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Dr PR

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  1. I am continuing work on the anchor handling rig. The kit plans called for just gluing the two pieces of the catheads together at the angle. That didn't sound very sturdy to me so I decided to use a bridal joint with a mortise cut on the horizontal piece and a tenon on the vertical part. I made a 1/16 inch dowel of the same wood to pin the two pieces together. The result is a very strong joint! I also used a similar dowel to pin the two sheaves into the slots in the cathead. The left image shows the "eyes" of the ship. The catheads have been mounted on the rails and bolsters fitted around the hawse for the anchor cable. The boat davits have also been mounted on the stern. The next picture shows the anchor cable routing. The cable was normally stowed in the cable tiers below the midships hatch. The anchor was stowed on the rail just aft of the catheads, suspended from the cathead and railing without the anchor cable attached. When the anchor was needed the cable was brought up, lead through the hawse and attached to the anchor. A short fishing boom was attached to a sturdy deck fixture and used to lower the anchor so it hung from the cathead. The cathead tackle was detached to drop the anchor, with the cable feeding out of the cable tiers, or perhaps the cable was first faked down on deck to ensure clean running. The anchor was raised using block and tackle attached to the fore mast or on the lower spar on the mast. A messenger line attached to the running block was lashed to the cable and the messenger hauled in. When necessary the anchor cable could be secured to the bits while the messenger was repositioned on the cable. When raised to the side the cathead tackle was attached and the anchor was hauled up. The fishing boom was used to haul the anchor flukes up to the rail. Then the anchor cable was detached and stowed below. A heavy wooden piece was attached inside the bulwark to make the inboard part of the bolster. A book on wooden ship building said the hawse opening should be 2 1/2 times the diameter of the anchor cable. The hawse opening was shaped to minimize the curvature of the cable as it passed through, with a radius two to three times the diameter of the cable. The outboard part of the bolster has rounded edges to the hawse opening. The opening curves around from the inboard side and down to lead the cable out with a gentle bend. Some ships had metal inserts in the hawse opening to reduce wear on the bolster. This configuration is a blend of several drawings and photos.
  2. Gregory, That's an interesting idea. Do you first close it down to the desired diameter - by chucking the proper size drill bit? The jaws do not have cutting edges, but I can see how they might "worry" wood into the desired cylindrical shape. **** I am doing everything with hand tools, and some things are quite a challenge. I am retired now, but when I was working I had access to a full machine shop. I really miss all those great tools! I can see that before I take on a really big project, like the 1: 96 USS Oklahoma City CLG-5, I will need a lathe and milling machine, and a place to put them!
  3. Gregory, This was my first attempt to "mass produce" parts, so it probably isn't the most efficient method - but it worked. 1. I designed the gun carriages in a CAD program I have been using since 1988 - DesignCAD 3D MAX. I had to fiddle with the dimensions for reasons explained in an earlier post. Then I printed a dimensioned drawing to work from. **** 2. For the carriage cheeks (sides) I cut rectangular "blanks" of boxwood sized to the largest dimensions of the parts. I made several extra pieces in case I screwed up some of them. 3. I placed all of the pieces together side by side in a small vise and trued up the ends with a file so they were exactly the same length. 4. Then I glued strips of wood across the ends. This made one single "cheek assembly" to work on. 5. I have a very old and pathetic Dremel drill press, but I have learned to make it work for most jobs (a milling machine would have been MUCH nicer!). I set up a guide that I could slide the cheek assembly along. A router bit was chucked in the Dremel and it was carefully positioned for each cut. I adjusted the height and bit position by cutting into scrap wood until the cut was correct (very tedious and time consuming - Oh, for a milling machine!). Then I slid the cheek assembly along to make the same cut in all the pieces. 