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Cruizer class brig by Timmo - 1:36 scale Radio

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Hi Timmo,


a more than decent progress to me, lovely work in all its aspects

( rigging, the onlay, choice of materials and approach,...)

Sincere congrats 

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Harrier has been launched. Despite mid-winter weather I've made it to a couple of local lakes for some testing.

The masts broke down to allow the vessel to fit in the back of the car easier than expected. I don't even have to drop the seats which means I can even take kids.



It's been extremes of weather each time with the first outing having not enough wind to give enough control to go about comfortably while the second was a bit too much for the amount of sail up.

Harrier has been tethered each time with a line tied to a stern gunport to allow it to be retrieved when things either got nervous or the I was caught on a lee shore and pushed into the weeds.IMG_1544.thumb.JPG.40bca0a7179230675f1f1a79ff0402d9.JPG

Some strong gusts in the second outing put a decent heel on and caused some worry that she might not right, but up she came. She took water through the gunports but the hatches only shipped a small amount of water. I'll work on water tightness. 

IMG_1547.thumb.JPG.f3ea0102337927da4972c05499eb0e85.JPGIMG_1545.thumb.JPG.5fbec18075941a41168cc857aa7e27f0.JPGThere's a bit more ballast testing to be done yet. I've had the ballast pipe keel set about 20cm below the keel and it'll be a matter of trial o see how far up I can raise it while maintaining stability. I've also been experimenting with a temporary centreboard to see what effect it has. The jury is still very much out on all this.

Theres a lot to get to grips with here, but as one lakeside spectator said 'practice makes perfect'.




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Rigging line is on the way thanks to a fellow modeller with a ropewalk. This will replace the temporary rig up at present. 

While I'm waiting for this some of the cosmetic fittings have got some attention.

The carronade slides have been made.

The elevation screws are threaded brass rod with the turning handles brass rod though a drilled styrene tube section. The pic below shows the plastic rod with turning handles ready for mass production for the 16 guns. Painting is next up but the guns won't be installed until rigging line has arrived and they can be rigged off the vessel.


Anchors have also been cut and filed from clear acrylic left over from the rudder extension. This cuts on a bandsaw and is easily filed to shape. They will have brass sheet flukes and a wooden stock.

There will be two bowers and a smaller stream anchor. 



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Congratulations Timmo!  She's beautiful.  Those gusts feel like they're deliberately messing with you, don't they.


Did you manage any video at all?


About those gusts...

I reverted to only controlling the tops'l yards, cutting out direct control of the course yards.  I'll have working bunts and clews on the courses to brail them up (after pulling the wire from the sleeve at the foot), and the t'gallants and royals will be removable, yard and all.  I'd  make  that stays'l brailable if I were setting any.  I have two tris'ls, or spencers on gaffs that brail up in lieu of stays'ls that may or may not get set if the air's very light, but their sheets aren't controlled.  The trick is not only having options in sail configurations, but options you can implement at the water's edge.


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Thanks Jerry. No video as yet as I've been a bit busy try not to lose control to wave the camera at it for longer than a few seconds. It'll come.


The topgallants are removeable and the topmast staysail in the middle there is uncontrolled but can be brailed down to limited sail area. I've got her set up like this and now the wind has disappeared entirely.


I'm still considering putting reef points in the topsails to give a few more options. There's still the fore course to be made also.

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Here's a Jimmy James sketch of Jack-Line reefing, some call French Reefing.  It's a method used on real ships around the 1840's or so and can be seen in photos as late as the 1920's.   I didn't install such a set-up as I figure that if it's blowing too hard for tops'ls, it's blowing too hard to sail.  I have nothing to prove :)


A line is attached across the sail, typically at each reef point, making retro-fitting a sail easier without altering anything.  On a model you could use line that matched the sail's color to make it less visible, and put in regular reef-points for show.  The cringles are hooked to hold the sail up and out (think reefing tackle) and a jack-line is passed through the loops from front, over the yard to the back, back over the yard to the front and so on across the sail.  The jack-line's tied to the yard at either end.  You can CA some of the end of the jack-line to make a sort of needle to help thread it.  It's a LOT simpler and easier to do and undo on a model than tying far too many reef-points than any human mind could endure.


