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Schooner Polotsk 1777 by Mike Y and his daughter - Master Korabel - 1:72

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I am going to build this kit with my daughter. She was really insisting on building her own wooden ship, like daddy's. Seems to even be ready that it will take a year. Will see, will see, she seems to be really interested  :)


The kit is a 1777 schooner in 1:72 scale made by russian manufacturer Master Korabel (translated as "Master Shipwright").

Laser cut planking, nice wood, seems to be very well thought through!

Includes few PE sheets, very nice castings (anchors and cannons), all fittings have a good quality. The laser cutting is top notch and plywood is high quality as well.

Best part - the price is $95!

Despite having english text on the box, all instructions are in russian. But maybe photo manual would be enough?

Here is the link to the manual, it answers most of questions about this kit construction: http://forum.master-korabel.com/mk0302f.pdf

Some build logs for the ones who are curious:




Got a few questions "where to buy the kit". My friend bought it in Russia and gave it to me, it is a cheapest option. 

I also found it on ebay, the seller has a 100% rating and looks like a producer of the kit. So maybe buying it directly from the producer via ebay is better.

ebay.co.uk: http://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/mk0302p-Schooner-Polotsk-Wooden-Kit-wood-ship-1-72-model-master-korabel-/112015347120

ebay.com: http://www.ebay.com/itm/mk0302p-Schooner-Polotsk-Wooden-Kit-wood-ship-1-72-model-master-korabel-/112015347120

It is a "plus" version, so a bit more expensive. The kit I bought is a regular one - no boat and the blocks are simpler.


The main goal is to enjoy the process together, learn the handcraft and generally have fun. In the end, I would be super proud of her if she will have enough stamina to finish the hull and plank it. That would be quite an achievement for 6 years old.

I will try to show that kit in details, please pardon for the build quality - I am letting her to do as much as possible, not focusing too much on quality and accuracy. Step by step :)

Edited by Mike Y
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Really impressed with the kit quality!

The laser cutting is super accurate, the kerf is minimal:



All bevels are pre-marked, so you just follow the lines:





The ply is good, very uniform, no defects, middle layers are not falling apart:



Super impressive for the $95 kit. It is the quality you would expect from the $400-$500 range.

Frames are inserted into clear slots in the base board, that ensure perfect alignment.

Notches in the frames and keel are a bit too tight, so all notches and all parts require some filing to fit. That was a bit unexpected, and too tedious for my daughter (so far), so I spend some time filing.. Meh, boring task :)


But there is a steady progress :)





End result of the first two modelling sessions:



The "building board" is, apparently, a permanent part of the hull (lower deck), the upper parts would be installed on top of it. Interesting idea!

Edited by Mike Y
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Yes, pre-spiled planking for beginner kits is a must. I do not have the hard statistics, but the feeling is that a lot of beginners stop the build during the planking.

First part - assembling the skeleton, bulkheads and keel - is quite simple and takes few evenings. Then - decks, that are also fairly easy. And then most of kits suggest to plank the hull with a set of thin and straight planks, which is dramatically more different comparing with all the previous phases of the build.

So I really hope that pre-spiled planking will make this kit available for kids. With some simplifications, for sure. Will see.

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Right now I'm just saying hello to a very enterprising little girl!  What a marvellous idea you had, to build a model ship just like your dad!
It looks as though you've started well, but be careful not to do it better than he does!  It might hurt his feelings!

Mike, I wish I'd got into model shipbuilding when my eldest daughter was your daughter's age.  She was always interested in the hobbies I had, and she loved to take part.  She would certainly have loved the idea of building a model ship.  But she's adult now (probably quite a bit older than you, in fact!) and she pursues her own hobbies.

So far, it seems you've found the perfect kit for your daughter to try out her burgeoning skills.  I hope she perseveres.  This will be a most fascinating build log, and I'm looking forward to seeing how she progresses.

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Thanks everybody for the encouragement! Yes, we are talking about what the online communities are, what the build log is, and she is going to make the photos (and maybe a comment) for the next post :) It is good to know that our community is really the best when it comes to kindness and sharing!

Edited by Mike Y
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I got a few questions "where to buy the kit". My friend bought it in Russia and gave it to me, it is a cheapest option. 

I also found it on ebay, the seller has a 100% rating and looks like a producer of the kit. So maybe buying it directly from the producer via ebay is better.


ebay.co.uk: http://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/mk0302p-Schooner-Polotsk-Wooden-Kit-wood-ship-1-72-model-master-korabel-/112015347120

ebay.com: http://www.ebay.com/itm/mk0302p-Schooner-Polotsk-Wooden-Kit-wood-ship-1-72-model-master-korabel-/112015347120

It is a "plus" version (with a boat kit included, and a better block quality), so a bit more expensive. The kit I bought is a regular one - no boat and the blocks are simpler.

