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Chuck

HMS Winchelsea - 1764 - Scratch by Chuck (1/4" scale) - version two

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sterndrawing.jpg

Welcome to the Winnie project.   With the barge almost complete I am starting work on the Winchelsea once again.

 

But yes I am starting over again.  Many of you might wonder why I would do such a thing.  There are several good reasons actually.  Let me explain.

 

- About 3 years ago during a flood in my workshop,  the 1st Winnie was severely damaged.  Although not submerged the humidty and moisture cause the planking at the bow to open up like a banana being peeled back.   I did fix it as best I could but I will never be as happy with it now.

 

- It has been a long time since I first designed the project and I have learned a great deal since then.    In fact,  I have already made numerous adjustments to the design which will make this model easier to build this time around.  After watching so many folks build the Confederacy kit, the Syren and yes even watching Rusty build the Winnie alongside me....I was able to identify several key areas as trouble spots.   I have since developed new design concepts to make constructing these areas less troublesome and easier all around.

 

- Over the past several years...5 or 6 actually, I have discovered more info and facts about the Winnies appearance appearance.  This includes finding the original draft of the Winnie herself.  I originally used the drafts of her sisters to make the design.  Although very very close,  there are differences and I have made all of the required updates.  I found this plan in Sweden of all places.  I probably could have just continued and nobody would have noticed....but I would have known what the differences were.  Better to do it right!!!

Winchelseaoriginal draft small.jpg

- Lastly,  as all of you know,  this will be a commercial project of some sort.  Probably like Cheerful with a starter package and many mini-kits.   This project is so much larger than Cheerful and a frigate of this size would be very expensive to model.  I wanted to ensure that as many folks who want to build her can give it a try.   To use Boxwood or Pear for a project of this size would run into the thousands possibly and be very costly to manufacture as laser cut parts.   I was even toying around with building her in 1/4" scale.  I still do really want to.   But some close friends talked me out of it for good reason.  Anyway....the new version will NOT be made of Boxwood or Swiss pear.  Instead it will be made out of less expensive materials where I could write about the techniques to finish the wood etc.  I think it would benefit others to see a scratch model built from something other than costly boxwood and with some care it can look wonderful.

 

 

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So lets get right to it....

 

The first step is to assemble the nine pieces that make up the stem.  The photo below shows two stem examples.   The example on the right is completed and made from Cherry.   Its a beautiful wood and and wonderful to work with.   All that was needed was to sand it smooth and apply a finish of Wipe On Poly.   This stem assembly has not yet been tapered however but I wanted to show you guys the two woods I am using and what they will look like.  The stem is 3/16" thick but will need to be tapered thinner as it narrows towards the forward side of the stem.  That will be done in the next update when I add the gammoning knee.

 

stem.jpg

 

The example shown above on the left was made from identical laser cut parts.  Of course you can scratch these parts and cut them out with a scroll saw....but I am assuming many will be starting with the starter package.  These nine pieces are all laser cut and absolutely no sanding is required to remove the laser char on each piece before assembly.   The pieces are precision cut so they fit well.  Maybe some minor tweaks here and there but if you sand them they will certainly not fit so nicely together.  

 

The elements were glued together with yellow glue.  I used Tite-Bond.   To use CA on these parts with be frustrating as the wood would soak it right up and it wont hold the parts together well.  The laser char is perfectly fine with the tite-bond.  In fact the char does an excellent job of simulating tarred seams as you can see in the final photo.  I found it easier to build these into two parts first.  The larger stem assembly of six parts.  Just dry fit the pieces first.  Then glue them together after you tweak any small areas to get a really tight fit.   Then the second assembly of three parts was made the same way.  You can see the two parts above.  I sanded the two edges where these will be joined just a little bit to ensure a tight fit once again and then these were joined to make the finished stem.

 

stem1.jpg

The photo above shows both stems completed but not yet tapered.  I think the finish on both look really good and the example on the left looks exactly like the more expensive boxwood.  But its not.  In fact, boxwood is 5 times more expensive than this wood.

 

The photo below shows my boxwood stem made for the version one Winnie.   I really cant tell the difference at all.  The new version actually has less wood grain showing and is completely smooth.  No blotches or fuzziness.  I now must decide which wood to use.  I can only build one.   But maybe I know who might build one using the other wood alongside me as I work up version 2 of the Winnie.

