fish

Lauck Street Shipyard

56 posts in this topic

I once felt sorry for Bob, despite his angry and paranoid disposition. I reached out to him many times, only to have it thrown in my face.

 

He actively tried to pursue a member who wished to sell his original practicum discs, saying they were violating his EULA, and Bob made this poor guy, who wasn't touting illegal products, feel like a criminal.

 

The final straw for me came when he copied the entire MSW forum structure, verbatim, including forum area descriptions, onto the LSS forums in an attempt to make them more popular.

 

Bob doesn't have a great staff following on MSW.

42rocker and WackoWolf like this

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I used Bob’s practicum to build my AVS. As someone who had never tried something like this I found it helpful. However, even more helpful were the comments I got from others on his forum who offered advice, comments and alternate views. Over time they ran afoul of Bob and were banned or withdrew from his forum. Last November I found MSW and realized the things I liked about Bob’s forum existed here but in much greater quantity, quality and variety. The guys who helped me with my AVS were now all posting on MSW and many more people with them. MSW has all the benefits (and more) and none of the BS. We are all adults and for the most part we all act that way. I for one resented being treated like a child and having to worry that I would be publicly scolded for having an opinion that differed from his. Eventually I just stopped posting there because it was no longer fun.


 

I was not banned from his site but people I grew to consider friends were. Good people who build fine ships were banned for silly reasons. When I found myself reading and rereading every entry before I posted it I realized it was too stressful. This is a hobby and we should enjoy every aspect of it and that includes the people we interact with.


 

This AM when I logged on I noticed that in the very short time that MSW 2.0 has been online we already have more than 1700 users and almost 12,000 posts. MSW 2.0 is a phenomenal success and this rapid growth is a tribute to the people who conceived the idea of this forum and executed it. It’s also a tribute to all of us because together WE are MSW and it is our freely shared photos, posts and advice that have ship builders from around the world flocking to this site.


 

Thanks for listening; I feel better having gotten that off my chest.

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You even get information about looking for information! That's what's great about MSW. You just have to ask and so many willing and helpful people respond

Jaxboat likes this

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I find this thread rather sad. I believe Bob to be a troubled soul, hence his erratic behaviour. In the past he has done much to help promote ship model-making, for which we can be thankful. But, unfortunately (as is well documented here) he is his own worst enemy. Rather like the description of Mae West, he fires on any would-be rescuers.

Jaxboat, 42rocker, fish and 1 other like this

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I find this thread rather sad. I believe Bob to be a troubled soul, hence his erratic behaviour. In the past he has done much to help promote ship model-making, for which we can be thankful. But, unfortunately (as is well documented here) he is his own worst enemy. Rather like the description of Mae West, he fires on any would-be rescuers.

 

I agree that it is indeed sad.   as a former customer and having known several Viet-Nam Vets on the one hand I feel for him but at the same time I see that he damages his business and possibly hurts the hobby if folks get the wrong ideas about who builds the models.

 

I hope he gets help or at least finds some peace and can get along better with folks.

42rocker, J T Lombard, fish and 2 others like this

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I have just read through this thread, and with each post I have said, yeah, I know that, and yeah, that's exactly right. 

 

Here's my story:  when I got to the rigging of my first build (and my only completed one so far!), I was positively baffled, since the kit instructions said, basically, start at one end work your way to the other.  I came across his "College," and bought the rigging portion of the Rattlesnake practicum.  It was what enabled me to rig the ship, period.  That seemed so positive that I decided on the Rattlesnake as my next (and current) build, even though it was beyond my capacity.  Again, Bob's practicum is what enabled me to do the model at all, and I've learned enormously.  BUT whenever I sought advice through his forum, I was told simply that he'd long since forgotten about whatever step I was having trouble with.  The tantrums on the site, the bizarre new projects (at one point he was going to make violins and write a practicum for that), were a continual source of bafflement for me -- for over a year I'd say to my wife, "so here's what Bob's doing now," and she'd just shake her head.

 

Now that I'm doing the rigging on the Rattlesnake (sort of a "this is where I came in" experience), I understand that rigging doesn't interest Bob, and so he doesn't put much effort into his explanations.  I've decided to pore over the rigging plans and work things out for myself.  It's slower going, perhaps, but much more educational.  AND I've come to rely on this wonderful site and community enormously.  When Bob announced his new rules to "participate" in his forum, I just thought, well, so long.  And one indication of why MSW 2.0 is such a valuable resource is this very thread right here.

