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Hubac's Historian

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  1. Yes, it truly is mind-boggling. In 2003, when I was standing in the guts of the Provincien, at Batavia Werf, it was almost incomprehensible to me how tall the stern rose above the keel. The counter timber was gigantic! You are really doing an incredible job, here, Mark. It’s fascinating to me, the questions that arise as one works through their process. And, as you say, it is astounding the complicated geometry that these shipwrights could render with their trained eyes and hands.
  2. At the 3:11 mark, of the following video, the narrator is showing how Victory’s tiller operates, on the actual ship. Shortly after that point, you can see the tiller’s entry into the ship, and the same curved beam that you have fashioned, just beneath the entry point:
  3. I love how the lighting turned out, EJ. What a magnificent job you have done by making all of the carvings yourself!
  4. I just took a look at the expanded view because I couldn’t remember if this conjectural ship from the Album was drawn as a true three-decker of a two-decker. It’s a three-decker. That would place the pilot on the middle deck, actually, and the slot in the main deck.
  5. Chapman, this drawing from the Album, to my mind, definitively affirms the presence of the slot. And, yet, there are a few curious things about the drawing. First - although the rowle is shown on the deck plan view, it does not appear to be represented in the cut-away view. Second - the slot railings would seem to eliminate the possibility that the pilot stands on the main deck, and in any case the whip-staff isn’t drawn as projecting high enough above the railing for anyone to work it. So, that would seem to place the pilot on the lower deck, and facing a
  6. Jan, I think you have keyed-in on something fundamental to this discussion: the schaarstokken, or as I think they are called in English - the King Planks(?). These longitudinal stiffeners - because they are mortised into the deck beams - would compensate for the presence of the slot. Nonetheless, Leminuer’s drawing shows the slot crossing both pairs of King Planks, but that does not, in itself, invalidate your argument. Certainly, for all practical purposes, the slot must cross the first pair, closest to the centerline of the deck. However, given the down a
  7. My issue with this is that the tiller man, the pilot, on the three-decker is standing on the middle deck, in this scenario, and that much further from the chain of command. There’s a lot of superstructure above him on Soleil Royal, with no view of anything but the mizzen mast and the guns to either side of him. And I’m sorry to disagree, but the pilot will have more leverage to push down through the yoke, the fulcrum, and to either side if he’s standing at the end of the whip-staff, as opposed to closer at the base. The length of the whip-staff counts too.
  8. Hey Dan, Your points are well received, here. The Goodwin drawings, as well as the contemporary French drawing, is of a two deck ship, but our discussion pertains to three deckers: I wonder whether the extra deck of separation (the middle deck) wouldn’t provide the extra leverage that would make steering such a large ship much easier, particularly in a heavy seaway. Admittedly, it is less than ideal to interrupt the deck planking, at the main deck level. I wonder, though, whether the external wales, the internal riders, and all of the internal supporting knees mitiga
  9. Hello Papsa, With regard to the tiller/whip-staff arrangement, here is what Mr. Lemineur drew for the St. Philippe: Tiller entry is on the lower gun deck. The whip-staff passes through the yoke, in the middle deck, and then through a slot on the main deck - all just aft of the mizzen mast. The whip-staff slot is numbered 97, in the main deck drawing above. There does not appear to be any visual accommodation for the tiller man, through the quarter deck. It seems that commands to the tiller man would be shouted down, through the aft companionway,
  10. The wiring is actually the port lid lanyards, which I’ve secured to the top of each dummy block with a clove-hitch. I’ve coiled them up with blue tape for tidy keeping, until I pull them through the ports, at the very end of the build. As a matter of fact, I cook with the pink salt, but I keep this other stuff for mouth irritations and stove fires.
