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About catopower

  • Birthday 06/17/1962

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  1. Then again, Ages of Sail has it in stock, AND unlike Cornwall, they're a paying sponsor of this site... 😁 Of course, there is international shipping, which will probably make it more expensive. Does UK Customs tack on VAT on products shipped from the US?
  2. Actually, all the Victory Models line of kits starts with a 1300. The 04 indicates specifically HMS Vanguard. I don't know of a way to identify any revisions of the kit. The only variances that I've been aware of is the current version vs. the old Model Expo version, though I imagine some other things have changed. I agree that if you purchase from a major supplier, like Ages of Sail or Cornwall, I'm pretty sure they go through enough of these that they will have the "current" version, good or bad.
  3. I'm sorry that I don't have any photos of the pieces I cut for the stern trim. I had cut, test fit, trimmed, test fit, and glued them into place, and they seemed to look just fine. So, I started to mask the bottom of the hull for the lower hull's paint job. I've seen slight variations on the paint scheme, but if you look at paintings, wood block prints, drawings, the replica ships, they're all pretty similar. I don't know why it was done this way. I masked off using Tamiya yellow masking tape, and the paint is Liquitex, an artist's acrylic. You'll notice in the last two photos an angled deck near the bow. You're looking at its underside, making it look dark. This, and the vertical supports were added, but I didn't post any info about it. This brought me up to Step 28 in the build. I was very happy to get to this stage in the build. The bottom paint give the model a more interesting, complete, look. Plus, it covers up all those errors in the hull.
  4. I tried to build the Estes Saturn V kit, but it was too much for me. The best I did was the Orbital Transport. First launch went amazingly well. Booster came back down by parachute and the orbiter flew circles around it on the way down. Worst was a windy day and the launch of the "Interceptor" fictional Air Force craft with wingtip rocket pods. Flew straight up and a gust caught it about 1/3 way up and it made a right-angle turn. Had to go chase it down, but it was a fun flight.
  5. Growing up next to Vandenberg AFB in the 60s, I remember weekly missile launches. It was the norm in the town of Lompoc, where you'd be inside, hear a rumble, the windows would start to rattle, you rush outside along with every family in the neighborhood standing out on their lawns, and watch the rising streak of smoke. You'd watch and look closely so you could see the puff of smoke from the staging. After a while, all you could see was the speck of light from the upper stage engine fading into the distance, and people all wandered back into their homes. They were all unmanned flights – a lot of them, test flights. They were very inspiring to a kid at a time when the space program was in full swing!
  6. Thanks Druxey. Fortunately, with what you might call a facetted chine hull, one with many flat sides and angles, these gaps aren't as pronounced as they would be on a smooth planked one. I had a similar problem on the Higaki kaisen model, but only in one place. I mentioned the issues I had to Woody Joe and that an additional bulkhead at the bow might have helped. Initially, I though the Higaki kaisen had a better designed internal frame that make for better fitting plank pieces. But, I looked back at my old photos and see that it was about the same. I don't know why I had more trouble this time. In any case, I looked at my photos of the Hakusan Maru again, the ship I took photos of on Sado island, and noted some of the details that appear on that ship that don't appear on this model. Now, these ships had some variations to them, so certain modifications are just another option. But one seems to be certain on just about every replica and model I could find. That is the heavy plank at the edge of the rudder well opening. I marked up a photo to show this plank and other features. This photo also gives you a better sense of scale as it has some people walking around. The red arrows point out this heavy plank. If you look at the last photo of my model, the end you're looking at is the edge of the hull pieces. So, I'm going to see if I can add these pieces, though it might require a little trimming of the rudder well opening in order for the pieces to fit correctly. In any case, I also labeled in green a strip along the chine of the hull. This strip runs all the way to the bow. On some ships, it appears to run all the way back to the stern where the blue arrow is shown. On this ship, it actually stops at that last green arrow and there is a kind of fashion piece there. I'm going to take the simple route and run the strip all the way back. Finally, I thought I'd point out another feature that doesn't show up in these kits: There are tenons sticking through the planks where I've marked with yellow arrows. These have wooden keys that lock them into place, which you can see in the photos. I'm going to try to simulate the tenons – easy enough since I just have to glue wooden squares into place. I don't know that I'll be able to simulate the keys due to the small size. First Modifications Okay, I already did the easiest modification, and that was to add that strip along the edge of the chine of the hull. A very simple process of measure, cut, bend, trim, and glue. The application of the strip wasn't perfect, particularly on the port side. Also lining up right on the edge means that I need to file the edge in a couple spots where I didn't get it quite exact. Minor issues. Note the pencil marks along the edge of that bottom piece, aft. I've been testing out shapes for that edge plank and found that to get them to fit properly, I'd have to trim away that area. Next step is to make the pieces, trim away that section of the hull and glue them into place.
