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  1. Table of Contents Welcome to my build log for documenting the making of HM Cutter Alert by Vanguard Models. In order to keep this organized I have reserved this first post for a table of contents in order to allow future readers to jump ahead to sections they are interested in if so desired. Log #1: And So It Begins Log #2: Assembling the Frame Log #3: Designing the Deck Log #4: Final Assembly and Faring Log #5: Planking and then Re-Planking Log #6: Lining Off the Hull Log #7: Fixing More Errors Log #8: The Stern Bulkhead and Counter Log #9: Lining Up the Wales Log #10: Concerning Drop Planks Log #11: Adjusting the Second Band Log #12: The Garboard Strake Other Alert build logs I have found useful (not an exhaustive list): Blue Ensign (Finished) - A must read for anyone wanting to add some extra details to their kit glennard2523 (Finished) VTHokiEE (Finished) PhillH (Ongoing)
  2. I finally succumbed and started work on my Christmas present, the second version of the HM Alert 1777 by Vanguard Models. I also picked up my first foray into the Anatomy of the Ship series, The Naval Cutter Alert 1777 by Peter Goodwin. I'm not certain how much I will stray from the kit (certainly not as much as Blue Ensign) but I think that it will be a useful guide and will hopefully help resolve any questions that I have as they arise. I think I might need a bigger workbench to fit that beautiful manual on. I started by removing the false keel and the bulkheads and here you can notice one of the differences between the initial release and this second edition. The false keel and the rudder post are not keyed together anymore. This allows the rudder post to be added after (at least, I don't have the errata sheet in front of me) the initial planking. After a dry fit (bulkhead 10 is installed incorrectly here 😬), I added a bearding line to help with sanding down the false keel. Working on the half hull planking kit from the NRG helped me understand exactly what I was doing in this step. After sanding down the keep I sanded down the last bulkhead to get the proper angle. Dry fitted the false deck (I hope I'm not messing up my terminology) and gently rested the ship in my new building slip (and wow is this building slip overkill for this model). There are a few questions that I have to ponder since the manual still reflects the initial release instead of the second version (with the keyless rudder post) so I have to consider when to install bulkhead 10. I'll probably finish up my half hull before continuing too far on the Alert, but I had the day off and the half hull was in a different location so I couldn't resist starting.
  3. I have just ordered the HM Alert (V2) from Vanguard Models and I am looking forward to receiving the kit next week (UPS delivery scheduled for Tuesday 6th April). I am currently rigging the Duchess of Kingston (Vanguard Models) which should be completed in a few weeks time. I choose the Alert for my next build as I think it will fit the gap between the completion of the DOK build and the release of the Sphinx kit from Vanguard Models release in few months time.
  4. Hi everybody. My name is Goemon. I am new to this site, and, as you can see, new to the process of posting build logs. I bought the "Alert" because I was attracted by the word "premium version" which is limited to the first time. Production started in April.First of all, I will introduce the production record for 2 months divided into several times. Since this first edition frame has a loose fit, I removed False Keel in an inverted state, applied adhesive to 3 Bulkheads, inserted False Keel, and repeated the adhesion every 3 sheets. Keel was limewood, so I remade it with Pear Wood. The bulkhead is a 3 mm thick MDF with a filler of falcata material inserted. I glued the main deck and stern. Although it is the first edition, Stern's MDF has been added. The first plank was glued from a position where it could be fixed with a pushpin 4mm lower than the designated position. The second planking is done with clinker, so I practiced from the bottom of the hull for the third and subsequent exercises. I am not an English-speaking person, so please refrain from reading strange English. Even if I study for 10 years, I don't use it everyday
  5. This will be my first wooden ship, so I plan to follow the excellent instruction book provided by Vanguard Models and draw heavily on the build logs from Blue Ensign and VTHokiEE. To start things off I felt a picture of what is in the box was appropriate. As this is my first kit I cannot comment on the quality of wood and parts as I have nothing to reference them against, but everything is well packed in sealed plastic bags marked up with numbers for easy reference. For a detailed review of the parts I would refer you to the excellent kit review by James H The instructions indicate that you should mark up the parts with their reference numbers before removal from the host sheet, so I did that for the bulkheads and keel then did a quick dry run to gauge the fit. The Bulkheads fit very snugly onto the false keel so combined with the lower deck should ensure a nice square build. I dug out my French curves and drew the bearding line onto the false keel. It is recommended to sand this area down to 1.5mm thick to allow for the thickness of the planking. In this version of the kit the sternpost is added after the planking allowing it to sit flush against the planking once it has been sanded down. I took a tip from Blue Ensigns log and used some paper strip on the false keel to gauge the depth to which the keel should be sanded back to. Then realising I was going to need a way of supporting the model I put together a temporary building board to support things during the early stages of the build. Next, I chamfered bulkhead 10 to the correct angle to match the top of the false keel. The bulkheads were then slid into place and the lower deck slotted over them before adding glue to secure everything. Next the bow patterns were chamfered and glued in place followed by the securing patterns 12 and 14. I have deliberately left bulkhead 10 and the transom frames off for now as others have had breakages with these. As the structure is now very sturdy, I am considering starting the fairing of the bulkheads and then adding the deck and transom frames before completing the fairing at the stern.