6. This setup adjustment was repeated for each successive cut. 7. The grooves for the cannon trunnions were carved with a small round file, and the large concave cut on the bottom was cut with a larger file. I suppose I could have done these cuts with the Dremel using ball end mills, but I didn't have the right sizes. 8. After all the cuts were made I used the end mill in the Dremel to carve away the strips that were glued along the ends of the parts to free up the individual cheeks. 9. I put a small (0.020") drill bit in the Dremel and set up stops to position individual cheeks. This allowed me to drill the holes for the wire loops in the same place in each part. I didn't show the loops for the gun tackle in the pictures, but they will be there. **** 10. The carriage axles were done in a similar manner. Front and rear axles were the same size. I needed rectangular cross section beams to tie the carriage cheeks together, with axles for the wheels protruding from the ends. The wood was 1/16" thick boxwood cut into equal length strips about 3/16" longer than the axle beams should be. After gluing a strip along the ends of the bunched pieces to hold them all together (as above) I used the end mill in the Dremel to carve notches in each end top and bottom leaving the proper length beam with a 1/16" square bit of wood protruding from the ends for the axles for the wheels. 11. Then the strips glued across the ends were removed as described above. 12. I needed a way to turn the square axles into cylinders. I made a cutting tool from a 1/16" inside diameter short brass tube. I cut notches in one end of the tube on opposite sides of the tube diameter. These were angled to create cutting teeth. 13. This tool was pressed over the ends of the square axles and rotated to cut away the corners and leave round axles. It worked! I have also used this tool to make 1/16" diameter dowels to serve as pins for the sheaves in the catheads and boat davits. 14. The holes through the axles for the axle pins were drilled with a 0.020" diameter drill bit in a pin vise. **** 15. The other parts were fairly simple and were just cut from wood strips using a small saw and miter box and shaped with a file if necessary. I hope you could follow all of this. If something isn't clear just ask and I will try to explain it better.
  4. Carl, Thanks. I used the triangular file because it centered nicely in the groove between the two soldered washers. The soldered pair is about 0.040" wide (1 mm) and the smallest round file I have is about 0.032" wide (0.81 mm) at the extreme tip - and that is a small file only 3 inches (76 mm) long! Only a short portion near the tip is small enough diameter to work making the groove. I don't know if it would have centered as well as the triangular file. I suppose I could use the triangular file to start the groove and switch to the round file to finish it. Once the rigging is in place you won't be able to see the sheaves anyway.
  5. I have been working on the larger deck details. I want to get all of these fittings ready for when it warms up enough to go outside and paint. The knightheads and bitts were fairly simple, after I decided how to build them. The parts supplied with the kit seemed pretty grotesque and oversized. I took the dimensions from drawings of schooners and revenue cutters of about 80 tons. The pumps were an interesting small project. I used eight pieces of HO scale railroad ties for the wooden barrel and cut the metal pieces from thin brass. I will paint the metalwork black. I built up the support under the circular pivot gun rail and shaped it to fit the camber of the deck. A couple of scuppers were cut into the support to allow the rail circle to drain. The photo on the right shows one possible configuration for the 6 pounder gun battery. The guns are spaced every third opening between frames. I have also experimented with spacing at every fourth opening. In either case the number of ports will be more than the number of guns. I plan to place dummy gun ports along the hull outboard of the deck house. There will be two stern gun ports. I will paint the bottom of the hull white. Between the waterline and the wale will be black, and the rail will be black. The stripe on the bulwark between the wale and rail will be white, with black gun port covers. The dummy gun ports will also be black. The inside of the bulwark will be brown or yellow. Most of the deck fittings will be white. I have started working on the catheads for the bow and boat davits for the stern. Again, the parts in the kit are pretty crude. They have only one sheave and an open slot in the end that the sheave fit into. Every drawing I have seen shows two sheaves. I made the sheaves by soldering together two 1-72 brass washers. I chucked them in a drill and used a small triangular file to carve the groove.
