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Harwich Bawley - by Mobbsie - 1/24 Scale - Restoration- Finished

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Hey, Mobbsie, of what material was the hull of the model originally?  I remember about 10 years ago a bunch of models from a now-defunct English manufacturer were being sold off - can't remember if it was eBay or elsewhere.  The kit line included all kinds of English smallcraft, including a bawley.  The hulls were resin or plastic.

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tried doing a search for SMW........came up with a lot of hogwash......guns mostly.  scale can be confusing........the use of scale with model cars and planes - the small the number,  the larger.........but the scale with boats seem the other way around.  it depends on the actual size of the subject,  as I have been led to believe.

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Popeyes - it depends only on how the scale is expressed. Cars and planes normally use a straight ratio type scale such as 1:48, 1:72, 1:8 or whatever, meaning that one unit of length in the model represents that number of units of length at full size. So at 1:48, one inch equals 48 inches, or one mm equals 48mm. That is, the scale is independent of the unit of measurement.


Where it gets confusing with ships is that in addition to this ratio expression, there is also the use of the "inches per foot" scale. In this form, the scale is expressed in terms of the number of inches on the scale model that equate to one foot at full size. So for example a scale of 1/4" means that 1/4" on the model is equal to one foot at full size. If you do the math, a scale of 1/4" is identical to a scale of 1:48. Is your head spinning yet?


It gets even more confusing when the "inches per foot" scale is used, bit the inch designator (") is left off, or when the ratio form is used, but expressed in fractional form. For example, talking about a 3/16 scale (meaning 3/16" to the foot), which is actually a scale of 1:64 in ratio form. Or alternatively, talking about a scale of 1/24 (meaning a ratio of 1:24), which is actually a scale of 1/2" in "inches per foot" form.


Now is your head spinning?


Sorry for hijacking your log Mobbsie - I'll get my coat and leave now...........

Edited by gjdale
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Hi Guys,




You certainly didn't let the grass grow under your feet in finding that kit, it certainly looks the part and is a good representation but the scale at 1/48 is most definitely wrong.

The Bawley from Stem to Stern excluding the Bowsprit is 38ft long with a beam of 14ft, the model measures 19" long and 7" wide, this equates to 1/2" to the ft. Following Grants explanation that makes it 1/24. I must be totally honest here and say that I have more chance of flying to Mars than working out scales, the term "Thick as a brick" fits very well in situations like this.  I do hope mate that that satisfies your enquiring mind.




Looking very closely at the hull but not scratching any paint off it most certainly is wood, I thought at first that she was Plank on Bulkheads but she isn't. It would appear the hull is made up from preformed panels up to deck level, these panels have been attached to Bulkheads which form the ribs above deck.

The deck itself was formed from sheet ply and came in one piece, there were no deck planks on the original kit, the deck was painted the same grey as the hull.  I hope that gives you the answer your looking for mate but if you have any other questions please don't hesitate to ask, I'll do my very best to give you an accurate answer with the information I have on this boat but I do warn you it's not much.




With an answer and explanation like that you can my friend hi-jack this log any time you like, so take that coat off and get your backside back in here. :im Not Worthy:


Thank you one and all for looking in and your very kind comments and remarks, also everyone who hit the like button. All are very much appreciated.


A small verbal up-date, the deck planking is now complete and treenailed, I used a 0.8m drill bit and filled the holes with a Pear past made from Pear sawdust and diluted white glue. I do however have one question which I hope you can answer.


Because the planks are not joggled into the Margin planks ( seen on photos) they are cut at an angle and butt upto the Margin plank. Where these planks meet are they also treenailed and if so at what frequency.? The photos do not show this detail.


Thanks guys,


Be Good



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Obie Wan:  "this is not the ship your looking for......."


thanks Grant...working with plastic kits most of my life,  I never worried too much about scale.  but now that I've been working with wood,  I'm finding I really need to fill in the gaps  ;)   I agree with mobbsie........you stay right here!


sorry if I kicked up any dust Mobbsie.......search suspended ;)

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  • 2 weeks later...

Jeez but time flies, I'm due an update.


As already stated the deck is completed and has been given two coats of Poly, I quite like the effect.


Bits are starting to go back on, so far the Windlass, Cabin Hatch Cover, Hatch Boards, Canvas Sheet ( kitchen tissue ), Bilge Pump & Pipe ( scratch ), Coal Bunker with Bucket ( scratch ), Port & Starboard Shrouds with Pin Rails, Bow Sprit with Chain and Tackle and a new Boiler ( scratch ). I also made brackets for the Windlass Bars.


The sails are all complete, they a lighter colour than I had hoped for because the material is cotton and polyester which doesn't take the dye too well, they look a little faded. They were real fun to make as you can imagine, cutting out, diluted white glue on the hems and a brief turn on the Admirals sewing machine were the easy bit. The hard bit was hand stitching the rope around the edge of all of them, it wasn't until the last sail was halfway through before I found an easy way to do it.


Time for some pics.


The completed Deck



After Deck with Coal Bunker and Bilge Pump in hold



Looking Aft with Accommodation Hatch



New Boiler



Rope work to Main Sale ( the easy way )



Windlass refitted



Port & Starboard Shrouds ( no ratlines thankfully )



The full set of completed sails



One of the many scratch shackles



The boat so-far



So there we are guys, your right up to date now, you know the drill, good or bad remarks / comments always welcome.


Be Good













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Hi Gents,


Thanks for looking in gents and all your kind comments and remarks during this restoration.


This will be the final update on the restoration as she is now complete and has been taken down to the museum, I must say they are very pleased with her as am I.


The rigging was a bit of a mystery as there is no plan that I could find so it was a case of looking at as many photos and other builds of a similar ilk.


She came together very quickly in the end and before I realised it she was almost done and it really wasn't worth making two posts with what was left. I decided to carry on and finish her off.


There's no tech info to pass on so I will get straight into the pics and hope you enjoy them.


I wanted the sails to billow and so I soaked these ropes in white glue, the ruler is to add some tension and hold the sail out until the glue dries.



The main sail with some of the rigging, the Reg Number was put on using a Chinagraph pencil my Admiral uses in the garden, no bleed and it worked a treat I think.



A chain storage box was made up



The fittings have been placed in the hold



All the sails are now on and hopefully they look as if they are filled with air, I used a large fan and starch, sprayed the starch on in small amounts and let it dry by the fan, then add more starch and repeat until desired effect happens.



The Top Sail didn't take to well and proved a pointless task, it held for a while then dropped.



The Spritsails are clearly billowing



The shape of the Mainsail can be seen and it held it's shape.




And the final pic



So there we are, the finished boat. I have enjoyed doing this restoration as it has made a complete change in the subject which upto now has not been my thing, who knows where we go from here.


Be Good



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Thank you all for your very kind comments and remarks Gents.


The next thing for me is the repair on the Thames Barge, still angry about it but I can see a positive side, some of the build is quite naïve and can and will be improved on, I will be starting a log on this. 


I still have the Granado Cross Section on the go, I am now following Grant and need to play catch up.


I have also ordered 3 Woody Joe's kits but these are as far removed from ships as it's possible to get but they are for the future.


Be Good



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