 

Whew!  I feel relieved.

 

Cheers,

 

Martin

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I have had generally good experinces with LSS practicums.  There are many folks who bought his AVS practicum to get started in the hobby.  But I do agree with comments from others about Bob's rules. Different people learn in different ways and Bob's somewhat gruff manner is not for everyone.  I do think Bob has made real contributions to our hobby by providing help and guidance to novice builders. I think his Constitution practicum is very good and almost a must to have for all but the most accomplished modelers.  With new beautifully designed  kits with highly detailed instructions such as Confederacy and Syren as well as sites like MSW, the need for 3rd party supplied practicums will diminish.

Just my opinion

Jaxboat B)

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I agree with most of the above and was reprimanded once for telling someone all the good things about one of his practicums but also mentioning a couple minor negative points publicly.  In my line of work I see a lot of Vietnam vets and see similar erratic behaviors although not meaning to excuse it completely in his case.

 

I do miss Bob's kit business.  Gotta give him a lot of credit for what he did there.  I built his Halifax and loved building it (I have posted pictures).  The quality of the wood and the instructions were really good for someone who I assume had never designed kits before the Fair American kit.  Too bad he couldn't have kept that part of his business going and too bad that the person he sold the kit business too has apparently not been able to get it going again.  Maybe just not profitable.  I'm not sure since I have no business sense.  I have his Kingfisher kit (unstarted) and I know several of you have built such beautiful models of that one.  So he's got that aspect of his legacy to be very proud of, I would say.

Dave

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Aaron  I got back into ship building  after 40 years and a massive heart attack.  Finding his web site and  then purchasing the Bluenose practium and conversing with Bob on things I could not be more pleased.  His detail has helped me along with his forum and other forums such as MSW.  There is always something out there that someone has done before you and most are more than willingly to help.  If you are a newbie I would recommend his work.  Like most pro's and artist they are testy in their work but want you to learn and enjoy the craft.  I never fail to learn something from fellow forum members whether it is techniques-tools-methods-kits-suppliers etc.  Anyone who says they do not need help needs help.  Enjoy the craft!

Paget

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The final straw for me came when he copied the entire MSW forum structure, verbatim, including forum area descriptions, onto the LSS forums in an attempt to make them more popular.

This kind of surprises me a little since he makes such a BIG case about his EULA and copyright issues, then he goes and violates the very thing that he is preaching about. 

I sent him an email making - what I thought - was a reasonable offer for the Constitution practicum. His reply was - to say the least - surprising. I have not been back to his site since.  Kind of glad I hesitated on paying that asking price now as it seems it would have been a big mistake.....

Martin W likes this

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I am a new modeler, and currently working on the Constitution MS 2040- and would not know where to begin if not for Hunt's practicum. I have only positive experiences w Bob. The only problem is "he" was the only person to answer my questions on his forum and I began to feel a bit bothersome,  so after I found MSW I stuck w it, and it simply has much more content to sink your teeth into. It seems Bob spent a lot of time creating his practicums, and for inexperienced hobbiest like myself his practicums are pretty much invaluable. Copyright laws are a unexplored realm as far as the internet age goes, and there are many people who suffer great loses intellectually and financially due to the easy exchange of information. So that being said, I have found the pracitcum a bit hard to understand at times, but is essential for my build non the less, and I also use information provided from this site in combination w the practicum.

DanO, WackoWolf, mtaylor and 2 others like this

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I wish he would buy back is POB business and get back to building them. I would love to buy a few more, They where one thing that he did well with out people grumbling. You paid for what you got and you got a good kit with an excellent chance of a great outcome to put on a shelf

Andy

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I wish he would buy back is POB business and get back to building them. I would love to buy a few more, They where one thing that he did well with out people grumbling. You paid for what you got and you got a good kit with an excellent chance of a great outcome to put on a shelf

Andy

 

 

I would totally buy a Kingfisher and probably a Fubbs as well.

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Over the years Bob has gone through a hell the I am sure he wouldn't wish on anyone. He reduced his activities to providing the practicums and tutorials out of necessity. However, in a communication with Bob a short while ago he did hint at a POB kit but would not give me any details. With his design skills and ability to produce phenomenal kits, it shoud be one that everyone should have. He is doing the best he can and setting idiosyncrosies aside, give him the benefit of the doubt.

 

My 2 cents,

 

IR3

DanO and ScottRC like this

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Hi,

 

I have a couple of Bob's practicum's and they are not worth the money - you can find all the information on this website!

