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HMS Agamemnon by ETNZ - Caldercraft - first wood build


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Just opening a build log to get me underway. The kit is still in Auckland having travelled from Australia. I think I am in for a reasonable tax bill before Customs release her. It has been a week now and I am getting impatient to get the call from the post office to collect my hernia. That is not what I am nicknaming her yet, simply that I have heard the kit is very heavy. I read Mobbsie's build log. And once I saw the ship in the case I wandered what I had got myself into. It is huge! However, off to work to pay for the tax now. I shall update the log when I get it.

 

All the best everyone.

 

Eric

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Well Eric, in for a penny, in for a pound! I am envious, I am tempted to try this beauty, but I know it will try my paitence. Keep reading the logs and collect the needed tools and continue to ask for help when needed. And take pictures - lots of pictures!

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Well, she has berthed in Matamata after a brief sourjourn with Customs and Excise. So tomorrow, opening photos of the complete kit as I check the content followed by a base board and then the keel. Wish me luck.

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post-19810-0-92007100-1433622777_thumb.jpg

 

Thanks Mike, my research so far has been to find out how to build this model and do service to the kit. Anyway, it finally arrived at my offices on Friday and I opened it on Saturday morning. This will bore some but I was just checking the parts off before starting anything.

 

Our dining room table is one metre wide and three metres long just to put the photo in context.

 

The wobbly edges were my fault as it was my format panoramic photo on my phone too. A day of firsts!

 

I shall update with photos as I go and to those that have gone before, please expect questions!

 

Best wishes to all

 

Eric

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First stage complete. Keel in place and first bulkhead. Photo to follow. The cut outs are not fantastic to be honest but then I didn't want it to be a simple matter of push fit and done, but one of the aft cut outs is rediculously out of true. I shall spend the week working through them and then start gluing the bulkheads tried up with bulldog clips.

 

A question for anyone who has made this vessel, is the rabbet line cut after dry fitting to get the line where the end of the bulkheads run or is it not bothered with on this model? There is no mention of it in the instructions.

 

All the best,

 

Eric

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Slight issue with the main keel piece in that it is warped. Be this through storage, fumigation or what I don't know. The build board helps but I am concerned that once out it will resume pretending that it was made out of banana wood rather than birch ply! I had hoped gluing the false keel on would assist but apparently not. It wA easy to flatten with the aid of a panel pin onto the board but you guessed it sprang back to its delicate curvature on release.

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Hi Eric,

 

I had the same problem with my Aggy and I know for a fact that others suffered also.

 

The way I got over the problem was to keep the keel in the build board, once your happy with the fit of the bulkheads I removed them and drilled a 1/4" hole through them on both sides.

 

I then fitted the bulkheads back onto the keel and squared them off and glued them in, once the glue was dry I pushed a dowel through the holes drilled in the bulkheads and glued it in place. I found this cured my problem and I didn't have any further issues with the keel.

 

That may help you mate.

 

Be Good

 

mobbsie

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Eric, the other solution is to ask for a new one from Caldercraft.  They may hum and har a bit but will likely be willing to replace.  The warp on the keel of my Diana/Jason kit was at the bottom (as painfully shown in my log), so glueing up the bulkheads/false deck would not solve the issue.  I lost a good few months trying out different options, but very glad a replaced it in the end.  Best of luck.

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Thanks Mobbsie and Jason for your thoughts on that one. The dowel option is far preferable for me Jason. Bio security here in NZ is such that I think my kit which was purchased from Australia was fumigated. I would have to wait an interminable time to obtain a replacement which could be equally damaged when I receive it. I considered buying a sheet of 5mm birch ply and copying the pattern off too.

Did you put a rebate on your keel Mobbsie? There appears to be no mention in the instructions. As it is an expert level kit, perhaps it is taken as read. I was considering a butt joint.

Cheers

 

Eric

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I think on second reading and establishing what a plank terminal piece is I have answered my own question! Bulkheads all glued in position and false cannon supports in place. I am thinking of a weathered deck which should be at least fifty shades of grey! Whoops wrong site! Seriously though, that grey weathered look is what I'm after. 'Weatherit' I understand has been removed from the market. has anyone tried household ammonia? Just a thought.

 

Cheers all

 

Eric

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Hi Eric,

 

Sorry for the delay in replying mate but life has a tendency to get in the way sometimes. 

 

Regarding your keel joints, I wouldn't go too fancy mate, when you've completed the second planking she will be coppered below the waterline and all will be covered.

 

I did cut a Rabbit but in all honesty it's not necessary, as I say its all going to be covered.

 

Now, weathering, I'm no expert so I really cant advise you in this area, you need to talk to Riverboat ( Frank ) on this issue, he is a grand master at weathering and I'm sure he will put you right.

 

Hope that helps mate

 

Be Good

 

mobbsie

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Thanks Mobbsie. No problem with delay. I understand all too well. I'll try Frank as you suggest. I am really enjoying this build. The shapes of the bulkheads and the developing shape are beautiful. I may change my opinion by the time I have got through the planking (but I somehow doubt it!).

 

Cheers Eric

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Hi Wayne, I think I've seen a post or two from you before elsewhere on the site. I hope you enjoy the build, I think you may have many years of ongoing pleasure as days are taken up at work plus evenings during the week, then stock and block over the weekend. Oh, not to neglect my wife, family and friends. Then there is the rugby too. That might end this weekend though! Go the mighty Chiefs!