  6. Richard, I have been researching anchors on Baltimore schooners and revenue cutters. I am pretty sure they carried anchors. They were lashed to the ship's side, usually near the bow and cat heads. The anchor cable (rope) was removed and stowed below decks. When they needed to drop the anchor the cable was brought up and attached, presumably with the free end attached to something for the drop. I am also pretty sure most of the smaller ships (about 100 tons or less) did not have winches or capstans. I have found several references to raising the anchor using block and tackle rigged to the fore mast or the lower spar on the mast. Line from the lower block was attached to the anchor cable and then the cable was hauled in section by section. For ships with a capstan a continuous messenger loop was run around the capstan and lead forward where it was fastened to the anchor cable. The messenger was then pulled in with the capstan and the loop returned to the fo'c'sle. As the cable came in the messenger loop was spliced to it again and again as the loop was pulled around the capstan. In this manner they managed a fairly continuous pull on the cable. When the anchor broke the surface the block and tackle rigged to the cathead was used to hoist the anchor to the cathead. Then the anchor cable was unattached and stowed. A portable boom was rigged to the base of the fore mast or some other sturdy foundation. Another block and tackle was rigged to the end of the boom. When the anchor reached the cathead I think they first used the boom to raise the anchor flukes to the rail or deck, and then a line was wrapped around the anchor stock or flukes to secure the fluke end to the deck/rail. Then the tackle from the boom was attached to the top of the anchor and used to release the anchor from the cathead, or at least to take the strain off the cathead tackle. After this the top end of the anchor was lashed in place. Apparently the cathead was not used to support the anchor in it's stowed position, at least on some ships. When they wanted to drop anchor the tackle from the cathead was attached to the anchor. I guess they used the anchor boom again to release the anchor/flukes from the rail and lower it beneath the cathead. The anchor cable was then attached. My guess is that this method was used because it was cheaper than providing a winch or capstan, and it did not take up deck space when the anchor wasn't being handled. Also, the smaller ships carried smaller anchors that could be hoisted with ordinary tackle. Lots of guesses there, but it is based upon some early shiphandling texts that I found, especially the midshipmen's guides to ship handling from the 19th century. **** Two boats?! I know that some ships carried a boat slung over the stern on davits. The Mantua Albatross kit has these davits and a horrible example of a boat pressed out of sawdust or something, that is badly warped. I get to build a new boat from scratch. I guess two boats could be nested on the davits. Also, I have seen drawings of boats slung over the side on davits, similar to whaling ship boat stowage. These davits could be portable, so they wouldn't show on ship's plans. I guess if you worked on one of those ships back then you knew how things were done so there was no need to put everything on the plans.
  7. I think the earlier posts just about said it all. Here are a couple of photos of the windlass on the modern Lady Washington replica. As you can see there is a pawl to stop reverse rotation as the windlass is turned. Also, the holes for the handles are staggered and in three rows, so three people can be turning. You can see how two people can be turning while the third is repositioning the handle to keep the motion going fairly smoothly. Here is a close-up of the pawl. Not much happened quickly on a sailing ship. Normally they had hours to prepare for leaving port, waiting for the tide. If they dropped hook at low tide the current would carry the ship up stream. As the tide went out it would carry the ship back downstream over the anchor cable, so they just had to winch it in. As someone mentioned, some smaller ships did not have windlasses or capstans. I have read that anchors were raised using block and tackle rigged from the lowest spar on the fore mast. I have been researching this because plans for many schooners and revenue cutters do not show a windlass or capstan, and I have been trying to figure out how they raised anchor and what they did with the anchor cable. My first ship, a 112 foot inshore minesweeper (USS Cape MSI-2) had a hand cranked windlass to raise the anchor and chain. We definitely didn't enjoy doing that! It was a very slow process and even the CO took turns raising the anchor. It might take an hour to haul it in. An now a fairly modern lost anchor story. Inchon, Korea, has some of the largest tides on Earth - 30 feet or more. I have been in harbor when the water receded several city blocks between low and high tides. During the Korean War a US destroyer (don't remember the name) dropped the hook in Inchon, and it was dragging. The inexperienced skipper then dropped the other anchor. Big mistake! As the tide changed the ship spun around the anchor chains, twisting them together. Guess what? You can't hoist the anchors if the chains are wrapped around each other! The ship received orders to get underway IMMEDIATELY! They had to break the chains and depart without both anchors. That really pissed off the fleet commander. He told the ship it couldn't go into port until it had anchors. The ship contracted with a Korean company to recover the anchors, but the ongoing war delayed the operation. Eventually they had the anchors and chain on a barge waiting for the ship to return. The ship's orders were to go into Inchon, recover the anchors, and then immediately leave port and steam directly to the US west coast, non stop. The ship had been at sea for many months before it got into port. One of my crewmen was at the pier when the ship came in to tie up. He said that before all the lines were over, when the ship came within a few feet of the pier, sailors began going over the side and running down the pier! Captains do not want to lose anchors - it doesn't make a good impression on promotion boards!