 

correctedstemknee.jpg

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Nope not cedar....I have no idea when this project will be ready for prime time.   But I am working on it exclusively from this point.   At least once the barge gets done.  This project is getting my full attention.  I am not ready to name the wood yet.   I want to experiment more and get the project going a bit first.  I will be making it available in both woods when its ready.  

 

Here is a another shot of both stems.  Cherry version on right.  I have leaned them against my now dusty Cheerful model.   Cheerful as you know is made from 100% boxwood.   I am really liking this new wood and hopefully as I get further along I will declare victory and just start using it all the time.  But I am not ready to take that plunge yet.   Rather than get folks hopes up about a cheap alternative I want get some of the planking done and have a look. 

 

I thought yellow cedar would do the trick a few months back but it just wasnt to be.   Its beautiful wood dont get me wrong.  But with the recent trade wars with Canada...the yellow cedar has sky-rocketed in price lately.   Originally I could buy the premium stuff for $9 a board foot.   It now sells for close to 15 or $16.   Its not any cheaper than boxwood now which I have been able to get for $20 per board foot in 12/4 billets.  But the look-a-like wood I made the stem from is $4-$5 a board foot for the really premium stuff.  So fingers crossed.:D

 

twostems.jpg

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This is going to be fun to watch progress. My Cheerful kit and all its subkits still live in the original shipping package waiting for the skill to improve. This one will probably do the same for a couple of years until I'm ready for it. Of course the barge will have to fit in somewhere. 

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Chuck,

 

I've seen your original Winnie first hand it's a beauty. I'm sure that Winnie "Version Two" will be every bit as nice and probably top it. I'm looking forward to the build and also hearing about those design changes you plan on making.

 

Your off to a great start!

 

Mike

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Hi Chuck - 

 

Looking forward to watching your artistic and engineering talents on display once again.  If those stem pieces fit together as well as you describe, you have taken laser cutting and kit making to the next level.  Thank you.

 

Dan

 

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16 hours ago, Tigersteve said:

What a great opportunity to make another planking video!😄

Steve

Another vote for a planking video. The results are amazing and you make it look fairly easy. 

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Great to see you restart the Winchelsea Chuck, it's one of the frigates I intend to build one day, Pellew commanded her before the Indy, and I want to build all his ships before I go.

 

ben

Edited by Trussben

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The stem assembly is now completed. I made another new one because the last version got to dirty.  The stem was tapered as it worked its way forward to about 3/32" thick.  Then the gammoning knee was added which is made in two sections.   This was added to the assembly with titebond. Once completed I applied a wipe on poly finish.  Today I cut all of the bulkheads for the reboot.  I will be assembling the bulkhead former next along with the keel pieces.  You can see how I didnt clean the laser char off the inside edge yet.  This was on purpose because I want to see how it fits onto the bulkhead former with rabbet strip first.  I try to avoid sanding the edges that connect to other pieces until I can see how they are going to fit together.

 

stemfinished.jpg

And dont forget a Cherry version below which you will see Rusty and Mike continue building.  Cherry parts laser cut for the stem being test fit.  When assembling pieces like these which are like a puzzle, you should never sand any laser char off them.  It will complicate the precise fit of the pieces.  There is really no need to because they fit tightly together.  You know how the laser cuts on an angle rather than at a 90 degree cut.  I can work this to our advantage by simply flipping some of the parts so the angle of the cut fits tightly rather than have a gap on one side.  Its a simple yet strategic tip and I have no idea why other MFGs dont do it regularly.  I guess they havent figured it out yet. :P  And if you use tite bond on a laser cut edge it has no effect on the strength of the bond.  At least I dont see any.  All of the joints shown in my completed stem above were not touched....That is the laser cut edge with char and all.  I just glued them all together carefully.

stem2.jpg

Chuck

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Great to see you working again on Winnie, Chuck. Your use of cherry and that mysterious lighter wood has really sparked my interestB) I got some cherry from hobbymill way back for my project and was having second thoughts about using it, but seeing the beautiful result of your cherry stem renewed my confidence in this wood:)

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I’m so glad you answered the question of why the original Winnie build went completely off the radar Chuck.  Been scratching my head over that for months.

Also delighted to see you are back with a new plan for this beautiful frigate.

Is Rusty going to be building along with you on this one?

 

Dave

 

 

Edited by SawdustDave

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