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About Cathead

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  • Birthday 09/08/1979

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

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  1. I managed two more steps this week. First was gluing in the chimneys, which was scary as now there's a much larger delicate feature to bump or snag. No photos of this because it doesn't look any different from past test-fittings. Second, I worked on the main deck stern railings. This was difficult because I needed the railings to hold the full curve around the stern without any other support as the boiler deck doesn't extend out over this. Here's an example of what I'm basing this on. So what I did was build a basic jig that would hold the railings in the right curve while I (a) soaked and bent them and (b) painted them, as I've learned the hard way that painting makes thin strips like this lose a lot of their pre-bent curve. This worked really well. After the initial soaking and drying, I painted them in place. When that was dry, I took them off and painted the small bits covered by the clamps and jig; this wasn't enough to lose the curve. Then I mounted three thick posts on the main deck using small pins, one at each end of the railing and one at the very stern. When these were solid, I mounted the railings, then went back in and added smaller spacing posts. Here's the results: I think it came out nicely. Now I'm terrified of bumping the stern. Oh well. I've also started thinking about the two yawls I'll need. These were a pretty distinct design used on the Western Rivers; there was some good discussion of these over in Brian's Chaperon build, such as here and here. Basically I need to build two 16-18' boats with a flat stern and a hard chine (no rounding between the bottom and the sides). In addition to the photos shared in the second link above, I found two relevant drawings of what these craft might have looked like, but these differ in one important respect and I'd like an opinion from the resident experts (look, I'm asking ahead of time for once!). First, drawings of an Ohio River yawl from Howard Chappelle (sourced from Google Books). This has a fully flat bottom from side to side. Second, a sketch of a riverboat yawl from Alan Bates (photo from a book in my possession). This has an angled bottom from side to side: I'm not sure about posting these images as it technically may violate copyright, but I'm also not sure how else to explain what I'm trying to work out about these two designs. Happy to take them down in a moderator thinks it's a problem. Meanwhile, I'd like to better understand the difference between the two and which version might be better for me (and/or easier to build). Any advice/input?
  2. That's an interesting thought. I'm feeling that a bit in my current 2.5 year project and could see the value in doing somethinge else, but I also so want to be done! Regardless, well done. Master Korabel seems to do really nice work.
  3. Chuck has been affected by the virus-related business closures; you can keep up with his status here; it's a long thread but reading the last couple pages will give you a sense of his current situation. As you don't need the blocks for a while, just keep the idea in mind. I don't remember their cost offhand.
  4. Good start, happy to follow along. Depending on your budget, you might consider replacing all the blocks with those made by Syren as they're of really high quality and a joy to work with. Not that you need to order them now, but as a thought instead of ordering replacements from M-E.
  5. I'd like to say that I really enjoyed the article on the Coast Guard river cutters, especially given the Yacona's early adoption of desegregated crews. I knew nothing about this bit of history and was glad to learn it.
  6. Spent the last two weeks working on various details. The railings on the boiler deck have been giving me nightmares, but I finally figured out a "good-enough" way that works at the level of the rest of the model (representative if not precisely accurate, don't look too close). These were really difficult to bend and shape, especially where they didn't extend between two decks for extra support. I left a gap on either side, forward of the wheels, to allow access to where the boats will be stored. Figured a chain was enough to keep passengers out; this was leftover scrap from a past model: These stern railings were especially tricky: Ladders up to the pilot house and various Texas cabins: A couple broader views: And here's one posed with the painting this model is loosely based on: It's getting ever scarier to handle this model as the fragile details go in. I'm so paranoid about bumping these railings, they were such a pain to do in the first place. And it's just going to get worse...
  7. It's truly sad how quickly the scum start seeking opportunity in times like this. As 40-somethings with elderly parents, it's been really stressful trying to keep them from falling for such things (they already did once and luckily we averted any damage). Thanks, Mark, for the warning on this style, it hadn't occured to me that scammers would try that, so I'm going to pass it along. My mother-in-law is the kindly sort who can't say no to anyone and is ripe to be sweet-talked by a phone salesman.
  8. Nice work so far, especially in working around the inevitable mistakes or accidents. The general consensus is that wood glue is far preferable for binding wood than CA is, though the latter has a role in certain applications. Just keep it away from water! I think you said you were bending your planks dry, which might have contributed to one snapping. Soaking them really helps loosen up the fibers so the wood takes the bend easier. Your model is looking very nice, and this is a great way to practice these skills before diving into something bigger. Keep it up!
  9. I thoroughly approve of your helpers, as evidenced by my username and photo. You made an earlier comment about certain things looking better from a distance, that's true for most models. Only the true geniuses among us can make things that look great in close-up photos!
  10. Yeah, that was probably a little harsh. Feeling kinda edgy. Not a criticism of anyone building the kit, just a frustration that such a wildly unrealistic kit is the only "entry level" option available. As for Model Expo, I hope they have the resources to wait this out and come back online whenever that becomes possible.
  11. If only we could replace all the awful King of the Mississippi kits with this one...
  12. That's fantastic! Love the googly eyes, you could've donated the model to a Disney movie.
  13. I'm working on doing a better job of checking out the logs of everyone who pays attention to mine. This is an amazing build that I'm sad to have missed so far.

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