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John Clements

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  1. Another Wow! for this latest episode, and for several reasons. To spend five hours a day on one project is beyond me. I struggle to concentrate for an hour, which is partly why I have several projects in completely different areas on the go at one time to give variety, as well as 'normal' life of course. Painting the centre of those monograms blue is a great idea and completely changes their appearance - for the better. You've also reminded me that I need to do something myself to create that flow between levels in the bulwarks that you've made with the dolphins, and the picture of the other ship has me wondering about creating some more complex deck edge rails on the SR too, rather than the somewhat plain ones provided. There's just so much to think about with this kit, which makes it quite different from any other that I've attempted.
  2. I bought a second-hand copy of the Mondfeld book. Yes, it is full of fascinating information and very easy to read. I quickly discovered some explanations of terms I had not understood in Boudriot and Lemineur. It turns out though that it is not so useful for the gun tackle questions, not because the answers are not there but because I already had them. The St Philippe book gives the rope sizes for each size of gun, and I have a table from Radimir which explains which block to use for each size of rope. I just hadn't put the two together. So far, so good. It seems that the 3mm blocks are correct but then, to my mind, the aesthetics take precedence. The 3mm blocks simply don't look right because there is insufficient space between the eyebolts for the line to be taut. That is what shows in the picture above. and I think part of the problem is that the hooks and eyes are over-scale, especially the hooks, and don't leave enough space for the blocks to separate. I do think that although the blocks on the front tackles can be very close, they do need to have a gap between them to look tidy and realistic, so I think now I will settle for the 2.5mm blocks and move the rear eyebolts as far back on the carriages as I can, as in the second photo above. This reflects the diagram in Mondfeld (of which I had already found a copy on the web) for the French style of tackle. Now I'm away for a week and will mull it all over before ordering the blocks.
  3. I have now experimented with the 2mm and 2.5mm blocks for the gun tackles and the outcome is in the pictures below. Not perfect but enough to show the intention, I hope. I do think the 3mm blocks are too big. The 2mm blocks are fine and are really the only ones that show a gap between the blocks of the front tackle but are difficult to manage (several just disappeared into the ether whilst I was rigging them), so I have settled on a mixed economy - 2mm blocks for the front tackle and 2.5mm for the rear. I have also moved the eyebolt at the rear of the carriage a little further back and am attaching both tackles to it, which does accord with the diagram Radimir sent me for continental tackles. I also have to be more careful to make sure that the hooks are in alignment so the tackle is not twisted, as some of these are, especially for the more visible guns (these are mainly under the fo'c'sle deck). It's good to have come to a conclusion on this - only another 30 guns to go!
  4. Thanks for your comments, EJ & Ian. I am experimenting with different sizes of blocks and eyebolt positions on the gun tackles. There are an awful lot of them so it will be some time before there is any visible progress!
  5. Thanks, Henry & Michael, for your helpful comments. Actually, the blocks are properly rigged - I've just checked with a bright light. It's an illusion created by the angle of the camera, the rope and block being the same colour, and the slight groove in the block between the two channels into which the rope has sunk. They say the camera never lies but in this case it has! But thanks for being helpful, anyway. I'm not sure about changing the arrangement of the rear tackle. It would certainly be simpler but I have already glued the guns to the deck and glued the eyebolts in (as indicated in documentation given to me by Radimir). As the carriages are quite fragile, I'm afraid of damaging them if I drill more holes in them. I may have to leave these as they are, and try the single tackle on the higher decks. I'll have a think.
  6. Just to add to the above, Radimir at HisModel, helpful as always, is sending me some 2mm and 2.5mm blocks to try out.
  7. I can't believe it's two months since I last posted progress but I don't have much to report. I have glued all the main deck guns in place and fitted the recoil tackles, and all the eyebolts in the deck, the bulwarks and the gun carriages. Now my problem is that the distance between the eyebolts is so short that the 3mm blocks I am using for the tackle are touching each other as the photo below shows. It may be that the rear end of the tackle should be fixed further back on the carriage; I used the pre-drilled holes in the carriage but my feeling is that the blocks should be smaller. That size is probably fine on a larger carriage such as on the lower decks but the upper deck guns are appreciably smaller and I believe the blocks should be too. At the end of the day, I think aesthetics has to come into it as well,; if it looks a mess, it's going to spoil the model. So I'm going to try the 2.5mm blocks, and if it still looks cramped, will use 2mm blocks which I can't say I would be looking forward to, given their size and my eyesight.
  8. It's always so interesting to come back after a few weeks and see how you are progressing. I agree with all those comments about the bulwarks not fitting and had the same experience of it all appearing not square when glued up. Quite a lot of filing and filling needed. And the bulwarks did keep coming loose until the joint was saturated in plastic weld, though I still try and pick it up by the stand when I have to handle it. I did like your solution to the sheets being put through the bulwarks in the wrong place. I had been puzzling over that myself and the built-in sheaves just seems the right answer.
  9. Those figures look really good and the whole scheme has a brightness and clarity with the colours you have used which looks far better than the overall red or blue finish. And that painting you found is a real gift and quite a challenge to replicate in the scale of the model sculpture. Really looking forward to seeing the end result on the stern panel.
  10. You've made a great job on those figures, making a great success where I quailed at the thought of what needed doing and, as you've seen, ended up with them supporting the brackets rather than the actual balcony. They are amongst the smallest parts in the kit, bar the blocks and pulleys, and nicely moulded so very much worth keeping.
  11. Hi Marc. Those blocks give a much better joint with the hull than the Heller offering and a better shape to the whole structure. My own guess about how it was built would be for the planking option, which would be lighter and simpler, I think, and would match the rest of the construction. I'm not sure where they would have sourced a piece of lightweight timber of such a size. The book sounds very interesting and right up my street as a Baroque enthusiast. I'll be having a look this weekend. This coming Monday shops are open again so I'll be able to pop down to my local art shop and buy all those bits and pieces I couldn't be bothered to order on-line.
  12. Well, here is my cheapskate solution to the surplus lower gallery supplied by Heller, which I think doesn't look too bad. It's basically bending, cutting and filling the original piece, after removing the floor, so that it sits flush against the stern. I didn't want to waste the four supporting figures (despite not being able to find any evidence that there would have been any sculpted figures in that position) but luckily they fit against four of the brackets under the next gallery. Again, one of the pleasures of this vessel is being able to - within reason - make up your own mind about detail. My real reservation is with the false windows along the side. I made them rectangular to match the upper window in the Heller moulding, but they really don't look right. On the other hand, the stern window pattern looks too small, so some sort of compromise is needed. As I've now got probably quite a long pause whilst fitting up the visible guns and their tackle, I'll have some time to think about it.
  13. Great to catch up and see how you are getting with those quarter galleries which is so problematic and incorrect in the kit. I echo everyone else's appreciation of your attention to detail and historical probability, and the workmanship that lies behind it all. Being in the midst of my own struggles in this area, I can only say that one strives towards something satisfactory for one's own level of skill, whilst being lost in admiration for your craftmanship. Even though I am attempting something much less complicated and original, it is really useful seeing how you are approaching the problems and resolving them.
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