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  1. Just got my USS Constitution. Built a Long Boat but this will be my first major ship build trying to work out as I am not a carpenter how to build the building slip will show you pictures once I get started
  2. Well with winter round the corner, it's time to hunker down and get back into the shipyard with Cutty Sark. This is a model I have always wanted to build since starting out in this hobby with Billing's Mary Ann. Thanks to Kip (aka Sawdust), I was able to acquire this second hand model which he purchased from a neighbor for 2 bottles of wine. He also sold me Nepean's book and Campbell's drawings so I have lots of info over and above what Billing supplies which isn't much. Thanks to Lou's lead, I have also purchased J.J. van Griethuysen,s drawings which are spectacular. As you can see from the photos, this is an early Billing kit , from the 70's I would guess. Einar Billing includes a little intro with the Reader's Digest version of instructions they are known for. In them he states that the kit is intended to be built and not merely assembled. He expects the builder to exercise skill and imagination in the building of the kit. Sage advise indeed. As with all earlier Billing kits, the hull and fittings are sold separately. Billing believed some modellers might want to create their own fittings. They also recognized that many models are never completed so why buy a bunch of fittings that might never make it onto the model which will never be used. The majority of the wood in this kit is mahogany, which you can imagine is now rather dried out and a little warped. I have decided to replace the hull planking with obechi which I have used on previous Billing kits. It's not expensive, bends easily with a little steam and will be painted, so no need for top quality timber. As the build progresses, I will decide what other wood needs replacing. As can be seen from the photos, the kit is already started. The original owner of the kit did get it stared but then realized he no longer wanted to continue. So I have the kit framed and with the false deck installed. The rest will be all me. He has done a first rate job, and the keel is straight so it is a good point to resume where he left off. Job one will be to bevel the bulkheads. So here's a couple of pictures of what is to come...
  3. There are scant details on MSW of builds of this iconic Billing Boat kit, and periodically questions arise, often concerning inherited or partially built models requiring completion or restoration in the absence of plans or instructions, which in the case of Billing Boats were somewhat thin. So, in the spirit of giving some images that may help, I post here my Norske Løve story. I must have posted it somewhere before but can’t for the life of me remember where or when, but I do have my original log and photos. A cautionary note, this is a model I made over forty years ago, so the standard of fittings, and the ravages of dust have taken its toll on the condition. If I knew then what I know now I could certainly have made a better job of her but she remains a model for which I still have great affection, and I have resisted the temptation to upgrade her. Those not familiar with the finer points of our art tend to be seriously impressed by the sight of her. ( Norske) Løve Story More years ago, than I care to remember, before my office was a den of computer stuff, and before the digital age, I had a yen to build a large scale wooden 18th century warship. In those days it was either Billing Boats or Billing Boats, and as I browsed through their catalogue my eyes alighted on Norske Løve. It was the image of the modeller putting the final touches to the model that grabbed my attention, I wanted to be that guy. BB Cat cover Yes, I still have that original catalogue, in those days I actually went to a model shop, can you believe it! Pity I didn’t have the internet resource back then, but I did have the Longridge book and perhaps more importantly the Masting and rigging book by James Lees. Given that the Norske Løve was launched in 1765 it immediately struck me that the round tops provided in the kit, were oddly out of period, more 17th century than 18th The masts and tops were therefore scratch built to proportions given in the Lees book for ships of the correct period. The other main area that gave me concern was the head. In common with many wooden kit models this is a weak area with a less than realistic rails set up. Catalogue shot of the bows These were therefore also scratch built. I made other ‘modifications’ not necessarily in accordance with the plans, such as a skylight on the Poop and removeable skids to house boats which were not provided with the kit. Billing at the time (and probably still are) were in the habit of providing some plastic fittings for their kits such as blocks and Deadeyes, decorations etc. I seem to recall that the fittings kit was a separate purchase to the main build kit. This is Billings catalogue shot of the completed model. The build took me a couple of years, and my office resembled more of a joiners shop than an office. Drill stand and vice screwed to the desk top, wood turning model lathe and dremel permanently plugged in where now the printer and computer stuff reside. Everything was covered in a fine film of dust, but boy how I enjoyed that build. When completed the model sat in a lighted cabinet that filled one wall of the office and that’s how it stayed for some years. With the arrival of computers and the need to use my office for its proper purpose, everything was changed. Away went the cabinet and all the modelling stuff. 