Jump to content

Zeeschouw by petervisser - FINISHED - Billing Boats - Scale 1:22 - Small

Recommended Posts

Hi Everybody,


This is my attempt at building Billing's zeeschouw. It is a great kit for beginners I think as the constuction is simple and some basic skills can be acquired pretty easily. The kit won't take years of building so one shouldn't lose interest during the construction. I decided to build it because I noticed lots of these models in Dutch front windows and they looked pretty fun. After the Unicorn, I was ready for a nice easy model to build that was also unique in its own way and pretty to look at.


Zeeschouws were originally built as small fishing vessels in the Netherlands. As fishing became more efficient with larger vessels, this type of boat was converted to sailing yachts for pleasure boaters. You can see many zeeschouws sailing in the waterways of the Netherlands.


So without further ado...




Here she is as dsplayed on the box. Unfortunately, the kit is not widely available and the best place to purchase one is through an online store in the Netherlands. I bought mine while on holiday there.




This is the box the model is packaged in. Billing has chosen to ship three different models in the same box to save costs I presume. The model the box contains is marked with an "X".




And so the process begins. A small building board is required along with some square stock to start the framing on the keel. These are not included with the kit. All the pieces are laser cut and fit together nicely.

Edited by petervisser
Link to comment
Share on other sites

The framing was a pretty simple affair and I just had to make sure that everything was square.




A couple of stringers are added to secure the bulkheads and add a little support to the deck.




All the frames fit snuggly to the keel.




It's a little hard to imagine that this will look anything like a pretty boat at this stage.




Stage one complete!

Edited by petervisser
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Hi Wayne. No I don't mind one bit. Hope you enjoy the ride!


The next stage involved adding the deck, the cockpit sole and the lazarette top.




The deck has quite alot of sheer and I had to bend the sheet so it conformed to the tops of the bulkheads. For this I use the plank bender extordinnaire, the electic kettle! Just make sure you wear some heavy leather gloves. The sheet and kettle exhaust in pretty toasty!




I've used a few plank bending techniques in the past including Billing's tip of using a candle flame. I had a few singed planks and finger tips using that method. The kettle is my favourite by far.




In the photo above the deck is in place as well as the cabin and cabin top. All pieces are laser cut so assembly is a snap. However, I did not use the laser cut piece for the cabin top. It was a single sheet of thin ply, and I am at a loss as to how Mr. Billing meant us to form its shape. There in not only a sheer bend lengthwise, but also a camber. I opted to use strips of mahogony that I had laying around which I was going to lacquer. That way the planks could bend to the sheer as they conformed to the camber athwartships. In the end, I decided to paint the cabin top.




I used mahogany strips to laminate the cabin bulkhead and lazarette. The printed sheets don't compliment the model one bit. It added a bit of work but the results are worth the effort. I also used narrow strips of mahogony to simulate a deck grate on the cockpit sole.



Edited by petervisser
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Onward ho...


Next step is to add the hull sheets to the bulkheads. There are only three per side so "planking" in not the long drawn out process that a normal ship is. However, prep work is still important and the bulkheads have to be bevelled to avoid sharp kinks.




I really like my sanding blocks for bevelling bulkheads.






Now that the bulkheads bave been sanded, the hull panels can be attached. As you can tell, some bending will have to take place before they can be glued in place.




The kettle is great for bending these large sheets of ply. I just had to hold them above the spout while bending them to shape.




These panels are simply dry fitted to the bulkhead frames.




Link to comment
Share on other sites

Thanks John. Coming from a Dutchman, that means alot!


I started building this model last year and had a build log going on the previous version of MSW. So please don't think that this model is being built at lightning speed!


The next step in construction was fastening the hull sheets to the bulkheads. I steamed them all and had nice bends applied so that there would be little stress when they were applied to the frames.




I temporarily attached a strip of wood to the keel so that the garboard stake would be tucked under and held secure while the glue dried at the bow.




Here the garboard strakes are in place and the next hull panels are ready to be applied. Each panel is laser cut, so it makes life very easy. I marked the panel with pencil so I know where the bulkheads are.




The panels are the perfect shape and attached to the bulkheads nicely.




I have made it a habit of using wood dowels to help hold planks, or in this case, hull panels in place. It is added insurance that they are on the model permanently.





Link to comment
Share on other sites

I am skipping back to the cabin bulkhead here so you can see how I made the windows.


I learned a trick from a fellow modeller on the old DDM website. He was a Russian who was building a Corel Bellona. On his model he used a floppy disk sheet to simulate windows. They had a very realistic look on his gallery windows and I have used it here on this model to  good effect. I have often thought back to his model and wondered how he is getting on with his project. It was one of the finest models I have ever seen..




These disks are becoming rare with the advent of thumb drives, but I find some all the time at work squirreled away. Just rip open the plastic case and the perfect window material presents itself.




Here you can see the window material in place. The only thing missing is the lace curtains the Dutch use to dress their windows! Can't have it all...


Link to comment
Share on other sites

Hello Peter,


Nice looking little boat!  I also love these old time fishing boats and hope to build a model of a botter or schokker sometime in the future (if I live long enough  :rolleyes: .  Have seen many in years past when still living in the Netherlands.  Mine will be scratch build though and a larger scale.


