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Victorian Racing Cutter Vanity by M.R.Field - scale 1:16 - Radio


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I do hope I've titled this right. I can't toggle twixt typing here and checking the rules without losing this page completely, so if it ain't right, moderators, please correct the order.

 

Well It's a model of the boat I used to live aboard in Burnham-on-Crouch in a line of similar-ish vessels, one of which, Ann Marie, a yawl, was successfully restored and went off chartering.  Vanity, alas was moved to Bristol where I believe she has been destroyed for want of somebody with a piddling million to restore her.  A few weeks of a footballer's salary would have secured her future, then the footballer could have been thrown away.

 

SO....I figured it fell to me to make a decent model of her for posterity.

Because I don't have huge amounts of time, despite being retired, I had to knock this thing up a bit sharpish. I found lines for Clara in Traditions and Memories of American Yachting, which has plenty of English yachts in with lines.  I had the lines enlarged on a photocopier and transferred them to 3mm ply to make the bulkheads.  Then cut them out on a bandsaw.  A strong back style building board was made, the bulkheads glued to upstands representing  a line above the vessel when upright, purely arbitrary.  These upstands were then glued to square bars which were bolted to the strongback.  The keel, which varies in width along the length of the boat (I should say the sided measurement)  was drawn out to a plausible shape on the enlarged drawings and cut out of 3mm ply twice, as it would go from being stuck to the other one fore and aft, but have hardwood sandwiched in between along the middle portion of the vessel where the real one had 12 tons of lead.

Once that was in place in slots pre-cut in the bulkheads, planking began.  Now here I should say despite copious amounts of reading, I had never planked a model boat before, apart from a large clinker planked electric canoe model of a Peter Freebody craft that was done for a lady in Cincinatti.  That was planked in veneer over a thin strip-planked hull which was completely lined, so no need to see the clinker inside.

Also, I had given my son some old chairs my Granddad made in the 20s, but which had fallen to bits in modern central heating and asked him to rip them up into 2.5-3mm thick strips. These he did. I don't ave a full sized table saw.  They ended up about an inch wide, so that's where I began.  I cut the stem angle and bevelled that off behind then took it round to the sternpost, which was extremely raked being the rudder post effectively.  The first 5 or 6 planks went on like that unfettled each side.

Then as the bilge (such as it is on a plank-on-edge cutter) was rounded there came a need to shape them a bit here and there, but still not a huge amount.

Only a few part-planks where I'd run out of full length planks and the final few each side up to the counter stern were awkward.  The time came to take it off its building board. Bolts were removed and the upstands broken away.

The amazing thing to me was how light it was!  Even with some re-inforcement, it is stupidly light, which augers well for internal ballast only as the hull is very deep.

 

It is now at the stage where I have glued in some deck supports and have to add supplementary deck beams to give the camber as I hadn't built that in.

Weather has dictated that little has been done on the hull while I can't get the bandsaw outside, so I have made spars.  I've used dowel as I didn't fancy the time it would take to do it by hand.  But the surprisingly straight grained stuff from B%Q (yes really) still has to be tapered here and there.  Mast and spar bands are made from strips of brass, bent round and silver soldered together or brass bar turned to fit with lugs soldered in to pre-drilled holes.

 

For a complete change I started the after decklight. That was made in more Cuban Mahogany strip as the colour was gorgeous and the finish possible was hard and smooth.  Here I should say that apart from using a small plane on the hull, I use metalworking tools almost universally on the quality woods I like.  I cut using a jeweller's piercing saw against the metal vice jaws and clean up with Swiss files. I rarely use a knife and only for bigger jobs, a chisel.  Even then that's likely to be a reground and honed Swiss file.  I don't possess a razor saw. I tried one once, it stuck, I threw it away.  Perhaps a life time of making brass patterns for the model industry has given me this preference.  The casing has dovetailed corner joints and the lids have mortice and tenon joints, so that the whole thing effectively held itself together before gluing!

 

Well, that's enough waffle.

Please don't judge the hull too badly. It will be finished to a gloss black by the time I've filled and planed and epoxy coated it.

The gaff jaws are made of Steamed Pear, a favourite timber of mine, fixed to flats on the spar, then drilled and pinned with brass rod.