1153 Norske Løve then proudly sat uncovered on a long chest of drawers, where it resides to this day. Strangely things have come full circle and in retirement my office once again resembles more of a workshop, but I don’t think the resident equipment would appreciate a return to the heavy sawdust days. So here is the photo collection of my interpretation of Norske Løve, 1120 1127 1134 1138 1139 The head rails were scratch built using yellow pine, but there were several breakages before I got a satisfactory set. The Lower and Middle rails are mortised thro’ the head timbers, and the Main rail rebated into the head timbers. 04 02 I recall the exercise being long, slow, and frustrating. 1151 I particularly like the stern and Quarter galleries with their glazed lights, one of my pet dislikes with wooden kits are false windows or even worse stuck on windows, such as with the Mantua Le Superbe that lies forlornly in the loft. This is one area where Billing have done a good job, there was very little tweaking to this area of the build. 1140 1170 The modified tops, scratch built to proportions given by James Lees. The plastic rigging blocks supplied by Billings were replaced by boxwood versions. 004(2) 1133 1152 The main difficulty with single planked hulls such as this is that there is little scope for cocking it up if you don’t want to hide it with paint. I also have an aversion to stub guns so the lower ports are closed. 008(2) 010 The Poop was modified by the addition of a skylight, and the Ensign hand painted on cotton. The simplicity of the Danish flag lends itself to this method. 007(2) I think the anchors were aftermarket purchases. The Boats 002 005 Boats were not supplied so I had to create my own. 1132 1173 The deck fittings are mostly removeable to assist cleaning which is evidently overdue when this photo was taken. 1145 Dust build up is clearly apparent here. 1135 I really prefer models out of cases, they have so much more impact, and 1:75 scale allows for reasonable cleaning access which in this case takes about three hours every few months or so. I hope those who cross paths with this kit get some benefit from this vintage build. Regards, B.E. 22/03/21
  4. For my second model ship project I will build Billing Boats "Will Everard". It is the first kit I bought. But due to delayed shipment I bought another kit (Swampscott Dory by BlueJacket) from a local hobby store and built it instead as my first build. I originally selected this kit since I thought it "looked nice" and wanted to try model ship building as a hobby. I have since read a lot more about the hobby, the kit in question and about the ship itself. I still feel that it will be a fun kit to build, but now based on a bit of more understanding and knowledge. The kit is labeled as a beginners kit on Billing Boats website, but on the box it says "The Advanced Beginner". I think that should be about my level of experience 🙂 The content of the kit looks OK. There are laser cut plywood parts, strip wood for planking of the hull and of the deck and a building board in MDF. Fittings are a mix of plastic and metal parts. I have read in several places that Billing Boats instructions are lacking a lot of detail. After having read them I can confirm this. Even simple things, like that the numbering of the parts list is the intended order in which the parts should be assembled is not mentioned. I figured this out after studying the drawings for some time. Fortunately there are two good build logs for this kit here on MSW by Izzy Madd and by Micklen32 they should help me along. The hull of this kit is built in two halves, which are later glued together. It should (in theory at least) make it easier to do the planking. We will see... After reading the build logs mentioned I have noticed that Billing have made modifications to kit over the years (this is a rather old kit). In particular regarding how the bulkheads are mounted. The form it takes in my kit looks to be slightly easier than seen in Izzy Madds or Micklen32s builds.
  5. I built this R/C steam launch in eighties. As you may see in the photos I changed the design a bit to make room for the electronics. The engine provided in the kit, a single oscillating cylinder, was not capable of moving the boat so I cheated a bit by installing an electric motor and covered it with the structure that you can see in the photos that provided a good spot for the steering wheel. The captain is one my tokens from the time I purchased my first real boat. The first photo shows the kit's version with the seating arrangement and the canvas sun cover.
  6. A new day, a new year, therefore the perfect time to start a new model. Quite a bit bigger than I've done before Sorry for the quality of the picture, had to use my phone.
