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Decided to make my own shrouds


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Hello all,


Well I'm seriously thinking to make my own shrouds and ratlines because the own from my kit dont look so very nice and i think it would be a cool experience to do it for myself. Some very friendly people here on the forum have given me allready some links to start out with it. And offcourse I search on google for more details on the ship im building at the moment (HMS Bounty 1:110 by Revell). 


Now the funny thing how shall I start and what shall I cut away, drill or glue hahaha. This is my second kit and my first sailing boat. So im really overwhelmed and maybe I make it too difficult for my first sailing boat....who knows.


Well I found some info in the book Anatomy of the ship HMS Bounty on how the shrouds are


fixed post-23820-0-81724100-1455633767_thumb.jpg


So this is what I should try to accomplish with with the scale in mind offcourse


And this is what I have:




Im thinking to leave the Forechannel, Chain and external planking as it is. Than maybe I could find away to connect the chain deadeye and lanyard to this piece.


I have found also the shop syrenshipmodelcompany where I could buy some stuff to try to make this. 

I was thinking to buy a bunch of 3mm deadeyes. But what kind of size rope for the Shrouds and ratlines is a big question for me.


So I share this whole story in the hope someone has some tips and maybe someone could tell me what size os rope would be good for the shrouds and ratlines. Maybe there are also people who think has done this on the Revell kit and can talk from experience how theye have done it.


Grtz Ray


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The Shrouds are a huge part of the hobby itself.  It must be in the top three issues most often talked about when people discus their ship models. Also it always represents a milestone in the construction of a ship model: Everything you build BEFORE tackling the shrouds are usually woodworking projects. Nearly everything AFTER the shrouds becomes a rigging project and little woodworking happens after this point. So the topic always becomes an issue, and many model projects stall at this point and are never completed. I say this to warn you that if this is your second model you must prepare for a difficult and time consuming job ahead. But everyone on Model Ship World will be happy to help you when you have questions.

Edited by JerseyCity Frankie
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I can see this part is very difficult and your answer makes me even more affraid t start with it. But i think it is an important part that makes a ship looks even more finished. I think also if you never try it you will never learn it. On the ither hand it would be cool to finish my first sailing boat before i destroy one. Im not ready to start with the shrouds yet i havent finished the deck even. But i thought lets start gather a some information before i start with it. Im also not in a hurry to finsih this kit (it doesnt sial away by itself  ^_^ ). All informationis welcome and i will study. Even if I descide not to do it on this project I will do in with a future project because again I think it make a ship complete

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I think that if you decide to go with making your own shrouds you will probably want to go all the way and replace the deadeyes and chains with them.  You can probably still use the channels.  The pre-formed deadeyes do not really have the depth to use with rigging line.


As far as what size line to use, the question will be are you using the kit supplied thread or will you purchase or make your own rope?  Usually these kits only supply three sizes of thread.  If you do use the kit thread, use the largest for the shrouds and probably the smallest for the ratlines.


If you are buying your deadeyes and rope, there are general rules of thumb regarding the sizes.  Some of the reference material mentioned in your other posts will have this information. But in general, deadeyes were half of the maximum diameter of their masts.  Shroud sizes can be calculated as a certain fraction of the main stay (which was the largest line in the standing rigging), or if you find a table of rigging sizes specific to your vessel ( I have most often seen these published tabulated by vessel tonnage).


I am in the process of replacing the kit supplied  deadeyes and chains on my build.  I should have some pics of the process I used uploaded in the next few days.  I am sure you can find others who have done this with their builds here in the forums.



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Thanks again for your answer. I tried to find some of the reference material and some I could find as ebook. Plus I measured the mast of my mast and a deadeye of 3mm and a smaller one from 2mm should do the job. 


Regarding the sizes of line I got 2 packages in my kit one green and one black but both with the same size. so for the shrouds and ratlines i thik they are useless. So I was thinking to buy some. But in my pdf on the anatomy of the bounty i cant find any reference regarding sizes of rope or deadeyes. For that I will try to makae some more searches and start reading the books I bought from Amazon about rigging, hopefully I can find something.


Do you know if one can order pre-made chains?

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Hi MTaylor,


Yes there are drawings in 1:96 and a list of dimensions but nothing mentioned about the deadeyes or thickness of lines like throuds or ratlines. I was actualy thincking to rescale the drawings i have just by measuring and calculate to 1:110 (which is the scale of my kit) and use the sizes of ratlines and shrouds as mentioned in the Victory thread.


