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Hello all together, after more than one year absence of model ship building and this forum I still have realised a couple of weeks ago that the older forum disappeared including all blogs. So now we are on version 2.0. I did launched a new business and it was important to spend all my energy in this project, especially during the first months that are the most critical ones. However, after a view on Dirk's fabulous Siren log I have got ispired to follow up with my Mercury project and did the outer tree-nailing as well as the first steps to do the hand rails. Unfortunately I have no copy of the blog on the older MSW. But here some reminders about the model. The ship is based on K.H. Marquardt's draughts in the late 80's. As I was a young boy I have got from my dad, he was a fisherman, a book from the so called Blue Series from Hinstorff Publishing in East Germany. Both the country and the publishing house doesn't exist anymore. But since these days I had in mind to build one of his three described ships as the gunboat Axel Thorsen from the Royal Norwegian Navy, the skiffboat Elgen from the Royal Danish-Norwegian Navy and last but not least the schooner HM Colonial Schooner for Port Jackson. In 2011 I have heard about an English version of this book with an additional plan for the Enterprize and did an order. What a positive surprise. It is not just added by one additional plan. I guess it the original masterpiece from what the older German book was printed as an abstract, missing all passages related to the navies of the so called imperialistic class enemy - what a nonsense. The book is really a masterpiece about schooners and belongs into any bookshelf of a serious collection. And, it shows the plans for sail, masts and yards that are still missing in the German version. Perfect. That's what I was waiting for and did a start with the Mercury, what was, following Mr Marquardt, the name for the so called Schooner for Port Jackson. I guess the name was given locally in Australia after assembling all parts on-site. That's why probably the draughts at NMM are also just titled as Schooner for Port Jackson. Hope, my time allows my to frequently continuous with my little tiny schooner. Cheers, Daniel
Sometimes I can conspire to combine my day job as a journalist with my penchant for maritime history and here's the result featuring bravery, disaster, battles, tsunami, and treasure hunting. A feature on the wreck of Royal navy storeship HMS Buffalo in Mercury Bay New Zealand. The event was 175 years ago this month and there's a number of events on where it happened to mark the anniversary. Writing this yarn threw up some really interesting characters, a tale of drama at sea and the almost forgotten history of an area I have spent summer holidays in since I was a boy. It's a good read, but then I'm biased! A highlight was talking to maritime painter Paul Deacon whose wonderful renditions of the buffalo were used in the illustrations, with an example below. Links to Paul's facebook page with more examples of his great work are at the bottom of the story if you follow the link to it. Also Ken Hindmarsh mentioned in the story has a reproduction of his ancestor's naval service medal ( a cousin holds the original) and it's one of only two ever issued with seven clasps. His battles included the Nile (aboard Bellerophon where he was the only uninjured man on the quarterdeck and ordered the ship away from L'Orient just before she exploded), Trafalgar and others. Image: Paul Deacon