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  1. I recently had to move a model in a short, 15 minutes driving distance, and creating a proper crate was not considered as an option. Not being the safest method, I'm not recommending this to anyone, but here goes my solution. I used cable ties to fix the base of the model to a large cardboard sheet. This prevented the model from being capsized, and any movement was absorbed by the space around it. I drove pretty careful, and the mission was succesfully accomplished. The ship shows some damage, but this comes from being abandoned 12 years on a shelf, not the transport operation.
  2. thank you Rick. while I built this out of the box, there are several great examples of builders supporting their build with proper research, and correct the simplifications of the kit (like the upper bow planking, correct mast top, etc). Woody Joe makes a bit more elaborate version of the same ship (link) The kit is pretty straightforward to build, the only thing I would change is the installation of the deck beams, which are added in a very early stage in the build. The protruding beam ends are very difficult to nicely plank around. I see no reason to do that, the beams could be added once the second planking finished, with the rectangular openings left open during the planking. good luck to your build.
  3. once I had the basic hull set up, started working on the guns. I planned to populate the gun deck will carriages (instead of dummies) throughout. A very fiddly job, but I was enthusiastic about it. I purchased aftermarket cannon kits (they are made of pear) and after sanding, staining assembled them. I also changed the barrels to stock Amati items, I wanted to have them uniform, and they were just the right size. A barrel is test fitted for checking height: I fully rigged the visible guns. The barrel is only a temporary fit here, they will be painted black and the breeching rope added. I used 2mm blocks for this.
  4. finally, some deck fixtures were made, following the kit instruction. I didn't know that time, but these were almost the last features built by the kit, and what follows is a long process of experimenting with all its failures and successes.
  5. Having the hull shape and the gunports ready, the second planking can start. I never had such an easy planking job like this. The hull shape is very friendly. In addition, the strips are so thin, like paper, it's really about just gluing them side by side. There is large grain, the reddish color makes it typical kit look - but at least easy to work with.
  6. and here are some recessed ports, with future lids. Inspired by the painted models, I used the second planking material to show a light stripe over the gunports, and planked dark above and below. This is the final cover - it's a pity, there is so much visible grain. the wales are also built up using first planking strip. At the end the wales come out smooth but I recall an endless loop of filling/ sanding/ painting to reach the final stage.
  7. the bottom of the ports are cut, and filler pieces inserted to the upper edges. finally the gunports can be framed. the example below is a port without lid. I had some spare strips for this, but soon I had to order more material. The wales are buing built up. The upper wale strip (first planking) was installed originally as temporary one for the gunport positioning, but it is the right size and the bending qualities were better than the thick walnut (?) one, and choose to use it for the wales.
  8. finally both bulwarks installed and the gundeck planked. The red color is an ordinary water based €1 wood stain from the hardware store, but worked very well for this model. I wish I still had a jar of it, unfortunately now out of production. further investigation revealed the first mistake (many more will follow...). The kit originally designed with dummy gun barrels on the gundeck (except for the middle four), and their height under the closed areas are relatively unimportant. Not so with my planned carriages - now all of the ports are too high. The white paper templates mark the correct height from upper edge of the wale, the thin planks are the correct lower and upper edges. Let's correct all the 28 of them.
  9. the first bulwark piece in place. again, the fit of the precut part was very good. it will be covered with first planking later. besides not using the metal gunports, I also decided, I will build the gundeck with actual guns. I planked the whole gundeck, even it will not be visible. the deck planking material was pretty poor, unevenly cut and very brittle. A good scraping helped a bit.
  10. the kit provided cast metal gunports, which I decided against in favor of wooden lining. for this reason, I had to enlarge the gunport openings. and here is my sophisticated bending device, I still use different sizes of glasses and pots for bending. the soaked template stays on the former overnight.
  11. the basic hull takes shape quickly. the fit of the precut parts was perfect. the hull shape is not difficult either, so no issues with the first planking. the frames are made of a very light and soft plywood, having a balsa core - parts can be chipped off by fingernails. the first planking is 2 mm, rather rough basswood, but bends easily and provides a lot of room for future sanding. a precut prow piece will be added later, a vertical strip acts as a placeholder during planking. the bulwarks will be built up by a gunport strip, so the planking doesn't take too long.df
  12. after finishing my small Coca model recently, I decided to move on with my Occre Diana, I started 10 years ago. This was the period where I discovered forums, ship modeling books, I purchased the recently released Vanguard kit (still unstarted) and prepared myself to build a better quality model than my previous efforts, which may exceed kit offerings. I shortly learnt, the Occre kit provides ample room for customizing. This is not an expensive kit by any means, and we got what we expect - a well designed hull shape, average (or less) quality materials and loads of generic fittings. I started the build out of the box, but changed concept already in the early stages. My usual sequence was to build a step by the kit, then deconstruct what I have done and replace to an improved version. Then go to the next stage and repeat. But how an improved feature should be made? I found it pretty difficult to answer - the provided plans are more assembly instructions, and I had no specifics about the actual ship (well, proper research was not in my plans anyway), so I used the resources I had. I drew a lot of inspiration from the design of the Vanguard kit, the Anatomy of Ship Diana book (which is a different, British ship) and pictures from the forums I liked. The result therefore not a specific ship, but (in the best case..) a generic frigate. Anyway, I try to resurrect this project and finish it to a reasonable standard. The plan is to add the missing parts to the hull, make the masts and rig the ship. In the 10 years passed, I saw a lot of wonderful models built here, and I have questions, wheter a feature I liked by the time is acceptable for now. There are several parts to change, but still not decided if I want to contuine the build/destroy loop. If I want to finish this in a reasonable time, some compromises most probably had to be made. This is the actual status, on my working desk - the first task is to dust it off. I will post the sequence, how I got this far.
  13. ...and the ultimate question at last, what to build next.? I have a couple of options.. An unstarted Vanguard kit, from the first production batch. While it's the ultimate project, and finally I have the space to build it, still not sure to take a 5+ years commitment. Probably I could build the Coca over the same time needed to frame the gunports on the 74. Other option is to finish my half built Occre Diana, which is so heavily modified, I can not call it Diana any more. I have the hull almost ready, however have some details which now I don't like and needs change. Then to mast and rig the ship, a year long project to say. Or start another quick build.. there are some nice little kits out there..

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