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Tim I.

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  1. As mentioned in my previous post, I had this kit on the shelf for about two years now. Unfortunately the keel had a slight warp in it and so did the bulkheads. I will still use them anyway, but work on correcting the warpage as I go. The pictures below are from the progress yesterday. The former was assembled and the frames added one by one, using the framing jig to square them as much as possible despite the deviation from the warping. All of the bulkheads were pre-sanded and the bulkheads 1-4 pre-faired before assembly. More bulkheads added, and moving towards the stern. After adding the bulkheads I added the pre-scored deck plates and glued them into place. Like I did in my previous version, I will use these pre-scored (from the laser cutter) as a false deck and plank over them with very thin (1/32") planks, for a more finished surface. In this picture you can see the port coal bunker being assembled (the kick-board is being dry fit at this point prior to gluing). Under the false deck, I added CA Glue to re-enforce the structural element of the pieces as they are very thin and due to the grain susceptible to breakage. When working with these, take your time and gently work them into place. I would recommend using Tight-bond II glue when you put these down, or gluing from below, like I did. The blue line, is painters tape I cut about 1/2" wide to hold the two pieces together and provide for proper re-alignment of the frames due to the warpage mentioned above. The next step was to begin working on putting together the coal bunkers. Both the port and starboard coal bunker pieces resemble the one (port side) above. If your going to open the coal bunkers, I would suggest you plan ahead and dry fit the pieces first before you start cutting. Keep in mind the covers open towards the boiler, so it will be in the way once the boiler is installed. You will need to plan for this. In the picture above, I carefully scribed the laser cut lines a little deeper using a ruler and a number 11 X-Acto blade. In this step, you need to take your time and do multiple light passes. To much pressure, you run the risk of slipping (damaging the piece or your hand) or cutting through the piece all together. In this step on the starboard coal bunker, I replicated the process I did on the port side. If you look at the picture above, the second, third and fourth hatches will be removed. At this stage, I will however only remove the second and the fourth bunker covers so I do not compromise the structural integrity of the piece. The third bunker cover will be removed post the piece installation. Here is the result of the process described above, with the second and fourth bunker covers removed. If you decide to go this direction and detail the coal bunkers, I would recommend you follow this process, instead of gluing the piece on and deciding to do it after the fact like I did below on my first version of the Picket Boat. This is what could potentially happen if you wait to remove the bunker covers post installation after gluing the entire piece in place (Note: these two pictures are from my first version of the Picket Boat, not the current version underway). The first issue, is the covers did not come off intact and were a complete loss. I had to fabricate new ones. Second, the edges where the covers were removed were damaged by the removal process, so I had to use wood filler to rectify my mistake. Stay tuned for more updates, and thank you for following along! Tim I.
  2. Illustration of the Picket Boat (Photo # 84468) from the United States National Archives Obligatory Box shot! Without being too long winded, a few months back I had come to the decision of leaving the hobby all-together. In the process, I pulled down my old build logs and archived them. Most of my motivation towards leaving the hobby, is that I have built ships for only other people, and did not have any models I had built to show for it. I also took on too many concurrent projects (over eight at once), leading to me feeling burned out. With the urging and encouragement of some close friends, I have decided to re-think my decision and continue building ship models, this time - for me only. The first Picket Boat I built now resides in the collection of the Military History Society of Rochester, NY. It was an immensely enjoyable build, and I would recommend it to any new builder if they are looking for a forgiving, but challenging project. After delivering the first Picket Boat to the museum, I purchased a second kit and left it on the shelf. Although, I am still working on the PdN (a model that also is for someone else), I decided to take this project on before I start the Medway Longboat. This model will be for me. I will deviate some from my previous process and will weather the boat more than I did the first version. I also intend to detail it differently. Periodically, I receive PM's about the first Picket build and how I did some of the finishing details and weathering. In this build log, I will spend less time on the structural elements of building of the kit and more time on the finishing of the model (painting, fitting out and final details) so those that are looking to do similar details can follow along. So to get the build log rolling, here are some pictures of my first finished Picket Boat (V1.0). I look forward to your comments, questions, feedback and welcome you to follow this build log as it kicks off! Thank you, Tim I.