Your model is really taking on a nice shape  I'll look over your shoulder as you progress, brings back memories.






Link to comment
Share on other sites

Hi Peter,


When I look to your name I think that you or one of your relatives are from the Netherlands…...

Nice to see a Dutch ship.

I take a seat next to John I will see how you bring this to an end.

The things I see so far are is very nice.

Heb plezier van je bouw (Enjoy your build)



Link to comment
Share on other sites

Thanks for all the nice comments guys. Yes she is a pretty little boat and it is a shame that it is not more widely available. It makes for a very nice beginners kit.


Sjors, I could read your Dutch! I am able to read a little bit still after all these years. I was a little tike when we came across on the old Rijndam. This summer my wife and I are coming to Holland again for a holiday and visit with family. We are renting a motor yacht and sailing the canals in Friesland with my cousin. Hopefuly we won't run over any zeeschouws....


At any rate, here are a few more pics of my model...




Going back to the hull planking, I glued the panels to the bulkheads using super glue and held them with finishing nails so that they stayed. They are not the nails I would normally use because they are way too big. But they were all I had at the time. Once the glue had cured I removed the finishing nails and replaced them with wood dowels. I also planked over the bow deck with some mahogany strips I had laying around. I used black thread between them to simulate the caulking.




I made sure to drill some pilot hole first before pushing the nails home.




Here the wood dowels have replaced the finishing nails so that the hull can be sanded smooth.






No matter how hard I tried, I ended up with a gap between the panels. I simply made a wedge to fill it in. The gap on the other side was much smaller and was filled with wood filler.



Link to comment
Share on other sites

Once all the panels were in place and the glue had dried, I could remove the dowel heads and fair the hull. This was a very satisfying stage because the hull was nce and smooth, ready for fondling...








She is now taking on a nice shape, and will soon be ready for some paint.





Link to comment
Share on other sites


Or: dat ziet er mooi uit!


Sometimes I think it's a pity that Billings has these ships not in their

original 'working boat' outfit, but in their converted yachtlike outfit.


It implies that the only detailing you could do to the kit is laced curtains (yes, definitely missing those :) ),

while they used to be ships used for quite a lot of small business: fishing, but also transport of (small) life stock.



Link to comment
Share on other sites

Thanks for your kind remarks Jan and John. Yes it is a shame that Billing doesn't market the boat as a working vessel. It would make an interesting subject. However, a colourful yacht has a bit more appeal to the masses... like me I guess!


Mr. Billing is a little stingy with the wood on this particular model. Although the hull panels were of fairly good design in that they laid on the bulkheads (except for the one I pointed out earlier) the two middle panels were a tiny bit short on length by a millimeter or two. I could have sanded the transom down so that the panels reached the after face of the transom, but I decided on a different approach. I glued a thin sheet to the transom, which created a small gap at the sides of the hull. After sanding the extra sheet to the outside dimensions of the transom, I filled the gaps with wood filler.




Here you can just see that the hull panel was not quite long enough.




Here I added the sheet to the transom to create the gap.




Another view also showing how the panels did not quite meet up. It was an easy fix to deal with both these issues.




A filler piece is added to the gap between the hull panels.




A little wood filler to fix Mr. Billing's mistake...




Here a closer look. Using my sanding block after the wood filler dried, hid the slight defect perfectly.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Although not called for in the plans, I decided to add some rubbing strakes to the hull. The lower ones helped in that it made for a nice pin stripe and more detail. I would expect an actual vessel to have one there also to protect the hull when tying up. The upper ones were added to help support the cap rail. There wasn't a cap rail supplied with the model. The plans suggested a 1.8 x 2.0 mm strip be used, But I didn't like that idea. So I used some small square stock to glue to the outside of the gunwale so to allow the cap rail something to sit on and adhere to.




The strakes add a little something to the hull details.






Now I am ready to paint the hull.


Link to comment
Share on other sites

Thanks very much gents. "Atta boy's" are always welcome.


To start the hull painting process, I used a sanding sealer primer on the wood. I applied a couple of coats and smoothed the hull between coats with some extra fine steel wool. I wanted a nice smooth finish.




This is the product  used to prime the hull.




The first coat of primer applied. The stand is temporary as it was surplus to another model.






The hull is now ready for the top coats.


Link to comment
Share on other sites

While prepping the hull and waiting for the paint to dry, I tackled the side boards and the rudder. I decided to laminate both sides of the rudder and one side each of the side boards with mahogany strips I had on hand. They add a little more wood lustre to the model. I only put the mahogany strips on the outboard sides of the side boards and painted the inboard sides the same colour as the hull.




On the right, the strips are glued to the laser cut side board, and the left one has the extra material removed with a combination of X-acto knives and sanding block.




Here is the laser cut rudder ready for its strips to be laminated.




The mahogany strips are applied and ready for some varathane.




Here the components are ready. Billing supplies decorative decals for these pieces that I will apply closer to the finish of the build.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

very nice Peter.

I have build the same once but than in scale 1:10 but based on rescaled drawings of the Billings kit

this one was supposed to be a sailing RC model, but in the building process I forgot to add an extra keel so it is now a static model

Edited by JanV
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.


  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    • No registered users viewing this page.
  • Create New...