood regularly and, while it is relatively soft, it can be made to look very good. I shade one edge of the plank with a typical number 2 pencil and get a nice caulking line. You can also shade one end of each plank for a caulking line there as well. Make sure you get an accurate centerline marked on the deck before you begin planking. Once that first plank is laid along the centerline, the rest should line up well. 

 

You can also buy premade grating strips that can be put together to form the grating. You may find that you need a light framework around the grating, but you can use some planking material for that. 

 

You can get the strips and grating from an online supplier if you do not have a hobby shop nearby. 

 

Russ

 

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

You know what, it might be just me being a bit duh. There are 3mm mahogany strips in the kit, in a quantity that seems to be enough for the deck and superstructure planking. So let me take my 'there's no wood for it in the kit' back and swap it 'is it the wood for the deck?'. The strips are on the parts list, but not numbered, just listed, so there's no precise indication what they are designated for. I looked through the plans and instructions, and it looks like there's nothing that could require that much mahogany strip other than the deck. I would expect something lighter in colour, but the picture on the box shows a little bit of foredeck that is quite dark; unfortunately, there are no full-view coulour pictures of the deck.

 

Now, here's another potentially stupid question. On the first picture in my original post, you can see that planking has 'windows' in them where the deck fitted bits and bobs go. There's also a border around the edges of the main, quarter, and foredeck. Makes me wonder - is it just the way plans are drawn, for clarity, or is it really meant to leave unplanked spots? I'd really rather plank everything over, and glue things on top. Any thoughts on this one? 

 

Thanks, 

Pavel

mtaylor likes this

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Pavel:

I have never had much luck with mahogany. It tends to be brittle and open grained; not a good choice for scale modeling, generally speaking. I would think a lighter colored wood for the deck would be more appropriate. 

 

I have planked decks both ways; using full length planks and leaving open spaces into which hatches and deck structures would fit. Leaving the open spaces is more tedious in laying the plank but it makes it easier to get a nice fit around the bottom edges of deck structures. When laying the full length planked deck, the reverse is true. It is easier laying the planks, but more difficult getting the good fit around the bottom edges of the deck structure. Which you use is based on what you think will work best for you. 

 

Russ

 

 

mtaylor and RPaul like this

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

 

 

I hope this photo can help about gratting

 

cutty_sark_15.JPG.0c4a45705007cfe8544534a10d0c9a7c.JPG

About planking - you are captain of your model, and it depends how you see it finished. Personaly, I think that there just have to be planking, but if you decide to do this, pay your attention to scale of planks and their width if you can. And then, question - will it be visible at all ? is it worth? Your choice.

Take care and keep on working

mtaylor, RPaul and BETAQDAVE like this

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

What scale is the model ? - I am not familiar with the kit.

 

If the scale is 1/96 or smaller, I would not go for a planked deck perhaps, as it can look quite overscale. Remember that the planks would have to be less than 2 mm wide. Getting this cleanly done is a bit of a challenge. I would rather draw on the pattern with a pencil, give individual planks a slight wash with very dilute acrylic paint (burnt umber or black) to create a bit of variety, then seal the wood, rub it down lightly and finally draw the plank pattern with ink.

 

Mahagony is definitely a no-go for deck-planking, unless you are building a yacht. Usually some sort of pine was used on the prototype. So a light, but hard wood would be good for this.

 

Deck-openings, whether for hatches, or smaller items, such as bollards etc. are usually 'framed'. You don't want to run the end-grain of the deck-planks against hatch-coamings, because this would be difficult to get water-tight. On both, the prototype and the model, you would begin with laying-out these 'frames' that should have nicely mitred corners. You can then butt your planking nicely against to these. Available length of planks is also a consideration. It rarely exceeded 10 m and would be typically around 6 m to 8 m. So, if you have a space between openings of less than 10 m, you can have one continuous plank. Otherwise would would have to split it into two or more lengths. Think also about notching the planks into the waterways, particularly at the bow.

mtaylor and RPaul like this

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Pavel,

 

Go to build logs model ships, in search type in Cutty Sark, if I have this right it will bring up members build logs which will help. You may be able to search under Billings Cutty Sark and may bring up just those logs

RPaul, mtaylor and BETAQDAVE like this

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Hi Pavel, being the dilettante box collector, I have a few of the BB kits, and without exception, they all have a printed deck supplied with them but since the Cutty is not among them I did a google image search and it seems that pretty much holds true in that case also.  Did you purchase the kit new, or was it used - it may be missing parts in either case, and another possible answer may be the age of the kit - many of the mfr's change contents here and there for various reasons at times, although I haven't seen much evidence of that in Billing's case.  IMO Wefalck's ideas are on the money if you can't get the printed ones from BB, in any case I sure would enjoy watching you build this baby!  Steve M

 

BTW - the picture you have posted shows the parts you should have, and the link below shows an actual photo of the parts that should have been in the box..

