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  1. Sure, most anything you can imagine can be designed and 3D printed, but with limitations. For masts and yards on a model, which can be very thin, 3D printed plastic parts will likely flex more than would be acceptable. So for that application, wood is superior. The level of detail possible with a 3D printer is also limited. That's not to say that 3D printing has no place in ship modeling, as you'll see if you browse through my Sultana build log.
  2. Here is my log of playing around with Blender. The first post shows how I imported plans into Blender and scaled them to the scene. I was using Blender 2.79. There are interface differences in Blender 2.8, but the procedure is basically the same, as illustrated in the video Denis posted above. https://modelshipworld.com/topic/20027-hull-modeling-with-blender/
  3. The pumps on the Sultana are quite beautiful, particularly in the long curve of the handles. Here is the initial 3D design. I 3D printed parts, painted them, and tried them out. They were good, but looked a little too tall. Also, the interesting transition from octagon to square at the bottom wasn't distinct enough. I revised my design and created a new set. The old version is on the left, new is on the right. The new pumps also have wire out the bottom to help hold them in place. Here are the pumps installed on the deck.
  4. I started work on the binnacle by creating a 3D design with the lid on. This was not bad, but a bit boring. The best picture of the open binnacle I have found is from ship25bsa.smallsquareddesigns.com, which has been a great resource for reference photos. I first tried adding the details of the instruments as raised parts of my 3D design, but it was beyond the ability of my 3D printer to render them in sufficient detail, so the result was just little plastic blobs, which were made worse after painting. My revised design replaced the instruments with a little piece of paper. Testing the binnacle on the model. And finally it is glued on and tied down to rings on the deck.
  5. The Sultana has four hatches. Two are small: one is located aft of the windlass and the other is forward of the binnacle. A long, medium sized hatch is on the quarter deck, and will be open to expose the ladder on my model, as it is on other Sultana models. Finally, there is a large hatch on the main deck. Most models depict the main hatch covered with boards, but on the Sultana replica, the large hatch has grating and a ladder down. The picture below is of the medium hatch, with the grating in place to cover the ladder. Note the white cover. All of the hatches on the Sultana have these covers, which keep out water. However, I think I will omit the white covers. Creating a grating in Fusion 360 isn't too hard. Draw a rectangle, draw one of the square holes, use a rectangular pattern to create the remaining holes, then extrude the sketch. For the grating on the Sultana, I need to have the holes and space between holes at roughly .6mm in size. I ran an experiment to see how small I could make grating that still retained square-shaped holes. As you can see, the pieces in the lower right are acceptable, while the ones in the upper right are not. This shows the limits of what I can do with 3D printed grating. After some experimenting, I found that having the surface raised in one direction makes the grating look better. Next is the hatch coaming. From my earlier work, I already knew the exact curvature of the deck camber. From there, I created the profile of the coaming. And then the profile was extruded. I created a new sketch on the coaming surface to indicate where the recess is. And the relevant parts were cut out. After 3D printing and painting, here are my final hatches. And here are the hatches on the model. The aft-most small hatch hasn't been glued down yet, because I need to place the binnacle first, then glue the hatch an appropriate distance from the binnacle.
  6. I know. It's been an interesting experiment, to see how far I can go with 3D printing. I'm not aware of anyone else who has tried making a wood / plastic hybrid like this.
  7. This details building the ladder. First, one side of the ladder is created. The fillet feature allows the ladder to be rounded off at the top. One step of the ladder is created, and a rectangular pattern operation creates the remaining steps. Extrude the steps and add a copy of the side piece, and the ladder is complete. Using a knife, I scribed some lines into the 3D printed part to simulate wood grain. The piece was painted a wood color followed by a brown wash to enhance the texture. And finally, the ladder is glued into place.