  6. I have built the Amati Revenge and Fly from the Victory Models series, and both were terrific builds with outstanding kit quality. These were designed by Chris Watton, so when I saw that he had formed his own modeling company, Vanguard Models, I really wanted to try one to see how the kit quality and ship appearance compared. Opening the box, the kit quality looks outstanding. Everything neatly packed and shrink-wrapped, and the wood looks great. The manual is also something to behold: large lie-flat with heavy pages and lots of 4-color pictures and drawings. I'm looking forward to starting this one and will post a log as I go. Regards, David
  7. I have been following the excellent work of friends on this site for a long time. There are really great works, so I learned a lot of new things. I wanted to share one of my work with you. Our model has been revised at 1:48 scale of the plan of the V model. note: what is written here has been translated by google.
  8. Hello all. In 2019, I bought the damaged and unfinished Alert hull via Allegro on the Internet. Cutter very nicely made sewn in difficult technique until he begged to finish it. Since May 2020, I have been trying to renovate and finish the construction of the Cuter Alert from 1777 based on the plans from the book Anatomy of the Ship by Peter Goodwin. Greetings, Piotrek PS. Sorry for the English but I use Google translator.
  9. Hi All. There have already been some great build logs of this, which have really helped. It's my first time attempting something of this nature (I have done other sorts of model making but my only boat was an Amati Viking boat which had a single plank layer made from floppy bits of plywood). The kit really is a thing of beauty, it's like model ship kit making arrives in the 21st Century. The precision with which the parts fit, the self jigging, the immensely helpful manual. It's been an absolute joy so far. It's a shame therefore that I'm going to massacre it. Oh, OK, I'm not. My planned alterations will be only superficial and reflect the fact that I don't like guns, I don't like paint, and I do like creative reimagining of history. So in my imagination, this vessel gets pacified. Bought out of navy service by a wealthy naturalist. Some on here were very helpful when I raised this idea in the History section, and if you're interested here is a link to that https://modelshipworld.com/topic/25831-historical-fantasy-oh-and-heresy/ Anyway, we can return to that later if it's of interest to anyone; an alternative history. I can't fill in all of the details entailed in executing that and maybe you can help. Here are a couple of pics as she is at the moment, with sanding of the first planking just started. I haven't done this before and had some issues, especially as I managed with extraordinary idiocy to misinterpret Chuck's brilliant edge bending tutorial. I got it back to front, and realised my mistake about half way down and finally got the point on board. My excuse is that the 3D geometry of this is counter intuitive if you look at a profile plan. But the truth is I'm an idiot. I got it in the end though.
  10. 1:48 H.M.S. Alert 1777 Trident Model Available from Trident Model HMS Alert was a 10-gun cutter launched at Dover in 1777 and was converted to a sloop in the same year. On 19 September 1777, during the American War of Independence, Alert caught and engaged the American 16-gun brigantine Lexington in the English Channel. After two hours fighting, Lexington damaged Alert's rigging, and broke off the action, but Alert's crew quickly managed to repair the ship and caught up with Lexington, which was now virtually out of ammunition and unable to reply to Alert's fire. After a further one and a half hours bombardment by Alert, Lexington struck her colours, surrendering to Alert. Lexington had lost 7 men killed with 11 wounded, while Alert had two killed and 3 wounded. During the Action of 17 June 1778, Alert engaged the French 10-gun Lugger Coureur, and after 90 minutes, forced Coureur to strike. Alert was captured in the Channel by the Junon on 17 July 1778, and foundered December 1779 off the coast of America. French records show her serving as Alerte, a cutter of fourteen 4-pounder guns. Wikipedia The kit Alert is packaged into quite a large and heavy box, as befits the quantity of timber and fittings within. The box itself is sturdy and plain, except for the Trident logo and motto in the bottom right corner. When opened, you will see that the parts are broken down into different packages, labelled A, B, C and D. Each pack is protected with layers of bubble-wrap and all other parts within the box are also protected with infills of more bubble-wrap and foam. Cradle Pack As you’d imagine, this pack contains all parts to build the complex building cradle that a model like this really needs. In fact, this is probably the most unusual looking cradle I’ve seen for a POF model, but I don’t get out much really! Most parts in here are in thin MDF and are generally very flat. You will need to take exceptional care in making sure the cradle is 110% accurate as you work. A quick test of a frame sheet into a frame slot showed it to be very tight. I recommend you perhaps scrape away the laser char to make things better, but still snug. In my test, that worked for me. All the subsequent frame sheets from the other packs seem to be of consistent thickness, but you’ll need to assess each frame/slot in turn. Unlike convention, the individual frames aren’t built over a drawing. Instead, they are built within a series of MDF jigs which have plugs to stop the jigs from splaying outwards when the parts are inserted. This will keep everything tightly together whilst the glue sets. There is a risk of accidentally gluing the frames to the jigs, so I would use some clingfilm, as it used for wrapping sandwiches, and lay it over the jig before you fit the components in. As with many POF models, the frames are taller than they should be, to help with construction. These need to be cut to length later in the build. This kit provides a template which fits to the cradle, and this gives the height of every frame so you can just mark the hull with a pencil before committing to the saw. Another jig is also included into which you will assemble the keel stern prow and deadwood timbers. This should ensure you get things absolutely correct before you progress to the many frames. Pack A Each of the timber packs is labelled with the pack number, but also on the label are the numbers for the individual sheets, which is a nice touch. You can see from this one that Pack A contains 10 sheets of timber. All of these are in cherry wood. Some of the sheets in this packet vary a little in grade with regards to colour. More on that in a moment. The first thing you’ll note when opening is that all sheets are packed with cutting debris from the CNC router. A lot of this in my example is highly compacted and it takes far more than teasing it out to clean the sheets up. This material is substantial too, with both packs having enough debris to quarter-fill a small shopping carrier bag. Now, the sheet colours can vary across individual sheets and here is where I found a problem in debris removal. Where the sheets are uniform and slightly darker, the material came out fairly easily, although still time consuming. Where the wood was lighter, the debris was very difficult to remove and the edges of the machined parts were rough, and in my opinion, needed replacing as it’s likely some of that