  7. I am in the process of picking up where I left off 45+ years ago. I am new to this forum and ship building in general. My wife got me a Christmas gift early in our marriage. Assembled the hull w planking and the moves and career put everything on hold. So far I’m planning by reviewing info I can find online, creating a workplace, deciding what tools, I need and my next step. I’m trying to find out about what fittings I need and where to get them as none were included in kit back then. And that scale (1:75) is no longer made by Billings. I’ve worked through some builds on this forum and will continue till I feel ready. Any advice greatly appreciated. Gary D
  8. I am presently starting a second log. I am not even 2 years into this hobby, plugging away at a Caldercraft kit, the HM Granado, and have now started a new (old) build. My neighbour purchased this kit 25 years ago in 1989 and completed it to the stage shown in the pictures below. Unfortunately, that is where it has sat for 24.5 years and fortunate for me though is that he has passed the kit on to me. I was very surprised at the quality of his work, certainly better that what I would have done on my first effort and maybe even on a second effort for me, specifically with respect to the planking. The kit though has some definite misgivings. 1) There is no instructions at all - not sure if they were present originally and subsequently lost but for me I have had to do a lot of research both on MSW and with a co-worker of my wife's who to my surprise has built 3 Bluenose and Bluenose II kits and lucky for me, was able to provide me with his instruction manuals and plans to refer to. 2) The quality of the kit components is certainly not up to par with the Caldercraft kit - for example plastic deadeyes and blocks which I will surely replace with wooden items. 3) Some missing parts but certainly easy to scratch build - for example the rudder and the cradle. 4) There are some minor mistakes and deviations from the plans made by my neighbour, but easy to fix. There are some positive items to the present build and kit though. 1) The hull is single planked but my neighbour has done a very good job (in my estimation). The nail holes are nicely countersunk and with a fine layer of wood filler, the hull is ready for primer and paint. 2) The deck planking needs a simple fine sand and is basically ready for a protective varnish. 3) The fixes that are required are easy to do - for example at the transom. Also I feel that I should first put some fake stanchions to make it more to the proper and original form. I should also cut some scuppers into the hull which I find more appealing to the model. And I will also have to create a waterway which I presume will have to be masked off and simply spray painted, first with primer and then a paint, given the current state of the model and difficulty getting a brush into the bulwarks and stanchions. There is a current build on MSW of this same original kit, presently not on the market, at this scale anyways, done by 7Provinces. Hopefully we will be able to collaborate a bit and I think the model will turn out quite well. Not sure on how fast my progress will be as I currently have another build on the go.
  9. Good Evening, I am writing this build log to chronicle my second ship build from Billings Boats, and altogether. I received the ship model as an early birthday gift, and could not wait to get started.
  10. Hi everyone. Just started the Norske Love from Billing Boats. Have the keel and frames put together. Stay tuned for upcoming progress. I have built the Bounty from Billing Boats so know the kits pretty well.I am renaming the ship the REDEMPTION. A dark fictional version that will have real custom made bronze figurehead and stern decorations. I work in a bronze foundry and sculpt my own pieces.
  11. For my latest build I have chosen the Billing Warrior 1860, the first British ironclad battleship, which was powered by both steam and sail since those good folks at the Admiralty didn't quite yet trust something that belched smoke. I would have liked to make this a scratch build, but I couldn't find a set of decent plans and the two research books I've purchased don't go to that level of detail on the hull. So, another Billing kit with, as it turns out very poorly done laser cutting - half way through on a good day. Never mind, there are some decent drawings and the usual sparse instructions. She is a monster though and dwarfs the Victory at 1.47 m. Still, at least the hull wasn't copper plated. The box The contents The research books Spot the laser cut Dry fit of keel