  8. Wow! Valeriy, you have made great progress since I last looked in on this build.
  9. One of the problems I have been thinking about is whether or not ships fitted with a pivot gun also carried carriage mount broadside guns. Chapelle's "The Baltimore Clipper" lists the armament of numerous schooners and privateers. Most carried one long gun and from one to a dozen smaller cannons. The guns in the Mantua kit are a reasonable battery for the Baltimore clipper. He describes (pages 72-74) the armament of the HMS Dominica (200 tons) as having a short 32 pounder pivot gun and fifteen carriage guns - twelve short 12 pounders, two long 6 pounders, and a brass 4 pounder. The Dominica may have been a three masted schooner, but the plans show a two-masted ship. Chapelle comments that it was unusual for a three masted ship to carry a pivot gun. The Decatur was an American two masted schooner armed with a long 18 pounder pivot gun and six 12 pounder carriage guns. The Decatur and Dominica fought a running battle where the Decatur used it's pivot gun with devastating effect. The ships were about the same size and speed but the American gunnery was superior. The Decatur eventually boarded and captured the Dominica. Both of these 200 ton ships were quite a bit larger than the revenue cutter I am building, but the Decatur's battery was similar in number. My 12 pounder pivot gun and six 6 pounder carriage guns seem reasonable for the 80 ton ship.
  10. Are you using a Windows or Apple operating system? There isn't much compatibility between the two. I have used DesignCAD (Windows) since 1988. https://www.turbocad.com/designcad/designcad-3d-max-2018.html DC has a 2D version for about $50. It is the easiest to use CAD program I have seen - and I have used half a dozen over the years. It has a free user forum with many experienced users checking in daily to help new users. I can't strees enough the importance of a good users forum to help you learn how to do things! http://forum.designcadcommunity.com/index.php HOWEVER, any new program will take time to learn. **** You say your kitchen program outputs to "BtoCAD." What file format does the kitchen design program generate? If your program can generate DXF or DWG files just about any CAD program can import them. If it outputs Sketchup format files you could use that program. I looked up BtoCAD and it apparently uses the AutoCAD DWG file format.
  11. Here is another puzzle. I see you have made anchors for your cutter, and it looks like you have pieces for cat heads. But how were the anchors raised, and where was the anchor cable stored? Chapelle's drawings of the Doughty designs show no anchors or cat heads for the 31, 51 or 80 ton cutters - they also had no bulwarks above the main deck. But the 77 ton Morris did have bulwarks with cat heads and apparently anchors and tackles. But no windlass is shown to raise the anchor. The Mantua Albatross kit includes nice anchors and chain, and cat heads. But it has a capstan aft of the main mast, and shows the anchor chains running far back to holes in the main deck midships. Chapelle's drawings of the American privateer Lynx/HMS Musquidobit and HMS Alban show capstans aft of the main mast, and cat heads forward. But they don't show where the anchor cable ran. I'm pretty sure the Mantua kit is modeled after the British schooners. I have read that the revenue cutters were to remain at sea as much as possible and not anchor in port. So maybe they didn't have anchors, but I think I would not be comfortable without having anchors to help ride out storms or to drop hook in port while taking on supplies. You can't always count on finding a berth along side a pier! I have also read that on some of the Baltimore schooners the anchors were raised using tackle rigged to the main spar on the fore mast. One account said the anchors were stowed below decks through a midships hatch. So what do we do with the anchors? I can see that the anchors may have been rigged on the bulwarks and cat heads. Dropping would entail swinging them from the cat head and then releasing them. They could be retrieved with block and tackle rigged from the lowest spar on the fore mast. The cable/chain could have been hoisted lengths at a time until the anchor was raised, and then it could have been stowed again on the railing an cat head. Any thoughts? Phil
  12. Thanks. They should look better after they are sealed and painted. I have quite a collection waiting for painting. I want to use a clear lacquer sealing coat, but it contains acetone, toluene and other smelly solvents that you really shouldn't breathe and should be used outdoors. It has been cold and damp outside (winter in Oregon) so I am waiting for it to warm up a bit before doing the painting. I'll paint the gun carriages brown. I think I will blacken the cannons.
