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Beginning to Do Some Seizing


mikiek
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Hi Everyone - before I get too far into seizing for my build I wanted to get a few things straight. I apologize as some of these questions are answered in bits and pieces elsewhere, but it would help me now to see it all in one place.

 

The build is 1813 Niagara at 1:64. The thread sizes supplied in the kit are (or at least claim to be) .008", .021", .028" and .051" .

 

1. Is there a rule regarding seizing thread size compared to what is being seized? I'm thinking at this scale, just use the smallest stuff I have?

 

2. Color. I've read twine or marlin (marline?) was used for real. But a quick search for marlin turns up all sorts of colors.

 

3. Do I use matching colors for seizing thread and the rope to be seized?  Or use 1 consistent color for everything?

 

4. Number of turns? This seems all over the board.

 

5. What book would get me closest to rigging done in that period?

 

Thanks.....

 

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An excellent question and an issue that is often one of my pet peeves about ship models. Too often the stuff used for seizings on models is grossly out of scale and draws attention to itself  by taking up too much space, by appearing way too fat and bulky. Seizings  and serving stuff and any kind of binding or lashing put onto a larger line are always made with small stuff considerably smaller than the line they are used on. You will never see something like a 2" thick line wrapped with something as large as a 1" line on an actual ship. Here is an example I pulled off the web with seizing stuff way too large and drawing attention to itself.The line marked #1 in the photo looks more like a giant sleeve. In reality it would blend into the contour of the line it was clapped onto. The stuff used in the photo on #1 looks as thick as one of the three strands of the lines it has been put onto, and this is way too thick. The line used in #2 is better. Aesthetically I like the seizings to be a slightly lighter or darker color of the line it is on, just so it is visible, since if done with stuff of a realistic size it tends to visually disappear otherwise.

post-3035-0-71231600-1458996008.png

Edited by JerseyCity Frankie
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There is a great tutorial on youtube which shows how to seize a block which creates loops either side so they can be wrapped to a mast and pulled tight. I got the hang of it but with my lack of knowledge on doing it correctly I was using pre waxed cottons so when I pulled the loops in the wax was pulling as well, even though it did the job close up the rigging was not very nice. The looping system is great but i'd love to see some example in here on how people do their blocks ect because some of them are superb looking. Great questions indeed.

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There is a great tutorial on youtube which shows how to seize a block which creates loops either side so they can be wrapped to a mast and pulled tight. I got the hang of it but with my lack of knowledge on doing it correctly I was using pre waxed cottons so when I pulled the loops in the wax was pulling as well, even though it did the job close up the rigging was not very nice. The looping system is great but i'd love to see some example in here on how people do their blocks ect because some of them are superb looking. Great questions indeed.

 

I agree it would be very helpfull if there were more video tutorial on how to do any rigging. Very helpfull together with the standard books that are recommended here on the forum.

 

Grtz Ray

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I've found several videos on "how to"  but my questions are more "with what".   In real life I'm assuming all rope starts out a similar color - none of it is black. I would think that this is also true for the yarn/twine used for seizing. For certain purposes, some ropes are then tarred. Would seizing on a tarred rope be tarred after it is lashed?

 

Then there is the marlin question. Google that and there are many different colors - most seem to be a variation of chocolate brown. Back in the 1812 period, would marlin have been used most of the time? If so I'm guessing that on any particular ship, it probably all came from the same source and would be the same color?

 

JC Frankie, I hear ya on the oversized thing. With some of the experimenting I have done, the seizing thread was so thin it didn't really add to the visual thickness at all and if it was the same color most people would never know it's there. While this is probably closer to real life, it's tough because I think most of us want people to see all the hard work we went thru.  It's kinda like serving ropes at 1:64 . A lot of people say why bother? If you do it right you'll never see it. But at the end of the day, I know it, and that's good enough for me.....[step down from soapbox]

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The line would have been tarred after seizing and the line put into place from what I've read. Otherwise it makes a big mess on things.

 

The tarring was Stockholm Tar which is a light brown when fresh.  It does darken with age but from the previous discussions here on  MSW, it really never goes black.

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Hi Mike, to a large degree (generally speaking) the line colour was similar with any difference to the colour ususally based on the material from which the rope was made - Hemp, Sisal, Manilla etc.  Most seizings (based on my time in the more modern navy) most seizings were done with sailmakers twine.  As Mark said, the protective tarring was applied later.

 

cheers

 

Pat

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After some further reading in Lever's book, he describes making "spun-yarn" from untwisted pieces of old cable. While being made, he describes placing the coils on a grate to keep the tar from getting on the deck. Later when he describes seizing, he refers to spun-yarn as the material used.

 

From that, I gather the seizing line was already tarred when it is balled up for distribution.

 

At the end of the day, it sounds like a user discretion situation. No real right or wrong (within limits).  I'm leaning towards a dark brown for seizing, and sticking with the one color throughout.

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J,

 

Checked it last night and it was 6/0 surgical thread.  I have had it for years but think it came from a surgical supply company.  If I remember correctly I think they refused to sell to me if I was not a doctor.  In my old business life 90% of my work was with doctors so I could always get them to order for me rather than lie about my medical affiliation.  Let me know if you can't find it and I will search back for my source and make arrangements to get us some more.  That may be one of those items that can be obtained from the fly tying suppliers too.

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An avenue of investigation is to look at how things are done on contemporary restoration and replica ships- with a caution! No two restoration or replica ships have the same degree of accuracy and fidelity and its very easy to find anachronistic methods and gear on "accurate" ships. But there are some vessels that have onboard practices methods materials and equipment that are more accurate than others.

The first that comes to mind is the French frigate Hermione. EVERYTHING on that ship is period accurate and its unlikely any future ships will match her attention to historical accuracy in materials- her rigging and sails are entirely natural fiber. The HMB Endeavoure and the Brig Niagara and the schooner Pride of Baltimore II should also be trusted to portray accurate period details and I may be wrong but I believe they too use natural fiber rigging, or have in the past.

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