  7. Finishing the hull planking As you saw from earlier pics, I had already started adding the last of the hull pieces, a.k.a. "planking". I finished up everything through Step 26 in the instructions. Construction was certainly not "trouble-free". The main issue I had was that I ended up with small gaps between many of the hull pieces. My biggest concern was that light might show through these gaps. Otherwise, most of these were not very noticeable. The biggest exception was the interface between the main hull pieces and the stern assembly. As you can see in the photo below, there was quite a considerable gap (inside the red circle). I don't know why the gap, but it must be that I left the hull somewhat wide close to the stem. I believe this comes from there not being a bulkhead close to the bow to set the proper curvature to the hull there. The piece is a simple one and I was able to find sufficient scrap wood among the laser-cut wood sheets in the kit to fashion replacement pieces. As for the other gaps in the hull planks, I ended up using scraps of wood to "light seal" all the small gaps. There were a lot, and you can see all the wood strips I glued into place to hide them. I felt that, in the end, blocking these gaps with wood would look better than sealing them with wood filler. Some of the gaps will also be hidden when I apply a paint scheme which covers the lower hull. At this stage, with the hull planks all in place, I'm starting to consider some modifications to the kit to make it look more like a real kitamaebune. I'll point out those as I progress further in the build. I have to say that I was a bit disappointed and frustrated with some of the problems I had with the fit of the hull parts. Others building this kit may or may not run into similar issues. But, I have to say that after getting it all together and cover the gaps from behind, I'm pretty happy with the project over all. The Kitamaebune kit has more frustrations than I remember when building Woody Joe's Higaki kaisen kit, but it really does go together more quickly.
  8. Sometimes it seems like the old companies don't really appreciate their own early work. So, maybe it's just as well they are gone and replaced by a company that understands the importance of these old models. At least we're lucky enough to be able see them again and maybe build them.
  9. I've admired this model kit since I was a boy. A friend of mine had built it and I loved that it had the whole launch pad complete with the erector truck. May not live up to modern kits with their photo etched brass, but the kit's still a classic. Congratulations on your find!
  10. Something I neglected to mention in my last post is that each dai, the railing that runs along the tops of the beam ends, is actually made up of four pieces. So, there are pieces glued to each end, and a 2mm x 2mm strip along the bottom of the back side. That strip glued along the back will make it impossible to bend the assembly to the proper curve, so you really need to pre-bend the wooden pieces first, then glue them together. If the 2mm x 2mm strip is cut to length first, it will have to be shortened slightly to fit. The dai rests on the forward most beam, on which Woody Joe has scribed an line to help align the dai properly. I've circled the spot in red in the image below. So, it's important to look for that line. It also means that it's important to glue that piece in "right side up" in the earlier step. Another note about that forward beam. The beam is stepped, or notched, and the step is perfectly vertical and helps give the hull planking the proper curve. Now, the thing is, where the step hits the hull plank, the hull plank, which is angled, doesn’t fit the perfectly vertical notch nicely. The ship modeler in me wants to adjust that step, so that it fits flat against the hull, but this would be wrong. With these Woody Joe kits, if it needs to be filed or sanded, they’ll let you know, and the fit is as the designers intended. So, some ship modeler tendencies need to be suppressed with laser-cut models. However, there is some filing or sanding that does need to be done, as the ends of the beams need to be flush with the curvature of the dai. The last part of this construction step is to mount two vertical posts on top of the dai. These support the aft ends of the bulwarks “fences”. Because alignment is particularly important with laser-cut kits, I took the bulwarks fence piece that is installed in some later step and use it as a guide to help me make sure I glued the posts in at the correct angle.