 

Currently this weekend I'm making a ropemaking machine from Perspex offcuts.  I bought a random set of cheap nylon gears off ebay in order to make my own design of sail winches and I found just enough to make the ropewalk.  It will be hand wound as I believe a man should suffer for his art<G>

 

Cheers,

Martin

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Here's the work done on the rope machine today, AFTER building a swing seat for my wife, which has been kicking around for a week or so.

So, only about an hour today. 

Alas, being a hater of fishing all my life, I find I don't have a swivel in a drawer anywhere, so that'll have to be a trip into town for such a strange object as our village has lost its fishing shop in favour of a beauty parlour.  I should add the latter is so much more needed than the former!

 

Cheers,

Martin

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Well, as I expected, my kind of boat isn't to anyone else's taste.  That's fair enough,I suppose, but no replies and only 62 views isn't enough to keep taking pictures.

Shame, as I quite fancied being part of this forum, but I really can't get interested in Warships of any age and so I guess I can't expect others to be interested in non military ships and boats.

 

Cheers,

Martin

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Martin, I have to ask: are you building this model and posting pictures to be popular, or to satisfy your own hobby interests by building what appeals to you personally? It is true that warships are more popular, and if you are really talented you can certainly draw a large audience. But there are members here who do, in fact, enjoy and appreciate small craft, work boats, RC, and other specialty niches within the hobby. I lean towards card modeling, and that's not a big draw here, either, but I share my builds because I am passionate about the card modeling art and enjoy sharing it with others, even if I don't get a lot of likes or comments. Besides, you are averaging 15 views a day, and that is really not bad at all, so it is hardly fair or accurate to say that your model "isn't to anyone else's taste." I for one do like small racing craft and would enjoy seeing this build through to its completion. But -- you decide.

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Chris,

I was building this anyway and have been since last year, on and off. More off than on as other stuff calls on my time.  I really don't give a toss if I'm popular or not!  That, as I tell my grandchildren, is the most wonderful kind of freedom.

I just thought such a boat might be of interest. It seemed not from the response.  Views are often just people catching up and then clicking somewhere else. It's not an expression of real interest, but if, like you, there are other folks who can show an interest in something other than Navy Board style models, I'll continue to post progress.

 

I've now smoothed out the deck shelf all round and will soon be adding the ply sub deck, but need to paint the interior with epoxy first.

I'm building this because I used to live on her and subsequent owners have allowed her to fall apart.  She has probably been destroyed now.  My only way of remembering her is to catch her as a model.  1/16th scale is the biggest I can store.  Come winter, I hunker down in a warm room and make scenic stuff, set-pieces, slot cars and, if I have time, 1/4" scale inshore craft.

I of course admire the craftsmanship exhibited in most of the shall we say "typical" models.  But something in me recoils at the idea of anything militaristic. My Dad didn't say much about his War, but enough for me never to go near it in any way.  And anyway, there are so many of "my" kind of boat out there that deserve to be modelled to the same standard as most on here.  I have a clinker dinghy, part modelled in the same scale, to be carried on board Vanity. That is, I hope, made to forum standards even if the hull of Vanity isn't, although her visible furnishings will be.  That was just a  way of saving time, something I need to consider these days.

 

I'll keep it going a bit longer and see what interest we can muster for non Warships.

 

Chidokan, I got the gears from ebay and was lucky, I guess, to get three the same.  I had the Perspex as offcuts in a batch also from ebay.  These days where I live there are no model shops or interesting shops selling materials and tools, so most of my purchases are from ebay.  I always have so much to do that I don't consider mail order as waiting, as I used to.

 

Cheers,

Martin

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I have had this kicking around for ever.  I believe it to be a form of watchmakers' lathe. I wonder if it might be a case maker's lathe as there is very little bed and a generous faceplate.  It came with a basic watchmakers' lathe and a load of tiny watch parts in tins.  But I kept this when I sold the lathe as it fascinated me.  NOW...I'm thinking..."serving machine"  Wouldn't it be nice to make an attachment to slowly turn it for me while I serve a bit of rope I've made on the machine in previous posts?

Obviously this part would have to be the "head" of the machine and some sort of tail end made in which I could lock the rope.

This machine is extremely early. It , despite the colour, is cast brass with a steel shaft.  It turns as smoothly as oiled silk, so I will simply clean and lubricate it to start with

 

Cheers,

Martin

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Hello Martin, I am one of the folk here who happen to really like Victorian Cutters. This is the first time I have seen you log since I have not been on the forum foe a few days, well I'm logged on but have been busy with the docks at the yacht club. Since you lived on the boat that you are building a model of, do you have any pictures of it when you lived on it?

