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HM Sloop Fly by AnobiumPunctatum - a POF model in scale 1:32

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The Swan Class Sloop and I have as some of you know a longer history. Two years ago I started my build log for the build in 1/48. A few month later I had to stop the build because I got some problems with my eyes. At the beginning of this year I started again. I decided to change the scale of my build to 1/32.
I hope that some of you are intersted in my build and like to follow my log.

So let's start again

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Docmuents (I will update the list during my build):

NMM drawings:

  • ZAZ4667: Line & inboard profile, decoration of 'Fly'
  • ZAZ4669: Lower & Platform Decks of 'Fly'
  • ZAZ4670: Quarter and Upper deck plan of 'Fly
  • ZAZ4691: Disposition of Frames of 'Cygnet'


  • David Antscherl, "The Fully Framed Model, HMN Swan Class Sloops 1767-1780", Volume 1 - 4
  • David Antscherl, "Swan class sheer and profile, scale 1:48", corrected frames
  • Allan Yedlinsky: Scantlings of Royal Navy ships
  • David White: Understanding ship draughts
  • David Antscherl: Understanding Eighten-Century Admirality drafts
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Part 1 Reconstruction of the hull lines


David Antscherl wrote in his wonderful series about th Swan Class Sloop, that there are a lot of smaller differences between the ships of the class, for example the knee of the head of Fly.
As first decision for my new start I decided not to use the general lines, which David has published. I want to do my own reconstruction. The naval cutter was a first exercise for this project. In January I started with the reconstruction. At the end of February I had a first version of my body plan, which matchs the lines of the historical drawing very well.



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To check the lines I started to build a half model. For the frames I use 3mm birch plywood, it's for a model in 1/32 perhaps a little small, but I've had a bigger batch at home. All space between the frames I fill with poplar plywood. It's easy to shape but stable enough for the purpose.
I glue the drawngs with rubber cement on the ply woord



With a sharp knife I mark every 5' line. The picture shows frame 0:




All bulkheades and the center are cutted out. The hull has a length of around 1m, which is not as big compared with the new 1/200 model kits of the WWII battle ships.




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With the build of my control model I started at the end of March.

The edges of all frames I've colored black. This will be later a great help by sandig the hull.
The glued surface of the cant frames is very small, so I've glued first plywood stripes on the center board.
To get the correct alignment the colored 5' marks on the frames and the center board are a great help.



First half of frame 0


Six frames have been installed.




At this time I've started to glue the filling pieces of polar plywood between the frames. I've used a chess board pattern to avoid the distortion of the frames.



Until the mid of April I've installed all frames and filling pieces from the center to the stem on the stem.
The next two pictures show the result of the work. It's looking very horrible





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Then I've started sanding the hull. I've used 60 grid until 120 grid sandpaper for the process. After around one week - I can only work on my model in the evening or at the weekends- I've finished the front half of my control model.
I am very happy with the result







To check the curves I use 1mm thick stripes of maple. The found differences are very small. So I think that my reconstruction will work for the checked range.









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Thanks Johann, druxey, Mike and Nils for your nice comments and all others for the Likes


Next I've installed all bulkheads until frame 20 and the filling pieces.6136376639663438.jpg




Then my favourite pastime - sanding :rolleyes:





Edited by AnobiumPunctatum
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The transoms can not be derived directly from my reconstruction of the body plan.In the half breath plan of the orioginal drawing the form of each timber is indeed located, but does not fit properly on the corrected design. Before starting for the next step I have taken these lines and adjust them so that they match up with my design and also with the position of transoms in Sheer plan.
Subsequently the transoms were transferred to 3mm plywood, sawn and glued on the control model. I 've filles the gaps as usual with poplar plywood. After sanding the area looks like in the following pictures:








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This is the current stand of my reconstruction. As you see on the pictures I've need some putty after sanding. This has two reasons.

  1. I've sanded to much on frame 20
  2. The lines for the transoms have some smaller mistakes.

During the last month I've redrwan the transoms. Also I've corrected a small mistake of the maximum breath in this area. In the moment I add the counter timbers to my drawing and complete the half model to check the revised design.

Edited by AnobiumPunctatum
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Welcome on bord, Antony


The completion of the hull of my control model in the region behind the last frames has attracted much longer than expected.
When planning the last phase of the construction I realized that the body plan of the original drawing and therefore my reconstruction at the top of the last two frames is too narrow. So back to the drawing board and the frames 19 and 20 newly constructed. The hull at frames 20 is now about 1 mm wider in the region of maximum breath than originally. With the help of several buttok lines and the new water lines I have also redesigned the transoms

I haven't add all changes on the test hull, so you can see in the pictures the not entirely harmonious course of the lines.



The first step of my little project -the reconstruction of the lines- is complete.

In between, I have asked myself several times whether the construction of the half-model was even necessary. After the problems in the reconstruction of the transoms and fashion pieces, that define the shape of the stern, have identified, the construction of the test model was more than worth. I am happy to have the mistakes now and not found during the construction of the POF model.

In the next few weeks I'll construct keel, frames and all other components that are needed to build the hull. In autumn I like to start the construction of the POF model. Until then, one last picture which shows the side view of the test hull.



Edited by AnobiumPunctatum
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  • 2 weeks later...

Beautiful lines Christian!!


Are you actually meausuring the hull and translating those to your CAD draws? Specially on the stern and fashion pieces.


Willing to see all those ribs together when you´ll start with the POF work.




Best wishes and happy summer!




