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Cutter Abythistos by Ioannis - RADIO - Scale 1.48 - Finished

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Dear forumarrow-10x10.png and modelers
Scratch build ABYTHISTOS –French 1784- was really a dreamarrow-10x10.png for me.
The building Idea has come 3 years ago while me and my son were watching photos and video from R/c models, and old time ships.
Yea I used to have a 2 mast wooden ship but I was not the builder ,I knew how to sail her how paint her and repair any engine easy damage but build one? how do we start? …sure from keel but then?…
Thanks to all peoplearrow-10x10.png on this forum that keep on writing giving ideas tips solutions, and answers
I have spend almost a month reading and watching your articles and tips before I decide to build my project
I have found scanned on the internetarrow-10x10.png a collection of plans
Easy to imagine .Difficult to build ?
What wood or other material to use for a certain part on the ship on the other hand. from where do we start? A plan to begin and a thought how is going to be at the end?
manual skills required patents
and ingenuity but most of all, patience
A cutter, nice curves with single deck one mast and less construction details comparison with a warship

CUTTERS de 4 CARONADE de 12 [1784]
I have acquired a set of plans body, sheer ,half breadth to start plus a general plan for riggings I choose enlarge photo method you can alter plans to any size you desire, then copy to a memory stick and, you have as much copies as you need for photo copying
But important point ,the lines on the original drawing must be very fine


LOA:0.73 cm bowsprit included
LBP:0.44 cm
MAX,BREADTH :0.17,5cm
MAST HEIGHT measured from deck roof :0.65 cm
Bowsprit length:0.21 cm
DRAFT Keel to white waterline :0.15 cm ,
Water line to upper deck top rail :0.10cm
Watertight compartments 3
1 electric motor 6v , 1 gig LOA 0.10cm
4 Sails./ 2 anchors continental type18th century/
1 French gun x18pounder

First day I bought various strait pieces of wood and finally
After watching a lot of dif ships plans I decided the cutter
The build method I used I call it COPY-PASTE

Choosing the keel, a strait piece of wood [beam]0.80 mm thick
Lots of calculations with Microsoft world program till I reduce the plan dimensions from the original minimize to the desired plan and also couple of photocopies I will need them to cut and glue on wood pieces so I have exactly similarity according to original ships plans

More building details I took also from other similar cutter ships

KEEL assemblage

The backbone of the whole ship. It also includes the rudder post and the stem mounted together with glue and a dowel
Small angle pieces of wood vertical installed on keel as floor will secure in place the ribs-frames.

Keel assemblage procedure finished
next step I made an adjustable keel holder using a baseboard and 2 aluminum angle to snug the keel as picture below


I made my own carpenters wood saw machine simply and cheap way without limits
I used an electrical hand saw with RPM adjustment
And screw it at the 4 hole edges of its base as photo below
Mine has open holes at the metal basein case there are not in yours just remove the base [allen screw usually used]and make the necessary holes with your drill

Tightly fasten with screw or chuck the two ends of an angle iron or wood ,parallel to blade and set your cutting mm distance according to desired
There are 2 types of blade Choose long blades. And For hard wood try iron blade and not the blade type for wood REMEMBER start slowly with low RPM don’t rush and .in case of hard wood also lubricate the blade with oil drops.[i use a wet with transparent -no cooking- oil
piece of cloth] You may destroy the first wood piece till you find the better way but when you do you will be rewarded
…sand paper will do the rest
and don’t forget to remove wood dust close to blade after, use
I have not used plank from storehouse Timber balsa wood is soft and fragile for planking
unknown behavior to sea water
Seawater ?
Yes me and my son wanted to sail with
So I need harder and good quality wood
Dry furnished Pitch pine medium hard long fibred tough doesn’t break easily with the tip I mention before I manage to cut several 2mm thick planking
good white glue quality 2 types express and waterproofpost-20953-0-52525600-1438353388.jpg