 

https://www.worthpoint.com/worthopedia/billing-boats-denmark-ref-nr564-cutty-244702677

Edited by coxswain
additional information
mtaylor and RPaul like this

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

This may be of some help. The deck plan is around page 14.

https://www.artesanialatina.net/en/elite/485-wooden-model-ship-kit-cutty-sark-tea-clipper.html

Open the instructions and you can see the deck was planked. When I built the Cutty Sark I planked the decks, however it was not a Billings kit.

Paul

Edited by Paul Jarman
RPaul and mtaylor like this

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I've built many Billing Boats kits.   I've also done a little customer service with the shop I was dealing with.   older kits have printed decks and parts,  but the newer ones do not,  due to complaints about it.  I'm actually surprised that your kit didn't come with planking for the deck.......all of the Billing kits that I've dealt with supplied it.   you can do it......just use thin strip .5 x 3 mm and it should come out looking fine.  I use a wood called Annegre,  sold By Billing Boats.  it's not a blonde wood like basswood or obechi.......but has a varied tan to reddish look {not as dark as mahogany}.   it had a very nice look,  after it's sealed with a semi gloss lacquer or urethane.  I suggest semi gloss, because you have more control over the sheen you want,  depending how many coats you put on the deck.  you can also make up a pair of waterways {margins}, to run along the bulwarks,  so you don't have to do all that fancy trimming around the bulwark posts.  this is what the borders around the decks are called

John Allen, RPaul, coxswain and 1 other like this

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

O wow, thanks guys, what a lot of help! 

OK, so definitely planking, and as Wefalck suggests, framing around deck fittings... Actually quite excited about it :) None of the parts are printed - so must be a newer kit, but that's not a problem, I'm reasonably confident I can handle it. 

I'm pretty sure now mahogany in the kit is for the deck and superstructure planking; there's no direct indication of it, but plans have triangular signs with numbers on them pointing at various parts  - I reckon it's for different finishes (apologies if it's something obvious, but I am still new to it, so discovering obvious stuff); the same no. 17 is pointing at the deck and bits that are more visibly planked with mahogany on pictures (other numbers also refer to painted bits). I've also seen some build pictures out there with fairly dark decks. Having seen the real Cutty's pics (thanks NenadM, the grating one really nails the question on the head), though, I'm really inclined to go for something much lighter (thanks Popeye for the Annegre suggestion, I'll take a look).

 

Right, I'm off to look at the build logs...

 

Thanks a lot again, it all really helps. 

 

Pavel

 

PS Incidentally, is there a table somewhere indicating which finish numbers refer to what on Billing's plans? I've looked through the instructions and plans several times, couldn't find anything. Pictures aren't always clear, either. 

mtaylor and coxswain like this

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Found the answer to the PS above - the copy of the instructions on Billing's own Danish website has a page that isn't in my booklet (and not in a few copies available online), and it does say there that the triangle is, indeed, for the paint/varnish; not planking, though - so I was wrong thinking that a number can denote a finish of any kind. Another thing is that numbers in the booklet don't match with the ones used on the plans: e.g., 1, 12, and 17, that are used extensively on the hull on the plans, aren't on the list... Cornwall Model Boats' site has BB's paints, though, and their numbers seem to match the plans (1 - white, 17 - clear gloss etc.).

