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18th Century English Longboat by Blue Ensign - Model Shipways - 1:48 Scale


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18th Century English Longboat by Blue Ensign - MS 1:48 Scale.

The second of the Model shipways kits which I am moving straight onto whilst I'm in the mood, and hoping to improve on my Pinnace build.

As with the Pinnace I have 'previous' with this kit having already scratched a 1:64 scale version for my Pegasus build, from Chuck's plans.

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It was quite small with an hull length just shy of 4" so one might think a larger kit should prove easier. Not necessarily, I found I had more trouble with the 1:24 scale kit Pinnace than the scratched 1:64 version.

I will use the kit provided false keel and bulkheads, but this time around I will replace the stem and keel with Boxwood. My aim is to otherwise not use any of the provided kit wood.

The hull will be planked with Boxwood strip, slightly thinner than the provided Basswood, but this should be less problematic on the smaller Longboat than it proved to be on the much larger Pinnace.

I now need to get the preparatory work done before I start assembly.

 

B.E.

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Cheers Guys, :)

Work begins cutting out the replacement stem and keel in Boxwood. The kit parts provide the templates.

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The false keel is prepped  with the bearding  lines cut in and the 'false' rabbet carried up to the stem.

One of the problems I found with the Pinnace kit was the softness of the Basswood stem, making it susceptible to dinks and scarring.

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The false keel is fairly fragile and I managed to break off the top part whilst trial fitting the stem. At least the Boxwood stem will be more robust than the Basswood version.

This is the time to also renew my sanding sticks and prepare a simple building board to secure the keel.

 

B.E.

 

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With the keel proper added the assembly can be secured in the simple building board, and the process of adding the bulkheads can begin.

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I always start by fixing the centre bulkhead and then work fore and aft to ensure they are all lined up and set square to the keel.

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I use two Engineers Squares to check each Bulkhead is vertical and square to the keel, and mini levels for the horizontal line across the top.

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With the bulkheads in place I stick two bracing strips across the tops to help brace the bulkheads against the fairing process.

The block on the top is to secure the boat inverted in a vice.

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Nothing fancy about the building board, just sufficient to hold the keel and stem in place.

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Fairing has just started in this shot, I don't bother to remove the char at this stage, it will clear soon enough and helps to show the fairing line.

 

B.E.

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B.E.,

 

Very nice new project

 

PS: I started laughing ---  and hoping to improve on my Pinnace build. so you wrote.

 

An impossibility for sure - Not speaking of your skills --- members will understand (:-)

 

Happy to be, again, at your shipyard.

 

Cheers,

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Thank you Michael, kind of you to say so, but I was definitely thinking of my skills:D

 

Time to think about planking.

The kit provides Limewood planks of ⅛" strips which equates to 3.2mm. I will be using Boxwood strips of 3.4mm. The kit strips are of 1/32" thickness,( 0.79mm) my Boxwood stuff is a nominal 0.6mm.

I would have liked a tad thicker but the required lengths are fairly short, and they will (should) be fairly easy to manipulate.

I added the transom piece, but to provide more security I drilled and pinned this piece thro' into the False keel.

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The sheer line was marked off  on the bulkheads and a sheer line template made  to form the sheer on the top planking strip.

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There is not a lot of room for clamping the strips during glueing on this little model. I use an assortment of modified spring clips, modified clothes pegs, and mini bulldog clips.

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Not a lot of pressure is applied using these but it is sufficient providing the planks are properly  wet/heat  shaped to remove tension.

I use a good quality pure pva with a five minute grab.

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The first two strakes below the sheer  went on without problem, and these add greatly to the stability of the hull especially the transom board.

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I then turn my attention to the Garboard strakes. For these I use 4.5mm wide strip.

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Planking will now continue to completion.

 

B.E.

 

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Thanks for your support guys. :)

Planking is now completed.

I planked alternatively from keel and Gunwale with the aim of getting the final strake  just below the waterline level.DSC01206.thumb.JPG.c52ca3574c8c23659c2d58f856225fa2.JPG

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Worked out fairly evenly along the hull for the final spiled plank.

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The final plank shape was marked on tape over the hull and transferred to a broader plank to cut out.

It was then a case of sanding/scraping by degrees to fit it along the hull.

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Final strips in place.

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The hull now needs fine sanding and a little fettlin'  to fill any hairline cracks along the plank joints.