  11. Good couple of days. I have all the lower decking installed, the cable mounts installed, and the starboard dummy carriages glued-in; the barrels are only temporarily placed to ensure they are centered on the port openings: You can clearly see, here, the impact of broadening the hull. The block, at center, is the foremast step (in progress), which will raise the height of the foremast proportionally with the main mast. Barrel projection is maybe a bit more than ideal, but it’s not markedly different than Frolich’s L’Ambiteaux: In any c
  12. Thank you, MD and Victor. Well, as you know, I’m a huge fan of the Heller kit, and the main reason for that is that they were extremely attentive to re-creating Tanneron’s sculptural work. This is why I will go to some lengths to adapt as many of the large sculptural figures as I can. With the exception of Africa, whose entire posture has to be altered, I should be able to re-use them all. You made me think of another Heller prestige ship that was very finely moulded, and that was La Couronne, at 1:200. I used to own this kit as part of a large stash of un
  13. It is refreshing, periodically, to shift between the intensive ornamental aspects of the build, and the more constructive bones of the project. I enjoy the ornamental work very much, but it is fatiguing. So, I’ve been fitting-out the lower gun deck. The first order of business was to scribe and secure the side platforms that will support the dummy carriages. Clamping these to my “beams” was tricky because clearance between beam and plinth base is very limited. I could get a binder clip on, near the hawse holes, but I needed to develop a system for the rest of the way
  14. Guys, thank you all so much for your concern and well-wishes. Today is the fourth day since I started feeling sick, and I already feel pretty much myself; no more fever/sweats/chills, no more headaches/body aches, no more weird chafing skin sensations, no more sinus congestion. I still can’t smell anything, but if that’s the worst of it, then I am well ahead of the curve. I am extremely lucky! EJ, to answer your question, I will not be doing any special detailing or paint work on the interior. The gun mounting blocks are painted flat black and are wide enough to close off any v
  15. I thought that medicinal scotch was shielding me from the Corona virus. Apparently, not even scotch is strong enough to keep it away. So, I am at home full-time, now, for at least the next two weeks. I am very lucky that the worst of it seems to have been fever and body aches although, interestingly, I did lose my sense of smell. And, so, work on Soleil Royal continues, more or less full-time now. Thanks to Henry, I was able to finish modifying my gratings. Here’s a shot of the new cambered gratings as compared with the stock, flat gratings: I will be mak
  16. I was intrigued by your Pegasus figurehead profile pic - the carving is excellent! - so I came to check out your work. I’m glad I did, and I’ll be following this project to completion. You’re doing a wonderful job, here. These models are quite large, eh?
  17. The rig is really shaping up nicely, EJ. I really like the trim of her sails, and the way that they taper up from the main course to the t’gallants. Excellent work!
  18. It’s a little annoying that I spent all of today’s allotted model time fixing this problem, but I am happy enough with the outcome, and have restored faith in the integrity of the mast: The dowel, in this section, apparently favored the un-cut half of the mast, so it appears that about half the dowel was still intact. Thanks for looking in😁
  19. Well, certainly I can appreciate the difficulty you describe, as when I’m reading all of these French language texts, and the technical descriptions often don’t translate well to English. Well, I have another book for you that may be a good visual guide for you: In particular, this section concerning the Royal James of 1671 is well described and beautifully photographed. The James is a few years later than the Katherine, but I would think the rig would be largely the same. I few years ago, I took a bunch of pictures of this model while on a trip to Washing
  20. Yes, the dreaded fireship. Can you imagine the gruesome spectacle of the English fireship slowly drifting toward the beached and battle-scarred, but still magnificent Soleil Royal? I continue to distract myself from the pandemic and my isolation from my family with work on the model. As you know, I’ve been experimenting with Liquitex Extra Heavy Gel medium. At first, I was trying to brush it in place, but I lack a fine enough brush, and all art stores are closed for the foreseeable future. But then, I happened upon this build video on YouTube, and I was fa
  21. Really beautiful detailing, Marc! Is it your plan to make every ornament from scratch, by hand, or will you 3-D print some of the ornament?
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