roughness wouldn’t all be sanded away during construction. One sheet in particular took a full afternoon to remove the debris, and the results highlighted lots of rough machining. As some sheets also had darker bands of timber, that is where the debris removal was quite easy, so the roughness generally seems to be limited to the lighter sheets or those with lighter bands on them. Of course, with CNC parts, whilst you get nice, sharp external corners, you do get rounded internal corners which then need to be cleaned up and the corner cut manually. You can see on these photos the rough surface to some of the part edges, some of it very jagged indeed: Aside from debris and the four aforementioned sheets, the CNC cuttings is actually very good, and each frame is constructed from around five timbers, plus chocks. Pack B A further ten sheets of cherry wood are included in this pack, again, all CNC-cut. As with the other pack, these parts, which make up more of the hull’s framing and the rest of the main construction, are simply removed from the sheets by cutting through the thin web of material that’s left from machining. A small number of parts actually dropped from the sheets as I tapped them on the bench to remove the last traces of debris from the CNC process, so I taped those back in place to protect them until build time. To contrast this, one part I removed from the sheet had a web of 1mm to cut through, so this varies. On the reverse of some sheets, there is more CNC machining for slots and channels etc. Timber grade seems to be very good, with a general consistency in the colour of timber and its finesse. All sheets are machined with the sheet number, making referral to the instruction parts plans, very simple. Packs C & D I could be wrong, but I’m fairly sure that the internals and barrels supplied with this kit (classed here as Pack D) are not standard, but for fairness, I’ve included them here as I see them as being integral to the kit review. If someone knows otherwise, I’m happy to correct this article. Both packs are wrapped into a single bubble-wrap covering, but with both labels denoting contents. Whilst C label has a list of materials, ‘D’ simply says ‘Compartment partition, Deck). For ‘C’, you will find all other constructional elements such as beams, knees, etc. Many parts have extensive slot routing as before, with the only real clean up being to square off the internal corners cut by the CNC router. Also of interest is the bowsprit. This is supplied on a flat sheet but milled roughly to shape. You need to fold the sheet and glue together before fully shaping the part to create the bowsprit. I admit that I’ve never quite seen anything like that before. Whether it saves time instead of just supplying quare timber stock that needs rounding, I guess I’ll find out. Another unusual feature are the pump tube casings. These are supplied on flat sheets and routed. You just need to cut along the outside edges and then fold into shape. I don’t know how well that will work, especially with the metal hoops. Not all parts in this pack are CNC cut. We have a number of laser-cut parts too, and some on walnut as well as cherry. Laser cut parts include the gratings, cannon cart pieces. Note how the gratings are also curved, as they should be. I have noticed how the wheels of the gun carts are devoid of any nail/bolt detail as I have seen on some of Trident’s own images. Looks like some sets were sent out without those details. Pack D holds two cheery sheets which contain various interior walls, all laser-cut and engraved. As I say, there are no instructions to help me with this and my emails to Trident haven’t been fruitful. A small number of barrels are included as their own kit, complete with photo-etch for the hoops. Another sheet of PE is included for the interior Strip Wood A small quantity of strip and dowel is included. The strip also appears to be cherry and is laser cut. The dowel looks like lime or Ramin. Some brass rod is also included in the dowel bundle. Materials quality can’t be faulted. Fittings A single box holds all of the various metal fittings, plus some laser/CNC cut parts too. The various fittings are bagged separately in clear sleeves. The timber parts include a mast base, winch gears and a stern piece. There is a little raggedness on the mast base. That is quite deep so it may need replacing. Rope quality is very good with no fuzziness. Castings are generally very good too, as seen here with the anchor and cannon. Details on the cannon are nice and defined. Many parts are provided on a casting block and will need to be removed from that before use. Some parts don’t have as good a definition as others, as can be seen by the swivel guns. Ignore the dirty appearance of the stove parts, as these are cast reasonably well and should be more than useable. Other fittings include copper eyelets, belaying pins, and deadeyes. Instructions and plans One large plan sheet is included with all the required elevations and details, including some part numbering too. This is printed full size to the model. A spiral-bound instruction manual is included which shows the various stages in line drawing format. The accompanying text is useable if not a little confusing. It definitely could’ve benefited from being proofread by someone who can speak English. An unusual addition is a sticker sheet with parts drawn on it. These are applied to the respective parts and the hashed areas are used as your guide to bevel these parts. In the absence of a multi-axis cutting machine at Trident, these will serve the job pretty well. Conclusion Trident have produced a really nice model here, with extensive use of CNC routing and innovations that aim to make this as easy to assemble as possible. That CNC does come at the cost of the bag full of waste material you need to remove from around each part, of which there are many. On my example, sheets were severely impacted with waste material, and dental picks etc. still struggled to remove it. When the material was eventually cleaned out, four of these sheets exhibited rough/jagged machining which damaged the surface edges of many parts. Despite several repeated requests to replace these sheets for this review, Trident haven’t answered emails for around 7 weeks now, and I have sent quite a few. PMs to them here on MSW also haven’t been answered. The remainder of the parts are superbly made, which is a real shame. When it comes to fittings, again, these are very, very good, being nicely cast metal parts such as the cannon and anchors, plus numerous other fittings. A small number of these are perhaps not as good as other, such as the swivel guns which look a little messy. In all, for the money, and providing you aren’t unlucky enough to get some rough parts sheets, Alert could well be a nice project to guide you into your first POF model. I’m led to believe that the interior parts and barrels aren’t included as standard, meaning another purchase. Those parts also don’t feature on any instructions, and to date, there are none I can talk of. Of course, H.M.S. Alert makes a great stablemate for CAF Model’s Le Coureur. However, if you wanted to choose between one or the other, then my money would be on the CAF Model kit, with its complete mast rig and interior. CAF, unlike Trident, also seem to be responsive to queries and correct any mistakes. My thanks to Trident Model for the sample reviewed here on MSW. To date, there is no website through which to order. When I know of one, I’ll amend this article.
