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What do you use to mount your plans for viewing while building?

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I hang them on the wall.   As needed, I'll copy or scan relevant areas and then put them back on the wall.  The copies/scans are used at the workbench.

"The shipwright is slow, but the wood is patient." - me

Current Build:                                                                                             
Past Builds:
 La Belle Poule 1765 - French Frigate from ANCRE plans                             Triton Cross-Section   

                                                                                                                       USS Constellaton (kit bashed to 1854 Sloop of War  _(Gallery) Build Log

                                                                                Wasa (Gallery)

                                                                                                                        HMS Sphinx 1775 - Vanguard Models - 1:64               


Non-Ship Model:                                                                                         On hold, maybe forever:           

CH-53 Sikorsky - 1:48 - Revell - Completed                                                   Licorne - 1755 from Hahn Plans (Scratch) Version 2.0 (Abandoned)         



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I agree with Mark, hang, before I start I will use a camera pop pics of small details or large on steps that may cause a problem on all plans , then reduce or enlarge to view better to prevent hopping up and down, then place in order of plan # and have them at hand as I proceed. Sounds convoluted but works with limited space.


Side benefit I learned from Mamoli Victory is some assemblies or rigging in plan 4 is added to in plan 6 and should have been addressed in plan 4, it avoids headaches later know this sounds off the wall but works for me.

John Allen


Current builds HMS Victory-Mamoli

On deck

USS Tecumseh, CSS Hunley scratch build, Double hull Polynesian canoe (Holakea) scratch build



Waka Taua Maori War Canoe, Armed Launch-Panart, Diligence English Revenue Cutter-Marine  Model Co. 


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I picked up a cheap and not at all sturdy drafting board with an adjustable top (for the angle-no height adjustment) at a garage sale - but these things are available at any office supply store.  I put it in the upright position and depending on the plan size I either attach the plans directly to the top or to a larger piece of foam core.  I can keep it right near the workbench and move it as needed.




Kurt Van Dahm






Nautical Research & Model Ship Society of Chicago

Midwest Model Shipwrights

North Shore Deadeyes

The Society of Model Shipwrights

Butch O'Hare - IPMS

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I use either a piece of plywood or foam core board. Both are easy to move around and plans can be taped or clipped to them. I lean the plans against the wall behind my desk or place them on the floor, depending on how I'm using them. I'm very cramped for space and this works fine. If I had more space, I like Kurt's approach.

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I scan the plans one section at a time, then combine them into a single file. Then import them into my CAD program. The Cad lets me adjust size to correct any distortion, and redraw any sections that are not clear, or slightly different on different sheets. it also allows me to draw any additional details I might make, as well as print any section I need during construction.


The originals get rolled up, and stored in a cardboard or plastic tube, for safe keeping.

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When my hobby area was in the wood shop I would just pin them all to the wall. It was nice to have all of them out to reference. When I moved upstairs when the Goat Locker was completed I have dry wall and my walls are all taken up by my plaques so no room to pin. I have read a couple of ideas I am going to implement. (1) I like the idea of copying and putting in a folder. (2) I like the idea of a adjustable drafting board. Thank you all for the suggestions.


Jim Rogers


Damn the Torpedoes , Full speed ahead.   Adm David Farragut.

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For space reasons I tend to work on models for which the plan at the model-scale fits onto an A4-sheet. If needed, I clip the plans onto a cheap A4 drafting board (hardboard with clips) that I can toss around the workshop. The original plans would be on the computer anyway.



panta rhei - Everything is in flux



M-et-M-72.jpg  Banner-AKHS-72.jpg  Banner-AAMM-72.jpg  ImagoOrbis-72.jpg
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  • 2 weeks later...

These are a lot better than what I do, which is spread them on my kitchen table, kitchen island, or even the floor :(



Current Wooden builds:  Amati/Victory Pegasus  MS Charles W. Morgan  Euromodel La Renommèe  


Plastic builds:    SB2U-1 Vindicator 1/48  Five Star Yaeyama 1/700  Pit Road Asashio and Akashi 1/700 diorama  Walrus 1/48 and Albatross 1/700  Special Hobby Buffalo 1/32


Completed builds :  Caldercraft Brig Badger   Amati Hannah - Ship in Bottle  Pit Road Hatsuzakura 1/700   Hasegawa Shimakaze 1:350

F4B-4 and P-6E 1/72  Accurate Miniatures F3F-1/F3F-2 1/48  Tamiya F4F-4 Wildcat built as FM-1 1/48  Special Hobby Buffalo 1/48

Citroen 2CV 1/24 - Airfix and Tamiya  Entex Morgan 3-wheeler 1/16


Terminated build:  HMS Lyme (based on Corel Unicorn)  


On the shelf:  Euromodel Friedrich Wilhelm zu Pferde; Caldercraft Victory; too many plastic ship, plane and car kits


Future potential scratch builds:  HMS Lyme (from NMM plans); Le Gros Ventre (from Ancre monographs), Dutch ship from Ab Hoving book, HMS Sussex from McCardle book, Philadelphia gunboat (Smithsonian plans)

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  • 2 weeks later...

Stapled to the sill plate above the concrete basement wall, or for small plans, buried under the project materials on the bench. 




"If they suspect me of intelligence, I am sure it will soon blow over, ha, ha, ha!"

-- Jack Aubrey



Yankee Hero, Fannie Gorham, We’re Here, Dapper Tom (x3), New Bedford Whaler, US Brig Lawrence (Niagara), Wyoming (half hull), Fra Berlanga (half hull), Gokstad Viking Ship, Kate Cory, Charles Morgan, Gjoa

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               Antonio C. Mendez (a scratch builder extraordinaire in Mexico) was a man after my own heart in that he was very adept at making his own tools and jigs out of whatever was at hand.  He often took one tool and converted it into another; like making an old rotary shaver into a ropewalk, or an old pencil sharpener into a miniature precision planer.

               That was the mindset I used to come up with my plan holder.  I had an old no longer used adjustable clothes drying rack that I took apart and remounted onto the side of my assembly table with a few spring clamps used for hanging brooms and mops.  As you can see, it can be very easily adjusted or removed without tools.  If I have a larger plan sheet to mount, I can raise the cross bar, attach an extension to the bar, or both. Being in a wheelchair, my reach is very limited, so having it within easy reach was very important to me.

By the way, Antonio wrote a book titled William Frederick’s (1874) Scale Journey: A Scratchbuilder’s Evolutionary Development, in which he provides detailed info with many photos and drawings describing his techniques.  I would highly recommend getting his book, as it’s full of ideas for model ship scratch builders.








“You’ve just got to know your limitations”  Dirty Harry

Current Builds:  Modified MS 1/8” scale Phantom, and modified plastic/wood hybrid of Aurora 1:87 scale whaling bark Wanderer.

Past Builds: (Done & sold) 1/8” scale A.J. Fisher 2 mast schooner Challenge, 1/6” scale scratch built whaler Wanderer w/ plans & fittings from A.J. Fisher, and numerous plastic kits including 1/8” scale Revell U.S.S. Constitution (twice), Cutty Sark, and Mayflower.

                  (Done & in dry dock) Modified 1/8” scale Revell U.S.S. Constitution w/ wooden deck and masting [too close encounter w/conc. floor in move]

Hope to get to builds: MS 3/16” scale Pride of Baltimore II,  MS 1/2” scale pinky schooner Glad Tidings,  a scratch build 3/16” scale  Phantom, and a scratch build 3/16" scale Denis Sullivan.

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