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Bob Fraser

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About Bob Fraser

  • Birthday 06/21/1958

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    Norris Green, Liverpool, Merseyside, England

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  1. 😀 certainly is - knocked a few uprights off or found the uprights on the stair barriers almost inacessible. BTW don't loose any beads, I think there are just enough and no more. With the smaller posts it'll make them sturdier to drill them and the deck to pin them in place with cut off nails. Nicely done on the stern upright, that at least gives enough room for crew to access the wheel area between the room and the fencing. Looking clean and fresh. 👍 Bob
  2. Hi Bob. Yep, I found the positioning out too, having done the same as yourself with the spacing. I guess it comes down to a half mm here and there, positioning slots being a half mm too wide so the cabin moves a bit. Looks good though. The other thing I found was that each upright was very slightly different and had to be measured with calipers before cutting, and cut slightly over to allow for the slant to be sanded. (I planked the underside of the roof so that's probably why 😀 , also being manufactured more than 16 years ago I guess tolereances weren't so exact and I noticed a slight warp in the deck pieces 😞 ) As everyone here will say, each model is built slightly different, and each builder will make the model their own - you're the captain so have fun building it and most of all don't worry! BTW I like the nails in the stable rail slots - gives them the appearance of strength, something I didn't think of, I've only just noticed them.
  3. Those pesky spiral stairs! 🙂 They've come out well. Mine broke, stair angles wrong, poles not vertical - it just wouldn't go right, so I chucked in the towel and did a straight staircase thats given me a few problems to iron out later on in the build. The deck supports - I had the same misgivings, are they vertical or slanted? Looking at the plans and various photos in the booklet, and as you've pointed out, the distance on deck to the houses, slanted came out the option to go with. One of the full size end on plans shows a slant, at least to my old eyes 🙂 It's all looking good from here!
  4. So sorry to hear about Lucy - we know all too well the feeling of such a loss. The paddles are looking good, good catch with the boards.
  5. Sadly, we lost this one today to a sudden illness within 24hrs. Dolly was 7 years old and quite the character. That's my shoulder she's on, and would wave a paw at you as if saluting to let you know she wanted something.
  6. 🙂 🙂. Ah yes, the Mersey Ferry used to be my preferred method of going to work for many years. Many a time the decks were awash with the waves on a stormy day, and getting off one when it was high winds was an adventure - you had to wait for the deck and landing stage gangway to be level and then run for it before a 3 foot gap appeared again! A few times I did jump the gap between stage a ferry just as it was pulling away from the Liverpool stage (much younger and fitter then!). Thinking about it I've never lived further than a 10 - 15 minute drive, and at one point a 2 minute walk, from the river. One of my schoolmates actually became a captain on them. this link will take you to a webcam site of cameras overlooking the river River Mersey To keep back on topic this steamer, USS Willow was moored in the docks a 10 minute walk from where I lived at the time. she's now sunk at her moorings in spain.
  7. You know what, you've just pointed out yet another mistake of mine! Doh... don't I feel a right dummy now. I think that list just gets longer each time I look - never mind, I'll just call it yet another adjustment 🙂 I must have forgotten those holes were there and put the next deck on with the plates on that one - don't know how I missed it! Now the chimneys are higher than they should be. Oops. I totally get the misalignment issue now. Well caught. Please accept my apologies. Thanks for the compliment about my build though 😀. The wife, who it's being built for, loves it and OKs all the changes made.
  8. Bob, the chimneys don't go to through to the second deck, I don't think the dowel is long enough to allow that! Those holes have a square of ply fixed to the roof beneath to close it off. Unless your model has been updated, mine has to be at least 12 years old. This is what I mean. No need to correct the holes. As far as mindless goes, wait till you get to cutting the railing posts for the top decks! 🤯
  9. Slow going, just some more railings added, so no more pics. I've found that 6 out of 8 of the oddly curved precut stern rails are missing 😱 🤬 so I'm going to have to make them myself. They're marked up ready to cut and shape - wish me luck! Cheers, Bob