The mahogany light looks very nice. What is the overall length of the hull, the reason i ask is because when I did a float test on my cutter which is 63 inches long

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I was high in the water with 66 lbs of lead as ballast.

 

I look forward to following along.

 

Regards Michael

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Vossiewulf,

I found an exactly similar one on ebay, but without the feet mine has. They also wanted £550 for it!

I think it's early to mid 19Century, before the American pattern types.

I'm beginning to think it would need too much modification to be a serving machine when they can be made very easily.

 

Michael, nice to have your interest. I was reading your pilot cutter log the other day.  Lovely work.

My model is 48" long.  66 lbs of ballast?  Jeez, I couldn't afford that much lead!

 

I have only a couple of pics of Vanity when I lived aboard as I no longer have a scanner, I can only find the one, but here she is:-

I have hosted dinner parties and Triumph Car Club committee meetings in that saloon!  The problem was always getting guests to go home.  My boss used to get in his dinghy in the marina the other side of the river after a half hour drive from the office and putter across with his Seagull outboard, just to allegedly wake me up if I'd decided not to go into work that day. He would then spend a couple of hours in the deckhouse taking it all in, drinking my tea and eating my toast.  Then he'd say, "You know if I didn't have the big house and Maureen and the kids and the business, I'd live like this".

 

Cheers,

Martin

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Hi Martin,

 

love the lines of your cutter "Vanity" they are resembling the yachting era of those British "deep and narrow" ships, or also nick-named "plank on edge"...

I might myself be considering one day to build a scratch model of the racing cutter "Genesta". these ships really have class indeed !  (fell in love with the lines, here a beautiful built example of which I unfortunately do`nt  remember the modeling builder, pic from the web)

 

Nils

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Nils,

that is a beauty.  I'm glad you're a fan of the plank-on-edge cutters. There are only 2 left now Vanity has been abandoned.  Partridge and Marigold.  I have lines for Genesta and an interior layout drawing for Genesta in the book "Traditions and Memories of American Yachting", which has a lot of plans for English yachts as well as many for American "skimming dish" style vessels.  I recommend that book for lovers of older yachts.

 

Cheers,

Martin

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Oh! be still my beating heart!  Keith, yes you "also have one", but ye Gods, what an absolute beauty.  That would be on my window cill or in my showcase.  Yours is so complete too.  Mine has nothing else apart from what you see on my picture.  And the bed is very short, about 4".  There's a knurled knob at the back which moves, but doesn't want to come right off.

I think I'll just clean it and display it. Making it do service as a serving machine would entail mods that I wouldn't want to make.  Whereas I could easily make a new serving machine.

Many thanks for your help with this.  I'm now off to look at your links.

 

Cheers,

Martin

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Martin, thanks for the pictures of this yacht. The interior looks stunning what a grand place to live in.

 

Keith..... I am now suffering a serious case of tool envy, that is a beautiful piece of watchmaking machinery.....in my next life I want to be born as a Victorian Swiss toolmaker....

 

Michael

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Michael, the whole interior was like it. It had been simplified a bit, so the master's cabin had become part of the galley, but the son's cabin and the lady cabin were still there.  Under the lady cabin berth was a long drawer and hand written on the base were the words "Bosun's papers".

It was a sea of maple and mahogany.

 

 

Martin

 

 

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In general there are many build logs and also many people who get started but never go beyond that. Add the fact that yes there is a bias for military vessels, and you're not going to have lots of people visiting right at the beginning. But if you keep going, people like Michael and Nils will find you and other people will see you're sticking with it and decide it's worth following along. So I think you'll find it worth it to keep taking those photos and posting them. Also, look around for other similar builds and stop by and say hi. And have a link to your build log in your sig. Lots of people don't have time to do lots of build log searching but they'll notice something waved around in front of them.

 

You already have people here very much worth having available to answer questions, look at some of their builds if you want an instant fit of jealousy :) Or you just wait for Keith to post a pic of insanely nice little lathe. I'll be growing up next to Michael on the watchmaker life path next time around.

 

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vossiewulf,

You have a point there.

I tend to have a look at what's new and if I see "HMS" or anything earlier than 19th century orei, I pass it over.  I guess as I am very narrow in my tastes, why shouldn't others be?

I have no idea how to link my build log in my signature, though.