 

Pavel

mtaylor, NenadM and coxswain like this

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Here's how I planked my BB Cutty Sark deck 20 years ago, to cover the unsightly printed planking. I'd do it very differently now...😔

D6321E31-E689-4A46-B7B9-C84B98C9AA04.jpeg

NenadM, mtaylor and russ like this

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

    My 2 cents worth would be that scribed plywood decking just looks like plywood with lines drawn on it. :angry: Individual boards found on a real ship have much better definition than that!  Having done woodworking for many years, I tend to notice right away that the wide grain pattern of the plywood crosses over all of the seams and that's a dead giveaway that it's just a sheet of plywood and not individual planks.  
     If putting in individual decking boards looks like too much work there is still another option.  I once modified the 1/96 Cutty Sark by Revell many years ago in which I replaced the plastic decking with some 3" x 22" sheets of .05" thick basswood decking boards that were 1/16" (aprox. 1.6 mm) wide glued up with black glue to represent the caulking.  It was a little bit of extra work but  I thought well worth the effort to eliminate the seams in the plastic deck and add that extra definition to them.:D  Micro Mark still offers this product for about $17. (It's also available in 3/32", 1/8", and 3/16" wide planks.)

 

    For your reference I have also attached some photos of the deck of the Cutty Sark as it actually appears today.  But, as it's your ship it really is your personal preference, so just have fun with it!  :dancetl6: 

post-8878-0-12989100-1478470392_thumb.jpg.8d1a3090ffc18736abe9a9d862fc9874.jpgpost-8878-0-41715300-1478447605_thumb.thumb.jpg.7411c4c1c76f70245f429dd7e2dc8008.jpgpost-8878-0-34399800-1478388985_thumb.jpg.6da42c77bd1b10722d8f82a682d80e07.jpgpost-8878-0-22446300-1478389145_thumb.jpg.df805d3ad8ebb769912e0766597f2c0e.jpg

As you can see, the decking is narrow and very light, so the 3 mm Mahogany would be both too wide (judging by the aprox. length of the feet of the tourists they must be about 6" wide, so @ 1:96 the planks should be about 1/16") and a poor color choice for decking but a good choice for the deck structures.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

  If you intend to put actual wood decking down or just draw it out, there is an add on wood veneer kit made for the Revell plastic model that I have shown below.  This is made for a 1:96 scale ship but, if nothing else, you can you can use it as a guide for your planking layout.  :P

horiz_naked.thumb.jpg.c72bcbe126c296e7360c74220d3bc8e2.jpg 

Altduck and mtaylor like this

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I too vote for a non-plank solution. As mentioned above, scale becomes an issue. Actual planks do look good, nothing looks more planked than actual planks! But if you can’t get lumber of the proper tiny size you will throw off the scale. But on the other hand, how bad is that? Many decisions in model building revolve around Literal duplication or Artificial representation. The Litteral duplication has its own inherent satisfaction, a thing IS what it IS. but with this come scale issues. You see this sometimes when actual brass is used to make metal objects for the ship, it’s too shiny and often too thick and bulky but it IS actual metal. Likewise when actual cloth fabric is used for sails and actual sewn stitches are used, made with needle and thread. The texture and rows of stitches on such sails are out of scale, but they are “real” and they have their own inherant satisfaction and don’t necessarily offend the eye since they bring something else to the table. Same with a planked deck that is out of scale.

in every aspect of model building, there is always some material or technique that can be used to fool the eye and stay in scale by substituting something that IS NOT the actual material used on a real ship. Like paper for sails or plastic for metal. Decisions about materials and scale come down to the intent of the builder, what is the overall Tone of the model? What type of “realism” are you aiming for.

Altduck and mtaylor like this

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

If it was me? I would go for a scribed deck. Using a pencil to draw the seams works but I find pencil lines look like pencil, the dull lead color. Colored pencil is better. But scribing the seams is worth investigating too especially if you’re going to use paint or stain, the liquid color goes down into the scribed lines, highlighting them nicely.

Altduck and mtaylor like this

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now

  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    No registered users viewing this page.

About us

Modelshipworld - Advancing Ship Modeling through Research

SSL Secured

Your security is important for us so this Website is SSL-Secured

NRG Mailing Address

Nautical Research Guild
237 South Lincoln Street
Westmont IL, 60559-1917

About the NRG

If you enjoy building ship models that are historically accurate as well as beautiful, then The Nautical Research Guild (NRG) is just right for you.

The Guild is a non-profit educational organization whose mission is to provide support to our members in their efforts to raise the quality of their model shipcraft.

The Nautical Research Guild puts on ship modeling seminars, yearly conferences, and juried competitions. We publish books on ship modeling techniques as well as our world-renowned quarterly magazine, The Nautical Research Journal, whose pages are full of articles by master ship modelers who show you how they build those exquisite details on their models, and by maritime historians who show you what details to build.

Our Emblem

Modelshipworld - Advancing Ship Modeling through Research
×