  12. Hello shipmates Yesterday my new kit arrived, it is a Billings Kit. I will post some photos soon. Jo.
  13. Hi Everyone, I am beginning a build of Billing Boats "701 FD10 Yawl" Arnanes. It is the second model I've worked on, and the first was a very simple model. I may be asking for advice, so thanks in advance for that. Upon opening the kit, it became clear that the construction will be plank on bulkhead and that the hull will be built in two halves (starboard and port halves), which will then be glued together to form a complete hull. It appears to be a good model for me to be building at this point, as it will be challenging, but not discouraging for a new builder. There are essentially no instructions, but there are good labelled drawings showing where the pieces go. Related to the description of the model, I would call it a Ketch, based on the size and location of the masts: the mizzenmast is stepped forward of the rudder post and the mizzen looks larger to me than what I would expect on a yawl. Still, the mizzen boom does overhang the stern, so you could make a point that it's a yawl. Either way, I like it and am looking forward to the build! -Jason Photo's below: 1 and 2: Kit, as-received 3. Starboard hull-half, with bulkheads glued in place and carved/beveled in preparation for planking.
  14. After a long pause (almost 30 years) the first picture of the Danmark building process. I have finished the planking of the main deck. There is a difference in colour, because the new wood has been in the box and the wood that had been glued to the deck has been exposed to light. I hope that after sanding the deck with fine sandpaper (400) this wil disappear. Furthermore the deck has to be varnished in wood colour. That leads me to some questions. - what colour should I use for the deck ( I.e. oak or Mahoney etc.), and shoul I use varnish from the DIY store, or is there special modelling varnish? - on the boards I have glued some planks that are thicker than the deck planks. I am planning to sans them an varnish them, however on pictures of the ship I saw that this is metal. I am not sure if this is done later (as the ship was launched in 1932). Or would this be a builders decision? Any advice on this is welcome! As final remark, this. Is my first wooden Billing Boats kit. Time will tell whether I should have started with a simpler kit 😀. Best regards, Ben
  15. Hi everyone, This is my first try at building a wooden ship from a kit. I have been slowly working on it since the first of the year. I have been looking at the build logs of Von Kossa and Jack Panzeca. They have done such a nice job and I can only hope to come close to their work.
  16. After getting some great information on my first thread I ordered the Norden and some tools, and today it arrived. Everything was present in the box so I got started I think it's a good first kit and will help me get to grips with the main aspects of building model ships, and there's not too much rigging or sail work, which is the most daunting part for me! Plus I love working boats. Although I think I'll be going for a Model Shipways kit for my next build whenever that may be, the Billings instructions are rather vague. So far I've relied more on two good build logs. So far (the first 2 hours or so) I have added the bulkheads to the first half of the hull and glued the two wood pieces at the bow and stern, I am just waiting for that glue to dry before adding the deck and starting the other half of the hull. I'm already enjoying this new hobby! If anyone has any other tips or notices anything I have done wrong or should do differently, let me know
  17. Ok , here we are, as will be noted from my introduction post this is a very old model that has been resurrected so the model was started long before digital cameras, home computers and the internet came to being. Therefor this log will only comprise of the rigging, nets and finish. This is the first wooden ship model I have attempted so there will be mistakes. The hull and deckhouse were already built, although not joined, and since restarting it the lower hull has been painted, the masts built up most deck fittings positioned and presently I am doing the standing rigging ( how do you guys/gals keep your temper and not “launch” the damned thing out the window ?) Yes I am finding this challenging but being a stubborn SOB I will not give in ! I am finding doing the whipping round the rope ends of the standing lines tricky and will need to have a look for some tips as I’m not convinced there isn’t a neater easier way. Here are a couple of pics so far. Cheers Paul
  18. Started my new build, the Mayflower by Billing Boats. I will try to follow a better format with this build log. Below are the first photos of my build. In the bottom, photo, are items #2 and #3 bulkheads or a frames? They appear to be frames while #1 is a bulkhead. Am I missing something???
