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Everything posted by jlheureux

  1. So a quick hand here...I have WAYYY to little belaying pins in this kit. I went to my local game shop and they ordered me some AL pins, but they are too big. They were cheap so I'm not stressing out about it. A quick measure shows that the one they ordered in for me are 10mm in length and the ones supplied by the kit are a scale size or two smaller at 8mm. So, would my best bet be ordering these from Model Expo? Does this look right? http://www.modelexpo-online.com/product.asp?ITEMNO=MS0680
  2. Yea, that cannon was a worthwhile diversion. My other coping strategy is to take my time more. MY first ship came out great, don't get me wrong but I went straight out on it and built the whole thing in about 2 months flat. So I'm just working on this one, then taking breaks as I need them and it's been working well. I'm a hobby addict so I brew beer, play guitar, workout, ride my motorcycle, write, paint, build furniture, build models......It's a busy life!
  3. Made a little headway back on the Constellation. Got the mainmast lower shrouds 95% done. Man it is a slow tedious process tying all those knots. This one has 8 lines and I made 25 rungs, on both sides. 8X25X2 is a lot of tiny knots. Hey anyone else working on this kit: how do you keep from going insane?
  4. Thanks man! It was basically a one day project but a great diversion. Only gripe I had with the kit was it didn't come with deck planking. The instructions stated "mark lines with a marker on the base to simulate deck planking" and I was like "yea, right" and made a quick trip back to the ship for some plank material.
  5. Side Project: Mantua Naval Cannon In my adventures with the USS Constellation model build I hit a 'road bump.' I happened to be browsing the isles of my local hobby shop and happened upon this little gem. This kit was marked down from $90 to $40 bucks. At a $50 discount I couldn't pass it up. The guy at the shop said a fella had come in and traded in a bunch of old kits, hence the markdown. I left feeling like a winner. I think it's technically a 'French Naval Cannon' but I liked the red, yellow, and black scheme of a Victory style ship so I painted it up that way. I ran out of room on the board so the one rear line isn't exactly accurate, but it works. For giggles I made a few extra little accessory pieces like the power canisters and the cannon bore scraper. I think it came out pretty good. It was just the distraction I needed to get my mind off of tying all those tiny damn knots. Now back to work on the Constellation!!
  6. Thanks for the suggestion Jack. I'm not into un-armed ships, if it ain't got cannons I'm not interested. HOWEVER-That ship you suggest has a pretty sweet looking swivel cannon I've not seen before. I may have to give that one a shot.
  7. That makes total sense actually. Good point. I think it's pretty cool how different countries approached problems differently. I remember the awesome Horatio Hornblower series when they took a French ship and the crew commented on how "the frogs don't use footropes"
  8. Mtaylor- is the difference cosmetic or are their pros and cons to each type of port in practice?
  9. Thanks Foxy; If I get what you're asking you're wondering about the single door flip up style gunports instead of a 2 piece segmented shutter style gunport. I don't have the pictures on me but with this model the kit specifies making the gunports throughout the ship this way with the one piece flip up door. It WAS nice using wood instead of pre-fab crappy metal doors, and I like the addition of the line on them that my SF didn't have. One random pair of gunport doors I believe right up by the bow had a two piece shutter in the plans, but for consistancy sake (as well as laziness sake-Don't build when you're tired / have had more than one beer) I just made them consistant throughout. If there is one thing I've learned on here is I'm the captain of my own ship build and I do what I want! Anyone a little more historically inclined on here have any info on the difference between gunport types?
  10. So, I'm feeling like my light colored wood is looking a little monotone. Anything else I could do to add a bit of weathering or to otherwise just give it a little more texture?
  11. Yea for the anchors they are hoisted up on the cat heads then I figured secured for travel I did a similar feature on my San Fran and just kinda likes it better than just dangling anchors. In reference to your question about the masts it helps me stay focused to go just one step at a time. I installed the lower masts and stays then am working on the lower shrouds one mast at a time starting forward and working aft. I will then owns talk the topmasts and rig them up. Then I'll do back stays and finish up the masts. The. I do yards pre-sailed. Stay tuned for my starch method to adding some body, and again start forward with the lowest mast and working up and back. Just seems to work for me. It also seems to help keep my large bear mits mobile enough. It creates more workspace doing it this way. Just how my brain works, and also how the rigging diagram is laid out. I go step by step with how they lay it out.