  11. Hi, new member here. I wasn't planning on starting a log initially, but I've lately ran across some issues that I could use a second opinion on, so I thought why not. This is my first proper build after introducing myself to the hobby by building the Bounty's jolly boat by Artesania Latina. I'll try to keep the updates regular, but most of the time I'm forgetting to take pictures of the different stages. First planking and initial sanding done. I just could not get the slot in the front stem to work as intended, so I have no room in it for the second planking, but I don't think it'll be much of a problem. And after proper sanding. Even managed a pretty nice stealer plank, too bad it's going to be covered pretty soon. I'm super happy and relieved how my first proper planking job turned out and I sure learned a lot! After sanding I planked the stern bulkhead and attached the stern counter pattern. Turned out even better than I expected. I still have a slight gap under the inner most planks and I'm unsure if I should cover it with diagonal planking or to sand the first planking flush with the rudder post. In addition, I misunderstood the instructions and sanded the whole rudder post to the thickness of 1,5mm. I was thinking of hiding this mistake by tapering the rudder slightly to match the thickness at the post, but I'm not sure how it'll affect the final look of the model.
  12. The Cutter Alert Build log The Alert kit arrived at a very opportune time for me as I'm fresh from my knowledge of cutters from my recent Cheerful build. Ever since I acquired (1991) the Peter Goodwin book The Naval Cutter Alert 1777. in the Anatomy of the Ship series, published by Conway Maritime press, I have long wished to make a model of Alert. Chris Watton has now made that possible, without having to scratch build everything myself. Before I start however, there are already things buzzing around my head, and points to ponder. Clinker or carvel planking below the Main wale? The kit indicates Carvel whereas Goodwin shows Clinker in his book but goes on to state that Alert was sheathed with copper at Deptford on 30 July 1777. How would this work, I've never heard of coppered clinker, can this be right? However, I'm tempted to look at clinker planking, but I've absolutely no experience of it or even how to begin, so it would be quite a challenge for me. If I do opt for Clinker I imagine one has to start from the Garboard plank and work upward to the wale. Should I go for a carvel base planking and clinker over the top, or go straight for a single planked job as with Cheerful. I may well think it's all too difficult, and build her carvel, but these are all questions I need to resolve before I reach that stage. In the meantime I have to get my build plan organised, which may be some time. B.E. 20/06/2019
  13. Hello All! just purchased the Vanguard Models HMS Alert 1777 kit. Anyone have the AOTS Alert 1777 for sale, Or know where it can be obtained for a reasonably good price? Thanks! Jorge
  14. Click on the tags in the title above (shown in black) for an instant list of all the build logs for that kit subject.
  15. Hello everyone, I am entrusted by Lanhai to publish the photos of the production process in the forum. Later, after getting familiar with the operation of the forum, Lanhai will upload the photos himself. Thank you for your support.