  13. 6 POUNDER CANNONS The Mantua kit included six small cannons. At first I thought they were too small to be used on a revenue cutter, but I compared their length to information for various cannons used in the early 1800s and found they were approximately correct for 1:48 scale 6 pounders. 6 pounder guns were used on the revenue cutters, so I decided to make carriages for them and see how they worked on the 1:48 model. This image shows the 12 pounder cannon used on the pivot gun at the top. The 6 pounder cannon is below it. Actually, both guns are a bit "pudgy" or broader in proportion to length for the dimensions of the real cannons of the period. But I decided to use them on this build anyway. The next picture shows a major problem with the cannons supplied with the kit. Both barrels were bored out to ridiculous diameters. The walls were so thin that the cannons would have exploded if they were fired with enough charge to expel the ball from the muzzle! Comparing length to bore diameter the 12 pounder was bored for a 28 pound ball, and the 6 pounder was bored for a 24 pound shot!! I soldered concentric brass tubing into the barrels and then bored the barrels to the proper diameters. The 12 pounder fired 4.5 inch balls, and the 6 pounder fired 3.75 inch balls. The photo shows the original over sized bore and the resulting correct bore dimensions. Another problem with the parts supplied with the kit was the height of the barrels on the 6 pounders when mounted on the supplied carriages and wheels. The barrel height was about the same as the top of the railing on the bulwarks. This meant the guns could only be aimed downward! That's OK if you are using them for fishing, but they would have been useless for any other purpose. The drawing shows the plan for gun carriages that would work on the model. The ship had substantial camber to the deck, so when the ship was on an even keel the deck edge sloped downward. To get the guns to fire with just slight elevation the carriages would have to be significantly lower than the kit parts, and the rear wheels would have to be much smaller diameter than the front wheels (this was common on real gun carriages). Using the dimensions of the deck, bulwark and rail on the model and the kit supplied cannons I worked out the dimensions of the carriages and wheels to allow the guns to be run out with the barrels horizontal (solid red outline) and to be fired with up to 5 degree elevation (dashed blue outline) with the quoin removed. However, if they were fired with elevation the recoil back up the sloping deck would have caused the top of the barrel to strike the railing over the gun port. The red dashed line shows the travel path of the top of the barrel in the horizontal position - it just clears the rail. I constructed new carriages for the 6 pounders. Each carriage had seven wooden parts, four brass wheels, a pin head for the quoin handle and two metal loops for the gun tackle. To put things in scale, the small brass wheels are 0.125 inch diameter. It was a lot of small parts to make. Just imagine doing this for a 100 gun ship of the line! I thought I might make the wheels from wood, but 1/8 inch dowels were not suitable for boring the 1/16 inch diameter holes for the axles. I used concentric brass tubing soldered together, two layers for the small wheels and four layers for the large (3/16 inch diameter) wheels. I chose this route because I do not have a lathe to drill the 1/16 inch holes into brass rods. Here are pictures of the kit supplied carriages (left) and the scratch built carriages (right). As you can see, the scratch built carriages mount the guns lower. In addition, they are much more correct in the details. The axles are even drilled to allow pins to be inserted to secure the wheels. Here is the full 6 pounder battery.
  14. I am slowly adding details to the hull. The top rails were the latest work. I cut the rails from a wide sheet of basswood (lime) as single pieces port and starboard. A third piece was fitted over the stern. I have shortened the tiller and temporarily placed the binnacle from the kit about two scale feet aft of the deck house. I may take another scale foot off the tiller and move the binnacle back a bit to give more clearance to the companionway on the deck house. The doors for the companionway were made from very thin plywood. It is easy to remove parts of the upper layer of the plywood to expose inner layers, and this is what I did to create the inset panels in the doors. Hinges were made of thin brass strips with brass wire soldered across. The companionway was modeled after the companionway on the lumber schooners C. A Thayer and Wawona. A handle was added to the sliding top of the companionway.
  15. Mark, Thanks. The 3D model is about a gigabyte (for comparison, the 3D CAD file for my house is only about 20 megabytes). I have included details down to 3/16 inch (1:1 scale) - primarily fasteners such as screws and rivets. But there were a few places where I omitted some of the tiny details (screw threads and some very small rivets) in order to keep the file sizes smaller. I put in all the details with the hope of someday generating walk around videos. I have started generating 2D files. The forward superstructure file took several days to generate and the resulting file is 345 megabytes. After cleaning it up to remove unwanted lines and duplicate line segments it should be quite a bit smaller. But it is going to take a long time to generate all of the files. Right now I am taking a break from CAD and I am building a 1:48 scale model of a Baltimore clipper revenue cutter. Phil

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