  3. Bob, Your carronades turned out great! What did you send to Shapeways to get them 3D printed? Thank you, Tim I.
  4. Work on the PdN has been progressing slowly, due to not having time due to work and other items limiting my time in the shop. Another hiccup in the build process and one that has me at a cross-roads on how I want to proceed -- that has made me feel deeply conflicted. Originally, I had dabbled with the idea of keeping the gunades. When I assembled the trucks and put them on deck to fit for size, I was a bit startled in their size. They look very big in comparison to the rest of the model, that led me to pull out some reference material on American War of 1812 cannon and carronades. After a few hours of research, the problem still did not have an answer I was comfortable with. The table below from U.S. Navy Ordinance and Ship Armament from 1812, by Spencer Tucker. The monograph is a well respected source on the provenance and condition of early American shipborne muzzle-loader pieces. It would be a mistake however to consider this table imperacle. The issue stems from the PdN was not a U.S. Naval vessel, and even at the time the U.S. Navy procured pieces from multiple foundries and often they were either a hybridized design (borrowing design elements from British and French pieces), or they followed British or French patterns. Keeping this in mind, I also referenced some other sources I had on British and French carronades from the time, and that unfortunately did not lead to clarity, rather more ambiguity. According to this table above at scale, the carronades contained in the kit would technically be closer to a 68-pdr carronade (see measurement below)! My interpretation of this build is focusing mostly on a British Officer's depiction of the PdN from October 11, 1814 when the HMS Endymion attacked the ship. One of the British officers involved in the engagement made detailed notes of the Prince de Neufchatel, specifically her armament at the time. In his log, he references that the Prince de Neufchatel was carrying six long cannons (six-pounders – two in the bow, two in the waist and two on the stern) with along with twelve carronades (believed to be 12-pdr.). The log does not state if they were on trucks (as gunades) or on sleds as carronades. The PdN was built and fitted out in France, so it is highly probable the carronades followed the French pattern. It was often a practice on smaller ships like this to put them on a carriage as a gunade, as it gave them the chance to move them out of the way if so required. So no true resolution from the research, rather a decision that had to be made to move forward. This project, has been plagued with setbacks like this - but in most cases I have decided to move forward regardless. I have been deliberating on this decision for the past fifteen days, ultimately, I have decided to do that again. Given the fact the guns are probably out of scale and the gunade carriages are way to big (that are supplied from the kit), I have opted to move them to carronade sleds. I will be adding some detail to them, but will be omitting some for the sake of just moving on. To start this process, I cut some styrene and drilled it out to simulate the hinge for altering the position of the barrel. I also cut of styrene rod to simulate the wheels of the sleds. They were then taped down (with painters tape) to a piece of scrap wood and spray painted with several light coats of black enamel spray paint for a smooth finish, buffing inbetween with autobody fine grit sandpaper (the result I will show in a later build log update). The next step was to begin working on the six 6-pdr. long guns. For these I pulled out some of Syren's cannons. A shameless plug, they are a joy to build and bring a great result if you take your time and follow the directions that are available (well worth the money!). To ensure a reasonably consistent result from assembly, I built a jig to aid in assembly. Once pulled from the jig, the wheels were mounted and I dry-fit the barrels on the carriages to test for alignment and fit. So far, I am pleased with the result. From this picture, you will see one carriage with four coats of paint on it. I did this first to color test how the color I used on the bulwarks went on and it worked out well. Then next step was to apply this color to the carronade sleds, and to the six 6pdr carriages. The entire process took several hours, as they were coated with nine coats of paint, before I decided they looked good enough. A close up shot of the carronade sleds, and the 6-pdr. carriages, after nine coats of paint. Down below, a view of one of the 6-pdr. carriages. There is still work to do on the guns. On the 6-pdr. carriages I need to add the metal work and mount the barrels. On the carronades I need to determine how I want to approach the elevation screw, and how detailed I want to make them. I am also debating on if I will stop with just breaching ropes or add the run in tackle. Right now I will probably go with the later. Next comes the question of blocks for the tackle. I have decent stock of Syren blocks, enough for the PdN, but I purchased them for another project -- so I will probably use those supplied in the kit even though they are not the best. I will save these details for upcoming build log updates, but this post brings you all current on where I am right now. Thank you for following along, and I look forward to your comments and feedback. - Tim I.
  5. Rusty, Thank you for bringing your barge to our ship group meeting this past Saturday. It was great to see it! - Tim I.
  6. Bob, It looks good. Are you going to do anything special with the lintels and the sills of the gunports? I left them as the directions called for. I think it is something that if I had to do it over again, I would dress them up a bit. Thank you, Tim I.
  7. Doug, Good luck on your new companionways. I really enjoy Philip Reed's book, with all the illustrations and depictions of extra detail. I have been picking at my PdN for close to four years now. It was the first ship kit I purchased, and over the years have built other ships, but this one continues to be a challenge for me. I am enjoying following your log, and am looking forward to seeing how your new companionways come out. - Tim I.
  8. Rusty, Is the line in the kit monofilament? If so, what "test" is it? Thank you, Tim
  9. Chuck, I am glad to see this project underway again. I am eager to build this when the kit becomes available! - Tim I.
  10. For those other builders that are working on the PdN, I wanted to bring up the work of Bob Comet and his spectacular interpretation of the Prince de Neufchatel. These pictures are not of my work, rather pictures of Bob Comet's model of the PdN that is showcased on the Hampton Roads Ship Model Societies website: http://www.hrsms.org/home/Prince+de+Neufchatel There are several things I like about this model. The black gunstripe. This is very plausible for the period and an interesting detail. Often blockade runners and other vessels that wanted to employ stealth would do this, as to reduce the visible signature of the vessel at night. There are several documented cases of ships (specifically US Navy ships doing this during the War of 1812 - U.S.S. Jones, U.S.S. Jefferson, U.S.S. Niagara, and others). The downscaling modification of the gunade carriages (trucks). One of the elements of the PdN kit is that the gunade carriages are too big for the model. In Bob Comet's model below, his representation of these appears more appropriate for the scale. The red painted companionways instead of buff or stained. I will admit it, I am a sucker for red... His depiction of the transom is interesting specifically the split gunport lids in contrast to the single hinged lids on the gunports on port and starboard. The inclusion of the Neufchatel crest for the figurehead. The emblem is well documented to have been there, but very few models of the ship actually include it. The two boats "shipped" in the waist. I have already built the boat that came in the kit, but I feel it is not adequate. It is apparent by Bob Comet's model below, that he added these boats (that differ from the one included in the kit). The buoy detail on the anchors. His application for the chain plates. I have been going back and forth on how I wanted to do these, as I have seen different suggestions on how it was done in the various sources I have on the PdN. In execution, I prefer this interpretation. His use of the shipways. Even though I have elected not to depict my model this way, his execution of the "ways" provides a good example for a modeler who chooses to do so. Lastly, his fighting top. The PdN only has one. In most depictions it does not have a solid floor - rather slats. I found this to be curious (the slats) because there are very few models where I have seen this. I have not made a decision yet on how I will approach it, but this example offers another interpretive viewpoint, or option I may consider for my model. Here are the pictures from Bob Comet's model from the Hampton Roads Ship Model Societies website: Tim I.

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