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Welcome on board, Daniel. The work on the llines is finished. In the moment I work on the disposition of frames drawing.

It's very interesting to compare the Cygnet drawing with the Shipbuilders Repository and Steel to get the thickness of the different timbers. And the to compare this with David's results.

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  • 2 weeks later...

In the moment I am working on a corrected disposition of frames drawing for my sloop

The basis are


  • DOF of Cygnet (ZAZ4691)
  • Dimensions given in "The Ship Builders Repository", 1788 (1)
  • Dimensions given in Steel "The Element and Practice of Naval Architecture", 1805 (1)
  • Antscherl TFFM, Volume 1


(1) The dimensions I took from Allan Yedlinsky "Scantlings of Royal Navy Ships 1719-1805". The original books are unfortunately to expansive for my hobby budget.


The different timbers for the keel and the knee of the head, I took from David's book. I only adapt these to the other proportions.


After a lot of measurements in the DOF of Cygnet and comparing with the given dimensions, I decided to follow Steel. I am really surprised how well the frames fit to the original drawing. If you compare the numbers of the sweep ports with the original drawing, yo see that there is one port missing, because it was not shown on the As built drawing.




In the moment I am drawing the cant frames, which is much easier as by my second project. :D

Edited by AnobiumPunctatum
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  • 2 weeks later...

Today it rained all day, so I had enough time to finish the design of the cant frames



The Bollard Timbers and Hawse Pieces are missing to complete the planning of  framework.
The individual components and the frames I'll draw later during the build.

Next, the construction of the two-stage slipway is on the ToDo list, then I can lay down the keel for the model.

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Hello Cristian,


Very nice drawings.  Getting the correct shape for the cant frames in the sheer plan view can be tricky business.  Did you approximate these or use the actual profiles for this.  The process I use for this is to construct the cant frame profile using waterlines along its line on the half breadth plan.  Compressing the horizontal breadth of the cant frame profile to the fore and aft distance from its intersection at topside to the intersection point on the deadwood then yields an accurate shape in the sheer plane view.  These sheer plane views are mainly for aesthetics, but constructing them is an interesting exercise in 2D CAD - even more interesting if you are manually drafting these.  A similar process can be used to accurately represent the shape in the body plan.  I found this helpful in lofting hawse timbers.


Lovely work.



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Thank you. I use also the waterlines of the half breath plan. I am sure that's a lot more work to draw this manually because it was more than enough work with my CAD.



These sheer plane views are mainly for aesthetics


You're right. But it made a lot of fun to do this exercise.

Also I had some points I want to check with the drawing. On the Half Breath Plan were only the positions and angles of every second cant frame given. I wanted to check the reconstrction of the other cants. What's with the position of the gun ports? WHich cant frames do I have to shift? Is every timberhead given in the Sheer and Profile drawing on top of a frame?


If I compared the position of the timberheads given in the Sheer and Profile of Fly and in the DOF plan of Cygnet, I found some alterations, for example at the fore cants. I wanted to check the consequences for the frame design.



I've checked the position of all timberheads of the Sheer and Profile drawing and my reconstruction again. At the after cant frames I found two timberheads whose position do not really match with my cants. The position of the other four timberheads is ok.

So I think to change my design will not solve the problem.

What do you think is the better solution? To move the timberhead or to add a timber between the frames and not to change the position.



Thanks for your interest and hints, which I really appreciate.

Edited by AnobiumPunctatum
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I can only try to answer your questions based on what I learned doing the Naiad drawings and from reading (and rereading, and rereading) Steel and the Repository on preparing drafts.  These texts are virtually identical.  As I understand the process for placing cant frames, it is as follows - in my words:


1.      Determine the number of aft cant timbers (pairs)between the fashion piece and the last square frame.


2.      On the half breadth plan set the aft edge of the forward section of the fashion piece (the aftermost cant frame) on a line from its joint face on the end of the wing transom to a point on the deadwood.  This point on the deadwood must allow just enough space aft of the last square frame to fit the inside ends of all the cant frames.


3.      This line is usually the joint line between the forward and aft parts of the fashion piece pair.  The aft section of this frame normally fits under and supports the wing transom.  On larger ships there may be more fashion pieces aft of this pair.


4.      On the half breadth plan, from the above line, set off equal spaces on the maximum breadth line to the joint line of the last square frame – one for each cant frame pair.


5.      Set of the same number of spaces on the deadwood.


6.      Draw in the lines of the cant frame pairs between these points and the points on the deadwood.


7.      Individual frames of each pair are then placed on either side of these lines so as to provide air space and to accurately define the sides of gun ports in the cant frame area.  On multi-deck ships, some jogging of the toptimbers may be necessary - as with square frames at times.


8.      By locating the sides of the ports from the sheer plan, the frames on either side can be accurately place on the half breadth plan.


9.      The cant frames can then be lofted by taking dimensions to waterlines along the cant frame faces.


The forward cant frames are drawn in the same way once the forward fashion piece is placed at the aft edge of the hawse timbers.  Care must be taken to eave adequate space along the deadwood to seat all the frames.


Another way of looking at this is to set the joint line points on the half breadth at the intersection with the numbered frame lines.  Some of Steel’s examples show the lines intersecting these points.  Both methods give very similar results.


As far as timberheads are concerned, I believe these were normally formed on the heads of the toptimbers that were left longer,  above the top of the side – for strength.  I would not be surprised to see anomalies on the drafts.  It would not be the first I have seen.


I hope this is helpful.



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