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Half Moon by SawdustDave - Restoration


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As a favor to my very good friend Dr. Andrew Hendricks (my dermatologist), I have interrupted my scratch build of the USS Constitution for several days in order to repair this very old model of the Half Moon which was gifted to him by a friend in Italy.

The model is well over fifty years old, and the original builder is unknown.  In shipping from Italy to America, the poor job of packing and securing it in the crate resulted in considerable damage to the fragile rigging and a couple of masts.  Also, it appears the model had been stored is a very dusty place over the years.  It may have been the dirtiest model I have ever seen.

 

Dr. Hendricks is a major partner in a group of investors who, several years ago, raised over a million dollars for the building of a full size replica of this historic ship (Dr. Hendricks is seen in the middle of this photo).
Another model of the ship is seen behind the three investors. 

 

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He gave me a call immediately after opening up the shipping container and discovering the condition of the model he was so looking forward to receiving.

Here's what he saw....

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While the damage to the rigging was considerable, I found the the heavy line used managed to remain in tact without breaking, in spite of the age.  
Much of the breaking occurred at belaying points along the spars where small thread was used to attach rigging blocks.
After reattaching all of the rigging, I had to spend several hours on re-tensioning quite a few drooping lines.

 

Then there was the cleaning.....
Boy!  Was she incredibly filthy!

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Here's a few shots of the finished restoration.

 

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I did create the coat of arms shield for the city of Horne and also the single arched window to the transom.

 

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Edited by SawdustDave
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This restoration is completed to the extent that the model has been restored to it's original state.

Obviously, it could be taken to a much greater level of appearing closer to the replica which was built by the investors.  I offered to add the paint scheme seen on that replica, but Dr. Hendricks chose to leave it largely the same as was created by the original builder since he was told by the curator that it probably was much closer to the way the actual ship appeared when Henry Hudson sailed her.

 

He explained that the paint scheme on the replica was done primarily for the public, and that he was personally opposed to such "Disney World" promotion of the ship he is so proud of.

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Nice job,how did you go about cleaning it?

Mostly stiff artist brushes with mineral spirits.  

It took several cleanings in order to eventually get all the caked dust out of the nooks and carnnys of the decks and from the entire hull.

No attempt to clean the dingy sails because I was afraid of the blotching that might occur.  I was not about to remove them and have to get into a complete re-rigging.  Although dingy, they are a consistent color and appear more "weathered" than dirty. 

 

Once cleaned, as much as possible, I simply brushed on a couple of thin coats of wipe on satin finish poly.

 

No stain was used at any point.

Edited by SawdustDave
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