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    Square rigged ships, Medieval and Roman armor, ancient siege engines, WWII machine guns and German infantry reenactment, adventure motorcycling

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  1. Rigged the mizzen topsail yard, including parrel and halyard which has a tackle attached to the mizzen top. The end of the halyard is tied to the strop of the bottom block.
  2. Rigged the main topgallant yard today. The methods used were the same as for the other ties, halyards, parrels, euphroes, and crow's feet as on the other yardarms. Things got tight trying to tie the halyard to the knighthead. I'm dreading how tight rigging the sails and lines are going to be on a model this small.
  3. The fore topgallant yard was rigged. A parrel was prepared with thin, cherry wood ribs prepared earlier and the tiny brown glass beads used in previous parrels for the trucks. Tie lines were slung to the yard and siezed, then passed through the sheave holes in the hounds of the topgallant mast. The two tie lines join at a block below, and the halyard passes through it, one end tied to an eyebolt on the port side of the forecastle deck and passing through a guiding block attached to the main topmast stay. The other end of the halyard ends in a block at the top of the two crow's feet. The crow's feet are attached to the main topmast stay line. It's difficult to keep the tension on the crow's feet lines without pulling the main topmast stay line out of position. The crow's feet were stiffened a bit with some satin spray lacquer to help maintain their shape.
  4. A few small details.... Iron rings on the hull. Can you guess what this is? You guessed it! Every ship need at least one....
  5. The topsail yards for the main and fore masts were rigged today. The parrels were made and used to lash the yards to the mast first. Then, each double tie was hitched and seized to the yard at one end, passed through one sheave on the mast below the top, then back through the other sheave in the mast, and hitched and seized to the yard again, after carefully measuring the length of the double tie so that it is long enough to allow the yard to be lowered to the cap below. On the rear side of the mast, the double tie line is used to strop a block. The block should draw both tie lines evenly to raise the yard. For the fore topsail yard, a halyard line is run starting at an eye bolt on the forecastle deck, up through a guiding block ties to the main stay, through the block at the end of the double tie, and ending with a block. Through the block at this end of the halyard, a length of dark line is passed, and a euphroe is tied to each end of this length of line. The euphroes have three holes drilled through them. The crow's feet are made in the same way as ones made previously. For each euphroe, the crow's foot lines that pass through the top holes are rigged first. These lines form the widest triangle under each euphroe. Line tension must be carefully controlled in order to not pull the main stay up out of position and allow it to remain straight. When tying the crow's feet line to the stay, a single overhand knot secured with CA glue is used, and the lengths of each of the crow's feet lines are carefully adjusted before securing with glue such that all of them are of equal tension. The end result is worth all the fussing to get the lines equal. For the main topsail yard, the double tie ends in a block behind the mast just like the fore topsail stay, except that it is tensioned with a halyard to the deck. The rearmost end of the halyard is tied to an eye bolt on the upper deck on the starboard side of the grating. It passes up through the block at the end of the double tie, then down to a three part tackle attached to an eye bolt just forward of the one for the other end of the halyard. A coil of line is glued over the top of the end of the halyard to simulate full length of the halyard line. There should be enough line here to allow the yard to be lowered to the main mast cap. Tying this tackle on the upper deck was difficult because that area is crowded by the lateen bowlines and main shrouds.
  6. The crojack (crossjack) yard was rigged. Contary to the Corel instructions, the crojack yard is lifted aloft and held using a single block and a sling. A single block is tied to the center of the yardarm, and a sling with eyes on each end is run through the block and up over the crosstrees between the mizzen mast and mizzen topmast. The eyes of the sling fasten to each other on the starboard side. To rig this, you have to make a length of line with one eye on one end, and run the othe end through the starboard side of the block, up through the top on the port side, over the crosstree, down through the top on the starboard side, and through the eye where you started. Then take the bitter end and lead it back up through the top and clamp it to the topmast shroud temporarily with a small alligator clip, drawing the sling tight. The bend in the line will form the second eye. Sieze that eye with a length of line, add a bit of glue to the seize and trim the excess off. Then cut the excess off the sling line at the base of the eye. The truss line to hold the crojack yard to the mizzen mast is a similar sling to the support sling, except that the passes on the side of the mast are drawn tight with individual seizes. The eyes of the truss loop through each other at the back of the mast. Once the line is run around the crojack and mast and through the first eye, the loose end is held like before with a clip to hold the truss tension. The port and starboard seizes are made to draw the upper and lower horizontal passes of the trust together. Then the second eye is closed with a seize like before, and excess line is trimmed after the seize is secured with a dab of glue. The Corel plans show a halyard with running tackle holding the crojack aloft, and a ling leading from the bottom of the crojack to another running tackle, presumably simulating the truss line from a parrel. No parrels are shown on any of the yards in the Corel instructions. My guess is they simplified the rigging. It's certainly difficult to rig parrels with truss and breach lines on this scale, but it can be done. The crojack rarely had a parrel. Instead, a simple truss line is used.