  16. Good morning Gentlemen, Well, for those of you who may not have read my previous thread (below), this is my first attempt at a scratch-build, using Goodwin's (extremely helpful) guide for the Cutter Alert of 1777. I have drawn out each individual scantling/rib (whatever you may call it) on paper, then card, using the plans illustrated in Goodwin's guide. If using the traditional method of paper/pencil, be sure to have a waste paper basket nearby I watched a video of a card build of the Alert (this one manufactured by Shipyard models), just to see the method of construction and how to go about it. Each scantling was then glued to the main section using PVA. So, as you gentlemen see below, I have now begun this wild project and so far, I am quite pleased with it. I look forward to hearing any advice you chaps may have for me. Cheerio, Caleb
  17. 1:64 H.M. Cutter Alert 1777 Vanguard Models Catalogue # VM-01 Available from Vanguard Models for £180 The Alert, built in Dover by Henry Ladd and launched on 24th June 1777, was the largest class of cutter in the Royal Navy. Alert originally carried ten four-pounder carriage guns and six to twelve half-pounder swivel guns. She was one of fifteen cutters built for the Royal navy between 1777 and 1778. Smaller cutters were often purchased or built by private yards and then purchased by the Navy, but Alert was purpose built from the keel up. In February 1778, Alert docked at Plymouth for an overhaul, to which some alterations were made to her hull and the ten four pounder carriage guns were replaced with twelve six pounder guns, raising her broadside weight by 30%. The guns were changed because six-pounder shot was more commonly available and, of course, they were more effective. Because of the increase in ordnance, the crew of the Alert was increased from sixty to eighty men, and recommissioned under a new commander, Lieutenant William George Fairfax. In May 1778, Fairfax was promoted to Commander and Alert was re-classed as a sloop to comply with Admiralty requirements. (Although always remained cutter rigged) On 17th June 1778, the Alert, in company with the frigate Arethusa, spotted and intercepted the French frigate Belle Poule and the armed lugger Coureur, with the latter overhauled by the Alert and surrendered, returning to Spithead after the action with her prize. On 8th July of the same year, whilst on an independent deployment, searching for the enemy fleet, Alert was taken by surprise and captured by the French frigate Junon. Alert is reported as lost without trace on 15th December 1779. Alerts sister, Rattlesnake lasted a little longer, being wrecked on the island of Trinidad on 11th October 1781. The model kit of the Alert is depicted after her refit with twelve six-pounder guns and a full complement of twelve half-pounder swivel guns, giving an ordnance total of twenty-four guns. Although not stated in the records when researching, it is possible that the upper bulwarks were fully planked, rather than having the open drift. The decoration that adorns the upper sides and stern is optional, as it is unlikely that the original vessel, when in service, would have had such decoration. This is inspired by the two paintings of the vessel by Joseph Marshall, which formed part of the George III collection of ship model paintings. It is possible the decoration would have been painted on during launch day, or if a prominent (Royal) figure visited to review the fleet. The kit H.M. Cutter Alert 1777 is the very first kit from Chris Watton’s own brand label, ‘Vanguard Models’. Of course, you will have heard of Chris’s name from kits released under the Amati (Victory Models) and Caldercraft/JoTika companies, as well as some magazine part-work stuff etc. I’ve bbeen watching this project come together both on and off Model Ship World, and the sort of effort that goes into producing a model kit. Vanguard’s new kit comes in a reasonably large box which is adorned with photos of the completed model, and some profile illustration too. Guess what? I got kit #001!! I’ll not claim any preferential treatment though! Lifting the lid and the first layer of bubble-wrap reveals a personalised customer letter and also a MASSIVE A3-size instruction manual which is spiral bound. We’ll look at this again a little later. Fittings A neat little labelled box contains all of the fittings for Alert, carefully kept in one place, and very professional-looking too. Cutting the tape tab reveals a series of labelled bags. Everything in this kit is also labelled in the same way and easily cross referenced against both the parts inventory and during construction. It really does appear to have been made as intuitive and easy to follow as humanly possible. The fittings are generally a mix of either resin or white metal. In the first pack we have the large winch which is cast in resin. This was originally intended to be white metal, but the quality of the parts was poor, so a new part was 3D designed and cast in light grey resin. Only a little clean-up is required to push this into service on Alert. Also in resin is the smaller windlass for the topsail bitts. The anchors are cast in white metal, and these look great. Very little preparation will be needed before they can be used. More white metal fittings are supplied for the twelve 6-pounder cannon and the twelve half-pounder swivel guns. I would give these a clean-up with a file and some steel wool. Another pouch is supplied for the cannon shot. One of the next packs contain steel pins for assisting with the first layer of planking. These look very nicely made and are sharp, with nothing malformed. It could be an idea to pilot drill the plank before using these, so as not to split any of the MDF frames or the planks themselves. The next two packs contain deadeyes and deadeye sheaves. The quality of these is very good, and definitely some of the nicest I’ve seen recently. Three more packets contain two sizes of single block and one size of double block. Again, quality is evident here. In the last three packets in the fittings box, you’ll find triple blocks, parrel beads and also the mainstay ‘mouse’. Rigging A zip-lock wallet contains six spools of very high-quality rigging cord in natural and black colours, as well as a sleeve of thicker natural thread which I think is for the anchor cables. This latter is handmade by Syren in the US, so you can be assured of its standards. Also note how each spool is labelled and inventoried so you won’t accidentally use the wrong cord when rigging. Timber strip Onto the timber strip. This initial release of Alert contains boxwood for the deck planking and pearwood for the hull. This sort of timber isn’t normally found in kits, with the recent exception of Master Korabel’s Avos kit’s XS Edition. It certainly is very welcome to see, and the standard of timber is excellent. I do believe that Chris will be releasing a slightly cheaper version of Alert with Tanganyika instead of pearwood and boxwood. Chris hopes this will retail for around £155 and is actually the same as he used in the prototype model you can see on the box lid and the photos in this review. All timber strip is packed into thick, sealed plastic sleeves, and clearly labelled so you can cross reference with the inventory to make sure you are indeed using the correct wood for the specific task. Timber standards are high with a nice uniform colour per batch, no coarse grain or split ends and fuzziness. Sail cloth is supplied too, just in case you do indeed want to display in this manner. The material is provided as sheet, and you will need to use the drawings to draw out the shapes on the cloth and cut/sew. Sails aren’t really for me, but the option is there, should you want to display her in all her sheets to the wind glory! Sheet material Now we come to the sheet material. There are two thick, clear sleeves containing laser-cut material. This first sleeve holds all of the main constructional elements plus something rather unusual for a kit like this, and that’s a clear acrylic display base! The base is a simple but attractive slot-together affair whose parts just need to be gently removed from the sheet. They are also covered in a protective film that makes it look dull in my photo. Rest assured that the material underneath is crystal clear. To assemble this, you could either use an acrylic