With lots of help and encouragement from lots of very knowledgeable members - who are friendly and polite towards you.

Save your money and spend it on tools, wood and reference books, etc. - it will be money well spent!!!

 

Bob is fine as long as you agree with him - he is not open to other opinions and ideas.

His is the only way of doing things in his mind (and he will kick you off his very poor forum if you challenge him!)

 

Bob likes to play the bleeding heart and hard luck story, but is not willing to reciprocate when others are in difficulty - he conned me out of one of his kits that I had paid for while he was developing it. By the time he had started to manufacture the kit and I could not afford the astronomical delivery charge he was imposing, because I was unemployed for a long period then.

 

regards

/Andrew

SteveM, WackoWolf, Martin W and 4 others like this

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However, in a communication with Bob a short while ago he did hint at a POB kit but would not give me any details. With his design skills and ability to produce phenomenal kits, it shoud be one that everyone should have.

 

He is working on the prototype now for a true plank on frame kit version of the Armed Virginia Sloop.  He is using a cnc machine to create all the parts to be included in the kit, and so far it does look very nice, although the proposed pricing is up there pretty high.  It's kind of a crossover kit between the PoF kits I've seen, and the typical PoB kit, as the frame pieces are all cut from a billet and included as parts in the kit, instead of having the modeler make frame pieces from scratch. 

 

The prototype has been constructed through the framing and removal from the jig currently, and it's certainly a good looking kit at this point.  Not knowing how far he's ever gotten on his other projects, I have no idea if this is a good sign that this one will actually see the light of day, or not.

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Regardless of peoples thoughts on Bob's personality and his practicums, there seems to be a near universal regard for the kits he used to produce.

 

He has just opened up a web page for his new kit with photo's of the prototype in it's current state and is taking deposits for potential December '14 shipments if anyone is interested. 

 

http://www.lauckstreetshipyard.com/avskit.htm

alangr4 likes this

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Hello there Fish,

 

All I can tell you is to go ahead and dive in and if you have questions about how to do things these guys will be able to give you some great advice but if you do happen to make a mistake,(which we all do), you will find that you learned from that too.

 

Happy Modeling,

Marty G.

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If I may...practicums have their place in the ship modeling world...many master modeler's offer practicums...they bridge the gap between the instructions in a kit and the knowledge gained through experience. Not every modeler gets the information they need from a "website"...for many reasons. Practicums can be worth every penny paid in learning how to model ships. Like anything, you can search through the available practicums and find one that works for you. The practicums from LauckStreetShipyard are very straight forward...easy to follow...and instruct certain key principles such as the importance of relationships between parts and structures. So don't dismiss practicums out of hand please...they have their place and their worth.

 

Also...there is often two sides to every story...so stay off the lee shore please!

 

JimD

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Poor Bob. I hope he is reading and taking some mental notes about these posts. He needs help.

His last remark to me when I left his forum (because of an insulting, nasty email I received from him) was 'GOOD RIDDANCE' and more. And I was one of his customers!!!! 

It was not long afterwards when others (not named here) did the same thing that I did. They made reconciling comments to Bob which were ignored, and the result was that the whole forum collapsed around poor Bob.

 

His products are good but not his personality.

scratch, Martin W, SteveM and 2 others like this

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I think Jim's point is that the practicums are found to be quite useful by some people, and they do not require any sort of personal interaction with the author unless you choose to have that interaction.

 

I doubt very many people interact with the author of AOTS, yet it's an incredibly useful resource for many people and is highly recommended, and probably would be even if the author was a total ****-hole in person. 

 

I know I've found the practicum for the AVS to be quite useful.  If Bob ever decides to give me reason to leave his forum, so be it, I still have the documentation that I paid for, so the ability to use the forums is just 'extra', and wasn't a consideration to the purchase, nor does it affect my use of the practicum as a resource in building the AVS.

GLakie and Martin W like this

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It's unfortunate that we wind up back on this thread over and over. I think all that should be said has been said. While I think new members should be able to find this thread I am not sure we should be adding any more to it.

I hope what I mean is understood in the right way.

Pugsley, Martin W, Canute and 4 others like this

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I have found Bob to be friendly, helpful, and quite pleasant. I have talked with him many times over the phone, and he is unfailingly talkative. (I did call on a Sunday one time, he was a bit less then thrilled about that, and understandibly so! a guy has to have some down time.) I will continue to purchase his kits. They are the best stuff out there!

Jaxboat likes this

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