Jump to content


  • Content Count

  • Joined

  • Last visited

About Cathead

  • Rank
  • Birthday 09/08/1979

Profile Information

  • Gender
  • Location
    Missouri, USA
  • Interests
    Ecology, history, science, cooking, baseball, soccer, travel

Recent Profile Visitors

2,818 profile views
  1. John, your comment reminded me of a Mark Twain quote about being in a steamboat pilot house, which I looked up to ensure I got it right. This refers to one of the big, fancy, Mississippi riverboats, but the concept applies to the Arabia as well.
  2. Nah, if I'd been that upset I'd have jammed a broken branch through the bow, installed some broken stacks and tangled rigging, buried it at an angle in brown-tinted epoxy, and called it a wreck model. Or given it the fate of the Saluda, which blew up near Lexington, MO with such force that the boat's safe landed on the river bluffs.
  3. So I made another big mistake. Afterward, I realized that it's become a pattern lately, I think because life has gotten really stressful and I was using modelling as an outlet but this also meant I wasn't focused on what I was doing. So I started laying out the forward part of the hurricane deck. Below, the starboard side is being glued down. Notice any problem? That's right, I forgot to measure and cut the hole for the chimney or even install the chimney. I also didn't fully color the underside with pastel, used too much glue (causing an ugly color smear underneath) and didn't hold the part over the heads (by the wheel) down long enough, so the glue expanded and peeled it back up. I was so upset when I discovered all this, but it's what happens when I'm not focused. I had to step away for a week and not look at the model. Gradually I was able to think through ways to deal with this. I carefully measured, drilled, cut, and sanded the chimney hole, which was nerve-wracking as the strucure is delicate and any breakage would be very difficult to repair. I sliced out and fixed the glue-warped part. I can't do anything about the color smear underneath, but at least it's hard to see from most angles. Here's the fixed deck, with clamps still holding down the repaired back part. Here I'm attaching more of the deck: Here's how I meant to do the starboard side, until I sat down for stress relief and got ahead of myself. Here, I've pre-measured and cut the hole so that the deck piece can just drop down on top of the already installed chimney, and made sure to fully color the underside. So now the whole hurricane deck is installed. Here are two views of the current status. It will be another few weeks before any updates as we'll be taking several short trips to Arkansas to help my in-laws with various things. I hope when that's over I can focus again and keep going. Next, I'll be applying the "tar paper" covering of this deck and painting it all black. Then it's railing time.
  4. When you glued these together, did you weight them down evenly? Pieces may seem to lie flat when dry-fit, but glue can cause the joint to warp a bit during drying. So, as Mark says, one option would be to try again and ensure that everything is weighted and/or clamped down nice and flat so that it dries that way. If this were a "regular" ship and the twist was minor, you might be able to get away with pulling the stem and stern back into line with other planking and framing. But the way these pieces stick out, and with the relative lack of support around them, I don't think that would work.
  5. Wayne, Bluejacket recently released a lovely looking Charles Morgan (whaling ship) cross-section.
  6. John, a question, to my eye it seems that the planking above the opening differs on the port and starboard side. On the port side it curves down to meet the vertical piece on the outside, but on the starboard side there's a distinct flat zone between the curve and that outside piece. Am I seeing this wrong? Hate to pick nits, but I'm curious about this.
  7. Careful cutting and filing can achieve almost anything from a solid piece of wood, so have at it!
  8. Cool! As for the T-shape, I'd forgotten about that. Would be it easier to start over and manufacture a T-shaped keel using two different pieces of wood, rather than trying to cut the T-shape onto your solid piece? Another option, depending on the tools available to you, could be to carefully use a table saw set very low to "rout" the lower edges of your keel. Whether that's practical or safe depends on the size of the saw and workpiece. How does the T-shape transition to the wedge shape? I can't quite picture this. A wedge sounds like it could be carved/filed/sanded fairly easily, but I'm not sure about the connection.
  9. A bit more progress framing the hurricane deck: I also added the railings protecting the main staircase. If you look closely you can see another goof. I ran two of the longitudinal beams too close to where the chimneys had to be (they aren't installed permanently yet) and had to file a slot on the outboard sides of the chimneys to let them sit where they needed to be. It's going to be essentially invisible when the decking is in place, but it caused some temporary gnashing of teeth.
  10. You could try building your own miter box/jig out of scrap wood, something that would provide a flat, smooth surface that the whole razor saw blade can be held against as it cuts. That would also help with ensuring consistent cuts in different pieces.
  11. Paul, I highly recommend this thread (started in 2013 and still going) where people post photos of their workstations and otherwise discuss the topic. My workspace is a ~3'x4' table in a corner of my small living room, which has been sufficient for all my various models. I have a few power tools in the garage that I use occasionally for certain things, but the vast majority of my actual modelling happens at that table, using simple hand tools. I think the best thing I've done is to develop an organizational system that lets me store a lot of stuff in a small space and find it easily. This includes a vertical wood-strip holder (made of PVC lengths glued together), a similar unit for tools that's mounted on a simple turntable, and a plastic storage unit with lots of little boxes for all sorts of small parts. Most folks would likely agree that a good source of light is key. Ventilation can also be important, as even raw sawdust can be pretty irritating and even dangerous, much less paint fumes or dust with paint/glue in it. If I'm doing more than light, raw wood sanding, I take it to the garage or outdoors and/or wear a mask. I also make a point of emphasizing benign materials like wood glue and water-based paints, as those are less toxic and irritating, especially given my living room location. Have fun getting started!
  12. So that was strange. I wrote a whole update post, which was then eaten when I tried to post it by some Firewall Error. But when I went back and did a test post it went through. So here's a shorter version because I don't feel like rewriting it all. Bending beams for the forward part of the hurricane deck: Connected together and installed on the model, using pins at the back: Adding vertical supports and testing the heat shields that keep the chimneys from burning passengers or setting the boat on fire; these are made from scrap PVC: Heat shields painted and vertical posts all complete: View from the bow: If you look closely, you may be able to tell that this structure is a bit out of alignment; the forward curve is closer to the port side than the starboard. It's fairly obvious from some angles and not at all from others. Redoing would mean starting over on this entire structure and I'm not up for that, so I'm going to do my best to hide it. The finished model will have enough detail and complexity that I think it'll be pretty easy to overlook. This is why I'm not a professional (among other reasons). Happy (soon) New Year to all of you.
  13. Cut one side, trace it onto the other, then cut the other with a bit to spare so that you can file/sand it to its final configuration. Practice on some spare material to get the idea and figure out any details that might not be obvious.

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 “Advance Ship Modeling Through Research”. We provide support to our members in their efforts to raise the quality of their model ships.

The Nautical Research Guild has published our world-renowned quarterly magazine, The Nautical Research Journal, since 1955. The pages of the Journal are full of articles by accomplished ship modelers who show you how they create those exquisite details on their models, and by maritime historians who show you the correct details to build. The Journal is available in both print and digital editions. Go to the NRG web site (www.thenrg.org) to download a complimentary digital copy of the Journal. The NRG also publishes plan sets, books and compilations of back issues of the Journal and the former Ships in Scale and Model Ship Builder magazines.

Our Emblem

Modelshipworld - Advancing Ship Modeling through Research
  • Create New...