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City of Monroe by cborgm – Scale ¼” to foot - Western River Steamboat - Finished


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I would love to build the sidewheeler you first referenced, but I haven't seen an plans for one similar to it.

I picked this one out of the "Fryant" plans about six months ago mainly from it's appearance.

The plans are 1/8 to ft, but I am going to build it 1/4. I have a slight problem with my right hand that has got worse with age so I felt the larger scale would be a little easier, and give an opportunity for a little more detail. Since I have put lights in the last three I built I am planning to do the same here.

 

Glad you will follow along you have given a lot of insight to these boats that really added to the hobby.

 

Clarence

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Cathead

 

From the artical of the boats that operated on the Ouchita River, I think this is that "City of Monroe". Now the plans call for coal bins, but you would think that boats in this area would be wood burning. What do you think? 

​also do you know what the Life Flots would look like. I am so glad you added an index to the log on the Bertrand I have already refered to it several times

 

Clarence

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Clarence, for whatever it's worth, that article lists the boat solely as the "Monroe" (not "City of"), and Way's Packet Directory also lists the "Monroe" as being a sternwheeler that operated on the Ouchita late in its life. Although, just to throw a little more fog into the mix, that online article claims that Ouchita-operating Monroe was built in Pittsburg (sic) while the Way's Monroe is listed as built in Wheeling. I think I'd trust the latter over the online article which may or may not know what it's talking about. I certainly don't think it affects your model's interest in any way, it'll be a really neat build no matter what. Given that Fryant himself lists his plans as being for a fictional boat, I'm not sure it's worth trying to tie them too strongly to any given prototype.

 

As for the fuel, the Monroe in Way's was built 1886 and sank 1915, and certainly by the later end of that period I wouldn't be surprised if it had been converted to coal even if originally built for wood. Wood became a dear commodity along the rivers as the regions were deforested due to high demand, and coal was much more energy-dense (same reason railroads converted over).

 

I don't think I can help you much on the small boats. My understanding was that most steamboats in the core riverboat era didn't carry "lifeboats" in the marine sense of the word, just a couple small yawls for general-purpose use. There was no direct provision for passenger safety. I don't know when/if that changed; I could see different practices developing as the 20th century got underway. I suspect Kurt or Captain Bob would know more.

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  • 3 weeks later...

I haven't been keeping the log up to date, so let me try now. I have the hull ready for planking. When I decided to build this at 1/4 to foot I didn't stop and think how big that would be. Roughly 50 inchs without landing platforms. This will be a good place to use all the material left from other builds. 

 

 

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FYI

Howard shipyards in Indiana built a side wheeler City of Monroe in 1897 was burned and damage by a tornado 1899 rebuilt as Hill City, converted to Corwin H Spencer and burned 1905. A lot of Howard Steamboat Company information is at Indiana.edu/lilly library. You can write or call and get copies of information on the craft you need. There is over 200,00 pieces of information about the company and what they did..

Lee

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I am using wood left from previous builds. The frames are 1/8 inch plywood, and boxwood. The deck is balsa. This was a mistake and will never use it again because of how fragile it is. I am not sure of the woodstrip I will use for planking. It is a dark wood that came with the "Mississippi River boat" kit, and I have enough left to cover the large decks. I cannot name the type. I am going to plank it with 20ft planks randemly set and stained natural. like you did on the Bertrand I think.  I know that they should probably be red, but since this will truly be a factious boat I will deviate from the norm. 

 

How llong is the Bertrand?

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I think Bertrand was around 160 feet long, which at 1:87 comes out to a little over two feet. The decking looks nice so far; I'm a big fan of that varied, weathered look: whether or not it's more accurate, it tends to feel more realistic than a uniform painted finish. And, as you said, perfect for a fictitious boat anyway.

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FYI

HI Mates, came across another site for picture reference, Years back Ralph DuPae collected pictures of river boats across the country. He found over 40,000 pictures and they are digital store to view and order from the Murphy Library located at the university of Wisconsion digital collection. uwdc.library.wisc.edu.

 

also the egregious (steamboat journal), S & D reflector (sons and daughters of pioneer rivermen) and American steamwheel association (sternwheeler).

Lee

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The boiler was built out of 11/8 dowel for boiler, 3/8 for high pressure outlet, and 3/16 for safety valve. Still have to add water inlet, and safety valve outlet to stacks. Very little will be visible but it is fun to build. I plan to hang  the high pressure line to the engine from the overhead, and paint it white to simulate the asbestos.

Since there doesn’t seem to be a real stern wheel “city of  Monroe” I am going to  design as I go from here based on using up the material I have is stock.

Thanks for your interest

 

Clarence

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  • 3 weeks later...

I made a little more progress. i have decided that there doesn't appear to have been a real sternwheel "City of Monroe" I would deviate from the plans a little bit and take some of the features of the "Carneal Goldman" show on page 17 in the book "The Mississippi Steamboat Era".

 

Anyway here are some pictures of progress to date.

 

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As you can see I am still calling it the "City of Monroe"

 

I need to touch up the paint. It is surprising what shows up it pictures that you never see when you look at it. 

 

Merry Christmas to All

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  • 1 month later...

I made a little progress I am trying to make it look used, and show a little wear. This lets me cover up a lot of my errors. I am going to finish the boiler deck base and then do the wiring to the lights on the main desk. Also you can see I decided to make it a wood burner.

 

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