I am often in admiration of others' skills, but never jealous.  Envious, maybe of their equipment, but then, I have some pretty tasty stuff myself!  And nothing to do with model boats. I could sell that off and buy a Byrnes saw, now that I have no old cars, but I like playing with my English wheel and it's very useful for levelling distorted metal sheet.

I' have worked as a professional modelmaker for many years, from brass masters of 1/200th scale aircraft for the RAF to full sized clay models for most of Europe's car industry, so have a healthy skill set, learned the hard way and through books. I subscribed to Model Shipwright for many years and learned a great deal from there.  I wonder what I did with all those.

 

Today, at a little village boot fair I found a set of wooden slats from Venetian blinds, which are about 3/32" thick in a lovely light coloured close grained wood. I can probably get all my deck planks for both Vanity and Bloodhound from these.  How much did this treasure cost me?  50 pence!

 

The insides of Vanity are now epoxy coated and I'll be planing down and filling the outside prior to epoxy and cloth.  THEN I can start on the deck.

 

Cheers,

Martin

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I am showing how I changed the name of one of the links in my signature as an example of how to create an active signature link. this is the third attempt to do this today because I apparently used an illegal SLQ link while trying to illustrate this process

I shall do this in stages because of time outs.

go to your profile edit and click on the account settings and click the signature button and a page like the previous image will appear.

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I deleted the text of Maria 1:2 and left only the description, then retyped a new description

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then the address of the thread was copied this is the address that appears in the URL bar at the top of your browser. once you have copied the address ,

then highlight the new description.

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click on the link icon which looks like a chain link and a new screen pops up where you paste the URL address.

The address below is of your own thread as an example of how it should look. my one is of my own thread.

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After you have pasted the link  press the inset button and it will look like the image above with the words underlined indicating the link.

Now you can change the color using the font color icon

 

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If the admins have a better descrpition it would be useful because the pinned one in the how to use the forum appears to be for the old site.

 

I hope this is helpful Martin

Michael

 

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There was me smug as a bug with my wee slats.  Trouble with living rural as we do is that you rarely get anything just sitting by the lanes in a skip. We used to live next to a skip collection business and I used to help him with sorting for a few quid cash, but it really was rubbish!  Skip after skip of absolute tosh, unfortunately.

But I can stretch to 50p I'm sure.

 

Cut the deck ply today and marked it up for deck fittings.  Also put some carlins in to strengthen the mast area and under the bitts where the bowsprit lodges. After tea I'll be making the carlins for where the decklights and companions go.  Tommorrow I'll maybe get round to epoxying the outsides.

 

Now then, Michael......I'm really not sure I can follow all that and do it at the same time, but I'll have a go and thank you for taking the time. least I can do is have a go.

 

Cheers,

Martin

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Waiting for someone to call, so a quickie job.  The deck prism.

When I lived aboard Vanity, this simple object casting a perfect straight rainbow of colours on the carpet in the galley would always lift my spirits.

 

I made a brass surround by cutting out a rectangle from some 10 thou. brass photo-etch surround (a great source of scrap shim) and drilling a hole in one end. It was then threaded on my piercing saw blade, trapped in the vice and the opening cut in with one all round pass of the piercing saw.  Quick clean up to the lines with Swiss files and a rub down with 800 grit, saw the frame done.  Then the prism was filed on the edge of a bit of 1/4" Perspex and that was trimmed off with just enough parallel to hold in the vice.  The rebate to sit in the frame was filed in with my sharpest square file. Very careful use of superglue held the two together.  Once it's fitted in a deck plank I will have built a wee box under it, so should it leak, the water can go no further than a tiny space beneath the prism.

Finally, tiny screw marks were impressed with a very useful tool I bought for making rivet marks on the foiling of model aircraft panels. I got 2 for 4 quid from ScaleModels, Ltd., an internet seller of goodies.

 

I put a standard knife next to this and the decklight to give some sense of scale.

 

Cheers,

Martin

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Keith, 

I'm as tight as a duck's derriere, so in the absence of any spare blades that one gets constantly sharpened. I have a large diamond dust stone which I used to use to hone my scrapers when I was a clay modeller for the Germans (mainly).

 

I have a link to the company's tools, but you may have to get in touch with them as I can't see that item on their list.

https://www.scalemodelshop.co.uk/accessories/tools/other-tools.html?infinite=true&

 

Cheers,

Martin

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