  8. Let's build the windlass, starting with the ratchet gear. After studying a number of pictures of the Sultana's windlass, I determined that the ratchet gear has 12 teeth. I created a 12 sided polygon and added one tooth. Then I used the circular pattern function to copy the tooth for a total of 12 units. An extrude operation created the final shape of the ratchet gear. Adjacent to the ratchet gear, I created an octagon, then a second smaller octagon the correct distance away. I used the loft function to create a shape between the two octagons, then mirrored that shape to the other side. The holes were added and both rectangular and circular patterns were used to place the holes around the windlass. And finally, the supports were modeled. All of the windlass parts were 3D printed. The windlass pawl and galley stack are connected. Here is a picture of the galley stack. For now, I have decided to omit the white cover on the galley stack. This is the galley stack 3D model. And this is the 3D printed part. I used some burnt sienna paint to indicate rusting. (There is no rust in my photo of the galley stack, but it is present on other photos I have found.) The windlass and galley stack glued on to my Sultana.
  9. I have been looking at publicly available 3D models in order to find a suitable figure that I might use as a starting point for modeling the Sultana's figurehead. This guy, "Standing figure of Alex" by user thowe on Thingiverse, won't help for the figurehead, but I thought it might be nice to have him available as I work on features of the deck to validate the scale of the pieces I work on. I scaled him down to 1:64, and printed him out. Expect him to appear in future installments.
  10. Jon, have a look in your local craft store for dried moss. It may be in the floral arrangement section and/or with materials for model train terrain. I have used it in the past for a diorama, and it may work as seaweed.
  11. On the Sultana, lifejackets are stored in containers at the sides of the main deck. These are arranged to resemble hammock storage, with rails and netting around them. The picture below is my own of the lifejacket storage. I tried several methods of creating the shape of the lifejacket storage. The top shows an attempt using modeling clay. The lower attempt was using blocks wrapped by fabric. I was not happy with either result. The method I settled on was to create a mold of the correct size, fill it with modeling clay, then press fabric against the side, giving it an imprint of the fabric texture. The metal rails were designed and 3D printed. All the pieces were assembled and wrapped in netting, which was produced using the method I have described earlier. Bars across the top were added. I was mostly satisfied, until I saw this photo on ship25bsa.smallsquareddesigns.com which shows that I omitted the covers. The covers wrap over the outer bar and on the inside is a hanging flap which identifies the contents as lifejackets. I went through the fonts on my system and was pleased to find that I already had the correct font: Gabriola italic. The covers were printed on paper and glued on to the model.
  12. I have completed the head rails, head timbers, and cheek knees. I found it best to work on the cheek knees first, and head rails last. It was necessary to make several parts in multiple pieces, as the shapes were too complex to model as one. I also attached the printed nameplate to the outer bulwarks. Here is the 3D design for the various 3D printed parts. For the curious, here is how I created the shape of the headrail in Fusion 360. I started by creating a construction plane which passes through the underside of the cathead at one end, and through the stem at the other. On this plane, I created a sketch and drew the curve of the headrail. This curve passes through the center of the eventual part. Next, I created two construction planes. The planes are tangent to each end of the headrail curve. On the planes, I created the start and end shapes for the cross-section of the headrail. In this case, a 3mm x 3mm square at one end and a 1mm x 1mm square at the tip, highlighted in blue below. To create a shape, I used the loft tool. Initially, the loft connects the two profiles via a straight path. In the loft dialog, I changed the guide type from tails to center line. I selected the headrail curve as the centerline, and the curved shape is created as I wanted it.
  13. Interesting idea. I think you mean a new station as shown below by the thicker blue line. If I try a direct loft across all the stations, it doesn't work. My keel is made of multiple lines, so it can't work as a rail, and not all waterlines pass through all stations, so they can't be used as rails. However, I get some good results from three separate lofts. Curiously, the direction of the normals is not consistent between each of the lofts, but the resulting surfaces are usable.
  14. I drilled the hawseholes and added reinforcement pieces on the outside and inside of the bulwarks around the holes.
  15. Thanks, Matt. If you look back at older pictures, my deck was much darker. I sanded it down to lighten it up, and fortunately, it ended up with a good weathered look. Now the question is whether I should move on to the bits I really want to do (all the stuff on the deck), or the bits I don't want to do (headrails and figurehead)...

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