Edited by Mike Y
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Proper photo update is coming soon, but in a meanwhile - a little bit about the kit.

It sure has a lot of notches and parts connected by inserting them into that notches. 

The problem is that all that connections are too tight. Nothing could be inserted without filing it first. Using the brute force can lead to cracks and broken parts, and I hate doing it this way. Fine fitting connections + wood glue are better than brute force :)


So before she can build the next step - I spend some time with a file, knife and chisel, making sure everything fits. Frankly, that is quite tedious and boring. As you can see, the kit has hell lot of notches! And every single one should be enlarged with a file.





Edited by Mike Y
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Hola Mike:


There are a couple of things that really amaze me, that your little daughter is interested in building wood boat models (I am sure she will be an excellent engineer in the future !!) and second, the quality of the model. I had not seen kits with this quality for 95.00 and also where the hull planks came pre-cut. This greatly facilitates things, especially for beginners.


Please congratulate your daughter for her effort.


Saludos, Karl

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Thanks Karl! Yes, I am also quite surprised with her passion to building stuff, and trying to feed this passion by showing her different techniques, materials, doing it together, encouraging, etc. No matter what career path she will choose, an engineering mindset will never hurt!  :)


This time she also dictated her first post in the build log. I just translated it to english with minimal syntax corrections:


I am building this ship with my dad. He helps me, but I build it myself. I am a Daughter Daria.

We are making a ship body (hull). I am gluing the parts:



This is the center of the ship, I insert the parts here:



And remove an extra glue with a stick:



We used clamps to help the glue stick parts together:




I also made some wooden things with a file. These things are now inside the ship.



Here we glued the deck. It was hard to fit all that parts at the same time!



Our ship will be big! With a long masts and big sails. We will ship some things, food, paintings and curtains on it, as well as toys and doll stuff. 

Edited by Mike Y
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  • 3 weeks later...


Progress was a bit slow because I got a bit sick, so no modelling due to the quarantine mode enforced at home.


Assembling the transom. I have hard time figuring out what these parts are, because in the true spirit of POB kits this area is going to be fully planked and its internal structure is totally different from the real ships.



Tricky part to fit, it has a dozen notches that need to be enlarged to fit properly. Lot of filing!



Now it is a time to fair the hull! That goes easy, because parts are cut with a good precision, so fairing is truly minimal, everything fits perfectly. I was doing it only because Daria loves the process of turning rough hull into the smooth hull. Fairing was not really necessary.



This part was lots of fun! Using compressor to get rid of the dust after fairing. Ended up playing with an air flow for a good 15 minutes :)



Transom continued:



Filing to ensure a good fit to the deck:



I let Daria figure out the right way to clamp the transom to the hull, and she figured it out!





Looks like a ship!





Now it's time for important stuff!


Edited by Mike Y
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You are making good progress, but I see you've got help ... in one of your pictures I saw a fairy's magic wand !!! Transom looks very good, and your Xmas tree shows a lot of promise. Curious how that turned out !


Looking forward to your next update. Keep your father well



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From both: thank you for the comments, it is really nice! :)


This weekend Daria asked me to find a time to build together, I was really happy she asked for it. Also, this time I tried to maintain a slower pace - the build sessions are supposed to be a moments of calm enjoyment, no rush. But it is harder with kid, since her attention span is quite short and she is typically rushing things. So trying to slow down :)


Fiddly bits in the transom. It is funny that this kit build reached the same milestone (hull is ready, building transom) after 4-5 hours, while it took 2 years to get there with my main fully framed build :)

Daria loves to think these are a pieces of the puzzle that can fit together. She might enjoy the Things Perfectly Fitting Into Other Things tumblr eventually :)



Gluing the side timbers with some sort of filling blocks. Everything is carefully notched and well thought trough, this kit is great! Daria got the concept of "parallel alignment" and played a lot with parallel machinist clamp.



Installation is tricky, but was fairly successful in the end:



Transom is ready. There are some gaps, but I in this build it is better to make mistake instead of chasing perfect quality:


(nevermind the glue, will clean it up when dry)

Clamping was very tricky because transom is not square and not parallel, so I did it myself. 


So far, that kit is quite kid-friendly. Except the fact that every single part fits too tight and notches should be extended with a file. Bleh!

I take all the nasty parts (filing, filing, filing, filing), and she gets all the fun parts (assembly, measurements, clamping). Not fair! :)

Edited by Mike Y
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