  7. Another correction was made. The Corel plans show the lateen yard's bowlines to be attached to the fourth main shroud line from the rear, along with the block it passes through. This would angle the bowlines forward, and they would not be perpendicular to the lateen yardarm. R.C. Anderson and other sources say that the lines should be attached to the rearmost main shroud. This places the bowlines at the best angle to hold the lower end of the lateen yardarm. The bowlines were cut and re-rigged the rearmost main shroud.
  8. The spritsail topmast backstay was rigged. The fine, crow's feet look nice. Time for a couple of corrections that has been bothering me for some time. The halyard was mistakenly ties to the cleat at the base of the sprit on the port side. That line was untied and resecured to the gammoning. The Corel drawing points toward where it should have been attached and mentions the gammoning but does not tell you how it is tied. R.C. Anderson also just mentions that the line is tied to the gammoning. Also, when I installed the ties for the main yards of the foremast and mainmast, I followed the Corel instructions, which rig the ties in the English style, running them through the cheek sheaves on the masts below the tops. Even though I had prepared the caps for running the ties up and over the caps in the Dutch (and thus French) style, I ran the lines in wrong style. So, using surgical precision, I cut the ties and rerouted them over the caps, all without damaging the parrels. The holes in the caps needed enlarging, so they were carefully drilled out by hand, again without tearing any rigging or breaking anything. Big success. Going back and fixing mistakes is often difficult and sometimes dangerous with regard to damage, but when you are pursuing authenticity, it's worth it to the builder.
  9. Lateen yard rigging is complete. I decided on using a simpler form of crow's foot for the lift line using one euphroe.
  10. Things are going slower, with the Covid 19 hysteria, and my wife just got out of back surgery. Some work has been accomplished on the rigging of the lateen sail yardarm on the mizzen mast. Figuring out the arrangement between the halyard line and the parrel was a puzzle. The parrel assembly and its truss line, with the tackle located at the foot of the mizzen mast, are not in the Corel instructions. They are made from scratch and assembled using R.C. Anderson's book as a guide, in the Dutch style, using a double block instead of a deadeye to hold the parrel assembly around the mast. After studying the suspension system of the lateen yard, I can see how the yard is moved from one side of the mast to the other. The parrel truss line is first loosened. One bowline, the one on the side which the yard is on, is unshipped from the yard, and the halyard is used to raise the yard arm up high enough so that the lower end of the yard can be passed around the rear side of the mast to the other side of the mast. The lift line is used to haul the upper end up to near vertical to assist in this operation. The parrel rotated about the mast to accommodate the new yard position, and the parrel truss line can be tightened back up. You can see why lateen sails are more complicated to work with than gaff rigged spankers on 18th century ships. The bowlines that position the lower, forward end of the lateen yard were rigged, starting at the belaying pin. The end of each line is only temporarily tied to the mainmast shroud until I decide the angle that I want the lateen sail to be. The lift line for supporting the rear end of the yard was started at the belaying pin also. The complicated blocks and euphroes for the crows feet that attach the lift to the yard are next. The line is loosely tied with a clinch knot to the yard just to keep it in position. The lift line passes through a block which the instructions say should be on the flag staff. I moved the block to its proper position, attached by a pendant to the topmast, with the block just below the crosstrees. I got a head start making euphroes for the lift line crows feet. I need to make some more, and will be making the crow's feet patterned after the woodcut print in Description D'vn Navire Royale.
  11. More parrel ribs, both triple truck and double truck, were cut from walnut today. Walnut stock was shaped on the mill, filed and sanded, and slices were taken off to make each rib after holes for the parrel line were punch-marked and drilled in the end. The holes were only made 12mm deep and you only get four ribs cut before you have to drill the holes deeper into the wood. This is done because the tiny 0.80mm drill bit will make the holes wander out of position if you go any deeper. Each parrel rib is sanded and inspected. Those that had holes too far out of position to be used were discarded. The double truck parrel parts will be used on the mizzen, topmast, and topgallant yards. The triple truck parrel was assembled for the mainmast lower yard. The procedure was the same as it was for the foremast lower yard parrel, but this time things seemed easier to do. Familiarity with how to use pliers to position and tighten the parrel line made things easier. The line passes that wrap around the outside of the ribs are glued in a couple spots after being positioned with a dental pick to prevent them from popping out of position. Shaping the ribs correctly helps keep these outside passes of line in position. After the parrel line is tightened, a tackle and lanyard are made on the starboard side of the foot of the main mast. The lower double block is hooked to an eyebolt on the deck, and the parrel lanyard is tied off to a cleat on the mast, with the extra line coiled around a paintbrush handle while the PVA glue hardens. Then the coil is hung on the cleat with some PVA to hold it in position. The halyard for the tie line is then tensioned and tied to the knighthead behind the mast on the starboard side. It's difficult properly tying a triple truck parrel on a 1:100 scale model. Most of the time a simplification of one sort or another is made. I guess I'm just stubborn...