  11. Thank you, Druxey. In fact, the painting in the first post shows three ships with the same markings. This painting was, I believe, an ema, or votive painting commissioned by the ships' owner. By the way, I was wrong about these ownership markings being black. I saw a couple photos recently showing a ship with orange or red markings, and another photo showing a ship with one marking in black and another in orange or red. But, that's the first time I'd seen a color other than black. I don't know if I'll be adding any marking on mine, as I will likely ruin the pre-printed sail, which looks very good.
  12. Getting back to the build, steps 19 through 22 involve the addition of some hull planks, a plank called a noke-dana, and a piece referred to in the instructions as a dai, which is the base for the bulwarks “fences” for lack of a better term. In the photos below, the red arrows point to the noke-dana, while the blue arrows point to the dai. I don’t really understand the meaning of the term noke-dana, except that danaor tanais the term for a plank. This piece is a heavy plank that is pierced for the main beams, locking them into place. In the kit, this piece is, of course, laser cut, but is actually made in two parts connected with a scarf joint. The tricky part is that it has to be gently bent, so, again with the dampening and bending it over a large round surface. I did this after the two sections were glued together using Titebond II, which is water resistant, making sure to dampen the wooden piece, but not at the joint. Once this piece is glued into place, the beams are cut and put into place. These are among the few structural pieces that have to be cut to size from provided wood stock. These beams protrude through the holes in the noke-dana – I’m sure that on the real ship they lock into that piece in some very clever Japanese way. The dai is mounted onto ends of these beams.
  13. Imai is Woody Joe's predecessor. They generally made kits in larger scales and sizes than Woody Joe does now (except for the Shin Nippon Maru kit, which is slightly longer than this Susquehanna kit). I wish there were still this and the 1/50-scale Kanrin Maru kits available. Woody Joe makes great kits, but nothing is more impressive to display than a large scale ship model!
  14. It occurred to me that there are a couple other scans of a similar type of ship in Souvenirs de Marine. These scans show what I believe to be an earlier version of the ship. The other scans were from a ship recorded in 1888, which is actually during the Meiji Restoration, while this one was recorded in 1868. I've begun to notice the difference in rudder shape, and the change in the decorative work on the end of the stem. I THINK this style probably dates to the early 1800s and possibly earlier. Ships of this type didn't change much during the Edo period, which began in 1603, but the demand for coastal transports really took off with the growth of Edo. This set of drawings is very nice in that it shows what is usually called a Tenmasen, the small lighter or ship's boat. Here are two more scans that I forgot about. Not super quality as there was an issue copying them from the original book. These depict another Kitamaebune, this time showing the temporary structure and fences erected to protect cargo on the deck, which was often piled high. This last one, also recorded in 1868, shows a much straighter stem. Interesting to me is that the run of the planking on the main cabin is longitudinal, rather than lateral. By the way, the markings on the sail, in this case the vertical rectangles at the top, indicate the owner of the ship. Rectangles in different patterns seem to have been the most common. But, I've seen other shapes too, mostly circles or balls in some combination. Clare
  15. Beautiful model, but it's certainly not 1/16 inch to the foot as stated in the album description. The completed model would then be 1/192 scale and only about 6-1/2" long.

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