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About jbshan

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  1. And apparently the Brown's yard and Bergh's were adjacent to each other, about where the New York Navy Yard would be established in later years. Maybe that was zoning or maybe that was just a good place to have a building slip. Yes, a small world, and you keep running into the same individuals, or maybe I should say the usual suspects.
  2. ditto. You get a sense of the multitudes involved, which shows up in the monotony for each item.
  3. In re putting ports in a merchant vessel: They almost all had ports as merchant vessels, it may have been a simple matter of enlarging those a bit or adding a couple more. They wouldn't have been terribly large, probably at most 9 pdrs. Lexington had 6 pdrs., although 'reinforced' so a bit thicker metal in the barrel, which would have allowed a greater charge, but because of the heavier barrel, not much if any more recoil. They could be rigged low down to the ship's side so the eye and ring bolts could get into solid structure. The biggest difference between warship and merchant is the shape of the hull, tubby in most merchant ships, less so in warships, they usually sailed faster, and the warship had heavier framing, this second not showing much on the exterior.
  4. Lou, the lines of Davis' model are taken from those for the British brig, of about 1800. Lexington was built somewhat before 1775 as she was an existing merchant vessel bought in to serve in the Continental Navy. The two types of vessels would not much resemble each other as the standards and practices of design had moved on a fair amount in the intervening 25 years. (Conversation with Clay Feldman, 2 of Davis' grandsons and Art Herrick, a noted researcher, at the 2004 NGR conference in Portland Maine.) If you have a copy of Brig Irene an example of one of those Cruzer class vessels that had a long life after the wars with the Netherlands Navy, the model being at one of their museums, you can compare. There is also the pair, Cruzer class brig sloops and Snake class ship sloops, which use the same hull design. All these correspond with Davis' Lexington.
  5. Goodness, you guys have been wearing your fingertips to the bone typing all this. For the moment, I'll address the Lexington questions, and try to come up with something on the rest a bit later. After more coffee. Davis' Lexington model seems to have begun life as his version of the well-known British Cruzer class brigs. During the depression, when shipbuilding and design jobs were scarce, he wrote up this model, publishing a guide to its building, but changing the name to Lexington, perhaps in an effort to appeal to an American readership. The model I built (am building. I work intermittently and slowly) is the Clay Feldman/dlumberyard semi-kit version which was featured in Seaways' Ships in Scale. This model is based on a contemporary painting of Lexington after her capture by the British. As such, she should more resemble a merchant conversion than the 25 years newer war brig, Cruzer.
  6. vossiewolf, yes, yes, and yes. If you go too far away from them, things get crowded, the ship gets topheavy, doesn't sail well, hogs excessively, all sorts of bad things happen. As one example, one of the smaller of the 'first frigates' was armed with 24 pdrs, to make her as powerful as the larger trio. Turned out she sailed better and swam properly when she was re-armed with 18s. Presumably the ports weren't changed, so there would have been larger ports at a larger spacing than the norm. Lou, you've got a little of the opposite problem, trying to fit guns into an existing hull, much as if, as you say, like Lexington she was bought in and armed by the Navy from a merchant vessel. In that case the tables would give guidelines as the guns would have to go in around stuff rather than the other stuff being arranged to suit the guns.
  7. Besides thinning a couple of planks if needed, when they got towards the last few, if it looked as if they were going to need a couple of tiny planks, they would use a few wider ones, as they approached the ends, to make things come out even. They were starting with trees, remember, not pre-cut strips.
  8. I'm not in immediate possession of the tables, but guns and carronades of each caliber had necessary 'room and space', if you will. The port of a particular gun would be required to be 2 feet 8 inches tall X 3 feet wide and the distance between ports be 10 feet. The size of port opening was obviously to allow for proper aiming and the spacing was to accommodate the size crew needed to operate the gun. This was the second step in design of a warship, the first being that 30 guns of 24 lbs. were required on the gun deck. Plug in the port size and spacing figures, add a percentage for the run and entrance of the hull and you knew how large a ship was required. (Don't hold me to any of those figures, I just made them up.) Within reason, the stays were moved to make room for the guns. Broadside guns would probably not be interfered with by the masts. They only need to recoil about a third the length of the barrel.
  9. Perhaps I should add that the white stuffe was used for voyages to warm waters, which I can assure you does not include New England in the winter, and was the most expensive of several alternative coatings.
  10. The 'white stuffe' follows the wale on the side and this line is continued across the transom. It obviates the need to determine and mark and mask a waterline. Also, and perhaps more important for the designers, that's how Mayflower II is painted.
  11. Yes, just a few licks with fine sandpaper. I only show the pics that came out of parts of the model that came out.
  12. For anybody wanting to shape flags, go out and sit at the mall, Burger King, maybe a factory or other commercial concern, wherever there's a flag of the size you want to model. Remember these things were huge. The largest ensign for Constitution would have been about the size of the Star Spangled Banner at the Smithsonian which is 30 X 42 feet. Watch your chosen subject in the breeze. It may have a basic waviness with small ripples running over the surface as you sometimes see in old van de Veld paintings. In any event, watch it for a while, take a few pics, try to 'get into' the movement. There should be a general radialness to it from the upper corner where the halliard is. Then use Chuck's paint brush handles.
  13. The pic doesn't show much of the nice diag. plank. If you wanted to point them up a bit, knock off the corners with a couple of licks with sandpaper, then they would show better with paint. Here's my Lexington which will not be painted. And my model of a 12 pdr. broadside gun where I've knocked off the corners of the plank to accentuate them under the paint.
  14. in re stern ports: Description p 19, photo p 25. I can't imagine they would have seen much if any use and were probably nailed and caulked shut. They could have been used for guns or for loading long items such as timbers for spars. I took a quick stroll through the destructions, didn't find it, but I would think it might help to pin a temp sternpost as a guide while you plank the lower part. How'd Willis (careful, I have a cousin Willis) do the color? Mirrors, purely smoke and mirrors.

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