Making frames copy paste method with cheap plywood…
A keyhole saw is good for accurate plywood cutting
A triangle piece of plywood has been removed from the interior of each frame so I can freely move my fingers between
George my son came forward as volunteer to help me cut out frames –piece of cake- he said.
Well he did well but I had to cut 4 pieces twice due to his badly cut
The above picture 7 shows how does the frame look like after I have cut them to right size
With some careful sanding the resulting pieces are nice and accurate
On the same picture 7 you can see the frame on top and middle of witch I drilled a hole [blue arrow]
I have discovered a new method to connect frame with keel
Picture below –a long machine screw will connect at middle all frames top
Assembling the stern with frames most difficult for me
Due to the curvature
stern has been cutted for propeller use
even my wife’s clothespin in use

Plank on frame
Plank bending has been made with the simply way of ,wetting them first
And place them later bowing and buckling on the wooden board with rustproof nails
Holding the plank in position on the model while the glue dries is a test for my nerve
by the way thats my roof garden next to my small workshop
post-20953-0-93805000-1438460718_thumb.jpgpost-20953-0-53345800-1438503013_thumb.jpgSome who favored the old ships

Thats from today ,during my trip i met this yacht waiting outside Hydra island Greece

a little further away and meeting herpost-20953-0-81337200-1438546583_thumb.jpgpost-20953-0-41359900-1438546596.jpg you can see the sailors up in masts

well thats  enough for today i have lots of things to do more .I must work my  solar oven also.


Im back

uffff..... in every step i must think about leaving space for servos motor shaft how to set up steering.Never did it again.The whole building is in my mind ,but next steps have been made longer


After placing frames things are getting better with hull planking. When job finish plywood frames will be removed and replaced by real wood pieces


Planking, clean work pleasant time lots of pinball holes



A small sandpaper machine will give a fine surface


Looks a bit ugly but timber is 2 mm thick,this ship is going to meet poseidon at see water so must avoid any bending

post-20953-0-66294800-1438892074.jpg post-20953-0-25078300-1438892221.jpg


Picture below showing

Extra strength

Small plywood supports have been set vertical between frames [as guides and stoppers] to avoid movements


Patience and ..planking finished

 Before I remove plywood frames I replaced them with new 2mm thick ribs made of curved solid wood [blue arrows picture above]

I did glue them tight to inner hull planking


Hull has completely covered by planking

I m starting to remove Plywood frames.Τhe inner part must be clear.

Now I have free space enough for motor shaft servos steering


I have painted  the internal with first a coat of white waterproof  glue and the next day a second coat of fat oil primer Before the  electric equipment  installation


The interior has been sealed’ I could also use polyester. 


Gives you hardness but also weight. 

Once I  made a small boat i used liquid polyester  it smells awful and also its hazardous



Now sitting on a chair I’m holding the ship on one hand

On the other hand a special bosh  electric tool  a handy multi sander

and rolling it slowly with low rpm in all around the sides

don’t forget wood planking is tough for this timber

last sanding and my hands replaced the tool by a very thin sand paper 180 grit so at the end of the day I had the desired smooth shape

Now I have got strength to continue

I will need to putty the body but that’s not urgent

I kept some wood dust I will need it later. to make my own colored putty

Hmm ,,midnight again and everybody on this house went to sleep  all ? no ..except..my partnerships  2westy dogs  watch carefully every step i do  Quiet.. time… to consider my next steps…post-20953-0-63672200-1438894539.gif


Deck construction


I forgot to mention that deck beam supports  of wood have been added at all around last upper planking

Beams will guide me and support the roof deck later


A plywood piece of 1.3mm thick took place as deck flat base on top of which I did glue with fine barbeque round wooden meat  sticks --wonderful result ideal for decks you may try it--

The special bosh multi sander with 100 grit first  180 later sand paper gave me the desired flat  deck surface ready  to varnish



Deck  divided in 2 pieces for reasons of installation servo..moteur,,battery 


Forward deck piece is 1/3 of the whole length glued to beams

Aft deck piece 2/3 of the total length can be easily remove

With 4 inox screw of 6mm



Time for putty and ballast keel

as ballast a weight of 1.2 kg 0.8mm thick long lead[yellow line under ship]

glued with epoxy and 3 inox screw under wooden keel

and under the lead a thin false keel 2mm has been added to protect the lead




this plan showing how connected the steering wheel

post-20953-0-94752600-1439065766_thumb.jpg [red letters -hole fore secure pin -]

                                              [orange letters-   inox tubes or hard plastic filled with grease-]

I know i post pure and  sort details but i always hurry to do something else and my hands are still covered with glue.post-20953-0-96690700-1439067578.jpg CHEERS.