  19. Back in February, Luekutus started a build log for the Billings Calypso which jogged me into finishing a project that I started probably 10 years ago. I really appreciate that he has planked his, it looks great and I’m looking forward to seeing more! My goal was to build a nice model for the mantel that was a good scale and not a warship. While I’ve done some basic research, my model is not 100% accurate and I’ve taken some artistic license in some areas. The Billings kit is crude by today’s standards but can be spiced up with a bit of detailing and is the best available today in a large scale. The helicopter supplied is AWFUL! I’ve given up on trying to make it look nice and am looking for an after market substitute in 1:48 that’s close. I added some 1:48 welding gas cylinders that look fine and the rope I’ve used is the truly nice stuff from Syren. Most of the trim is Evergreen and a lot of the wood is from my spares stash. Enjoy, Don
  20. I am very happy to have found MSW and to get the energy and inspiration to build this ship. Thanks to fmodajr and md1400cs. The WASA ship section below (unknown fabricator - prob. Billing boats) - was built in the early 90s and I mostly remember the tedious work cutting all pieces by hand (not laser cut) from wood panels. It took two years to build the main part and then another 4-5 years until the rigging was finished. Most of the time the build was put away waiting for me building up confidence to finish the model. This time I had the opportunity to have a dedicated work space, were the model could rest when no work was being done, and laser cut pieces. I though replaced the keel with a solid wood bit due to poor quality plywood. I had read that the foundation was a key to get the hull planking go easy. I tried to follow the instructions but later I found the book by Björn Landström "The Royal Warship VASA" from 1980 (ISBN 91-86448-12-9) and I ended up with some "creative" planking pattern compared with the images in this book. I was very close to mix two of the mid pieces before cluing them on the keel.
  21. First model ship kit build: First build log on MSW. Be still my beating heart! The Kit: Billings large model of the Oseberg Ship (1/25). This turned out to be Billings part number 720 and has plywood laser-cut shields, and laser-scored scrollwork in ply (More on the laser and ply later as the build commences) The kit was a Christmas present (2018) from my lovely Admiral, and was ordered and obtained from our local model boat shop Float-a-Boat. It took about 6 months to arrive but this was not a worry, as we both had plenty to do since we had just moved house. By the way, "Oseberg" in Australia is pronounced "Osssburg" I'm sure I could have obtained it cheaper and faster, but the end cost would be huge, as real model shops will not be there unless we use them I failed to take the ceremonial unboxing and layout on the carpet pictures. Sorry Not much in the box, as longships do a LOT with a little material. Some dowels, stripwood - all obechi as far as I can see, sail material, build instructions (which make IKEA instructions look encyclopaedic by comparison) and a double sided full size plan, which includes (some) dimensions for the build Jig Why a Longship? I love them! I went to see the Sutton Hoo museum in Suffolk, UK and was smockraffled by the model of the reconstructed boat in the entrance. It's about 1.5m long and I remember seeing it's bow from water level and realising that I want to make one of them. So since that I have been reading about the construction - actual and model. I have learned of the wide range of boats in this style of construction then and now. I can remember walking round Stavanger harbour in the 1980s and seeing small boats whose construction and fastenings are clearly cousins of the Oseberg ship Confession. I have Previous Form In the early part of this century I raced Footy Radio-control (sometimes) yachts and progressed from state-of-the-art carbon masterpieces designed by Angus Richardson (he designed the 507 Footy still sold by Melbourne's RadioSailingShop) to satisfying scale gaff-riggers such as Presto (https://www.woodenboat.com/boat-plans-kits/presto-footy) I was asked by Angus to make him a Drakkar to the Footy rules to act as his Admiral's barge on ceremonial occasions, so I made one, learned a LOT and made him the requested Drakkar called Rodolm with an Angus-designed pattern on the sail (photos follow if anyone is interested) The lower hull was carved blue foam (to the sections of the Gokstad ship) with about 3 strakes above the foam to make the hull. The keel allowed a removable polycarbonate keel with lead ballast to be inserted. Mast was exactly in the centre of everything and sail was fixed to the mast. Both rotated up to 180 degrees to allow close-hauled sailing on either tack. Now regrettably Angus had poor sight, and Rodolm had low and symmetrical prow and stern (as it had to comply with the Footy rules) and sailing her turned out to be a challenge for him. I added a staff and mylar streamer to the stern to help him with orientation and wind direction. Info: "Footy" yachts have to fit in a Box 12 inches long x 6 inches wide x 12 inches deep. (Rodolm did) I am aware of venturing into a huge forum of skilled experts with diverse knowledge. Please feel entirely free to dive in and comment, help, suggest solutions and/or request more (or less) information To come in next post: The build so far Mine is a Friday Kit Decisions about Floor levels There will be no Ply edge visible! The Giants on whose shoulders I an planning to stand andrew