At chucks company I found some nice deadeyes at 2 and 3 mm which seems like a good size if I measure the mast and take the half as Popeye2sea mentioned 3mm seems to be the half size.


Now the next adventure would be find some chain and find a way to fix. 


Im sorry for all those rookie questions. Maybe what I want to do is a bit to difficult for a rookie but I like it to try to make it beautifull. But everybody thanks for the patience and help this keeps me going on. 

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So comming back on the ratlines and shrouds im thinking the following


For the throuds i think i will order 0.63 and for the lower ratlines 0.30 and upper 0.20 (all in mm im from europe originally ;) ) I will order this and some deadeyes from Chucks company as you mentioned. 


The material from Dafi's is for the Victory i beleive so im not really sure if this would do the job for my Bounty

Edited by Ray1981
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I took a look at the tables in The Art of Rigging and for a ship rigged vessel of about 300 tons the Main Shrouds would be 7 inch rope (circumference) and the ratlines would be 1 inch.  If you go down to a 200 hundred ton ship the shrouds are 6 inch.  Not sure what the tonnage of Bounty was.


So, 7 inch rope is 2.2 inch diameter, at your model scale is 0.02 inch (0.5mm)

and 1 inch rope is 0.3 inch diameter, at your scale is 0.003 inch(0.07mm)


So you see what I mean about the ratlines on the pre-formed stuff being way too thick.


The laniards for the deadeyes are half the diameter of the shrouds.


Not sure if anyone supplies iron stropped deadeyes, or the chains and backing links.


All that being said, since this is your first foray into shrouds and ratlines, don't let all this minutiae intimidate you and cause you to stop your build.  I am one of those crazy people who love the rigging of these ships and I tend to go a little nuts with the detail on my build.

Do whatever is comfortable for you, and enjoy your build.



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Hey Popeye2sea again thanks a lot. I ordered some stuff from syren model ship company. The Bounty had a tonnage 400 Tons so I ordered


0.63mm and 0.20mm this is not exactly the right stuff but as we spoke about it is my first time lets try it to do first i think. Later I can be a more perfectionist everything on its time i think,


I ordered as well 3 and 4 mm deadeyes and 3 mm hooks and 2.5mm rigging blocks. Maybe some things a a bit out of scale I know. I'll see how it goes in the worst case Ill have to save it for a future project.


Thanks again for all your help. I hope to see soon some pictures of your work and offcourse when I'll start with this job I will post some pics.


Grtz Ray

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Well after long long long time thinking I decided not to make my throuds and ratlines by myself. Im really affraid that I will destroy everything. I have ordered the Le Glorieux from Heller which will arrive soon. This is going to be my next project and with that kit I appearantly need to make them myself. So i thik that would be a better start. 


I think this next kit will be a very difficult one for me but thats cool I really look forward to start with it. I think I will make a build log on that ship as I cant find any information on that kit here on the forum so maybe its cool for others to see this kit here on the forum.


Anyhow thanks a lot for the help I got a lot information in this thread 


Grtz Ray

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I agree with some posts here. The shrouds are in of themselves(along with the backstays) a modeling project all by themselves.  You can approach their installation in the same manner as you did with painting the fine scroll work or cannon work on your vessel.  It's simply lacing lines to form semi-rigged structures.  Work the lowers first or one mast at a time....what ever you do, establish a *Method* that works for you.  Personally I rig the shrouds for a single mast first...then the next mast and so on.  Then I tackle the ratlines...one mast at a time...in short..I compartmentalize my efforts..so the entirety of the shroud install process doesn't become to overwhelming.


Good luck in the next faze of your build.



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  • 1 month later...



I used the Anatomy of the ship book to build my airfix bounty and am sure there is a table in the back giving all rope and cable sizes for each item of the rig along with the block size. Then it was a bit of maths to get the thread size.


The Revell shrouds are awful and you will find it both easier and more rewarding to make your own. At that scale (Airfix kit, I believe is 1:87) I would keep the chain plate, cut off the dead eyes above ( and put to one side) and bits below, drill holes through where the dead eyes were, run the shrouds down from the mast heads, through the holes in the chain plate and into holes drilled into the hull where the bits below the chain plate would of attached. Then glue the kit deadeye moulded assemblies onto the shrouds. It will look even better if you can file a small groove into the back of the moulded dead eyes to except the thread.


This method, calculating the threads required and making of own deadeyes if you should want to go even further, are explain in the Noel C L Hackney books I mentioned on your other thread.






Edited by Thunder
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