  12. Been working on my ship. I took a little time off to brew some beer and hit the gym. I've always got something going on. I got the anchors rigged and on. I tie the catheads to the anchor in a way that I like, but I'm told that they would hoist them by the business end of the anchor in real life. Eh. I like how I rigged em. Except for one or two points I know I am going to have some overlap with portholes. I gotta measure better in the future. Finished shaping and putting together the upper masts and got them test fitted. Not secured yet, hence they look a little wonky. I also got the foremast main shrouds up and tied. I think they came out pretty well. A little loose, but I got better as I went along. I think the deal is the first set on every ship I do will be slightly sub par. I guess it's a skill you really gotta keep practicing. I prepped out my lines for the mainmast shrouds but I gotta wait for my lady to get the lines seized on the deadeyes. May take a few days.
  13. I wish that this Constellation had MORE sail. I like the look of those little horizontal sails in between the masts, but I know not every ship had things like that. I've been slowing down a bit now I'm up to rigging. I find when I try to rush things at this stage I mess up. But I am so looking forward to getting it done and seeing the final product, as well as starting my next ship although I'm really going to have to negotiate with the Mrs space wise. We already have no blessed clue where we're putting this one. It is significantly bigger than my San Francisco...
  14. Dude that ship is looking nice! I shoulda done what you did with going back to the dark wood on the gunwales. That looks sweet
  15. Gotta put the sail on! I got a trick with some spray on heavy starch and an iron to sort if stiffen up and pre-form the sails. I did it on my San Fran and it made them look more wind filled. Can you upload a pic of where exactly you affixed the spritsail yard to the bowsprit? I'm trying to figure out how to fit it in there cause with all those stays there are a ton of lines running under there.
  16. Man. What a difference a couple of masts and a little bit of line will do to a model. It looks like a ship now! I started with the bowsprit. The deadeyes underneath in photo one were a lot of fun as were the other stays that are built into this component. This is very different from the San Francisco and I really liked the added detail. I then added the lower portion of the three masts and did the stays. I like the triangular dead eyes. My wife was super helpful as a walking talking serving machine and I like the effect. I have the sense that it will work better to just put on these lower masts and do the shrouds before I attach the topmasts. Any opinion either way? My only question is now i have all that line run on the bowsprit where exactly do I afix the sail? Either way I do it there will be a line going over or under or inbetween the yard / sail. I think I got it but it seems a little crowded under there if that makes any sense. Fun anecdote: So I worked for like 3 hours rigging the deadeyes and tying them on underneath the bowsprit. Then I tied it off to the eyebolt on the bow as instructed annnnnnd promptly went to clip the end with a nail clipper and snipped the whole damn thing. I'm sure others have had that sort of experience. Nothing like undoing an entire evening of work in one snip. LOL.
  17. I made all my masts and fighting tops this weekend. That was fun. The bowsprit especially was much more involved in this kit and I enjoyed it. I'm almost to rigging and this kits rigging diagram isn't as good as the San Francisco was so I'll just take it one line at a time. Anyone have any reference shots they used?
  18. Any other thoughts on the line? Where could I get something that would be appropriately colored and gauged in mass for this kit?
  19. Overall I like the look and feel. I can't wait to get masts on her. I feel like it looks pretty close. Part of me wishes I'd painted. I just really like the look of natural wood. My goal is to paint my next one up. I'm thinking that MS Armed Virginia Sloop? Try something a little cheaper, but a new company and MS seems to create some new challenges and opportunities. What do you folks think of it? One Q: doesn't look like it comes with canvas though.
  20. Quite true mtdoramike...I'm always the worst critic!! I find that finishing work helps a lot too. Once I get a coat of poly on it I'm thinking the whole thing will really come together. Masts and sails go a long way too. Planning on painting my next one for the next level, but I just love the look of natural wood so much. Thanks for the compliment Rich. They're kind of hard actually. Just to get all the steps completely even. I made my steps a little wider than the instructions but I like a wide stair.
  21. I got a couple if rough spots on the second layer of planking. That strip was so thin and brittle. But overall I'm pretty happy. As I keep learning I'll get more precise. Some of my cuts are not perfect or 100% square but it's all good.
  22. So I redid those stairs and I like them much better now that you can see the lower deck cannons. Working on finishing up the chainplates. Decided to just go ahead and do all the brass brass and focus on the practice on construction this time around. I"m not going to be painting this ship so I'm just going for modeling and natural woods. On my next ship I I plan on utlizing paints and will blacken my brass to start trying to get more authentic colors. Question: Gunports on the main deck (top deck) don't get any sort of gunport lid or cover? Do they just stay how they are? What a great hobby.
  23. What's a hog?? I think what I'm going to do is take out the two ladders and replace it with one ladder each in between the cannons. As my wife notes "well for Acuracy with the cannon directly behind that ladder they wouldn't be able to fire because there is no space for recoil right?" She's so smart.

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