  10. I look at it this way, any fixes or alterations done make this your own unique build, (my excuse for my own mistakes and fixes!) rather than the AL version. No two real ships appear to be the same anyway! Checking mine again, there's a catalogue of mistakes on this deck, which were all realised after the planking had been done. Having had to rip up a deck of planking previously, I went the easy route for fixes. I've probably used the deck notch to locate the cabins, with the door facing the bow, (it needs to be because of the flagpole placement - photo 55), and done away with the roof tabs to fit the roof longer forward. This gives a slightly shorter back deck, no biggie there as it's access to the flagpole. The forward part needed to have a little scrap planking added, as I hadn't planked far enough under the cabins. Because of the door mistake the pilot house and access stairs, booklet photos 54, 55 and 56, needed to go slightly further back than shown so the stairs didn't cover the centre cabin door. If you look closely at the pics in my build you can see these when compared to the booklet. From what I've read these cabins were usually crew quarters, and even with the mistakes and adjustments everything still seems to fit. I take it from your pic above the door is facing the stern? If so, it looks from your pic as if you've possibly done the same as me - the long 3 panel wrap around window end should be at the cabin end with the biggest gap between the doors. The chimneys - not sure what you mean about the slant. From your pic the holes appear to be correctly aligned with the air vent grilles below. They sit in the holes, with a square of wood, photo 22 part 66 in the booklet, as yet missing in your pic, fitted beneath to stop them going all the way in. They have a protective sleeve, photo 60 part 175, at deck level to help set them vertical and cover the hole. More skew is sorted by the metal fixing between the two, so they should be held vertical in both planes when all parts are fixed in place. Hope this helps a little. Airbrushing looks good, as does the brushwork. Embarrasingly I've had one for a couple of years, but it's still in the box. Be careful when fitting the wood paddles, as the notches for them are quite fragile and can snap. The planks aren't exactly the same thickness over their entire length, and the notches reduce in size due to paint layers and casting differences, not much but just enough to snap if forced as I found out 😞 Cheers for now, Bob
  11. I think most, if not all, of us who have done this model have found the notches out of place, and aligned the deck manually. For the structure beneath the pilot house, check pictures 43 and 44 in the photo booklet for the positioning of the two deck pieces. The longer length of the roof goes forward, and the ventilation deck has the longer end to the back. The door end of the cabins goes forward. Embarrasingly, looking at my build again I can see I've got the door / no door ends at the wrong ends of the cabins, the door end should be at the end where the two cabin doors are closest. I got this and deck 2 the wrong way round at one point before I started the log, or just didn't note it, I forget now. Fortunately it doesn't affect the build as long as the doors face forward. Look ahead to photo 61. The stern steam pipes are misaligned in both planes, even when the decks are aligned. I found I had to trim the thickness on the inside once they went through deck 2 to get them to fit. The holes also need widening slightly. Look ahead to photo 66. The hog chain bracing beams are also misaligned between deck 2 and 3. They should be in a straight line and vertical, not slanted outwards. Before doing any planking on 2 and 3 look at the angles for the fore and aft ones, parts 203 and 204 in photo 66, and angle cut the holes to fit, so that the planking works, and part 202. The holes also need widening slightly. Oh, and you need to drill out the hog chain holes at angles too, easier done at this stage than when all is glued and the railings installed. The written instructions for photos 59 onwards just say follow the photos, and the fitting of these parts is well after planking has been done, so a good planking job could well be upset. (Hindsight is great - I've had to redo planking because of these things.) Hope this helps. Take care, and hopefully the fire won't affect you and yours. Bob
  12. Are cats cereal killers? We have an old box on top of the fridge as somewhere to keep the kids cereals. The cats think "It's a box! I'll sleep in it!" so now what's in there is left as a bed for them, sometimes it's even two up. He's not too happy I've woken him though.
  13. So some progress, but sloooow! Added the two fore stairwell surround railings And started on the railings Here's where it gets slow. Each and every one of the uprights is a different height 😞 Measure, cut and micro sand to a tight fit. Note to future self - maybe cut out the aligned holes on all decks and use one full height piece, measuring on the upper deck to get the post height right as I'm sure they'll still be all different 😱 The lower and upper handrails are slitted to take the P.E. railings and hold them steady. The wood not being the best and not exact along it's full length it does damage the edge slightly. Drillhead dropped to the correct height so no deed for lowering, the brass calipers as a fence aligned at the right depth and straight, the wood can just be slid through. Just realised this was done a year ago! Time flies. And of course Cooper the cat had to help. Given his name maybe I should get him making some barrels 🙂 Cheers for now. Bob
  14. Chimney rigging done, and added lateral tensioners. Hog chains done. Added a lateral chain at the aftmost diagonal, and a crossbeam on the sternposts. The rope was painted matt black to remove the turns, to look like iron rods, an idea stolen from @Cathead - Thanks! These were set into grooves to take them over the diagonals as on many steamers photos show they were bent to shape. Many of them had a criss-cross of rods overhead open decks giving much more lateral and fore-aft strengthening, but I've decided not to show that as it tended to be on the smaller more open ones. Next steps, the fencing and then tackle the foredeck. Cheers for now, Bob
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