cement such as Tensol, or an epoxy that will also dry clear. One such product that comes to mind is from HpH Models in the Czech Republic. You can of course use Cyano glue, but make sure it’s the odourless variety so it won’t cloud the clear plastic. The constructional stuff here comes in two sheets of 3mm MDF and one sheet of 2mm timber, all nice and warp-free. On the MDF, you’ll find the false keel, bulkheads, inner and outer bow patterns, stern planking and securing patterns, and the ship’s stove flue. The timber sheet contains the lower deck pattern (constructional element), and stern frames (middle, inner, outer). Laser-cutting is nice and neat with almost no localised scorching. It wouldn’t really matter either way though as these parts will be either hidden or bevelled. Our second sleeve of parts are all laser-cut from timber, with no MDF. Here, we have a combination of 3mm, 1.5mm and 1mm sheet material, containing parts for absolutely everything else timber-related on Alert, from gun carriages, hatch coamings, keep parts, cap rails, transom rails, tiller arm, trestle trees etc. You name it, it’s here. There are a few parts on the 1mm sheet which are hanging by only a few tabs due to the relative fragility of the tabs on a thin sheet, but all parts are perfectly fine. This material isn’t too rigid either, so those parts that need to be curved, such as the transom, will do so without any problem whatsoever. Photo-etch The inclusion of photo-etch in models these days is almost de rigueur, and Alert is no exception. Three frets are included in 0.2mm, 0,4mm, and 0.6mm bare brass, and all as good as any such material that I’ve used in any of my magazine and book work over the last 10yrs. As well as the obvious and intricate outer hull scrollwork embellishments, you’ll find metalwork here for the bowsprit and masting, cleats, windlass parts, stanchions, rudder gudgeon and pintle brace, eyebolt rings, deck grating, anchor ring, rigging components, and even a neat nameplate for the clear acrylic stand. All parts should be nice and easy to remove with them being held with thin, narrow tabs. A jeweller’s file will be needed to clean up any nibs remaining from the tabs. Instruction book This is epic in size! Printed in colour on thick paper stock in A3 size, the manual us spiral-bound instead of just being stapled. This means it will be easy to turn pages over, and the size is good for the eyes for those of us of whose youth has long since slipped away. The manual is 56 pages and begins with a side and upper elevation drawing of Alert, followed by a history and building tips/suggested tools and materials list. A full inventory is then supplied, along with images of the various sheets and PE frets. As the timber elements aren’t numbered on the sheets, you are advised to number each yourself before removal from the sheet. Construction sequences are given in photographic form with crystal clear English explaining everything along the way. All illustrations are also clearly annotated where required. The photographs are interspersed with more drawings of the vessel in various profiles, clearly showing the task at hand. A good example of how comprehensive the instructions are is the inclusion of a deck plank showing the planking format and the shift between the planks. When it comes to masting, drawings are supplied for this with accompanying dimensions and diameters. As I always find masting the most frustrating task, the drawings are a big help and clearly mark out the plan of attack. Excellent rigging illustrations are also supplied, showing everything clearly, including seizing, ratlines etc. A guide to exactly which rigging block to use is also provided. No guessing like on many of the legacy kits that got so many of us started in this hobby. As also mentioned, sail plans are supplied so you can make and add these from the cloth that’s provided. Conclusion What a great start to Chris’s new venture, Vanguard Models. He does keep telling me that he’s learnt so much from this that he will change in future releases, but he does sell himself short, dramatically. If you know of Chris’s work from his previous designs with Amati and Caldercraft, then you will know his own personal style comes through in attention to detail and design approach. This is a gorgeous kit that will present many hours of fulfilling bench time. Materials quality is what what we have come to expect from high-end kits. All in all, a fantastic package! My sincere thanks to Chris Watton for getting this out so quickly for me to feature as a review here on Model Ship World. To purchase directly, click this link at the top of the article.
  18. Well, I’ve done it. I started messing around with a card model from Shipyard because I was really curious about them. I didn’t mean to turn this into a real project, but I can’t help it, this thing is so frikkin’ cool! I’ve already described the kit in detail in the topic I started: here, so no point in rehashing that. I’ll just say that I’ve been distracted by this model more and more and now I might as well just get it over with and make a regular project out of it. Luckily, this card model seems to be progressing a lot faster than my wooden model projects. I think it’s because all the parts are already defined. I don’t have to figure out anything, I just have to build. So, I started tinkering with this kit back in August and picked it up every now and again to add some more to it. Now, I’m at the point where I’m spending multiple evenings in a row on it. At this rate, I don’t think it’s going to take all that long. I'd better really get working on this or I'll never get back to my other projects! Here’s where it all started... Framing was easy using the laser cut parts included in the kit. Note that not all of the shipyard paper models include laser cut framing. Instead, they give you the parts printed on standard paper and you are required to laminate that paper onto layers of card stock or plain paper in order to build the part up to the proper thickness. On a model this size, the frame density and the stiffeners seem to make the hull enough to work with The first layer of the hull covering is made up of thin pieces that fit nicely across the bulkheads. It's hard to avoid a little overlap, but I found it important to try, otherwise it creates a wavy surface for the planking. With the layer of stiffners in place, the first layer of hull planking is laid. There are two layers of planking, so I guess you can consider this a double-planked hull. The first layer consist of belts of planks. It's nice that these are printed with properly shaped planks. This makes this model more accurate than 90% of the wooden ship models kits out there, at least in terms of hull planking. The first problem I ran into was the in determining the proper positioning of the bulwarks piece. But, that looks like it will work itself out okay. The second problem is shown here with the laying down of the planking belts. This is a 2-D object laying down on a 3-D surface. The belts are relatively narrow, but not narrow enough to avoid creating a wavy surface along the edges. Fortunately, there is another layer of planking to go over this, so maybe I was worrying about it too much. But, what I found was that after the glue set, I could wick a tiny amount of CA into the edge and then push down on the bumps to flatten them out a bit. That has it's own hazzards as you can see here the glue fingerprints that I haven't seen since my early days of plastic model building. This is the point where I decided to try painting the surface of the hull using paints sold by ShipYard. Clare
  19. Not a race or anything - but here we go ! Kit arrived - in good condition. I am unfortunately not going to be able to do much - because I am actually packing to move house. But I couldnt resist having a trial fit of the keel and BHs. This is the first MDF kit I have really tried so it was interesting from that point of view. The wee bit of a surprise was how small and delicate the bits are - oh dear that going to be a challenge for my clumsy hands. Anyway it all assembled "just right" not tightly rigid so things had to be forced nor sloppy - everything just sat neatly in the right place. Wonderful start - Now I shall have to pack it all up again and allow other builders to streak past But Thanks Chris !!
