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First carving attempt by Joop

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Hello all.


The disadvantage of living in the Netherlands is that the postal costs for a little package is so enormous ( 15$) that I decided to try to make the blanks myself instead of ordering them at the NRG. 


At first I printed the paper on 100%. Glued it on a piece of pear of 3,5 mm(~9/64") and started sawing with my litlle proxxon scroll saw. With the help of my trusted loup I was able to make a neat example of a crown. The next very tricky step was to drill the holes with a 0.3 mm (~1/64") drill bit. With the help of some coffee and proper daylight this went well. all the holes went in on the right spot without breaking any drill.


Next step will be to mount it on a piece of wood and start carving.


The picture is the result of a nice couple of hours.


Edited by Joop-Ham




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Too late, but a stress free and precise way to drill the holes:

For small subjects, temp bond the piece to a base, mark/start the holes with a very sharp awl

and drill the holes with a drill press.

It avoids the twitch problem with free hand drilling as well as doing the hole perpendicular.

I find that the bits want to dance on the surface, and the awl produced pit avoids that.

NRG member 45 years



HMS Centurion 1732 - 60-gun 4th rate - Navall Timber framing

HMS Beagle 1831 refiit  10-gun brig with a small mizzen - Navall (ish) Timber framing

The U.S. Ex. Ex. 1838-1842
Flying Fish 1838  pilot schooner -  framed - ready for stern timbers
Porpose II  1836  brigantine/brig - framed - ready for hawse and stern timbers
Vincennes  1825  Sloop-of-War  -  timbers assembled, need shaping
Peacock  1828  Sloop-of -War  -  timbers ready for assembly
Sea Gull  1838  pilot schooner -  timbers ready for assembly
Relief  1835  ship - timbers ready for assembly


Portsmouth  1843  Sloop-of-War  -  timbers ready for assembly
Le Commerce de Marseilles  1788   118 cannons - framed

La Renommee 1744 Frigate - framed - ready for hawse and stern timbers


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Joop, you are doing the right thing. I think we all like the fact that Chuck got us started with laser-cut pieces, but in reality we all need to know how to make carvings like this from scratch. 

There are lots of books and on-line 'how to' instructions, but they are all for much larger carvings. To work at our scale requires a bit more care and some ingenuity. So go for it, drill tiny holes and carve those babies.
We are all watching, experimenting and learning.



Current build Cross Section USS Constitution  http://modelshipworld.com/index.php/topic/10120-cross-section-forward-area-of-the-uss-constitution/

Finished USS Constitution:  http://modelshipworld.com/index.php?/topic/103-uss-constitution-by-modeler12/


'A picture is worth a  . . . . .'      More is better . . . .

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After working for 3 hours at the carving I tried to make a hole in the center of the crown. Because of the thickness of the wood I thought it might be clever to try it with a small routerbit and my trusted proxxon . It didn't work out at all :huh: . Slipped twice and decided after to quit.


Next step as unsolving the glue. That also didn't work out well. After soaking in Isopropanol for 8 hours nothing happend  :( .


So in the picture is my first attempt to carve. Nice to do but I need a lot of practice .


Edited by joop




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For temporary gluing I have used a drop of contact cemment.  A little acetone works great in weakekning the bond as well.

David B

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  • 3 weeks later...
  • 6 months later...

Isopropanol (Isopropyl alcohol , also referred to as "rubbing alcohol") is not the same as Ethyl Alcohol (also known as Grain Alcohol or Deenatured Alcohol) here in the USA.  I believe that is the reason you were not able to release the part from the backing.  The two are different in chemical nature and cannot be substituted for one another.

Cliff Ward

Cary, North Carolina


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What type of glue did you use?  PVA also called yellow carpenter's glue? or Elmer's white school glue ? or CA type glue.  Isopropyl only works with PVA or white glue. For CA you need acetone.  8 hrs of soaking and the part should have floated right off the backing.

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  • 1 year later...

for small scroll saw work I use a fine jewelers saw blade, held in a jewelers saw frame, strong light, and a head mounted loop. the power of magnification depends on age. I use a block of wood mounted in a sturdy swivel vice. Wood block has a V notch cut in its center to support small delicate wood or metal. Don't buy cheep saw blades, they tend to wander.---stray dog

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  • 2 years later...

Joop, nice log and good carving discoveries

Balsa cement gives a strong fixing to a wood backing, bur releases immediately with acetone.



"Pas d’elle yeux Rhone que nous”


Kits under the bench: Le Hussard (Started in the 1980s)

Scratch builds:               Volante, Brig (R/C): Footy Drakkar "Rodolm" (R/C).  Longship Osberg (R/C)

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