Edited by ioannis
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working hard the last days, :( mostly thinking how would i connect this :o ?? how shall i do with the gear. :o ??...searched arround the forum from similar constuctions i got :D  some ideas :D  and answers. :D

well  i helped by George and even my wife,so ^_^  i saved time running to next levels

D7 Start placing electric equipment ,connections and steering




Orange arrows>Sponge type rubber self glue in all around under deck line. will make the void  space water tight

Black arrow>a small motor 6 v mounted on the white gear which gives a funny noise while rolling.

the white gear is connected with a shaft

Green arrow>>double arm steering bracket connect via tens ropes with the circular top  of servo

Yellow arrow>> servo top head

Blue arrow>>a stainless  steel dowel cross vertically the bracket connecting the rudder

Red arrow>>nut grommet with ball bearing and O-ring

Orange arrow 




I made  the aft part of deck[2/3 of the total  deck length] removable  so I can watch servos rudder and motor

Yellow lines shows the part of deck that can easily  be placed or remove



4 red arrows shown you the point where 4 screw 6 mm push through the deck  and place nuts on end of the screws

[4 nuts –bolt are  correspondingly  placed vertically on top of 4 beams under the deck]



Tighten the screws but not too tight ,the rubber which is glued under deck seal firmly the deck roof



D8  picture above show

Removable deck capsized,

black color self glue  sponge rubber


Deck details and decoration


i have not

place a high priority on the accurate reproduction

I need time for smallest details



A miniature cannon added - sorry no records  to show you how its been made before ships construction-

As I have seen from historical pictures looks like a

French 18 pounder gun 1740 to 1830.


Picture showing changes I made

Yellow arrow- hatch cover cut is larger than original top can be removed so I can insert and connect battery and receiver


Time is out . :P work now :( 


post-20953-0-59218400-1439323852.jpg comments are free :angry:  :angry:



Edited by ioannis
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D9 picture, details


A plastic

Box has exactly  inserted inside  and sealed with silicon

Battery and receiver will store inside

Green arrow

​ post-20953-0-55236800-1439499888.jpg

showing round waterway witch need to be replaced with a quadrangle type water way in future

Red arrow


 showing  one of the 2 drums covered with thin rope -looks like round bollards –a 6mm long machine  screw is fitted inside each drum

This drum will also use as fairlead connecting servo and main sail

Black   arrows

 shows a beam transversely installed on deck as a slide way and stopper for the removable deck

 blue arrow  rigging- binding



Mast  details- D10 picture-

Mast and bowsprit  are made from iroko  timber I found long sized 1.5m [octagonal shape] pieces at carpenters shop they use these to join and glue  furniture Pieces like chairs..tables,,

With a drills help I made them circular

As seen picture below the  mast  drill the deck through a [snotter] taper and the mast step  sit  on a snotter right over keel


To add a slight contrast I used other wood mahogany type to construct pieces such as

Mast taper ,blocks, dead eyes ,mast snotter, channel…..

On driver boom jaws  I used  copper bands

Between main mast, boom and jaws Teflon grommet has fitted red arrow on D10  picture ,so Boom or gaff can rapidly change direction  according  the way wind is blowing 



on gaff jaws I used copper bands and a copper ring on main mast, D11 red arrows

  blue arrow shows point that  jaws  bended with rope


futtock stave is made from a wooden spar -blue arrow


well enough for this now ,I must test  the solar oven 


so see you>>>


Edited by ioannis
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Hi Ioannis


Nice work! You're really pushing ahead quickly with your cutter. At the rate you're going, it won't be long before you'll be able to set sail on her maiden voyage.


The masts and sails look good, as is the Teflon ring to ensure the smooth travel of the boom from port to starboard. The plastic box to protect the receiver and batteries is also a great idea, I wish I had thought of that when I had my RC boats, but then again, it's all good in retrospect, isn't it.


Looking forward to the next update.





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