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Thanks Joe. Guns are finished and ready to be shown off when rigging line arrives. Likewise anchors.  The only other bits to make are the pumps, which should be pretty simple.


Gerry, thanks for that sketch on the reeking arrangement. I like it a lot and will likely use it. Tying individual reeding lines was looking impractical and had been preying on my mind. 

Its a cracking day here and a gentle breeze is promised so hopefully I'll get her on the water again this afternoon once duties at kids' sports matches are finished. 

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Harrier has been sailing for a while now but I've finally got her how I wanted her with some modifications to improve yard rotation and hence windward ability and also the cosmetics like gun and other rigging. 

Also, I've got evidence that she sails uploaded to youtube, (check my other vids and you can also see my recently built cedar canoe that's kept me from ship modelling for a bit).


Thanks to all who offered advice and knowledge, whether you knew it or not, and provided actual bits for her. It wouldn't have happened without you.







Harrier cleared for action.




The deck hatches lines offering access to the radio gear disappear at the right angles. You can see the rear hatch to the left in this shot and the clear tape that's used to seal them before sailing. After many attempts to get a self sealing hatch with rubber seals this was far easier and more effective.





The tiller is functional with the lines coming from a drum servo below decks and pulling it to either side. The wheel, however, is static as it felt like one more thing to go wrong and a little fragile. It's nice watching the tiller swing under a ghost helmsman's hand.










Sailing into the sunset. I've got plans scaled for a 1/36 Enterprize class 28-gun frigate and might start on some smaller pieces of that in near future. However, if the bank balance allows this year I'll crack into my real dream of a 1:1 sailing dinghy. Time for the real thing.

Thanks for following this drawn-out build.


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4 hours ago, jwvolz said:

The video is fantastic Wayne, really shows all the work you put into her. Well done!


Thanks Joe. It's a pretty light breeze and lots of unscale-like bobbing in that vid compared to when she's running her best in a consistent wind with sails bellied. However that's when more concentration is needed and I can't pick up the phone to film.

She's a great talking point. When I had her out yesterday for a couple of hours I had a steady procession of four individual gents who each had to know all about her. One thing I've found is it brings ship modelling to a wider public and that can't be a bad thing. One said he'd he'd often thought of picking up modelling that he'd last done as a kid. He was daunted by the thought of something like this, but the great thing this site and the people here teach you about modelling is that it's just a series of small tasks and problems that when solved add up to something bigger- eating a the proverbial elephant one bite at a time and all. 


Also....Looking at your Cruiser... I think the foc'sle and aft platforms you've got on Sophie look really good and are more typical for the class from what I could find.  The need to get at a moving tiller for potential repair ruled it out for me. The Sophie you've created is a lovely, purposeful looking ship, but I am biased, having a daughter by that name. 

I couldn't call mine that for fear of being accused of favouritism, as much as I like the O'Brien novels. 

I hope our builds coincide on another subject. You've been a good mate through it all.

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Thanks Wayne. I've enjoyed the ride through Granado and Sophie. Going New England fishing schooner next with MS Benjamin W. Latham, so we may be diverging a bit!

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On 15 August 2019 at 1:16 AM, Deperdussin1910 said:

Brilliant!!!  I can't believe I missed this build??  I have a stalled RC 1/24 scale brig build.  You've given me hope that servo arms can work for the main and fore.  Winch servo set up is what stalled me.  Thank you.


Servo arms would probably be easier than drums if you have the room in the hull to get the length of pull needed. Keeping tension on the lines on a drum can be problematic. Have a look at Jerry Todds' build logs for some mechanical inspiration.

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