  12. The foremast lower yard parrel proved to be too short and required more trucks and ribs to encircle the mast, so I disassembled the parrel assembly reserved for the main mast yard and used those parts. I'll make parts for a new parrel for the main mast later. The ties and halyard that support the foremast lower yard were rigged. The tie is as thick as the lower shroud line, in this case 0.80mm. The tie line was made starting with an eye at one end, passing the standing part though the eye, then passing it through the hound on one side, down and through the sister block, back up and through other hound, and temporarily wrapped around the yard. The was carefully measured and the eye seized around the standing part of the loose end of the tie line. The halyard, which runs through the sister block and knighthead on the forecastle, is left slack while the parrel line was untaped and tightened one pass of at a time. The parrel line is run down to the deck to a tackle made with two double blocks. The upper block is attached by seizing the end of the tie around the loop of the block strop. This block also has a loop on the bottom where the halyard is attached. The lower double block has a hook on the bottom end that hooks only the deck eyebolt. After running the halyard through the blocks and tensioning the parrel line line above, the bitter end is tied to a cleat mounted on the side of the foremast. The tie line is tensioned using the halyard, which is tied off to the knighthead. More parrel parts need to be made for the other yardarms next.
  13. More work on La Couronne today. The spritsail yard was hung from the sprit and the spritsail yard halyard tackle was rigged. Getting the length of the sling for the yard involved sliding the seizings to adjust the length and finally making the last eye on the end of the sling. Surgical forceps applied weight to the bitter end of the sling, holding it taut while slight black thread was used with a needle and needle nosed pliers to seize the eye. The remaining sling line was trimmed, and the halyard line was run through the blocks, tensioned, and tied off at a cleat at the base of the bowsprit. The remaining halyard line was coiled around a screwdriver shaft, glue applied, then glued to the deck when it was stiff enough for the coil to hold its shape.
  14. Today the fore and main lower yard parrels were manufactured from scratch. The Corel instructions simple have you lash the lower yards and lateen yard using line to the masts. I took some scrap walnut and fashioned a stick having the cross section of a parrel rib. Three holes were started with a prick punch and drilled into the end of the stick with a drill press, but only 1 cm deep. Any deeper, and the tiny 0.7mm drill bit would not drill straight farther down into the wood and the holes would be out of position. Then, the stick was sliced into thin sections with a band saw, like slicing a sausage. The tiny parts were then sanded by hand and lacquered, and the results are shown in the second photo below. The pattern for lashing the parrels was taken from R.C. Anderson's The Rigging of Ships in the Days of the Spritsail Topmast 1600-1720. A mystery regarding the Corel plans was solved. The line leading from the yard to the tackle on the deck in front of each mast is shown in the Corel plans to be tied to the yard, which makes no sense. Earlier in this build log I mentioned that Corel may have mistaken those lines to be toplines for hoisting aloft the topmasts. Now I realize Corel probably meant those lines to be the lanyard used adjust the tension of the parrels. So, I will run the parrel lines to the deck and install a tackle adjacent to the topline tackles. Both parrel sets are assembled in accordance with R.C. Anderson's illustration. Multiple layers of masking tape are used as the line is passed through the ribs and trucks. The trucks are Toho 11/0 glass beads #9020-2018-09, and are a bronze/brown color. They are the perfect size for this model. To rig the parrels, an eye is made on the end of a length of line, and the standing part is threaded through the eye to form a loop. A piece of tape is applied to hold the loop and the rest of the line is passed through center holes of the ribs and trucks from left to right. the line then makes loop, again held by a piece of tape, and is threaded from right to left through the upper holes. Then another loop is made on the right, taped to the beginning loop, and the line passed through the bottom holes. a loop is made, taped to the loop underneath, and the remaining line will later be run to the tackle on the deck. The yard will be passed through the loop on each side of this assembly with the parrel placed around the backside of the mast when it is time to install the yard. Foremast parrel Mainmast parrel Both parrels ready for installation

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