I am playing with weathering the deck now as suggested by riverboat Frank. Mobbsie, the guy is a guru! I had thought of the tea but that was just a darkened, the steel wool and vinegar on the tannin in the tea will be a cracker I'm sure. Did I see mention on your build log of the correct length for the planks for decking ? I'll have to go back and check.

On the decking question, I have seen black cotton, pencil, black nylon fishing line and nothing but fresh air used as a representative caulk on decking. Anyone have any other brilliant ideas?

Enjoy the rest of your days wherever you are.

All the best

Eric T

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Hi Eric,

 

I'm pleased that Frank is able to help mate, he really is the best.

 

To answer your question regarding Caulking, I started to use a softish pencil, I would glue the plank in place and then run the pencil down the length of plank, the main problem with this is that when sanding down the lead can smudge the surrounding wood which is not the effect you want.

 

I now use black card or paper, I cut the length of plank and using PVA glue the paper/card to the plank, when dry cut the strip away from the main sheet and lightly sand the edge flush. This can then be glued to the deck, when your happy with the process it is possible to do 5/6 planks at a time.

 

Regarding scale planks, using scale planks on this beast is advisable, I cut my planks 120mm, that was the same for both hull and deck planks.

 

Have you given any thought to the Butt Joints, this is the stagger between each row of planks and the pattern repeats after 4/5 rows. Also the length of overlap of the Butt joints.

 

I would advise that when doing your treenails that you keep the sanding dust of your deck planking, when it comes to doing the treenails you can mix the sanding dust with a darker dust and when your happy with the result i.e. colour, apply this mixture into the holes drilled for the treenails.

 

I may be a bit previous here but these are questions that need to be given some thought.

 

Hopefully you have also sorted out the problem of the warped keel.

 

Hope this helps and hasn't confused you mate.

 

Be Good

 

mobbsie

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Hi Mobbsie. Thanks for that, I was trawling the build log and found the discussion on the second planking but would like to get the deck looking good too. As for tree nails, I wasn't going to bother. On a real wooden deck, they are barely visible. With the weathered deck option, it is even less necessary. I have fond the bow decking around the heads area and the tea and vinegar gave a lovely blue which I have sanded lightly to a more representative grey/silver.. Thebonys us that the stain picks up the plank edge and you get a natural caulk line.

 

Thanks for the decking ideas. The weekend looks foul. So apart from some domestic chores, Ii will try and get the cannon dummy carriers opainted and glued together with a few planks on the lower deck then I can get the cross beams in too ready for the main gun deck.. Oh the local rugby franchise is playing too so I'll have to watch that too!

 

Thanks again, all the best

 

Eric

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Well, the weather was as predicted. What wasn't was the cottage flooding and having to clear out the children's accumulated flat ting bits and bobs from university in order to assess the damage. I was also getting stuck into ripping out the fencing and realigning it with the drive to accommodate my new cattle yards which should be arriving this week. Still, posts are in and all I have to do now is the rail and wire work. This weekend?

 

Just starting the decking. I have decided to do two things. One cut the deck through the middle and two, go for a five plank pattern with a butt shift of 24 mm. This will give me six planks in length almost exactly. I didn't enjoy cutting the stack of planks and my self heal cutting mat suffered with not being able to heal. Too many cuts in the exact spot. Anyway, when just about to set too, the dog wagged his tail and knocked over the wife's tea. Wet planks and rapidly bending deck. Still, that was quickly sorted and I moved onto gluing in the deck supports.

 

Off to bed now, night all

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  • 2 weeks later...

Deck weathered and holy stoned . I like the effect and my thanks to Frank and Mobbsie for putting me in touch. Now to cut out the various mast holes etc. but here's some photos of the deck weathered overnight !post-19810-0-21082100-1435824756_thumb.jpgpost-19810-0-78778300-1435824786_thumb.jpgpost-19810-0-63178600-1435824820_thumb.jpg

 

These look more brown in the photo. The effect is a grey blue in fact. More anon everyone.

 

Take care

 

Eric

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Photography is a funny old thing, three pictures all of the same object and three different colours, I prefer the 3rd picture.

 

I'll tell you what though Eric it really looks nice, pity 99.5% of it is going to be covered up, still it's good practice mate.

 

With this standard of work your turning out mate your Aggy is going to be a corker, keep it up.

 

I hope work around the farm is going well, it seems to keep you busy, it does however allow some time for Rugby, strange that, no time for Cricket.

 

Be Good

 

mobbsie

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The main gun deck being covered so much was the main reason I gave it a go. Thank you both for your comments and I'll try and use my proper camera in daylight rather than my IPad in false lighting.

 

Mobbsie, I enjoy cricket too but I follow my old woodwork master who used to have it on the radio. It is so much better and relaxing that way. Rugger on the other hand is a full on spectator sport down here.

 

Onwards and upwards I'll get a bit more dome over the weekend.

 

All the best E

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Winlich, my apologies for the brevity of the post. Following the gluing of the deck planking, a butt shift of 24mm and repeat pattern of every fifth plank, the entire deck was painted with a fresh cup of tea. Actually this was a second cup of tea as the dog knocked the first one over my fresh cut planks and the deck base. I think that led to the deep variation in colour as I forced the drying on the aga top. I then painted the deck with a white vinegar and steel wool mix which turns the deck very blue. A rub down with fine sandpaper brings the colour back to a light silver grey. As this was the main gun deck as stated by Mobbsie, most of it will be covered but I wanted to see what it looked like. Top deck and poop should be a little lighter without the second dunking!.

 

My thanks for the recipie to Frank. A master ship builder and chemist sir. My thanks and appreciation.

 

All the best all. E

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