  22. Hello everybody. I am kinda new here. I mean i have kept an eye on basically every ship build here. And now i thought its time for me to post my build! This isn´t my first build (first was La Couronne - because of the price tag :D), but this one i want to make as original as possible (for the real thing). As I said my goal is to make this ship as it is right now..not what it was. But will see through the process. Maybe some colors here and there- will see! And little bit of the backstory as well. Like my name says i am from Estonia. I have liked those old ships from the very beginning. Saw the first one..an boom liked it and it stay´d this way. And i remember when i was young i always wondered how the hell people build these... because my ships what i build these days was basically just arrow shaped wood blanks with sails But now when we have internet and computers i have searched here and there..i found these kits and everything. and then i stumbled upon this forum. and only thought what i had in my mind was: Dear diary- JACKPOT! i have learned so much from you guys. And now i want to put all this knowledge to work! And bit what i have done so far (almost a year of building). I really don´t like these plastic figurines..so i made them all out of wood so they look authentic! And i painted the ship dark brown... well the color dark brown was on the canister lid but the ship came out pretty black but i don´t mind! and there are some pictures of the progress so far! And now when the winter is coming and the nasty Covid-19 raising his head it time to start building again! Martin.
  23. Hi, My name is Peter, and I live in the snow country of south-east Australia (yes we do have snow in parts of Australia during winter!!!). About 12 months ago, following an inspirational cruise in the Baltic Sea and a visit to the Vasamuseet in Stockholm, I commenced building the Billing Boat's Vasa. This is the second large Billing Boat I have constructed, the first being the Cutty Sark, almost 40 years ago. This model is proudly displayed in a glass case in our home and has been a talking point and feature most of my life. Hopefully, while I now have more time, the Vasa will be the same. I have read many of the build logs regarding the Vasa by Nazgul, Marketdiens, fmodajr, md1400cs, mar3kl, Karleop and others. These builds are a mix of Corel, Sergal/Mantua, Billing and more recently the De Agostini release from Italy. Prior the DeAgostini model (by ModelSpace), a number of writers commented that they felt the Billing Boat's Vasa was the most accurate, and it was available before the DeAgostini model release, and so my choice was the Billing Boats kit. Having now progressed through this build, overall I am reasonably happy with the content of materials (although I have substituted some timbers), and scratched a number of items (eg below decks cannon mounts etc). The instructions are limited and short on detail, but the build logs have subsequently helped and filled in some of the 'gaps'. In particular, the exquisite build of Matti (Nazgul) has been wonderful, but many of the ideas of Mark (mar3kl), I have also adopted. So, to begin, the packaging and delivered product was complete with no obvious broken parts or missing items, but these would be picked up as I went along in the build. One thing that I did notice however was that hull planking used timber referred to as 'Obechi'. While this was all included, I did not like its scaled width or thickness, and so I did some maths to scale the planking of the actual ship pictures I had, and then purchased some 5 x 1 mm mahogany in precut strips. This to me, was a much better planking material, and better for the scaling appearance of the ship. A similar argument held for the deck planking and so I milled some of the mahogany to use for this as well. Different stain/treatments were also used to maintain reasonable appearance and weathering effects. Bulkhead layout was straightforward but the bulkhead extensions above deck (which were instructed to be 'thinned') were weak and fragile. Some of these broke in the process of the build, especially with the deck plywood fitting and so I trimmed these and added extensions later when the planking was built up above the deck level. The decking base needed some trimming but this was minimal and fitted satisfactorily. Before any comments are made about the Smirnoff bottles in the background, these are holding raw alcohol which I intend to use in assisting the bending of planks. This is to be an experiment, but I have read where it is more effective than water and/or steam bending. More on this later!!
  24. Here are some pics of my attempt at bashing a Billings Danmark. The model was started by another person who unfortunately will never see the finished model. (how often does that happen) It was just a painted hull when I started. I stripped and refinished, then laid the decks. It's pretty much scratch from there. Some components from the kit are being used, turnbuckles, belaying pins for example. Allan
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