  20. Hello all, So this is my first model boat build. I have some experience with traditional woodworking, but this is the first model I am attempting. I wanted to create this log to help other people who are thinking about getting started get an idea of what a first build entails, and what I will be going through. I will be trying things out, figuring out techniques, making mistakes and having to fix them, which I will (embarrassingly) try to post it all here. If any of you experienced builders have some tips on any of the things I have done or will have to do, your advice will be most welcomed. I got the Krick Alert from shipwrightshop.com, it has some vague 2 page instructions in English, but the detailed instructions are in German, so this should also help anyone building this model to identify parts, and sections of the manual. Also, I'm not the most technical or knowledgeable about the different parts of a boat, so please forgive me if I don't use the right terminology. Anyway, I'm pretty excited about this project and very quickly realised it is quite the challenge. Here it goes: This is the kit. I also ordered some files and a small saw with it and it all arrived very promptly. I would certainly recommend the guys at shipwrightshop.com, at least for people in the UK. The first thing I got started with was setting the bulkheads into the keel. Some of them were a bit to tight so I had to file down (very slightly) some of them for them to fit in tightly without having to hammer them in. After dry fitting, I applied some glue and set them in place. To ensure they would sit correctly, I dry fitted the precut deck while they dried. One bit of advice would be to number the bulkheads (A, B, C, etc) before attaching them, which will make it simpler later for the planking. I have seen some people placing supports between the bulkheads but these were so tight, and being held at the top by the deck, I didn't feel there was the need for this. Once the bulkheads where in place, I sanded the top of them to be nice and flush with the top of the keel. I then took some tracing paper and using plan Bogen 2, I traced some lines and some of the things that go on the deck to make positioning them later a bit easier. Then, I and glued the deck in place. To do this I used 1.5cm binder clips which worked great. I could press down the sides of the deck which lay slightly lower than the centre and hold it down by clipping these to the top bit of the bulkheads. Pick bellow. I originally thought to buy smaller binder clips, luckily they didn't have any smaller ones, because these are a great fit and anything smaller would not fit. I then planned the bits of the deck that were sticking out of past the bulkheads. The small D-Planed worked excellent for trimming the most of it and then I did some sanding to get it to the right spot and the deck to sit flush with the bulkheads. To bevel the bulkheads, I used one dummy plank. I bent it around the bulkheads to identify where and how much of a bevel I had to put into each one of the bulkheads. I thought of and tried different ways to do this more precisely but, being such small measurements and tight in between bulkheads, I decided to just do it by eye bit by bit until I would see the plank lay flush against the whole bulkhead. For the bigger angles I used as small D-plane and then a long piece of wood (about 20cm) with some 120grit sand paper around it which would allow me to sand a couple of bulkheads at a time keeping a rough angle of how the plank would sit. I then moved to a small piece of wood (~5cm) with the same sandpaper to do the more detailed and precise work on each bulkhead. With the deck dry and the bevels in the bulkheads, I placed the bow and stern blocks that receive the planks, and then again, using a plank as a guide, I drew the curve on them and the with a stanley knife and sandpaper I shaped these to match the curves between the bulkheads. These are the front ones, parts 15, 16, 17: and these are the rear ones, parts 18: For parts 19 in the rear, finding the piece of wood to use was quite tricky but it is a 1.5x5.160mm piece of very soft wood. The only piece of that type of porous soft wood in the whole kit. I cut parts 19 slightly longer (4 of them because you need to stack 2 on top of each other, on each side), then I wetted the two for the first layer for about 10min, dried them with a cloth and bent them to roughly the right shape. I applied glue and using the binder clips I bent and held in place the first layer. Once dry, I repeated with the second layer. Once the parts were dry, I trimmed them to size and did the same as with the stern blocks (part 18). I used a dummy plank to get the right shape and this time with a flat hand file, I filed the bevel to match the right angle. See Abb. 5 Following the rough English instructions, I started looking into the planking starting at deck level, and oh my... was that a learning curve. I had about a million questions of what to do, how to measure, how to hold the planks, how to determine the bevels of the planks, etc. Some of these questions I still haven't answered, but I will let you know as I progress. Not sure if this is the right way, but here is what I am doing: First using a small bendy wire, I measured the length of each bulkhead from the level of the deck to the very end of the bulkhead. I created a chart, with the bulkheads and their distances, and then divided the longest distance by a full width of the planks. Starting from the front I labeled the bulkheads A, B, C... bulkhead H has the longest distance of 100mm which divided by 5mm, which is the width of the planks, gave me 20 planks. I then divided all of the other distances by 20, which gave me the width of the plank at that bulkhead. I took a plank, marked the position horizontally of each bulkhead and then marked the width at each bulkhead and joined the dots. Here is a pic of the guide plank I used to mark the distance of the bulkheads: The bow and stern block attachments don't have a clear length as they progress downwards, so I just continued the line from the other bulkheads all the way