Relieved that this part of the build is completed, still not overjoyed with the planking, but it has turned out somewhat better than the Pinnace in that there is greater thickness of material left on the hull at this stage, just as well perhaps as the starting thickness was only 0.6mm.

 

I will now spend some time cleaning up the hull before I remove the bulkhead centres.

 

B.E.

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Looking very nice BE, the run of the planks looks great.  Now you are able to compare, do you think the pinnace is just fundamentally more challenging because of its shape, or was it simply your recent experience that allowed you to complete this more satisfactorily?

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Thanks Steve and Jason.

A bit of a tricky question Jason, no doubt after a six year absence of hull planking I was ring rusty when I started my Pinnace and following on immediately with the Longboat I did find it easier, particularly in relation to having a better appreciation of the necessary plank shapes.

I think the Pinnace is a tad more difficult with its finer lines and greater length, and in retrospect I think I should have made the Longboat first, not that I think I made a particularly good planking job on the Longboat even with it being a second bite at the cherry.

I did make things somewhat harder for myself by using very fine Boxwood strip (0.6mm thick) which leaves very little room for sanding adjustments.

 

I took these two builds on as deliberate warm up to Chuck's Cheerful cutter, and I'm going to have to seriously raise my planking game before I start, but at least I have the correct Boxwood timber sizes for that build. :rolleyes:

 

B.E.

 

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Thank you Guys,

Moving on...

I used my etched micro saw blade in a scalpel handle to remove the bulkhead centres, mostly went well but a couple of frame extensions broke off above the sheer; easily fixed tho'.

For sanding down the frames I used my minicraft drill to remove the bulk of the material and continued with  sanding sticks.

The frame extensions are soft and I simply snipped them off above the sheer and then sanded smooth.

At this stage the hull feels quite fragile, and soft handling is a must.

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The cap rails I cut from some 1.5mm Boxwood sheet having made a card template.

These were then glued into place and the sanding process  begins.

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The sheer of the Longboat is evident in this shot.

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Chuck indicates that along the sheer the rail should be 3/32" or slightly wider or around 2.38mm overall. Thus far I have managed to get the rail width down to around 3.5mm, except for the flare at the bow, so I've a way to go. Similarly the frames are still a wip with more fining and finishing required.

 

The basic hull is now complete, which is a great relief, but I see a fair amount of time is still required to address the deficiencies in the finish before I move on.

Regards,

 

B.E.

 

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Cheers Martin, and thanks for the likes guys. :)

Sand and check, sand and check, with the Longboat I resolved to reduce the frames to a finer profile than I did with the Pinnace, but the danger is that the finished job is quite fragile, and unlike the Pinnace there is no internal panelling to brace the hull, although there will still be the risers.

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I have now got the capping rail down to around 2.8mm  and it looks about right to my eye bearing in mind that the thole pins will need to be inserted.

 

The Footwalings are then put into place using Boxwood strip.

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For the stern and bow platforms a thin card template is used to get the fit and I then pva the Boxwood planks directly onto this, cut out the notches and the jobs done.

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I simulated nail heads in the footwalings by the use of yard brush bristles inserted into 0.5mm micro drill holes.

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The bow platform slopes to aft which is not really clear on the kit instruction photo's, but is apparent on the plan, and it needs to be low enough to allow the risers to pass over.

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At this point I also drilled micro holes (0.5mm) in the hull for the treenails. I will simulate these with coloured filler.

The hull exterior can then be cleaned up.

 

B.E.

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Raising the Risings

This is a crucial part of fitting out the boat. The Risings support the thwarts, and if they are not level each side of the hull the thwarts will clearly not be horizontal, something that will be instantly be apparent and this will spoil the whole effect.

I have used the kit provided Limewood strip, but I have faced it with Boxwood which provides a smooth clean surface.

Note:

The kit instructions indicate use of 5/32" strip (3.97mm) but the plan shows a narrower width of 2.5mm.

I have gone with the wider stuff not least because of the Windlass fitting.

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A simple jig is used to mark the upper line of the Risings along the frames, and one side is glued into place. Once set the other side can be temporarily pegged into place along the adjacent line and temporary thwarts used to check the alignment.

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Satisfied with the second Rising position, it too is glued into place.

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The knee at the bow is pre-cut in the kit, but I replaced it with a Boxwood version. At this point I also added the locker front in the stern sheets.

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I forwent the pleasure of scribing decorative lines along the Risings, but they will be added to the Thwarts.

I will next be looking at the waterline.

B.E.

 

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