to the bow and stern. I put the marked plank together with another one (to match on the other side) and using the small D-Plane, I planed the planks down to the line. I then modified the binder clips following something I saw on Youtube. (Sorry, I can't remember who's video this was but all the credit goes to you "Hero" as this would have been a nightmare without this tip.) Using the modified clips and clipping the first plank against the deck, I followed the deck line glueing the plank, leaving it 1mm longer in the bow and an the rest hanging out in the stern (as you can see a few pics back). I then sawed the front to match the angle with the keel and it fitted nicely. Here, I made my first big mistake: In the bow, I tried to keep the bevel of the plank flush with the deck, which looked quite nice from above. After it had dried, I realised that this had basically forced the plank away from the bulkheads and when placing the next plank there was a huge offset. Here is a pic of the gap: So, I had to take a blade and from underneath cut along the join of the deck and the plank for the first few bulkheads to release the plank and re-glue it allowing the bevel to shift with regards to the angle of the deck, but keeping the plank nice and flush against the bulkheads. Here is a pic of the plank removed: Here is a pic of the plank sitting nicely against the bevel of the bulkheads after re-glueing: In the stern, there was so much twist, that I had let the plank curve naturally as I laid it flush against the bulkheads so I did not have to correct this. I could see the planking being one of the biggest jobs of the boat and something that requires quite a lot of time each sitting. Therefore, I have started with some of the other parts of the boat that I can progress when I have shorter amounts of time. I will continue with some of this other work I have done, and keep updating how I get on. Happy building.
  21. Before I begin this build of Krick's Alert, I'm going to do a little research on this cutter. I ordered "The Naval Cutter Alert" by Goodwin. It should be here in a couple days then hopefully I can get a better look at this fine cutter, meanwhile I've taken a couple pictures of the box and parts. This is a German kit, so the instructions are in German, but they do include a sparse English version, but that's no big deal, If I get stuck, I can always ask Dirk . He did this same kit and did an amazing!! job on it. (as usual ) Anyhow,here's the pictures One thing I wish Krick would've done, is to roll the plans instead of folding them. It's really a bummer when they do that. I noticed that the keel is ever so slightly tweaked, I'm going to set the bulkheads in temporarily to see if it will pull it in . I have some box wood strip That I had purchased from Jeff when he ran a special, so I 'll probably use that instead of the supplied stock ( depending on the finish I decide on ) Here again , more than likely I will up grade the blocks and yardage with Chucks products. I purchased the sale set as an extra. After seeing it I'm not so sure I like the fabric, it seems a little on the heavy side, I don't know, maybe it's just me, but that's along way off. Frank
  22. I was really suprised that I did not find a build log about the Naval Cutter Alert on MSW 2.0. I know that there exist some pictures of a model on the old MSW The first source for building a model of this small vessel are Peter Goodwins book "The Naval Cutter Alert, 1777", published by PhoenixPublications Inc. 1991 and the two original drawing of her sister Rattlesnake (1776) which you will find on the homepage of the NMM. There also exist two paintings of Joseph Marshall of the ship, which are exhibited in the Science Museum, London. I found also an Sheer and Profile drawing of Alert which was published by the NRG. The sheer and profile of the NRG and Goodwin differ from the original drawing. They show the maximum width of the ship not at frame 0. Perhaps my Engish is to bad, but I could not find any reason for this. So I decide to draw my own lines. which were based on Goodwin and the original drawing. The drawing is not finished, because I decided only to draw what I need for my build. Next step was the keel. Goodwin shows for the pass between keel and lower apron a solution which I could not find on any original cutter drawings. For the after deadwood he does not offer any possible solution I decide to follow the original drawing of Cheerful 1806 for the pass between keel and lower apron. The flat joint at the foremost keel part is shown on original drawings of this period (for example on HMS Triton). For the after deadwood I decided to use a bearing line. I am not sure if this is common for ships of this period. The next picture shows my completed keel drawing: Goodwin uses for his design the common frameing pattern of double and single frames. I am not sure that this design was used for the original ship. For the Swan class sloops only single frames were used. This you will also find on the drawing of Cheerful and other cutters. Also the wide of the frame parts are not clear. In his drawing he uses much smaller futtocks than he descibed in the text part of the book. In his "Construction and Fitting of Sailing Man of War" he gives a third solution. What now? Alert is a practice model for me to get the experience to continue my HMS Fly build. Marshall shows on his paintings an simplified frameing design, so I decided to use this. Every frame is 8'' width followed by 8'' space. For the port side I like to show the clinker planking. On my drawing the final design for the last frame and the hawse pieces is missing in the moment. The drawings for every 31frames and 21cant frames are finished. I am not sure in the moment if I will use the original practice with chocks or the simplified method of Harold Hahn for my build. It will be very nice if you have further information about the cutters of this time. I found the Marmaduke Stalkartt on Google-books, but they didn't scan the plates. Perhaps one of the MSW user can help me to confirm my decisions.
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